Gattellari knocked out in 13th round


After being examined by the medical officer for the fight. Dr J. J. McGirr, Gattellari telephoned his mother at Bonnyrigg, telling her tearfully in Italian “I’m O.K.”

Dr McGirr said later that Gattellari had not been badly injured, but was very upset.

Gattellari recovered enough to smile when a small band of loyal fans were found waiting outside the dressing-room.

They crowded around his car offering him consolation as he left the Showground.

The end for the little Australian-Italian champion came three parts of the way through unlucky round thirteen.

After being knocked down twice earlier in the round, Gattellari was defenceless as the tough Italian calmly unleashed a barrage of hard blows.

Cheers for “Salvatore”

Gattellari went down, spreadeagled, near the ropes and the American referee, Harold Valan, did not finish the count when it was obvious that the Australian could not continue.

Valan and the handlers of both boxers crouched around Gattellari with concern as he lay on the floor.

After about five minutes of attention in his corner, Gattellari recovered to grasp Burruni by the face with both hands in congratulation.

“The second time Rocky dropped after a flurry of punches and was practically helpless.”Credit:Staff photographer

A big crowd of about 20,000, many of whom were members of Sydney’s Italian community, paid up to £10 a seat to watch the fight.

On the knockout of Gattellari they rushed the ringside, and climbed on chairs yelling excitedly “Salvatore, Salvatore.”

They kept up the chant until Burruni was bundled out of the ring by 10 policemen, who shielded him as they forced a passage through the milling crowd.

One Italian girl, screaming “Salvatore,” climbed over the backs of people nearby to force a necklace of shells on to Burruni.

The fight was billed for the world flyweight championship and a large silver belt was strapped around Burruni’s waist after his win.

However, the title is in dispute because the World Boxing Council claims it has stripped the Italian of his title.

Organisers believe they will gross about £45,000 from the gate.

The two fighters were guaranteed their payment before the fight. It is believed that Burruni will receive about £23,000 and Gattellari £7,000.

Gattellari knocked out.

Gattellari knocked out. Credit:Staff photographer

Mrs. Gattellari consoles her son after the fight.

Mrs. Gattellari consoles her son after the fight.Credit:Staff photographer

It was a hard-fought, exciting fight with blood being drawn by both boxers.

It was the Italian community’s night.

The Italians arrived in excited, buzzing droves from 5 p.m. onwards, and they kept pouring into the grounds up to start of the contest at 9.15 p.m.

They packed the bleachers, which in this case were the Showground stands.

The fight last night had the traditional ballyhoo of the championship contest.

The fighters were led into the ring from their dressing-rooms under the Suttor Stand by the Australian and Italian flags and guards of honour formed by R.S.L. youth groups.

The tiny boxers could hardly be seen among the boys of the honour guard.

The Italian anthem “Fratelli D’ltalia” (Brothers of Italy) and then “Advance Australia Fair” were played as the boxers entered the ring.

Gattellari scored well in the early rounds, but as the fight progressed, it became obvious that the heavily muscled Italian was the stronger.

The crowd roared encouragement to Gattellari in the twelfth round when he opened a cut on the side of Burruni’s left eye.

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But this seemed a spur to Burruni who launched a vicious attack from the beginning of the thirteenth round.

Gattellari went down on his knees from a hard right for a short count early in the round and soon after he was knocked down again to his hands and knees.

Burruni was quoted as a 5-4 on favourite before the fight started.

Some big bets, including one of £1,000, were reported on Burruni.

After the fight, Burruni’s manager, Umberto Branchini, said they would go home to sleep last night.

Tonight, after visiting the trots at Harold Park, they would probably celebrate at King’s Cross, he said.

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Rafael Nadal beats Diego Schwartzman, moves into French Open final for 13th time


Rafael Nadal is just one win away from all kinds of history after moving into the men’s French Open final with a 6-3, 6-3, 7-6 (7-0) semi-final victory over Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman.

The Spaniard now awaits either world number one Novak Djokovic or rising Greek star Stefanos Tsitsipas in the final.

In that match the Spanish world number two will be chasing a record-equalling 20th grand slam singles title, as he seeks to tie longtime rival Roger Federer.

Should Nadal win it will also mark his 100th career victory at Roland Garros and a 13th title at the claycourt grand slam — seven more than Swedish great Bjorn Borg, who retired after lifting the Coupe des Mousquetaires six times in his career.

In 12 appearances in the final, Nadal has never been beaten and never been extended beyond four sets.

Nadal, who lost to Schwartzman just a fortnight ago in Rome, reversed that result with ease as he completed his march to the final without dropping a set.

The Spaniard partially credited world number 14 Schwartzman for helping him to perform at a higher level.

“I know against Diego it is very difficult,” Nadal said when asked if the loss in Rome helped him.

“Two weeks ago I lost in Rome but I am happy with the way I have been improving and today was a very positive match for me.

Diego Schwartzman is just the latest player to be left frustrated by Rafael Nadal at Roland Garros.(AP: Michel Euler)

Schwartzman, playing his first grand slam semi-final, had two break points in the opening game but Nadal saved both to win the game after battling for 14 minutes.

The Spaniard went on to break the Argentine twice in each of the first two sets.

The duo traded service breaks in the third set before Nadal aced the tiebreak without losing a point.

His form throughout the match was sublime as he rattled off 38 winners to Schwartzman’s 24 and converted on six of nine break points.

The performance left Australian doubles great Mark Woodforde, who was on commentary, speechless.

“It really does take my breath away that possibly the greatest of all time… he gets into these moments that you think surely there will be a chink, but he responds so quickly and decisively,” Woodforde said of the performance, especially in the third set tie-break.

“Wow, just wow.”

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Penrith keep Parramatta tryless as they march to their 13th straight win


Win No.14 should be a formality for Penrith when they head to North Queensland next week.

Dylan Edwards was excellent, as was pint-sized winger Brian To’o and Mansour. The back three ran for more than 700m combined, which was almost expected given the weight of possession.

Unheralded front-rower James Fisher-Harris was also outstanding as he went up against former teammate Reagan Campbell-Gillard, who was booed with every touch.

Panthers five-eighth Jarome Luai celebrates his try against the Eels on Friday night.Credit:Getty

Penrith fans are entitled to dream big when the finals start.

Coach Ivan Cleary said afterwards: “We had to show plenty of patience. It felt like we dominated field position and had plenty of opportunities and half-chances, but we kept finding a way to shoot ourselves in the foot.

“The try on half-time was critical. To go into the break ahead was a huge confidence boost.”

Penrith played at speed and created more than their share of try-scoring opportunities.

Luai was denied by Blake Ferguson’s thigh and Billy Kikau stopped by the upright late in the game.

Who could seriously keep up with the number of times they targeted the Eels’ right edge of Ferguson and Waqa Blake and went close.

For all the excitement the young Panthers are generating, Parramatta also lost no admirers.

They meet Brisbane and the Wests Tigers in the final fortnight and should wrap up an all-important top-four berth.

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Their defence was nothing short of courageous and outstanding. They made 114 more tackles than ‘Little Brother’.

“We could see the effort and scramble was really good; we just couldn’t keep defending back-to-back sets. At some stage we were going to pay the price,” Eels coach Brad Arthur said.

“I thought our effort was outstanding.”

Parramatta had just 20 per cent of possession to start the game and at one stage were forced to make 57 tackles inside their own 20m compared to just six at the other end of Panthers Stadium.

The blue and gold wall will take some serious good football to crack it come October. Penrith threw everything at them for just three tries.

By the same token, the Eels will need to crank up their attack – and quickly.

Hopefully they will welcome back Reed Mahoney from a shoulder injury next week.

The Panthers lost their own dummy-half Api Koroisau late in the game to concussion.

Mansour received a lovely cut-out ball from Luai to score in the corner just 10 seconds before the break.

And when Cleary slotted the conversion from the sideline, the Panthers had something to show for their first-half domination.

You could only wonder what their mood would have been like had they hit the sheds with nothing to show for.

September-like football had arrived in, er, September.

Mansour thought he had a try in the seventh minute, only for the bunker to rule Stephen Crichton had spilled the ball forward.

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Penrith were unlucky to lose a captain’s challenge with insufficient evidence to overturn a stripping call on Ferguson.

Another potential Panthers’ four-pointer went begging when Moses Leota steamed on to a Koroisau pass and spilled it metres away from the line.

The visitors did a marvellous job to be in the contest – and their perseverance had them go ahead 2-0 through a penalty goal. Clint Gutherson was up-ended by Koroisau, with Andrew Johns describing the penalty on the Nine coverage as ”a soft one”.

Just when the Eels looked ready to hit the sheds with a slender lead, Kane Evans failed to get off Stephen Crichton and gifted Penrith a set re-start. And with enough time to get to the end of their final set, Mansour made Evans and the Eels pay.

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Daniel Ricciardo qualifies 13th as Renault struggle in Spanish Grand Prix qualifying


Aussie F1 star Daniel Ricciardo will have his work cut out for him in Sunday‘s Spanish Grand Prix after a brutally close Q2 elimination sees him well back on the grid.

Ricciardo missed out on Q3 by the narrowest of margins in the second session of qualifying as the Aussie qualified 13th, his worst qualifying of the season and second Q2 elimination.

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But the position doesn‘t show just how close it was with Ricciardo missing out on Q3 by just 0.032 of a second.

McLaren‘s Lando Norris was the lucky driver to claim 10th ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, AlphaTauri’s Daniil Kvyat and Ricciardo.

Red Bull‘s Alexander Albon was also on the edge of qualifying, just 0.003 of a second ahead of Norris.

While Ricciardo would see himself a bit unlucky, it‘s nothing to Vettel, who missed out on a spot in Q3 by just 0.002 seconds.

Former world champion Nico Rosberg put it in context.

“It must be so tough for him mentally now as well,” he said. “To miss out on Q3 by two thousandths of a second from Lando Norris, that‘s like 10cm at the end of the lap. For him, that must be very, very frustrating.

“I think he‘s in one of the most difficult mental challenges of his career at the moment.”

Sky Sports‘ Martin Brundle also felt for the four-time champion as Vettel missed his fourth Q3 of the season.

“What a miserable season the car number five of Sebastian Vettel is having,” Brundle said.

“He just seems to have lost his mojo.”

The usual suspects are once again at the front of the grid with Lewis Hamilton in pole position ahead of Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas, with Red Bull‘s Max Verstappen and Racing Point’s Sergio Perez on the second row.

It puts Hamilton in a strong position historically with 21 of the 29 races in Barcelona have been won from pole position.

It ended a horrible day for Renault with the team seeing both drivers eliminated in Q2, as Esteban Ocon qualified 15th for the Grand Prix following a crash in practice earlier on Saturday.

Late in the practice session, Ocon was red flagged after he crashed, ripping the front wing off his Renault, while trying to avoid the slower car of Haas‘ Kevin Magnussen.

Ocon tried to avoid a collision and turned into the wall in a heavy but bizarre crash, with the Renault driver reportedly checking his mirrors.

WATCH IN THE VIDEO PLAYER ABOVE

The stewards cleared Magnussen of any wrongdoing and labelled it an “unfortunate accident”.

“Magnussen pulled gently off line, having been advised of following traffic on fast laps. At the same time Ocon was also moving to the right to let traffic by and was looking in his mirrors for the cars following,“ the stewards said.

“When he subsequently looked forward, he was surprised to see Magnussen directly ahead of him and swerved to avoid a collision. Both drivers and the stewards agreed that it was an unfortunate accident and that neither driver was to blame.”

The Renault mechanics were able to get the car on the track for qualifying but it wasn‘t enough with Ocon starting well back.

SPANISH GRAND PRIX STARTING GRID

Row 1: Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)

Row 2: Max Verstappen (Red Bull) – Sergio Perez (Racing Point)

Row 3: Lance Stroll (Racing Point) – Alexander Albon (Red Bull)

Row 4: Carlos Sainz (McLaren) – Lando Norris (McLaren)

Row 5: Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) – Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri)

Row 6: Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) – Daniil Kvyat (AlphaTauri)

Row 7: Daniel Ricciardo (Renault) – Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo)

Row 8: Esteban Ocon (Renault) – Kevin Magnussen (Haas)

Row 9: Romain Grosjean (Haas) – George Russell (Williams)

Row 10: Nicholas Latifi (Williams) – Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo)



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