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SPORT | IN BRIEF

Murray shows the way on clay
TENNIS: British No1 Andy Murray eased the pain of his Monte Carlo embarrassment with an impressive victory over Andreas Seppi at the Rome Masters – on the day when world No1 Roger Federer was dumped out.

Murray crashed to German Philipp Kohlschreiber in his last clay-court encounter in Monaco a fortnight ago, but produced a polished display to beat Italian Seppi 6-2, 6-4 last night.

Federer, meanwhile, crashed out to Latvian Ernests Gulbis, who staged a stunning comeback after losing the first set 6-2. Top seed and French Open champion Federer won just 11 per cent of points on his second serve as he slumped 6-1 in the next set before Gulbis broke twice more in the decider.

Second seed Novak Djokovic eased past Jeremy Chardy 6-1, 6-1.

Davis dream nears the end
SNOOKER: Australian Neil Robertson showed no mercy on veteran Steve Davis as he waltzed into a 12-4 lead, needing just one more frame to reach the World Championship semi-final at the Crucible.

Six-time champion Davis, who beat reigning champion John Higgins in the last round, was 7-1 down after the first session and never really recovered.

World No1 Ronnie O’Sullivan came from behind three times to draw level with Mark Selby at 4-4, while 2005 champion Shaun Murphy leads Ali Carter 5-3.

Saints land Warrior Powell
RUGBY UNION: Northampton Saints have completed the signing of Wales scrum-half Ryan Powell from relegated Worcester.

The 29-year-old, who was capped three times by Wales, made 78 appearances for the Warriors since his move from Cardiff in 2006.

Powell said: “It was a great honour to be asked and I was over the moon.”