Sports Shorts

Football child sexual abuse report: ‘a dark day for the beautiful game’

News and reactions from the world of sport, featuring a £250,000 bet cash out and F1’s fastest street circuit



FA chief issues ‘heartfelt apology’ to abuse survivors 

An independent review of historical child sexual abuse in football has found that the English Football Association (FA) “did not do enough to keep children safe”.

The four-year review by Clive Sheldon QC, which was published in a 707-page report, described the FA as having “significant institutional failings for which there is no excuse”. A total of 62 survivors of abuse and 157 other individuals gave evidence to the investigation, which focused on the abuse of children between 1970 and 2005.

On a “dark day for the beautiful game”, FA chief executive Mark Bullingham offered a “heartfelt apology” to the survivors. In a statement he added: “They will never forget what has happened to them, and this report will now ensure the game will never forget either.”



‘Olympig’: Tokyo organisers hit by another resignation 

Hiroshi Sasaki, the creative chief of the Tokyo Olympics, has resigned after calling female comedian Naomi Watanabe an “Olympig”. After suggesting that the plus-size entertainer could wear pig ears at the opening ceremony, Sasaki issued an apology and admitted his comments were a “huge insult" to her. 

It’s the latest scandal to hit the organisers of this summer’s games. Last month the president of the organising committee, Yoshiro Mori, also quit after making sexist remarks and saying that women talk too much.


Formula 1 

F1 Saudi Arabian GP Jeddah Street Circuit

‘Fastest street track in F1 history’ is unveiled 

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in December will take place on the “fastest street track in Formula 1 history”. Drivers will enjoy average speeds of more than 250km/h on the Jeddah Street Circuit, which will feature 27 corners and be 6.175km in length - the second-longest on the calendar. 

Located in Jeddah’s Corniche area, F1 says the ultra-fast circuit “skirts the Red Sea and encircles a lagoon, and with three potential DRS zones and an evening start time, it should produce spectacular racing under floodlights”.

The F1 Saudi Arabian GP will be held on 5 December. 



Chelsea boss Tuchel: no one will want to play us

After knocking Atletico Madrid out of the Champions League Chelsea will go into tomorrow’s quarter-final draw feeling confident of beating anyone. In the round of 16 second leg Thomas Tuchel’s side defeated the Spaniards 2-0 on the night to secure a 3-0 aggregate win. 

Speaking ahead of the draw Tuchel is “pretty sure no one wants to play against us”. He said “it’s a big step, but no need to be afraid, we take what we get and prepare as best as possible”.

English clubs Chelsea, Man City and Liverpool will feature in the last eight alongside Borussia Dortmund, PSG, Porto, Real Madrid and holders Bayern Munich. The draw starts at 11am UK time.


Horse racing 

Punter wins at least £250,000 on £5 acca bet

A £5 accumulator bet placed last summer is set to earn a punter at least £250,000 today. Paul Dean’s five-horse wager began with two winners at Royal Ascot last June and in this week’s Cheltenham Festival he has won two out of three bets so far. 

Dean was in line for a potential £511,000 payday if hot favourite Envoi Allen wins the Marsh Novices’ Chase at 1.20pm. However, he has decided not to risk it all and taken a partial cash out with bookie Betfair. If Envoi Allen triumphs at Cheltenham Dean will win £300,000, but if the horse is beaten he will take home £250,000. 

“So after celebrations last night, four hours sleep, an hour’s walk at 5am, I’ve decided to take a partial cash out offer of 300 Envoi/250 the field,” he tweeted. “With other bets my position on the race is £322,000 Envoi or £250,000 the field.”


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