Lionel Messi continued to boggle the mind with the 650th goal of his Barcelona career, Patrick Reed kept his cool to triumph at Torrey Pines, while Judd Trump claimed victory at the German Masters… in Milton Keynes. We’ll explain why as we take you through five sports stories you may have missed this weekend…
Lionel Messi Scores Sublime Free-Kick To Make It Goal Number 650
The hyperbole-defying Lionel Messi scored his 650th (SIX HUNDRED AND FIFTIETH!) goal for Barcelona at the weekend, curling a sublime free-kick past Athletic Bilbao keeper Unai Simon on the 20-minute mark. The goal was the Argentine wizard’s 456th in La Liga and 49th from a direct free-kick.
Athletic Bilbao defender Inigo Martinez, who had the misery of marking Messi, said, “We all know Messi's quality. When he's all fired up like he was today he scores goals like that and there's nothing you can do about it."
The win, Barca’s fifth in a row in the league, moved Ronald Koeman’s men above Real Madrid on goal difference into second place on 40 points, 10 behind leaders Atletico Madrid, who also have a game in hand.
Patrick Reed Triumphs At Farmers Insurance Open
Patrick Reed made light work of the Farmers Insurance Open to claim his ninth career title on Sunday. The American triumphed with a five-shot victory at Torrey Pines in California having at one stage been tied with Carlos Ortiz of Mexico at 10 under.
Reed, a former Masters champion, received a controversial free drop on the 10th two days earlier and kept his focus to claim the win.
"I hung in there after everything that transpired yesterday," he said. "I felt mentally strong throughout the round.
"When I spoke to the rules officials [about the free drop] they said I did everything I could. I felt great throughout the day. I was able to go out there and shoot a low number and get the job done."
Earning an eagle on the sixth, Reed birdied the seventh and went on to record a front half of 33 in a four-under-par 68. Rory McIlroy, meanwhile, finished one over to claim 16th place, six under par.
Jonny Clayton Scoops £60,000 Grand Prize At PDC Masters
Jonny Clayton triumphed in the PDC Masters final on Sunday, beating Mervyn King to win his first individual televised title.
The Welshman scooped the £60,000 prize and secured the final remaining place in this year’s Premier League Darts. Clayton fought back from 5-3 down to win 11-8 and told ITV Sport, "It was my first time in the final and to get over the line is amazing. He went to sleep for a couple of legs and I took advantage. I've been hoping for a place in the Premier League so to hear that was amazing and I'm over the moon, absolutely chuffed to bits."
King was left to rue missed chances and said, "I can't tell you what happened because I've got no clue - it just did not feel right. I was just hoping I could hang in to the last leg but we didn't get that far and Jonny played some cracking darts."
Judd Trump In Blistering Form To Win German Masters
The name Trump hasn’t fared so well in 2021 so far but Judd Trump changed all that by winning the German Masters. The world number one defeated Jack Lisowski 9-2 in stunning fashion to claim his fourth ranking event of the season.
Trump won the same tournament in Berlin last year, but the Covid-19 pandemic meant this edition of the event was held in Milton Keynes at the Marshall Arena. The Englishman took advantage of playing on home soil and hit one brilliant shot so well - nailing the brown before the ball spun back to set him up for another pocket - he even showed it off later on social media. The 31-year-old was in blistering form, claiming seven frames in a row as well as five half-centuries.
Coronavirus Continues To Play Havoc With Formula One
The global pandemic continues to leave a cloud of uncertainty over all sports this year, with F1 affected again - Frenchman Pierre Gasly has become the sixth driver to test positive for coronavirus. The Alpha Tauri driver, who won last year’s Italian Grand Prix, insisted he was "feeling OK and will continue to follow my training plan from home while I am in isolation".
Champion Lewis Hamilton is the most high-profile name to contract the virus and missed the Sakhir Grand Prix, with young prodigy George Russell stepping up from Williams to fill in for Mercedes. Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll of Racing Point also missed races due to Covid-19, as did McLaren’s Lando Norris and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc. Gasly’s positive test means that 30 percent of the grid has now been affected since the start of the pandemic 12 months ago.