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Cooke guides Glamorgan to victory

Credit: Nigel French /EMPICS Sport

Glamorgan were indebted to a brilliant unbeaten 94 from Chris Cooke as they chased down a target of 318 to beat Kent by three wickets in a thrilling Royal London One-Day Cup match in Cardiff.

Cooke struck eight fours and four sixes in his 54-ball innings as Glamorgan, who required 103 runs off the last eight overs, secured victory with two balls to spare.

Cooke did have a life, though, caught on 52 after sending a Ivan Thomas delivery high into the sky, only to earn a reprieve with the Kent seamer having overstepped.


Welsh cyclists help Chris Froome to Tour de France victory

Credit: PA Images

Welsh cyclists Geraint Thomas and Luke Rowe helped Chris Froome to victory in the final stage of the Tour de France.

Cardiff's Geraint Thomas finished in 15th place after falling from fourth in the 19th stage of the race.

Chris Froome won the Tour de France for a second time after a ceremonial final stage in Paris.

Froome's defence of the 2013 title ended with a broken hand and fractured wrist 12 months ago, but the Team Sky leader responded to win the 102nd Tour by one minute 12 seconds from Nairo Quintana.

Andre Greipel won the 21st and final stage on the Champs-Elysees - his fourth stage success of the race - as Mark Cavendish was squeezed out of contention.

A crash in the final kilometre fractured the peloton and Froome's Team Sky squad rolled over the line together to celebrate a third Tour title for the British squad in four years.

After the victory, Froome thanked his eight team-mates including Thomas, who rode alongside Froome through crosswinds, across the cobbles and up mountains.

The 29-year-old from Cardiff was fourth until Friday's 19th stage to La Toussuire, where his efforts took their toll, but he hopes to lead Team Sky in a Grand Tour in future.

Thomas, who finished 15th, said: "It's certainly given me a lot of confidence and encouragement for the future, and I'm really looking forward to it."

Geraint Thomas begins final stage of Tour de France

Geraint Thomas currently sits in 15th position Credit: PA

Welsh cyclist Geraint Thomas has begun the final stage of the Tour de France.

The 29 year old currently sits in 15th position, with Team Sky colleague Chris Froome riding in 1st.

The Cardiff rider has been praised for his role in helping Froome to his second successive Tour de France crown.

Fellow Welsh cyclist Luke Rowe is also due to cross the finish line.

The pair have been friends for many years after both competing for the Maindy Flyers cycling club in Cardiff.

Thomas was set for a podium position but a crash on Monday saw the rider pushing for time. He fell from fourth to 15th position on Thursday.

The final stage ends in Paris this afternoon.

Wales World Cup qualifying fixtures released

Wales will look to make the most of home advantage when their World Cup qualifying campaign gets underway next September.

Chris Coleman's men play three of their first four matches in front of their own fans, with the opening match against Moldova followed by games against Georgia and Serbia later that Autumn.

Wales travel to Austria on October 6th, with a trip to face their remaining Group D opponents, the Republic of Ireland, the following March.

Gareth Bale celebrates a Wales victory Credit: PA photo

June 2017 sees Wales make the return trip to Serbia, with the remaining qualifiers - including Moldova and Georgia away, and Austria and the Irish at home - inked in for that Autumn.

Wales fans might feel quietly confident of their team's chances of qualifying for their first finals since 1958, but many will hope it doesn't come down to the last game: that match, against Ireland, comes just three days after the away fixture in Georgia, with a six hour flight from Tbilisi to factor in.

Speaking from Russia, Wales FA Chief Executive Jonathan Ford admitted there were "tougher" groups, but also said there were easier ones too:

Wales fixtures - World Cup Qualifying Group D:

Monday, 5 September 2016 Wales v Moldova Kick off: 7.45pm

Thursday, 6 October 2016 Austria v Wales Kick off: 7.45pm

Sunday, 9 October 2016 Wales v Georgia Kick off: 5.00pm

Saturday, 12 November 2016 Wales v Serbia Kick off: 7.45pm

Friday, 24 March 2017 Republic of Ireland v Wales Kick off: 7.45pm

Sunday, 11 June 2017 Serbia v Wales Kick off: 7.45pm

Saturday, 2 September 2017 Wales v Austria Kick off: 7.45pm

Tuesday, 5 September 2017 Moldova v Wales Kick off: 7.45pm

Friday, 6 October 2017 Georgia v Wales Kick off: 5.00pm

Monday, 9 October 2017 Wales v Republic of Ireland Kick off: 7.45pm

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