ROACH MOCKS MARGARITO W/ HAND WRAPS / WOODS RELEASES GRIP ON NO. 1


[PHOTO AT LEFT -
Photo is loading... Manny Pacquiao’s trainer Freddie Roach poses with metal gauntlet gloves to mock Antonio Margarito, during Pacquiao’s workout in Los Angeles in front of reporters for an upcoming boxing match with Margarito]

MANILA, NOVEMBER 1, 2010 (STAR) By Abac Cordero - Freddie Roach should carry a metal detector when he visits Antonio Margarito’s dressing room on fight night.

Margarito’s trainer, Robert Garcia, kept the mind game going when he put on brass knuckles during their recent media workout at the Fortune Gym in Hollywood.

“That’s [metal] what he [Richardson] found. Do you believe that? He [Margarito] got caught,” Garcia said in an article that came out of Fanhouse.com the other day.

It was Shane Mosley’s trainer, Naziim Richardson, who discovered the plaster-like substance in Margarito’s hand wraps before their fight in January of 2009.

It led to the one-year suspension of Margarito, who claimed he had no knowledge of what his former trainer, Javier Capetillo, had placed on his hands for the fight, which he lost by knockout.

“That’s what fell out when Naazim Richardson saw it,” Garcia said at the gym packed with mediamen.

“Manny, be careful,” he added. “Freddie Roach, you had better be in the dressing room like you said. You had better be there all of the time. Watch out, Freddie Roach.”

Margarito hit the mitts for a couple of rounds before the media, and his punches sounded heavy on video.

Roach had said he will personally be there when Margarito’s hands are wrapped, and make sure they’re clean.

“Yes, I will be there,” said Roach.

A day before Margarito staged his media workout, Pacquiao had his own time with the media a few blocks away at the Wild Card Gym.

And before the session started, Roach brought the house down when he wore a pair of armored gloves in mocking Margarito.

“I am going to make sure that Antonio Margarito wears hand wraps, not gift wraps, when he faces Manny Pacquiao,” Roach was quoted as saying.

Westwood at the summit as Tiger releases grip on No 1 By James Corrigan, Golf Correspondent Monday, 1 November 2010

For the first time in 16 years Britain and Europe awake today atop of the golfing world as Lee Westwood displaces Tiger Woods from the No 1 position he has held for 281 weeks. The Englishman is not only the first professional from his own country to be rated as the best in the game in more than a decade, but also his own continent.

The 37-year-old's accession was confirmed yesterday when Martin Kaymer did not finish in the top two of the Andalusia Masters at Valderrama. The German – who had won his three previous tournaments including his first major, the USPGA – trailed in outside the top 20. This meant that when the rankings were published this morning Westwood, who has played only two events in the last three months due to a calf injury, became only the third Briton, after Nick Faldo and Ian Woosnam to head the order.

The new status is understood to be worth millions to the 37-year-old, who experienced a nose-pinching slump eight years ago when he fell from being fourth in the world to outside the top 250. Of course, his story is not only unlikely because of that comeback from plus-foured oblivion but also because of the identity of the sportsman he happens to be usurping.

Since relinquishing No 1 to Vijay Singh in 2005, Woods has retained the coveted tag for a record period. Westwood's achievement in overhauling the 14-times major winner will inevitably be downplayed in some quarters because of the Woods extra-marital scandal, which reduced the most acclaimed athlete on the planet to the most vilified. Yet Westwood's credentials are worthy, despite the absence of a major on his CV. In the last 18 months, Westwood has notched up two major runner-up placings as well as as two third places.

Furthermore, he has lifted his second European Order of Merit and his first US title in over a decade in Memphis in June. But it is his consistency which underlines his validity. Westwood has collected more than 20 top 10s in the last two years.

There will inevitably be raised eyebrows at the Worksop man's elevation. But the overwhelming likelihood is he would have already demoted Woods if he hadn't suffered the ruptured calf muscle in July that has blighted a season which promised so much. For so long it seemed that, while Woods was struggling to recover his swing and his psyche, it would be Phil Mickelson who would emulate the Fijian Singh in relegating Woods, but the left-hander wasted more than 10 chances to do so.

When Kaymer then won last month's Dunhill Links Championship, a week after he and partner Westwood had proved so influential in regaining the Ryder Cup, it became clear that one of them would fill the European void, which stretched back to Nick Faldo in 1994. In the opinion of their captain, Colin Montgomerie, both would have been deserving candidates.

"The world rankings reflect current form and you can't knock Lee Westwood and you can't knock Martin Kaymer," said the Scot, who came closest to following Faldo by reaching No 2 in the late Nineties. "Certainly, I would have to say they are one and two in the world. There's a lot of talk about Lee not having won a major, so how can he be No 1? But that didn't interest me when I was No 2 in the world and I was trying to get to Greg Norman, who was No 1 at the time."

Yet Montgomerie has a warning for his friend. Westwood is teeing it up alongside Woods at the WGC HSBC Champions event in Shanghai this week and the latter has an instant chance of reclaiming his long-held mantle. In the singles of the Ryder Cup five weeks ago, Woods reminded us of his old self in dismantling Francesco Molinari, and, as Montgomerie confirmed, he will have yet more incentive in the Far East to build on the improvements he has been making with his new swing coach, Sean Foley.

"Once you are No 1 you want to stay there, and you've got to improve because the standard behind you is improving," said Montgomerie "It might be the end of Tiger's reign for a limited period, but I don't think he will be very happy about being No 2 or 3 in the world. He hasn't gone anywhere, Tiger Woods – he will be back with a vengeance next year."

Westwood's and Kaymer's Ryder Cup colleague Graeme McDowell will break into the top 10 after clinching the Andalusia Masters yesterday. McDowell was three over par for the day to finish three under overall, two ahead of a chasing pack of three. Northern Irishman Gareth Maybin, the unfortunate Damien McGrane of Ireland and Denmark's Soren Kjeldsen were the only other men to finish under par for the tournament, each closing one under.


Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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