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National Post Sports

Elsabeth Black of Canada performs in the Women’s Beam final of the Artistic Gymnastics event during the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland, on August 1, 2014. (Photo: Carl Court/AFP/Getty Images)

Elsabeth Black of Canada performs in the Women’s Beam final of the Artistic Gymnastics event during the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland, on August 1, 2014. (Photo: Carl Court/AFP/Getty Images)

Meaghan Benfeito of Canada competes in the Women’s 10m Platform Preliminaries at Royal Commonwealth Pool during day eight of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on July 31, 2014 in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. (Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Meaghan Benfeito of Canada competes in the Women’s 10m Platform Preliminaries at Royal Commonwealth Pool during day eight of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on July 31, 2014 in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. (Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Lights flare as Harry Owen of Wales performs on the rings during the Men’s All-Around gymnastics competition at the Scottish Exhibition Conference Centre during the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland, Wednesday July 30, 2014. (Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth/The Associated Press)

Lights flare as Harry Owen of Wales performs on the rings during the Men’s All-Around gymnastics competition at the Scottish Exhibition Conference Centre during the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland, Wednesday July 30, 2014. (Photo: Kirsty Wigglesworth/The Associated Press)

Vincenzo Nibali put his lungs and legs to work one last time, marching up to the winner’s podium of the Tour de France and sighing deeply before the Italian anthem echoed over the Champs-Elysees.
“Now that I find myself on the highest step on the Champs-Elysees podium, it’s more beautiful than I ever imagined,” Nibali, the Arc de Triomphe behind him, told the crowd. “I’ve never been this moved in all my life.”
Nibali, who calls himself “a flag-bearer of anti-doping,” is the sixth rider to win all three Grand Tours — France, Italy and Spain.
"I think it’s very important for cycling in Italy because at the moment there isn’t a lot of trust,” said spectator Massimo Solaroli, a 47-year-old physical education teacher from the Italian town of Imola. “We don’t believe an Italian champion can win an important race without doping.”

Vincenzo Nibali put his lungs and legs to work one last time, marching up to the winner’s podium of the Tour de France and sighing deeply before the Italian anthem echoed over the Champs-Elysees.

“Now that I find myself on the highest step on the Champs-Elysees podium, it’s more beautiful than I ever imagined,” Nibali, the Arc de Triomphe behind him, told the crowd. “I’ve never been this moved in all my life.”

Nibali, who calls himself “a flag-bearer of anti-doping,” is the sixth rider to win all three Grand Tours — France, Italy and Spain.

"I think it’s very important for cycling in Italy because at the moment there isn’t a lot of trust,” said spectator Massimo Solaroli, a 47-year-old physical education teacher from the Italian town of Imola. “We don’t believe an Italian champion can win an important race without doping.”

Rory McIlroy had to work a little harder and sweat a little more. No matter. Just like his other two majors, this British Open was never really in doubt.
With two key birdies around the turn, and a powerful tee shot at just the right moment, McIlroy completed a wire-to-wire victory Sunday at Royal Liverpool and captured the third leg of the career Grand Slam. The 25-year-old from Northern Ireland joined some elite company beyond the names on the silver claret jug.
Jack Nicklaus (23) and Tiger Woods (24) are the only other players to capture three different majors by the time they were 25. McIlroy won the 2011 U.S. Open at Congressional and the 2012 PGA Championship at Kiawah Island, both by eight shots. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

Rory McIlroy had to work a little harder and sweat a little more. No matter. Just like his other two majors, this British Open was never really in doubt.

With two key birdies around the turn, and a powerful tee shot at just the right moment, McIlroy completed a wire-to-wire victory Sunday at Royal Liverpool and captured the third leg of the career Grand Slam. The 25-year-old from Northern Ireland joined some elite company beyond the names on the silver claret jug.

Jack Nicklaus (23) and Tiger Woods (24) are the only other players to capture three different majors by the time they were 25. McIlroy won the 2011 U.S. Open at Congressional and the 2012 PGA Championship at Kiawah Island, both by eight shots. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)

So much for those second-round doldrums. Rory McIlroy is holding up just fine on Day 2 of the British Open.As for Tiger Woods, it looks as though he’s still a bit rusty.McIlroy, who has struggled on Fridays throughout the year for reasons that are a mystery to him and everyone else, was 9 under par coming down the stretch at Royal Liverpool, putting him three shots ahead of the field.Woods, on the other hand, went tumbling off the leaderboard with a double-bogey at the first hole and a bogey at the second. Looks like that 15th major title will have to wait a little longer, which really shouldn’t be surprising for someone playing for only the second time since back surgery. (Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

So much for those second-round doldrums. Rory McIlroy is holding up just fine on Day 2 of the British Open.

As for Tiger Woods, it looks as though he’s still a bit rusty.

McIlroy, who has struggled on Fridays throughout the year for reasons that are a mystery to him and everyone else, was 9 under par coming down the stretch at Royal Liverpool, putting him three shots ahead of the field.

Woods, on the other hand, went tumbling off the leaderboard with a double-bogey at the first hole and a bogey at the second. Looks like that 15th major title will have to wait a little longer, which really shouldn’t be surprising for someone playing for only the second time since back surgery. (Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty Images)

The Toronto Blue Jays are back on the field on Friday night against the Texas Rangers to begin a run toward the playoffs after the all-star break. Click through for the National Post’s look back at the first half of the season in words and in charts and a look ahead to what the Jays will need to make the playoffs for the first time since 1993.

The Toronto Blue Jays are back on the field on Friday night against the Texas Rangers to begin a run toward the playoffs after the all-star break. Click through for the National Post’s look back at the first half of the season in words and in charts and a look ahead to what the Jays will need to make the playoffs for the first time since 1993.

Jason Dufner of the United States hits his tee shot on the 13th hole during the first round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 17, 2014 in Hoylake, England. (A polarizing filter was used in the creation of this image.) (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)

Jason Dufner of the United States hits his tee shot on the 13th hole during the first round of The 143rd Open Championship at Royal Liverpool on July 17, 2014 in Hoylake, England. (A polarizing filter was used in the creation of this image.) (Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images)

She hadn’t done splits and high kicks since her cheerleading days in high school, but 40-year-old dance instructor Kriste Lewis set a lofty goal: to try out for the New Orleans Saints cheerleading squad, known as the Saintsations.Faced with competition from women who mostly ranged in age from 18 to 28, Lewis never thought she’d make the team. And then, she did.“I wanted to set a goal for myself, and the audition was a specific date that required specific training, so my goal was just to make it to the audition,” said Lewis, who lives with her husband and two sons in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, about 100 miles northeast of New Orleans. “Honestly, I really did not think I was going to make it.” (Photo: Bill Haber/The Associated Press)

She hadn’t done splits and high kicks since her cheerleading days in high school, but 40-year-old dance instructor Kriste Lewis set a lofty goal: to try out for the New Orleans Saints cheerleading squad, known as the Saintsations.

Faced with competition from women who mostly ranged in age from 18 to 28, Lewis never thought she’d make the team. And then, she did.

“I wanted to set a goal for myself, and the audition was a specific date that required specific training, so my goal was just to make it to the audition,” said Lewis, who lives with her husband and two sons in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, about 100 miles northeast of New Orleans. “Honestly, I really did not think I was going to make it.” (Photo: Bill Haber/The Associated Press)

The Hirsute Derby: Baseball’s best beardsIf ever there was a mismatch between sponsor and event, it was Gillette and anything related to baseball’s all-star festivities this week. The wire services on Monday filed many photographs of major league baseball players shaving with Gillette’s assuredly capable products.It’s mostly a losing battle, getting ballplayers to shave nowadays. The accompanying graphic is proof.

The Hirsute Derby: Baseball’s best beards
If ever there was a mismatch between sponsor and event, it was Gillette and anything related to baseball’s all-star festivities this week. The wire services on Monday filed many photographs of major league baseball players shaving with Gillette’s assuredly capable products.

It’s mostly a losing battle, getting ballplayers to shave nowadays. The accompanying graphic is proof.