Happy Birthday – May 25 – Jonny Wilkinson and Demba Ba

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Happy Birthday to Jonny Wilkinson (36) and Demba Ba (30)

Happy birthday to England Rugby, Toulon and British Lions hero Jonny Wilkinson and also to Besiktas striker Demba Ba, 36 and 30 today respectively. 

Regarded as one of the best rugby union players to have graced the game, England fly-half Wilkinson is most famous for his 2003 Rugby World Cup winning drop goal in the last minute of extra time against Australia in the final. He enjoyed a stellar clu career too having played for Newcastle Falcons in the English Premiership for 12 seasons before leading French club Toulon to two Heineken Cups.

Demba Ba enjoyed a successful spell at Newcastle United in the Premier League and completed a move to Chelsea before joining Besiktas for €6 million 18 months later. Born in France, Ba has been a full international for Senegal since 2007 and represented the country at the 2012 Africa Cup of nations.

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On this day: May 25, 2005 – Liverpool’s Champions League miracle in Istanbul

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Liverpool players celebrate their Champions League triumph in Istanbul.

It’s the 10th anniversary of one of the most dramatic and unforgettable European Cup finals ever.

Under manager Rafa Benitez, Liverpool claimed their fifth continental crown after they recovered from 3-0 down at half-time to beat an impressive-looking AC Milan on penalties.

Paolo Maldini opened the scoring early on before a double from Hernan Crespo looked to have put the tie to bed. Not so. Steven Gerrard first headed home to give the Reds hope, Vladimir Smicer’s sweet strike narrowed the gap before Xabi Alonso’s rebounded penalty levelled it up.

‘Keeper Jerzy Dudek became the hero saving Andriy Shevchenko’s crucial spot kick in the shoot-out.

Other memorable events on this day…

1922: Baseball hall of famer Babe Ruth was suspended one day & fined $200 for throwing dirt on an umpire.

1965: Muhammad Ali knocked out Sonny Liston with what some dispute was a ‘phantom punch’ to defend the undisputed world heavyweight title he claimed in their first bout a year earlier.

1981: One-club man Carl Yastrzemski becomes the fourth player to get 3,000 hits for the Boston Red Sox.

1994: The NHL’s New York Rangers beat the New Jersey Devils in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

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On The Radar: Dubai Duty Free Darts, NSL Basketball

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Power: Phil Taylor returns to the UAE for the Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters 2015.

We look at the sporting events lighting up the UAE over the next seven days including Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters, President's Cup semi-finals and National School League Basketball.

If we have missed anything please give us a nudge on Twitter using #360Fans @Sport360.

DUBAI DUTY FREE DARTS MASTERS

Thursday, May 28 – Friday, May 29

The Dubai Duty Free Darts Masters is an annual event on the Dubai sports circuit and one of the biggest of its kind in the region. The world’s top eight darts players gather in the city to compete against one another and win the coveted first place title. Players include Taylor, Van Gerwen, Lewis, Van Barneveld, Bunting, Wrigt, Anderson and Wade.

Venue: The Irish Village 

Website: Dubai Darts

OTSPORT COLLEGE ID CAMP
Thursday, May 28 – Saturday, May 30

College coaches from the USA comme to Dubai to teach and train players. These coaches will also give young athletes and their families a chance to ask questions about the university experience and what they can expect. The coaches will also be scouting and recruiting players for their own school teams.

Venue: Dubai Sports City 

Website: OTSport

DAMAN INVESTMENTS INTERNATIONAL PAIRS – UAE FINAL
Friday, May 29

The winning pair from the UAE Final will go forward to the World Final, which this year moves away from the United Kingdom for the first time, to the stunning Hotel Denia Marriott La Sella Golf Resort & Spa on the Costa Blanca in Spain. There will be a whole raft of special events and a gala dinner to mark the day.

Venue: Dubai Creek Golf & Yacht Club

Website: International Pairs UAE

PRESIDENT’S CUP
Saturday, May 30

Local pride is up for stake as the President's Cup ticks over into the semi-final stage. Al Ahli must overcome one of Al Dhafra or Ajman to make the final, where the winner of Al Nasr v Al Shabab will await them.

Venue: To be confirmed

NATIONAL SCHOOL LEAGUE BASKETBALL
Saturday, May 30

Sport360's inaugural UAE-wide school basketball league is reaching fever pitch as we enter the semi-finals. Could the next LeBron James be lurking in the UAE? 

Venue: Victoria International School Sharjah (VISS)

Website: NSL Basketball

CITY FOOTBALL SCHOOLS IN AL AIN
April 13 – June 17

Manchester City’s Football Schools programme is running weekly training sessions for young players in Al Ain over the course of the next two months, bringing the Premier League champions’ style and coaching product to the UAE.

The professional coaching team offers a wide range of sessions available to boys and girls aged 5-14. All new players will also receive a City Football Schools kit.

Venue: Hazza bin Zayed Stadium, Al Ain

Website: HBZ Stadium

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