From the back pages, June 25: Rafa Nadal crashes out after shock straight sets first round defeat

From the back pages
From the back pages

Rafael Nadal went out of a grand slam in the opening round for the first time in his career today as his Wimbledon agony continued against Steve Darcis. (The Independent)

ANDY MURRAY gave Britain something to cheer about after recording a straight sets victory over Benjamin Becker. (The Express)

On a dismal first day for home-grown players at Wimbledon, James Ward threw away a one-set lead against Yen-Hsun Lu to prevent an all-British second-round tie against Andy Murray. (Daily Mail)

England have dropped the biggest hint that Joe Root will open the batting against Australia this summer after omitting Nick Compton from the 14-man squad to face Essex in an Ashes warm-up at Chelmsford next Sunday. (The Times)

New Australia coach Darren Lehmann will turn to Shane Warne and a host of other legends of Australian cricket as he attempts to rebuild a team torn apart by defeats and ill discipline. (The Telegraph)

Australia were left reeling after three of their backs were ruled out of the second Test against the Lions this weekend, two of them for the remainder of the series. The full-back Berrick Barnes is concussed and will miss Saturday’s Test in Melbourne when Australia will be looking to level the series, while the centre Pat McCabe (neck) and the wing Digby Ioane will not be available for either of the final two Tests. (The Guardian)

GONZALO HIGUAIN’S Arsenal move is “at an advanced stage” — according to the Real Madrid striker’s dad. The Gunners are ready to pay a club-record £22million for the Argentine, who is also wanted by Juventus. (The Sun)