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Harden Helps Rockets Stay Alive, Beat Warriors 128-115

Houston's James Harden scored a playoff career-high 45 points to lead the Rockets to a start-to-finish 128-115 victory over Golden State on Monday to stave off elimination from the NBA playoffs.

The Rockets scored 45 points in the first quarter — equaling a playoff record — to quickly get on top. They were up by 22 in the second quarter when Warriors star and league MVP Stephen Curry landed on his head in a nasty spill and missed about 12 minutes before returning.

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CSKA Boost Champions League Hopes

CSKA Moscow boosted their bid for Champions League football next season with a 3-0 win over Rubin Kazan on Monday.

A brace by Serbian midfielder Zoran Tozic put the Red Army side on their way to leave them second behind newly-crowned champions Zenit St. Petersburg with one game left.

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Arsenal's Welbeck to Miss FA Cup Final

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger says striker Danny Welbeck is set to miss the FA Cup final against Aston Villa on Saturday.

Wenger confirmed Welbeck's knee problem is likely to rule him out next weekend and could put a question mark over whether the striker will be fit for England's upcoming friendly against the Republic of Ireland in Dublin and the Euro 2016 qualifier away to Slovenia.

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Premier Tests Won't Faze Rising Star Neil

Norwich manager Alex Neil is relishing the prospect of pitting his wits against the best of the Premier League after his remarkable rise reached a new high with promotion at Wembley.

Just nine months ago, Neil was a virtual unknown outside the close-knit Scottish community of south Lanarkshire where he was starting his second full season in charge of minnows Hamilton.

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Venus Williams Ousted from French Open by Sloane Stephens

A loss by Venus Williams in the first round at a Grand Slam is no longer the rarity it once was.

And, as it happens, the woman who beat Williams at the French Open on Tuesday, Sloane Stephens, is making a concerted effort, at her coach's behest, to focus less on who is on the other side of the net.

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Real Madrid Fire Coach Ancelotti

Real Madrid fired their coach Carlo Ancelotti on Monday as the popular Italian paid for a disappointing season without a major trophy.

Ancelotti, 55, had lead Real to their 10th elite European title last season but was sacked after the club finished runners-up to Barcelona in La Liga and lost to Juventus in the semi-finals of this year's Champions League.

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Platini Says Blatter Lied about Quitting FIFA

UEFA president Michel Platini on Monday backed Prince Ali bin al Hussein's bid to unseat Sepp Blatter as FIFA president, accusing the football leader of lying to him about seeking a new term.

Platini said as FIFA's executive gathered in Zurich that the 79-year-old Blatter fears a life of "emptiness" if he loses a vote for the presidency on Friday and that the world body will have no credibility if he remains.

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Alonso Optimistic despite Monaco Retirement

Fernando Alonso remained optimistic about the future Monday despite being forced to retire from Sunday’s Monaco Grand Prix in which his team-mate Briton Jenson Button claimed the struggling McLaren Honda team’s first points of the year by finishing eighth.

The two-time world champion Spaniard was following Button comfortably in ninth through the middle part of the race when he was hit by a mechanical issue that sent him sliding into a run-off area at the Ste Devote corner.

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Clock Ticks but Fortune Smiles for Federer at French Open

There are two distinct sounds when Roger Federer graces the courts of Roland Garros. One is the pop of backhands and forehands kicking up puffs of red clay. The other, getting ever louder, is the scratchy tick of life's clock.

At age 33, with 34 bearing down in August, time is increasingly the enemy to Federer's quest to add to his already record haul of Grand Slam titles.

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Keeping Home-Grown Stars the Key for Lyon

After several years of decline, the future looks bright for Lyon with an exciting young team, a return to the Champions League and the prospect of a move into a new stadium next season.

However, whether the seven-time French champions can maintain their revival will depend on their ability to keep hold of their biggest assets, notably Ligue 1 player of the year Alexandre Lacazette and young player of the year Nabil Fekir.

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