Sports news in brief (Jan 18-23)

Bick tick from Nike
Thorbjørn Olesen has handed Rory McIlroy a lesson in how to adapt to a set of new Nike clubs by finishing second at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship on Sunday – a tournament at which the Northern Irishman, and new fiancé of Caroline Wozniacki, failed to make the cut. “Rory’s had a long break,” Olesen told the Irish Independent. “Next time he’s back, I’m sure he’ll do great.” After a stuttering start to his final round, Olesen shot three birdies on the back nine, but was unable to sink a putt on the last to force a playoff. The result sees him officially become Denmark’s top golfer, as he is now number 42 in the world rankings, five places above compatriot Tomas Bjørn, and 23 above Anders Hansen. 

Secret footballer outed
Kanal 6 on Sunday revealed the identity of ‘The Secret Footballer’, the pseudonym for an unknown English League-based footballer who since early 2011 has written a blog for British newspaper The Guardian, as Dave Kitson, a forward with Championship club Sheffield United, who previously played in the Premier League − most notably for Reading. The segment showed Danish journalist Kian Fonoudi eliminating all the potential candidates one by one until only Kitson remained, and K6 duly translated it into English. When the news reached Sheffield United, it immediately threatened legal action if the channel didn’t retract the segment, which is has subsequently done. Fonoudi said the club’s action “just further proves my point”.

Wozs woes in Oz continue
Caroline Wozniacki bowed out of the Australian Open on Monday, losing 2-6, 6-2, 7-5 to Russia’s unranked double grand slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, a player the tenth seed lost to earlier in the month in Sydney. Wozniacki disputed a decision by the umpire at a critical moment in the final set, but in the end she could have few complaints, firing 23 winners to Kuznetsova’s 52, losing 23 of the 25 points that Kuznetsova contested at the net. In total, Wozniacki hit 53 winners in four matches, compared to 133 by her opponents, and 62 unforced errors – barely a third of her opponents’ 178. Her elimination will see her lose 180 ranking points for failing to match her quarter-final appearance in 2012.