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WGM’s weekend wrap

Written by Ben Blaschke

With the English Premier League season just around the corner, we’re set for an early preview of how two of the big guns might fare when Manchester United face Liverpool in the final of the pre-season Champions Cup in America.

The English giants both eased through their final group games in style over the weekend with United impressing in a 3-1 win over Real Madrid, while new Liverpool signing Rickie Lambert missed a penalty but the Reds still downed AC Milan 2-0. Although all eight sides competing in the tournament have used it as an opportunity to tinker with combinations, there is no doubt these bitter rivals will be going all ought for victory in tomorrow morning’s final.

British Open winner Rory McIlroy has enjoyed another amazing week, coming from three shots behind heading into the final round to win his first World Golf Championship title at the Bridgestone Invitational and reclaim the world number one ranking he lost 18 months ago. Ironically, it was the man who finished runner-up at Royal Liverpool just a few weeks ago, Sergio Garcia, who led into the final round but three consecutive birdies on the first three holes saw McIlroy take the lead early to beat Garcia to the clubhouse by two strokes. His rise to the top of the rankings ended Australian Adam Scott’s 11-week stint at number one.

However, even bigger news was the withdrawal of Tiger Woods halfway through the day’s play after suffering repeated back spasms. Woods has only recently returned from back surgery and this latest setback must pose serious questions over his future in the sport. It also comes just a week after we wrote a story on the 14-time major champion in which we unequivocally stated Woods would not break Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18, which you can read here.

The NSW Waratahs won the Super Rugby title for the first time with the most dramatic of victories in the Grand Final against New Zealand’s Canterbury Crusaders on Saturday – another good result for those who follow our sports betting tips. The Waratahs led 14-0 early but after the Crusaders gradually worked their way back into the game it looked like the home side might suffer a heartbreaking defeat when the Crusaders took the lead 32-30 with less than five minutes remaining. But with a minute to go NSW was awarded a penalty 40 metres out and Bernard Foley’s long range goal gave the Waratahs a memorable 33-32 win.

And the Commonwealth Games have come to an end in Glasgow with England finishing on top of the medal count ahead of Australia, Canada, Scotland and India. Notable results from the final weekend of action included Parupalli Kashyap becoming the first Indian man in 32 years to win badminton gold; Malaysia’s world number 18 duo of Vivian Kah Mun Hoo and Khe Wei Woon prevailing in the women’s doubles; Australia’s Sally Pearson defending her 100 metre hurdles title; and Usain Bolt leading Jamaica to gold in the 4×100 men’s relay.