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Sports round-up

Basketball, NBA: Kobe Bryant’s agent is to discuss a temporary move to Bologna with the club’s management, a statement from the Italian team said. On Tuesday Bologna made a three-game $800,000 offer to Bryant to represent the team. The Italian Lega A side have called on fans to help encourage Bryant to sign on by creating a special email account to which they can send messages to show the 33-year-old Los Angeles Lakers star how much he is wanted.

Cricket: Test cricket will return to Old Trafford in 2013 after England cricket chiefs awarded an Ashes Test to the famous Manchester venue. The home of Lancashire cricket has been used sparingly by England in recent years, playing host only to one Test – against Bangladesh in 2009 – since 2008. The other four Tests of the 2013 series will take place at Lord’s, Trent Bridge, Chester-le-Street and The Oval.

Rugby Union: The Italian rugby team were searching for a new hooker yesterday with Tomasso D’Apice out of the World Cup with a knee injury and no immediate replacement available. D’Apice injured knee ligaments late in Italy’s 53-17 win over Russia and was told he would need three weeks rest. The two hookers considered next in line to join the squad in New Zealand, the 50-Test veteran Carlo Festuccia and Andre Manici, from the Aironi club, are also injured.

Golf: South African golf star Ernie Els has split with former manager Chubby Chandler, moving management support for his career to his new office in Florida, Els said on his website. Els, a three-time major champion, had worked with Chandler’s British-based Intern-ational Sports Management since 2004. The 41-year-old African cited his schedule keeping him in America more and more and his new office as reasons.

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