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Olympic weightlifting champion found dead aged 35

Bulgaria's 2004 Olympic weightlifting champion Milen Dobrev has died at the age of 35, the Bulgarian interior ministry said on Saturday.

Dobrev took gold at the 2004 Olympics. Credit: Reuters

"His body was found at his home in (the southern town) Plovdiv," an interior ministry spokeswoman told Reuters.

"There are no signs of violence on the body, the cause of death is still not clear."

Dobrev won the Olympic title in the 94kg category at the 2004 Games in Athens. He also won gold at the 2003 world championship in Vancouver as well as two European titles.

"I can't stop crying," Bulgaria's former weightlifting coach Plamen Asparuhov said. "He was the best person I ever knew."

Dobrev retired before the 2008 Games in Beijing after failing to recover from a series of injuries.

UK Sport to focus funding on medal success

Medal success will remain the key factor in how Olympic and Paralympic sports are funded ahead of Tokyo 2020, despite criticism the policy excludes team sports.

The news will come as a disappointment to team sports like basketball. Credit: PA

UK Sport, which annually invests £100m of National Lottery and Government money into high-performance sports, will examine factors such as number of medallists and participation levels, but only around disciplines of "equal medal potential".

Sticking to the 'no-compromise' approach will come as a disappointment to team sports like basketball, synchronised swimming and water polo, all of whom saw their funding cut ahead of Rio 2016.

UK Sport chair Rod Carr said:

The board was impressed by the level and quality of engagement with UK Sport's strategic review from both the public and our sector partners.

It demonstrated that UK Sport's role in delivering medal success is valued highly by our stakeholders and the British public, and that they'd like to see our investment reach even more aspiring athletes.

– UK Sport chair Rod Carr


France name side to face England at Twickenham

France head coach Philippe Saint-Andre has named his side to play England on Twickenham in the final round of Six Nations fixtures.

Camille Lopez sustained a badly bruised knee against Italy. Credit: PA

.Stade Francais fly-half Plisson comes in for the injured Camille Lopez, who sustained a badly bruised knee during Sunday's 29-0 triumph over Italy, while loosehead prop Eddy Ben Arous has also been ruled out for the match at Twickenham as Vincent makes a start.

Plisson, who impressed as he came off the bench and scored 10 points against Italy, broke his nose at the Stadio Olimpico but has been passed fit to take on leaders England.

  • Starting line-up:

15-Scott Spedding, 14-Yoann Huget, 13-Gael Fickou, 12-Maxime Mermoz, 11-Noa Nakaitaci, 10-Jules Plisson, 9-Sebastien Tillous-Borde, 8-Loann Goujon, 7-Bernard Le Roux, 6-Thierry Dusautoir (captain), 5-Yoann Maestri, 4-Alexandre Flanquart, 3-Nicolas Mas, 2-Guilhem Guirado, 1-Vincent Debaty.

  • Replacements:

16-Benjamin Kayser, 17-Rabah Slimani, 18-Uini Atonio, 19-Romain Taofifenua, 20-Damien Chouly, 21-Rory Kockott, 22-Remi Tales, 23-Mathieu Bastareaud.

Mo Farah beats indoor two-mile world record

Mo Farah has broken the indoor two-mile world record. Credit: Mike Egerton/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Mo Farah broke the indoor two-mile world record at the Sainsbury's Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham today.

The 31-year-old athlete finished the race in 8.03.4 minutes, beating the previous world record of 8.04.34, held by Ethiopian runner Kenenisa Bekele.

It is Farah's first world record, finishing the second mile in an impressive 3.59.5 minutes.

The double Olympic gold medallist told the BBC: "This means a lot to me.

"I love representing my country, giving something back to all the people. Unbelievable."

Photographer in hospital after Rally Sweden crash

A photographer has been taken to hospital following a crash during the practice run at the Rally Sweden race, the only winter event on the World Rally Championship calendar.

Rally racing is a dangerous sport for drivers and photographers. Credit: Reuters

The accident happened on Thursday morning near the town of Raada when Polish driver Michal Solowow lost control of his car in a bend and flew off the road, striking the photographer.

"The situation with the injured party is stable," race director Christina Lundkvist-Wiklund told state broadcaster SVT, adding that the injured man had been taken to the hospital in nearby Karlstad.

Attending the event as a spectator, Montreal Canadiens hockey player Magnus Nygren witnessed the accident.

"The crowd stood on the driver's left side, but the photographer was on his right. So when Solowow spun, he hit the photographer with the back of the car, and he flew a fair distance out into the forest," Nygren told newspaper Expressen.

Sports Life Stories returns to ITV4 with Peter Shilton

A new series of Sports Life Stories returns to ITV4 on Tuesday 17th February, and first up it's legendary goalkeeper, Peter Shilton.

The 65 year-old won an astonishing 125 caps for England, but he's not the only sporting great we're showcasing this year.

Watch our promo above for an exclusive look at which Sports Life Stories documentaries to look out for in the coming weeks and months.

Sports Life Stories: Peter Shilton will be broadcast on ITV4 at 10pm on Tuesday 17th February.


Cricket team doctor asks for privacy on behalf of Hughes' family

The Australian cricket team's doctor has confirmed Phil Hughes is still in intensive care and made a request for privacy on behalf of the sportsman's family.

Dr Peter Brukner made his comments in what will be his last statement on the cricketer today, reported local newspaper The Sydney Morning Herald.

Phil Hughes Credit: DAN PELED/AAP/Press Association Image

Dr Brukner said: "Unless there is a change in condition there will be no further updates on his condition tonight.

"Phillip is in the best possible medical hands. The Cricket Australia community and his team mates have thoughts of thinking of his family and his friends at this moment.

"His family have asked me to request privacy in this difficult time."

Visiting Croatian fans throw flares onto pitch during Euro 2016 qualifier

Play was temporarily suspended during tonight's Euro 2016 qualifier between Italy and Croatia after visiting fans threw flares and firecrackers onto the pitch.

A firefighter removes a flare from the field during the Euro 2016 qualifying soccer match between Italy and Croatia Credit: REUTERS/Alessandro Garofalo

Riot police were seen entering the Croatian fan's section of the stands before the match resumed.

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Amir Khan denied visa to visit USA for fight

Khan was hoping to watch Floyd Mayweather's fight in Las Vegas. Credit: PA

Amir Khan's plans to travel to America this weekend have been halted after his visa application was declined.

The 27-year-old was due to fly to Las Vegas to attend Floyd Mayweather's fight with Marcos Maidana on Saturday, and had used his Twitter account to advertise promotional duties he would be carrying out while there.

His bid to do so was thwarted, though, with the welterweight saying his visa application had been declined.

It was reported that Khan had asked Prime Minister David Cameron for assistance.

Khan has had difficulties travelling to America before. In 2010 he had to train in Canada after visa delays, while in 2011 he claimed he was held in Los Angeles customs for over two hours because he is a Muslim.

The Bolton fighter is eager to be present at Mayweather's rematch with Maidana, as he attempts to persuade the world's number-one pound-for-pounder boxer to give him a 2015 fight.

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