Birdie blitz puts Feng among leaders

TOKYO - Defending champion Feng Shanshan birdied five of her last seven holes as she recovered from a slow start to share a seven-way tie for the lead at the LPGA Japan Classic Friday. China's Feng, who is looking to become the first player to defend an LPGA title in 2017, has been a top-seven finisher in five out of her last six starts. After 11 holes, the world number four was only one-under at the tournament in Ibaraki before she got into her stride to finish at six-under-par 66. "I did start the day slowly, just like usual, and then I got my first birdie on the eighth hole finally," said Feng. "My five-iron was really working so it left me a lot of birdie chances and I even missed one five-foot birdie. I still made four in a row in the last five holes, so I'm really happy about that."– afp

Ferrari could quit F1, boss warns

PARIS - Ferrari could quit Formula One at the end of 2020 if the team does not agree with the plans of the sports ' new owners, the boss of the Italian carmaker has warned. President Sergio Marchionne said F1 had been "part of our DNA since the day we were born" on a conference call discussing Ferrari's financial results on Thursday.  "But if we change the sandbox to the point where it becomes an unrecognisable sandbox, I don't want to play anymore," he said. "I don't want to play NASCAR globally, I just don't." US-based Liberty Media took over F1 this year with big plans to add more razzmatazz, concerts and celebrities.  And Chase Carey, who became F1 chief executive after the long reign of flamboyant ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone, has said he wants a "Super Bowl" build-up to each race.–afp

Poulter desperate for Ryder Cup berth

ANTALYA - Ian Poulter would give his "left arm" to compete in next year's Ryder Cup in Paris, the Englishman said Friday. Poulter is a veteran of five Ryder Cups since making his debut in 2004 and enjoys a remarkable record of having won 14 of 18 matches, remaining unbeaten in singles. However, he missed out on Darren Clarke's 2016 European team through a foot injury -- although he went to Hazeltine as a vice-captain -- and is currently well out of contention to earn an automatic spot in Thomas Bjorn's 2018 team. But the 41-year-old has not given up hope. "I would give literally my left arm to play," he said ahead of the second round in Antalya. "I mean, I want to be there, right. It's a good golf course, I've had success around that course. I'd love to be there."–AFP

FWO, Islamabad score wins in Martyrs T20

ISLAMABAD – FWO and Islamabad registered victories in the 1st All-Pakistan Law Enforcement Agencies Martyrs T20 Cricket Tournament 2017, after defeating their respective opponents at Bhutto and Karachi Company cricket grounds on Friday, while the cliff-hanger between Sindh and KP Police teams ended in a draw and both the teams were awarded one point each. In the first match of the day at Karachi Company ground, Motorway Blues, put into bat first, were bowled out for 105 in 18 overs with Mukhtar scoring 25. Ali bagged 4-12. In reply, FWO reached home in 12 overs losing just 2 wickets. At Bhutto Ground, Islamabad edged Punjab Police by 5 runs. Islamabad Police scored 107-9 and in reply, Punjab were bowled out for 102 in 19.3 overs. In the third and last match of the day, Sindh and KP played out entertaining tie. The match was reduced to 18 overs aside match. Batting first, Sindh slammed 133-6 with Ali hitting 34. Ahsan took 3 for 23. KP, in reply, also scored 133 runs as they required 2 runs on the last ball, but they failed to register victory. Keeping in mind the darkness factor, the tournament committee awarded one point each to both the teams. OGDCL Sports Board vice president Ch Ajmal Sabir was chief guest while SSP Motorways Shahryar Khan and others were also present on the occasion.–Staff Reporter