SPORT IN BRIEF: Etches hoping for slot on Hatton fight card

ADAM ETCHES is hoping for a place on the biggest fight card in Britain this year after making it a hat-trick of professional wins.

The exciting Sheffield teenager knocked out his first two opponents, but was taken the four rounds distance by Aleksei Tsatiasivili on Hatton Promotions’ card at Bolton’s Reebok Stadium.

Etches, 19, hopes his latest winning performance will earn a slot on the undercard when Amir Khan defends his WBA light-welterweight title against Paul McCloskey at Manchester’s MEN Arena on April 16.

Around 300 fans made the trip on Saturday and Etches said: “There is talk of me getting a four rounder on that bill, which would be something special so early in my boxing career.”

Etches revealed that he has been nursing a hand injury for two weeks and believes it prevented him from making it another early night against the plucky Estonian.

Ponds Forge voted top

Ponds Forge has been voted UK’s favourite place to swim.

The Sheffield facility came out tops in a survey of over 36,000 swimmers across the UK – the largest ever opinion poll of its kind.

It was completed by participants of the Marie Curie Cancer Care Swimathon, which is set to hit 580 pools across the UK between April 8-10 when some 20,000 swimmers will aim to raise around £2 million for the Foundation.

For more information about swimming at Ponds Forge, visit www.ponds-forge.co.uk or call (0114) 223 3400.

Saints on winning Trail

John Stewart dominated the boards as City of Sheffield Saints basketball team maintained their promotion push with victory at Derby Trailblazers.

The teenage star, fresh from England training, top-scored with 26 points and also had 20 rebounds as his side eased their way to an 87-66 success.

Team and scorers: John Stewart 26 (20 rebounds), Kingsley Ellmer 16 (5 rebounds), Chris Hackett 16 (6 rebounds), Garnet Gayle 10 (9 rebounds), Chris Law 6, Matt Brutnell 5, Jim Rose and Javan Hayles 4 each.

Saints, who host bottom club Bradford Maroons at All Saints on Saturday (6.30pm), are currently third in Division 3 North, two points behind leaders Birmingham Mets, with the same number of games played, and Sheffield Sabres although they’ve played two games less than their city rivals.

Portman’s 115 break

Dave Portman made a 115 break for Chapeltown WMC, the highest so far this season in the Sheffield and District Snooker League, to put himself in line for the Barker Billiards break prize.

It was his fourth league century - only two players have made more, Antony Bolsover and Martin Finnigan who have five each - and helped his side to a 4-1 win over Frechville Green as team-mates Wayne Wootton and Mick Stretch chipped in with breaks of 92 and 47 respectively.

In the A division top of the table battle, Players Lounge beat Eckington Hotshots 4-1 to reclaim top spot but only by a single point and with six matches to play the championship race is still wide open.

Free futsal coaching

Sheffield FC Futsal are offering free futsal coaching sessions to players aged 15-18 every Wednesday (6-8pm) at Sheffield Hallam University which will hopefully lead to the development of new teams who will compete in regional and national competitions. Anyone interested should contact Richard Moore on 07751234185 or email richard.moore@sheffieldfc.com for more information.