22 Nov 2021

Today's sports news: What you need to know

7:57 am on 22 November 2021

Latest - Germany's Alexander Zverev capped a memorable year by sweeping aside Russian world number two and defending champion Daniil Medvedev 6-4 6-4 to win the ATP Finals, claiming the title for the second time in his career.

Alexander Zverev (GER) waves to fans.


The 24-year-old Zverev, who did not face a single break point in the final, has now won six titles in six finals this year - including Olympic gold in Tokyo and two Masters titles in Madrid and Cincinnati.

Zverev, who also beat world number one Novak Djokovic over the weekend, became only the fourth player to beat the top two players in the world in the semis and final of the season-ending tournament.

Victory was also sweet revenge for Zverev, who lost in three sets to Medvedev in the round robin stage and came into the match having lost his last five meetings against the Russian.

Earlier, French duo Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut won their second ATP Finals doubles title by beating American Rajeev Ram and Briton Joe Salisbury 6-4 7-6(0).


Another title for SVG

Shane van Gisbergen has become the 14th driver in Supercars history to win two or more titles.

New Zealand driver Shane van Gisbergen


Van Gisbergen mathematically clinched the 2021 Supercars Championship in Sydney after Sunday's Race 30 was declared a non-event because of rain.

The 32-year-old New Zealander helped Triple Eight Race Engineering to its ninth drivers' title and first since 2017.

Van Gisbergen helped his squad clinch its 10th teams' title with the Race 29 victory on Saturday night.

Just 25 drivers in over 60 years of championship seasons have won the drivers' title.

He won the drivers' championship on his first attempt as a Triple Eight driver in 2016.

The Kiwi became just the sixth driver in history to win 13 or more races in a season when he dominated the Sydney SuperNight opener.

Phoenix held in opening game

The Wellington Phoenix and Macarthur FC have drawn 1-1 in their opening A-League game in Newcastle.

Gary Hooper of Wellington Phoenix celebrates scoring  a penalty goal


Played in wet and windy conditions at McDonald Jones Stadium after the match had to be moved from Campbelltown Stadium due to an unplayable surface at Macarthur's home ground, Lachlan Rose's 61st-minute strike cancelled out Gary Hooper's first-half penalty to ensure both teams started their seasons with a point each.

The Phoenix offered more threat than Macarthur in the opening half and their efforts were rewarded in the 24th minute when Olyroo Reno Piscopo was upended by James Meredith.

Phoenix coach Ufuk Talay felt a draw was probably a fair result but was upset his team gave up a goal from a set-piece.

"You'd expect them to come out at us in the second half, one-nil down, and we weathered the storm quite well," he said.

"Disappointed to concede a goal through a set-piece like that and then we had a couple of opportunities at the back-end to possibly win it.

"At the end of day I think a draw was a fair result."

Next weekend Wellington will host Western Sydney at their temporary Wollongong base.

England continue to dominate

The England women's rugby team has ended their dominant Autumn campaign with a 89-0 hiding of the USA in Worcester.

England ran in 15 tries.

The world number ones have beaten New Zealand twice and Canada in the past month and have now won 18 in a row.

The result means England have scored 239 points across four games this autumn and conceded 39.

"We rarely play four games in a row so to be able to go out there and perform like that and to keep the tempo that we wanted, is just incredible. The score is just a bonus," England's Abby Dow said.

"It's been a long process but all the training we've been doing is clearly paying off. The depth in our squad has definitely been highlighted. We've been able to see people have their 100th cap and people make their debuts too."

The women's rugby World Cup was postponed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and will be held in New Zealand from Oct. 8 to Nov. 12, 2022.

The Black Ferns ended their European tour with a 29-7 loss to France in Castres yesterday.


Ireland win again

Ireland made it a clean sweep of November test victories as they followed up last weekend's memorable triumph over New Zealand with a more routine 53-7 thrashing of an indisciplined Argentina in Dublin.

After Mateo Carreras caught the hosts napping to give Argentina an early lead, Ireland rattled off 53 unanswered points, with Josh Van der Flier, Andrew Porter and Caelan Doris grabbing first-half tries.

Van der Flier added his second while Pablo Matera was in the sin bin and the floodgates opened after Tomas Lavanini saw red shortly afterwards with Dan Sheehan, Cian Healy and Tadhg Beirne making it seven tries from Ireland's increasingly impressive pack of forwards.

The victory, almost as wide Ireland's opening 60-5 win over Japan, also made it a weekend sweep of wins for the northern hemisphere over their southern counterparts, setting up an exciting 2022 Six Nations in which Ireland should be genuine title contenders.


Warne favours Cummins to take over captaincy

Former Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne said the time is right for fast bowler Pat Cummins to succeed Tim Paine as captain of the test team and blood Josh Inglis as the side's next wicketkeeper.

Paine resigned on Friday after media revelations he had been investigated and cleared over sexually explicit text messages sent to a female former colleague four years ago.

Vice captain Cummins, 28, has taken 164 wickets in 32 test for Australia since making his debut in 2011.

"For me, the time is right to make Pat Cummins captain, something I thought even before the events of Friday unfolded," Warne wrote in Australia's The Daily Telegraph.

Warne, who has previously criticised Paine's captaincy, praised the 36-year-old's leadership after he was appointed captain in place of Steve Smith in the aftermath of the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in 2018.


Morikawa top in Europe

Collin Morikawa overtook Rory McIlroy to win the World Tour Championship in Dubai, making him the first American to finish a season ranked No. 1 on the European golf Tour.

Morikawa, 24, birdied five of the last seven holes and carded a 6-under 66 in the final round to finish at 17 under, three shots ahead of runners-up Matt Fitzpatrick of England and Sweden's Alexander Bjork.

Morikawa, who won the Open Championship in July, easily won the Race to Dubai title as the tour's leading points winner over fellow American Billy Horschel.

"It's special, it's an honor, really, to be the first American to do that on The European Tour to put my name against many, many great Hall of Famers, it's special," Morikawa said. "I get touched up just talking about that."

Northern Ireland's McIlroy, who began the day with a one-shot lead, finished in a tie for sixth place at 12 under. He bogeyed three of the last four holes and turned in a round of 2-over 74.


Ogier wins another title.

Sebastien Ogier won his eighth world rally championship in nine years while the Frenchman's Toyota team clinched the manufacturers' title.

The 37-year-old won the season-ending Monza Rally in northern Italy with Welsh team mate Elfyn Evans, his only title rival, finishing as runner-up after they were separated by just half a second overnight.

Ogier, who will be going part-time with Toyota next season, lived dangerously when he clipped a concrete barrier at the Monza circuit on the last day but escaped damage and clinched his fifth win of the season and 54th of his career

He is the second most successful driver in the sport's history after retired nine-times world champion and compatriot Sebastien Loeb.

Nobody else in any FIA-sanctioned world championship has won as many titles as the two Frenchmen.

Toyota won the manufacturers' battle with 522 points to Hyundai's 463.