Moon of Liberty Cricket – 4th Test Match Eng v SA


Test Cricket

4th Test Match – England v South Africa at Old Trafford


Moeen Ali was the hero for England as they wrapped up a 3-1 series victory over South Africa. England batted first and put enough on the board to leave South Africa chasing. Jonny Bairstow fell one short of his century top scoring as England set up their win with a total of 362. In reply nobody made a half century for the visitors as the collapsed to 202. James Anderson took four wickets to help England to a commanding first innings lead.

The Moeen Ali took over, first with the bat scoring 79 not out as England added 243 to set a target of 380 for South Africa to win. Rain took the game into the fifth day and the only real question was could England take the wickets. Haseem Amla put up resistance with 83 but Ali took the key wicket and went on to take 5 second innings wickets to seal the win and the series for England against what has been a depleted South African side.

England will now move on to face the West Indies in their final test series before heading to Australia in the winter for the Ashes.

Full Report (Cricbuzz)




4th Test Match – At Old Trafford, Stretford, Trafford

England v South Africa

England1st Inns – 362 – (Bairstow 99, Stokes 58, Root 52, Rabada 4-91)

South Africa1st Inns – 226 – (Bavuma 46, Anderson 4-38)

England2nd Inns – 243 – (Ali 79*, Morkel 4-41)

South Africa2nd Inns – 202 – (Amla 83, du Pleesis 61, Ali 5-69)

England win by 177 runs

England Win the series 3-1




Moon Of Liberty Soccer Update



Premier League – Everton v Man City


Super Toffees thrash Manchester City

A majestic performance from Everton saw off Manchester City at Goodison Park. Romelu Lukaku coolly finished a Kevin Mirallas cut back to give the hosts the lead and early in the second half Lukaku returned the compliment putting through Mirallas to make it 2-0. Tom Davies in only his second league start dinked the ball over the City keeper Claudio Bravo to make it three. London born debutant Ademola Lookman completed the rout with a fourth in injury time. Everton remain seventh but clearly have an array of exciting talent coming through with this hugely impressive display.

Full Report (BBC Sport)

Premier League – Man Utd v Liverpool


Score draw a fair result in East Lancs Derby

A draw was a fair but frustrating result for both sides as Liverpool earned a point at Manchester United. Liverpool had a first half lead through a James Milner penalty after Paul Pogba had handled in the area from a corner. Roberto Firmino and Georginio Wijnaldum has chances to make it two as Liverpool were dangerous on the counter attack. However Manchester United kept pressing forward and got their reward when Zlatan Ibrahimovic headed home in the midst of a goalmouth scramble to equalise. A point a piece means Liverpool are seven points behind Chelsea in third and Manchester United are 12 points behind. It makes Liverpool’s match with Chelsea at Anfield at the end of the month even more a must win if they want to stay in the title race.

Full Report (BBC Sport)





Premier League

Manchester United (0) 1 (Ibrahimovic) – Liverpool (1) 1 (Milner)At Old Trafford, Stretford, Greater Manchester

Everton (1) 4 (Lukaku, Mirallas, Davies, Lookman)Manchester City (0) 0At Goodison Park, Liverpool


Moon Of Liberty Cricket – Eng v Pak, WI v Ind



England v Pakistan 2nd Test Match

An imperious batting display from Joe Root and Alastair Cook led England to level their test series with Pakistan at Old Trafford. Cook got a century but it was Root’s brilliant 254 the was the star turn in putting 598 on the board. Chris Woakes then took three wickets as Pakistan were dismissed for just 198 with Misbah Ul-Haq top scoring with 52. Cook and Root then added another 147 between them to take the game away. Woakes and Jimmy Anderson with three wickets each polished off Pakistan for a huge 330 run victory.

West Indies v India 1st Test Match

India thrashed West Indies in the first test in Antigua with a double century from captain Virat Kohli and an all round performance with bat and ball from Ravichandran Ashwin. Ashwin added 113 to Kohli’s 200 to help India establish a total of 566. Kevin Braithwaite top scored with 74 as West indies could only score 243. India enforced the follow on and Ashwin took 7 second innings wickets to seal the victory for India by an Innings and 92 Runs.

Full Reports ( – Eng v Pak   WI V Ind




2nd Test MatchAt Old Trafford, Stretford, Greater Manchester

England v Pakistan

England 1st Inns – 589/8 Dec – (Root 254, Cook 105, Woakes 58, Riaz 3-108)

Pakistan 1st Inns – 198/10 – (Ul-Haq 52, Woakes 4-67)

England 2nd Inns – 173/1 Dec – (Cook 76* Root 71*)

Pakistan 2nd Inns – 234/10 – (Hafeez 42, Woakes 3-41, Anderson 3-41)

England win by 330 Runs

Series Ted 1-1


1st Test MatchAt The Sir Vivian Richards Stadium, North Sound, Antigua

West Indies v India 

India 1st Inns – 566/8 Dec – (Kohli 200, Ashwin 113, Dhawan 84, Mishra 53, K Braithwaite 3-65)

West Indies 1st Inns – 243/10 – (K Braithwaite 74, Dowrich 57, Yadav 4-41, Shami 4-66)

West Indies 2nd Inns – 231/10 – (C Braithwaite 51, Samuels 50, Ashwin 7-83

India win by An Innings & 92 Runs Runs

India lead the series 1-0

MOON OF LIBERTY STAR MAN – Ravichandran Ashwin (India)


Rugby Round up


Rugby League

The Grand final was a close affair at Old Trafford but it was Leeds who edged out Wigan to take the trophey in the end and complete the League Leaders shield, Challenge Cup and Grand Final treble.Wigan took the elad through a Joe Burgess try bit Leed hit back immiedately with a try from Danny McGuire after a kick through from Kevin Sinfield, who was playing his final game before heading to Rugby Union. Joel Moon went over for a second for Leeds before McGurie scored again to give Leeds a commanding 16-6 lead at half time.

Wigan fought back in the second half, Ryan Hall stole the ball which set up a play for Dom Manfredi to get a try back for Wigan two goals and a try from Matty Bowen which he converted moved Wigan ahead and the momentum appeared to have shifted. However after more fine work from Sinfield, 20 year old Josh Waters was the hero for Leeds as he crossed and Sinfield gave Leeds the lead back with a touchline conversion. This was the final score of the game as Leeds ran the clock down to seal a 22-20 victory, the first time Leeds have beaten Wigan in a major final. The winning points coming from Sinfield after a masterclass of a display, a fitting end to his Rugby League career/

Rugby Union World Cup

Pool A – Australia, England, Wales, Fiji, Uruguay

As expected this came down to two of three between Australia, England and Wales. Fiji were surprisingly poor throughout and did not really compete with the big three at any stage, Uruguay were whitewashed as expected. Wales despite countless injuries scored a magnificent comeback to beat England at Twickenham 28-25 with a superb kicking performance from Dan Biggar. Australia then gave a superb performance of running rubgy to send England out of their own tournament. The game to decide who topped the pool was won by Australia, 15-6 over Wales with no tries but a great defensive performance despite being down to 13 men for part of the second half.

Pool B – South Africa, Scotland, Japan, USA, Samoa

This pool ended as expected, but it got there in a round about way. Japan stunned group favourites South Africa in the opening game with a try with the very last play of the game giving them a 34-32, but the schedule meant after the heroic effort they had to play Scotland just four days latter while Scotland were coming in fresh. This told in the second half when Scotland ran away with the game. Japan won all the rest of their game but are not in the Quarter Finals after South Africa comfortably beat Scotland, meaning all three sides had won three games but South Aftrica and Scotland had more bonus points. Scotland secured their Quarter Final place after a nail biting 36-33 win over Samoa who until then had been very disappoining. Harsh on Japan, but Eddie Jones and his side can be proud of their efforts.

Pool C – New Zealand, Argentina, Georgia, Tonga, Namibia

No upsets here, Argentina gave the All Blacks a scare in the opening game leading after 60 minutes but New Zealand had too much in the end running out 26-16 winners. Both sides coasted through the rest of the group to comfortably qualify for the Quarter Finals. The surprise package were Georgia who scored a shock win over Tonga and gave the All Blacks a very good game for 50 minutes before New Zealand ran away with it.

Pool D – Ireland, France, Canada, Italy, Romania

This group built throughout towards the pool decider between France and Ireland. Canada and Romania were not competative and Italy were poor against France, but ran Ireland reasonably close without looking like winning the game. With both sides through France and Ireland met in Cardiff in an incredible atmosphere in which Ireland won the game 24-9 but at the cost of losing captain Paul O’Connell for the rest of the tournament after a hamstring tear. They may also lose man of the match Sean O’Brien to suspension as the disciplinary commitee are to look at a punch thrown. The win however does mean they play Argentina, a tough game but preferable to playing the All Blacks, whom France will now face. They have beaten New Zealand twice on british soil in past World Cups, can lightening strike a third time?

Rugby League

Super League Grand FinalAt Old Trafford, Streford, Trafford

Leeds Rhinos (16) 22 (Tries 4 – McGuire 2, Moon,Waters – Goals 3 – Sinfield 3) Wigan Warriors (6) 20 (Tries 3 – Burgess, Manfredi, Bowen – Goals 4 – Bowen 4)

MOON OF LIBERTY STAR MAN – Kevin Sinfield (Leeds Rhinos)

Leeds Rhinos win the Super League Grand Final

Rugby Union

Rugby Union World Cup Pool Stages

Pool A

England 35 Fiji 11At Twickenham, London

Wales 54 Uruguay 9At The Millenium Stadium, Cardiff

Australia 28 Fiji 13At The Millenium Stadium, Cardifff

England 25 Wales 28At Twickenham, London

Australia 65 Uruguay 3At Villa Park, Birmingham

Wales 23 Fiji 13At The Millenium Stadium, Cardiff

England 13 Australia 33At Twickenham, London

Fiji 47 Uruguay 15At Stadium MK, Milton Keynes

Australia 15 Wales 6At Twickenham, London

England 60 Uruguay 3At The City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester


Pool B

South Africa 32 Japan 34At The Amex Stadium, Brighton

Samoa 25 USA 16At The Amex Stadium, Brighton

Scotland 45 Japan 10At Kingsholm, Gloucester

South Africa 46 Samoa 6At Villa Park, Birmingham

Scotland 39 USA 16At Elland Road, Leeds

Samoa 5 Japan 26 At Stadium MK, Milton Keynes

South Africa 34 Scotland 16At ST James’ Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne

South Africa 64 USA 0At The Olympic Stadium, The Queen Elizabth Olympic Park, Stratford

Samoa 33 Scotland 36 At ST James’ Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne

USA 18 Japan 28At Kingsholm, Gloucester


Pool C

Tonga 10 Georgia 17At Kingsholm, Gloucester

New Zealand 26 Argentina 16At Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London

New Zealand 58 Namibia 14At The Olympic Stadium, The Queen Elizabth Olympic Park, Stratford

Argentina 54 Georgia 9At Kingsholm, Gloucester

Tonga 35 Namibia 21At Sandy Park, Exeter

New Zealand 43 Georgia 10At The Millenium Stadium, Cardiff

Argentina 45 Tonga 16At The King Power Stadium, Leicester

Georgia 17 Namibia 16At Sandy Park, Exeter

New Zealand 47 Tonga 9At ST James’ Park, Newcastle Upon Tyne

Argentina 64 Namibia 19 At The King Power Stadium, Leicester


Pool D

Ireland 50 Canada 7At The Millenium Stadium, Cardiff

France 32 Italy 10At Twickenham, London

France 38 Romania 11At The Olympic Stadium, The Queen Elizabth Olympic Park, Stratford

Italy 23 Canada 18At Elland Road, Leeds

Ireland 44 Romania 10At Wembley Stadium, Wembley, London

France 41 Canada 18At Stadium, MK, Milton Keynes

Ireland 16 Italy 9At The Olympic Stadium, The Queen Elizabth Olympic Park, Stratford

Canada 15 Romania 17At The King Power Stadium, Leicester

Italy 32 Romania 22At Sandy Park, Exeter

Ireland 24 France 9At The Millenium Stadium, Cardiff


Rugby League Super League Semi Finals


Wigan will face Leeds in the Super League Grand Final after two home wins in the semi-finals mean the two sides who lead the table most of the season will face each other at Old Trafford. Hudderfield have been the suprose package this year but their game at Wigan was one too far as the Warriors were far too strong. Ben Flower and the outstanding John Bateman scored tries in the first half in which Wigan dominated possession and probably should have put the game away in the first half. However the tackling Huddersfield had to do took it’s tole in the second half as Dom Manfredi, Tony Clubb and the award of a penalty try saw Wigan take a commanding lead with Matty Bowen adding 6 goals. Brett Ferres got a consolation try for Hudderfield at the death, but they were well beaten and Wigan totally deserved their win.

The Following evening at Headingley ST Helens took the game to Leeds The first half saw a try for each side with Saints James Roby and Leeds Zak Hardaker going over. A late Luke Walsh drop goal gave the Saints a 9-8 lead at half time and Mark Percival scored first in the secon half to give Saints a five point lead and an upset looked possible. Leeds showed why they finished top of the table though and fought back with a try from Ryan Hall and a Kevin Sinfield conversion putting Leeds ahead 11 minutes remaining. With the game still on a knifedge, Kallum Watkins was the hero for Leeds with a last minute try to seal the victory and Leeds passage to old Trafford.


Rugby League

Super League Semi-FinalAt The DW Stadium, Wigan

Wigan Warriors (12) 32 Huddersfield Giants (2) 12

Wigan (Tries 5 – Flower, Bateman, Manfredi: Clubb, Pen Try, Goals 6 – Bowen 6) Huddersfield (Tries 1 – Ferres, Goals 2 – Brough 2)

MOON OF LIBERTY STAR MAN – John Bateman (Wigan Warriors)

Super League Semi-Final – At Headingley, Leeds

Leeds Rhinos (8) 20 ST Helens (9) 13

Leeds (Tries 3 – Hardaker, Hall, Watkins – Goals 4 – Sinfield 4) Saints (Tries 2 – Roby, Percival, – Goals 2 – Walsh 2 – DG 1 – Walsh)

MOON OF LIBERTY STAR MAN – Liam Wakins (Leeds Rhinos)



Premier League

In the early game Stephen Naismith was the hero as Everton defeated Chelsea whose miserable start to the season continues. Naismith did not actually start the game but came on for injured Muhamed Besic.Naismith got on the end of Brendon Galloway’s cross to give the Toffeemen the lead and rifled in a second from the edge of the area. A 30 yard strike from Namanja Matic got one back for Chelsea before half time but Naismith completed his hat trick with eight minutes left to seal the three points. Everton are in fifth while the Champions are in 16th place, just two points off the drop zone.

Early season hope that Liverpool has turned the corner is ebbing away after a very poor performance at Old Trafford where Manchester United earned a comfortable win. The first half was one of the poorest a Liverpool verses Manchester United games has probably seen with not a single serious shot at goal. Just after the break united took the lead with a smart free kick from the training ground finished by Danny Blind. Joe Gomez brought down Ander Herrera for a clear cut penalty which Herrera converted to make it 2-0. Christian Benteke who had been poor for the most part give Liverpool some hope with a spectacular overhead kick from a Jordon Ibe cross to pull one back but United hit straight back with debutant Anthony Martial ghosting past Martin Skrtel to score a brilliant individual goal to seal a deserved win.Man U move into third, Liverpool are in mid table with seven points after two straight defeats.

The Sunday game saw a fantastic come back from Leicester City Their opponents, Aston Villa, took a first half lead with a 20 yard shot from Jack Grealish. Carles Gil added a second from range and Villa seemed to be coasting. Claudio Ranieri then put on Nathan Dyer who made an impact and the game turned. A Ritchie de Laet volley from a corner got one back. With 8 minutes to go Danny Drinkwater’s low cross was met by Jamie Vardy to equalise and the Foxes got the late winner when Nathan Dyer bravely put his head into a a group of bodies to beat keeper Brad Guzan from Riyad Mahrez’s chipped cross to score on his debut after being loaned from Swansea. The victory moves Leicester into 2nd place in the table after a fantastic start,


After poor starts both Nottingham Forest and Derby County will hope wins on Saturday will kick start a run. Forest had to come from behind at QPR after Charlie Austin gave Rangers the lead with a 20 yard strike. The game turned when QPR keeper Robert Green brought down Chris O’Grady giving away a penalty and being sent off. Henri Landbury converted to level. The winner came when Ryan Mendes set up new signing Nelson Oliveira to slot home the winner for a big away win for Forest.

Derby County also got a priceless away win at Preston. Chris Martin was the hero with both goals. The first came after he was put away but a wonderful through ball by Johnny Russell. The second was direct from a free kick from 20 yards to put Derby 2-0 up at the break. Preston improved in the second half. Daniel Johnson forced a fine save from keeper Lee Grant and Johnson did eventually get one back, but the Rams held firm for a 2-1 win to end a poor run of form.

League 1

Struggling Blackpool produced a good display at league leaders Gillingham but still fell to defeat. Doug Loft gave the Kent side the lead poking the ball home after Luke Norris’ free kick was not held by keeper Colin Doyle. Norris hit the bar early in the second half but Blackpool leveled on 51 minutes. Brad Potts low cross was turned into his own net by Ryan Jackson. The winner came 9 minutes from time when good work from substitute Ryan Donnelly Set up Gillingham striker Bradley Dack to win it and earn another three points. Blackpool remain in the bottom four but after last weeks first win, the performance is something fresh to build on.

League 2

Mansfield Town remain in the play-off places after a big win against Crawley Town at Field Mill, aided by the sending off of Gwion Edwards. Nathan Thomas opened the scoring with an individual effort bursting into the box and keeping his composure to finish and give Mansfield the lead. Shortly after the break Mitchell Rose added a second from 20 yards, Edwards was sent off a couple of minutes later for a bad challenge on Nicky Hunt. Matt Green turned in a cross from Craig Westcarr to make it three and and Green returned the favour with a through ball to Westcarr who finished to make it four. Mansfield could have had more in the final minutes but the Stage will be well pleased with a solid home win.

Notts County got back to winning ways after a sea-saw battle against Luton Town. County started the better and Izale McLeod headed in Graham Burke’s cross to give Notts the lead. Early in the second half McLeod made it two with a smart finish. Luton fought back with a back post strike from Cameron McGeehan set up by Craig Mackail-Smith. A 20 yarder from Jonathan Smith leveled the scores and Luton looked on course for at least a point. However Luton gave a free kick away on 92 minutes and Liam Noble converted to give the Magpies a much needed boost in a highly entertaining game.

Newport County remain rock bottom after being beaten by a 93rd minute penalty against Morecambe. Aaron Collins and Scott Boden both forced saves from Morecambe keeper Barry Roche in a positive start. Against the run of play Morecambe took the lead after Alan Goodall headed in a Jamie Devitt Corner. Scott Barrow equalised from range in the second half and just as it looked Newport would deservedly get something from the game, Aaron Hayden’s challenge on Kevin Ellison was adjudged a penalty, and Paul Mullin stepped up to condemn Newport to yet another defeat.

National League

Southport were unlucky not to end Forest Green’s 100% record with a strong second half display which nearly saw them take a share of the spoils. The leaders raced into a 2-0 lead Aaron O’Conner was put through by a clever ball from Sam Wedgbury, O’Conner still had plenty to do and score from a tight angle. Kurtis Guthrie set of Keanu Marsh-Brown to make it 2-0 and Forest Green were looking comfortable at the break. However Southport got on back in a much better second display when Andy Wright headed in a corner. Mike Phenix forced a fine save from Forest Green keeper Jonny Maxted late on almost forcing a draw, but the leaders held on to make it 9 wins out of 9.

Tranmere Rovers got a much needed win against Chester City to end a run of two defeats. Both goals came in the first half. An Adam Mekki cross was met by Liam Hogan to give Rovers an early lead. James Norwood added to the lead with a fine individual goal. In the second half Chester had a chance to reply when a penalty was given for handball but Scott Davies saved John Rooney’s spot kick. Norwood and Gary Brabins, playing against his old club, had chances to increase the lead but the game ended 2-0 moving Tranmere 2 points behind the play-off places.

Scottish Championship

Queen of the South suffered a third straight defeat at Raith Rovers after a late winner. A Ryan Conroy free kick was well saved by Rovers keeper Kevin Cuthburt with the best chance of a poor first half. Rovers were the better side in the second half with Lewis Toshney and Rory McKeown squandering chances to give Raith the lead. Queens could have stolen it against the run of play Cuthburt saved an Andy Dowie header, but moments later James Craigen crossed after Queens failed to clear a corner and defender Kyle Benedictus was rewarded for staying forward with a headed winner 12 minutes from time which moves Raith above Queens into 5th place in the table on goal difference.


Premier League

Everton (2) 3 (Naismith 3) Chelsea (1) 1 (Matic) – At Goodison Park, Walton, Liverpool

Manchester United (0) 3 (Blind, Herrera, Martial) Liverpool (0) 1 (Benteke) – At Old Trafford, Trafford

Leicester City (0) 3 (de Laet, Vardy, Dyer) Aston Villa (1) 2 (Grealish, Gil) – At The King Power Stadium, Leicester


Queens Park Rangers (0) 1 (Austin) Nottingham Forest (0) 2 (Landsbury, Oliveira) – At Loftus Road, Shepherd’s Bush

Preston North End (0) 1 (Johnson) Derby County (2) 2 (Martin 2) – At Deepdale, Preston

League 1

Gillingham (1) 2 (Loft, Dack) Blackpool (0) 1 (Jackson {OG}) – At The Priestfield Stadium, Gillingham

League 2

Mansfield Town (1) 4 (Thomas, Rose, Green, Westcarr) Crawley Town (0) 0 – At Field Mill, Mansfield

Notts County (1) 3 (McLeod 2, Noble) Luton Town (0) 2 (McGeehan, Smith) – At Meadow Lane, Nottingham

Newport County (0) 1 (Barrow) Morecambe (1) 2 (Goodall, Mullin) – At Rodney Parade, Newport

National League

Southport (0) 1 (Wright) Forest Green Rovers (2) 2 (O’Conner, Marsh-Brown) – At Haig Avenue, Southport

Tranmere Rovers (2) 2 (Hogan, Norwood) Chester City (0) 0 – At Prenton Park, Birkenhead

Scottish Championship

Raith Rovers (0) 1 (Benedictus) Queen Of The South (0) 0 – At Stark’s Park, Kircaldy