Sarries land prop Du Plessis
RUGBY UNION: Saracens have freshened up their crumbling Premiership title campaign by completing the signing of South African front row forward Petrus Du Plessis, from Nottingham.

The 27-year-old tight-head prop had been lined up to join Sarries for the start of next season but director of rugby Brendan Venter has brought the deal forward due to injuries to Carlos Nieto and Tom Mercey. “We have watched Petrus for some time, and we are delighted to have secured his services,” Venter said.

Barker set for opening showdown
SQUASH: Londoner Peter Barker is looking to make home advantage count when he opens his ISS Canary Wharf Classic campaign tonight against Enfield wildcard entry Adrian Waller.

“It’s time I got some more big wins on the board in 2010,” said the fourth seed, who hails from nearby Limehouse. “It’s a wonderful venue, one of the best in the world. We travel the world but it’s always nice to be on your own doorstep.”

Kauto was ‘lucky to survive’
RACING: Kauto Star’s owner Clive Smith says the horse was lucky to survive his fall during Friday’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.

Paul Nicholls’ charge was 8-11 for a third win in four years but came crashing down four fences from the end.

“It was a terrible fall and we were so lucky to get away with it,” Smith said. “He’s an amazingly lucky horse.”

Smith has also confirmed that Queen Mother Champion Chase flop Master Minded was checked by a vet yesterday.

More Olympics tickets on sale
OLYMPICS: An extra 300,000 tickets for the London 2012 Olympics will go on sale to the public, it has been announced.

The increase brings the total number of tickets to eight million with prices expected to be unveiled in the autumn.

“It’s critical as many tickets as possible end up [with] the public,” said Olympics minister Tessa Jowell.

Ticket information can be obtained by calling the London Olympic Organising Committee (Locog) on 0844 847 2012.