Nick Mulvenney

Himalayan snowfall hits Olympic torch bid

China's bold plan to take a special Olympic torch to the top of Mount Everest faced a possible setback on Saturday as snow fell on the world's highest mountain. The climbing team has been at 6 500m in advanced base camp or higher for at least two days, waiting for better weather to take the flame to the 8 848m peak.

China to meet Dalai Lama aides amid Tibet tension

China is to hold talks with envoys of the Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism whom it blames for a wave of unrest, state media reported on Friday, as the Olympic flame arrived in Japan. The move comes after concerted pressure from the West on China to talk to the Dalai Lama and marks the first serious step to defuse tensions.

China turns patriotic wrath on Olympic demonstrators

China on Tuesday denounced protesters who upstaged Olympic Games torch relays in London and Paris, with state media saying that saboteurs are bent on wrecking Games goodwill. An international Olympic official also criticised the protests, but said the relay would stay on its round-the-world course.

Security tight as China launches Olympic torch relay

China's president and the country's top athlete launched the Beijing Olympics torch relay on Monday amid cheering, dancing and tight security, marking the symbolic start to a Games overshadowed by activism and unrest in Tibet. Chinese President Hu Jintao lit a cauldron on a red-carpeted rostrum on Tiananmen Square before handing the torch to World and Olympic champion hurdler Liu Xiang.

US retain lead as rivals falter at World Cup

Americans Boo Weekley and Heath Slocum hit a solid three-under-par 69 to retain a one-shot lead over their more fancied rivals after the second-round foursomes at the Golf World Cup on Friday. England topped the leaderboard by two shots midway through the round, but they found the alternate-ball format more taxing and a late bogey dragged them down.

Pollution intrudes on Beijing countdown party

Pollution intruded on celebrations to mark the one-year countdown to Beijing's Olympics on Wednesday when Games chief Jacques Rogge said events might have to be rescheduled if air quality is not up to scratch. The International Olympic Committee president said he was happy with preparations but that some competitions might have to be moved.

Jacquelin leads Asian Open

Frenchman Raphael Jacquelin put himself in position for a wire-to-wire victory at the Asian Open on Saturday, carding a two-under-par 70 to take a one-stroke lead into the final round of the ,3-million event. The 32-year-old mixed four birdies with a couple of bogeys to finish the third round on 11-under, a shot ahead of Australian Scott Hend.

Jacquelin in familiar territory

Raphael Jacquelin fired a second-round three-under-par 69 to open a three-shot advantage at the ,3-million Asian Open on Friday, the Frenchman leading a tournament at the halfway stage for the second week in a row. The 32-year-old, who led by two strokes at the same stage of last week's China Open, made the most of balmy afternoon conditions.

Federer top of the world

World number one Roger Federer underlined his absolute dominance of men's tennis when he routed American James Blake 6-0 6-3 6-4 on Sunday to win the Masters Cup for the third time in four years. The Swiss was beaten by David Nalbandian in last year's final but there was no upset this time.

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