25 Oct 2021

Today's sports news: What you need to know

6:19 am on 25 October 2021

Latest - New Zealand golfer Lydia Ko has finished tied for third at the BMW Ladies Championship in Busan South Korea.

Lydia Ko.


Ko fired one of the best scores of the final round, a course equalling eight under par 64, to finish five shots behind the winner.

A didsappointing opening round appeared to cost Ko any chance of victory.

World No. 2 Jin Young Ko rallied from a four-stroke deficit to defeat fellow South Korean Hee Jeong Lim in a playoff.

It's the 11th career title and fourth this year for the South Korean Ko, who is projected to return to No. 1 when the new world rankings are released.

Meanwhile Josh Geary finished tied for 40th... 12 shots from the winner Jeff Winther of Denmark in the latest European men's event in Spain.

Quartararo wins title

Yamaha's Fabio Quartararo became the first Frenchman to win the MotoGP world championship following a fourth-placed finish in the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Italy as his closest title contender Francesco Bagnaia of Ducati crashed.

Yamaha rider Fabio Quartararo.


Pole sitter Bagnaia was leading Ducati's home race when he crashed with five laps to go, handing Honda's Marc Marquez the race victory and the world title to Quartararo who has an unassailable lead in the standings with two races left.

Quartararo's victory ended nearly a decade of Spanish dominance after Marquez (six championships), Yamaha's Jorge Lorenzo (2012 and 2015) and Suzuki's Joan Mir (2020) won the last nine titles.

Australia's Casey Stoner was the last non-Spanish rider to win a title when he dominated the 2011 season with Honda. Lorenzo, the last Yamaha rider to take the title, was also at Misano to congratulate Quartararo.

Honda's Pol Espargaro finished second and Quartararo looked set to finish on the podium as well, but he was overtaken on the final lap by Enea Bastianini, who moved up from 16th to third on his Avintia Esponsorama.

The Grand Prix was also seven-times premier class champion Valentino Rossi's final race on home soil as the 42-year-old Italian, who finished 10th, bids farewell at the end of the season.


Award for Black Ferns Sevens

The New Zealand women's rugby sevens team has won a prestigious award, recognising them as the best female team to compete at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

New Zealand captain Sarah Hirini after the women's sevens final at Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Tokyo Stadium, Tokyo, Japan on Manday 31st July 2021.

Sarah Hirini Photo: Kenji Demura/Photosport Ltd 2021

The team received the Tokyo 2020 Best Female Team Award virtually at the ANOC (Association of National Olympic Committees) Awards, which were held in Crete this morning NZT.

Team captain and New Zealand Team Te Pou Hapai Wahine (female flagbearer) Sarah Hirini says the team was thrilled to accept the award.

"This is a huge honour for us. It was unreal to win that gold medal and this award just makes that campaign even more special," said Hirini.

"We're really proud of our achievements and success over the last five years and we're excited for what's next."

The women's sevens team claimed it's first ever Olympic gold medal at the Games.

In the final at the Tokyo Games the New Zealanders beat France 26-12 in a commanding performance to seal their spot as Olympic champions. The athletes celebrated with a powerful haka, just one of the ways they incorporate Māori culture into the team and celebrate their mixed heritage.

Real win first El Classico

Real Madrid beat Barcelona 2-1 in the first Clasico of the season in front of 86,422 fans at the Camp Nou after a sensational strike from defender David Alaba and a late goal from Lucas Vazquez gave Carlo Ancelotti's side three points.

Barcelona controlled possession in the first half but Real were lethal on the counter-attack, taking the lead when Alaba started a flowing move with a tackle and finished it at the other end with a left-footed drive from the edge of the box.

Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman brought on Philippe Coutinho at halftime while strikers Sergio Aguero and Luuk de Jong were also thrown on in the second half as they searched for an equaliser.

With seven minutes of injury time added on, Real doubled their lead when Marc-Andre ter Stegen saved a shot from Marco Asensio from another counter-attack but Vazquez pounced on the rebound to score.

Barca got a goal back in the 97th minute when Sergino Dest crossed to the Aguero in the six-yard box and the Argentine tapped in but it proved to be a consolation goal as Real moved provisionally top of LaLiga with 20 points.

Barcelona are five points behind in eighth place.


Mussolini to take the field

The great grandson of former Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini has been named in the Lazio squad for the first time for their Serie A clash with Hellas Verona.

Romano Floriani Mussolini, 18, is part of coach Maurizio Sarri's 23-man group of players for the trip to Verona.

He is the third child of Alessandra Mussolini and husband Mauro Floriani, and great grandson of Benito Mussolini, who was prime minister of Italy from 1922 to 1943 after a fascist coup.

Alessandra is a former member of the European Parliament for Forza Italia and another of Benito Mussolini's granddaughters, Rachele, won a second term as a city councillor in Rome this month.

A minority of Lazio fans, known as "ultras", have links to the far right and banners expressing pride in the fascist movement have been flown at the Stadio Olimpico.


Half marathon record smashed

Ethiopia's Letesenbet Gidey smashed the women's half marathon world record, finishing in one hour, two minutes and 52 seconds at the Valencia Half Marathon.

The 23-year-old Gidey, who is also the world 5,000 metres (14:06.62) and 10,000 metres (29:01.03) record-holder, shaved more than a minute off the previous half marathon mark of 1:04:02 set by Kenya's Ruth Chepngetich this year.

In the men's race, Kenya's Abel Kipchumba made a late charge to win in 58:07 minutes, moving him to sixth on the world all-time list.

Fellow Kenyan Rhonex Kipruto was second in 58:09 and Daniel Mateiko was third in 58:26 as the top seven men finished the World Athletics Elite Label road race inside 59 minutes.