Thomas
Hunter at Crikey sports desk writes:

Davis
Cup:
Australia
v
Belarus. When
Lleyton Hewitt
confirmed his availability for the Davis Cup tie starting today against
Belarus, Fitzy was putting more top spin on Lleyton’s form than Rafael
Nadal
could ever add to a forehand. Despite Lleyton
suffering the worst form of his career, getting beaten by everyone and
not winning
a tournament for over a year, Mr Dunlop Volleys declared Lleyton would
be back
at the peak of his game for the tie. Which of course was rubbish.
Lleyton is more than
likely to perform admirably in the tie, today playing world No. 457
Vladimir Voltchkov (although he has been ranked as high as 25) in the
second
singles match. But the real test will come on Sunday, if he has to play
the
dangerous Max Myrni – world singles ranking 51 and No. 3 in doubles –
to secure
the win for his country, and keep the buzzards away from his own career.

Following
in Lauren’s footsteps.
Lauren Jackson’s position as the world’s
pre-eminent female basketballer may be starting to reap some rewards for other
female basketballers in this country, with WNBA teams signing three of Jackson’s
Australian team-mates. As the Herald Sun reports:
“AIS graduate Renae Camino was taken by
the Houston Comets in the second round with 24th pick overall, while Jess Foley
was picked by the Indiana Fever and Marita Payne by the Connecticut Sun.” Camino, in particular, has been labelled the
next Lauren Jackson. Named the 2004/05 WNBL Rookie of
the Year, and selected in the World Junior All Star Team last year, she is
battling a knee injury to be fit for the WNBA tip-off in October.

F1 claims first major scalp for ‘06. Toyota technical director Mike Gascoyne has left the
Toyota Formula One team just three races into the season. After a successful 2005,
Toyota entered 2006 with high hopes, but differences
of opinions on how the team should be run after the disappointing start to this
year’s racing has seen Gascoyne move on. The BBC reports,
Gascoyne was employed by Toyota on the strength of his performance with Jordan,
a team he took from obscurity to success in the late nineties, and then
Renault, a team he had made competitive again by the end of 2003. But not allowed
to push the team in the direction he thought necessary, he and Toyota have
parted company “amicably”. The resignation won’t
leave Gascoyne short of a penny, though. His salary while in the job was a
reported £3.7m ($8.9m AUD) a year.

Peter Fray

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