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General: Moments of the Month: June Review

There was plenty of international football action in June, while Englishman Matt Fitzpatrick hit the headlines by claiming his first Major title at the US Open.

Gareth Southgate's England faced four games in the Nations League, but ultimately it was not a successful break, with questions now being asked of the Three Lions.

There are no such problems for Rob Page after he helped guide Wales to their first World Cup finals since 1958.

England did fare much better in cricket, with the Ben Stokes-Brendon McCullum era getting off to a perfect start against New Zealand.

There was also the spectacle of Royal Ascot, with all the racing action available on our Sports Live Streaming platform, as well as Golden State Warriors being crowned NBA champions and Colorado Avalanche lifting the Stanley Cup.

Football: Southgate under pressure following lacklustre shows

England's most successful manager since Sir Alf Ramsey still has plenty of credit in the bank following the past four years, but Gareth Southgate has come under increased scrutiny following a bad month in the Nations League.

England only scored one goal in four matches (a Harry Kane penalty) as they could only draw with both Germany and Italy, while, most worryingly, losing twice to Hungary.

Southgate will argue that all four games were used as experiments and that he never once used his strongest team, but given there is little further preparation before the World Cup, it was a wasted opportunity.

Wales were at the other end of the emotional scale in June - it was ecstasy at the Cardiff City Stadium as Gareth Bale's free-kick was enough to scrape past Ukraine and earn a first World Cup place in 64 years.

There will be a battle of Britain in Group B with England 1/3 to finish top, while Wales are 6/1.

Cricket: England brush aside Black Caps

The winter Ashes series couldn't have been much worse for England and sweeping changes were required for them to become a force again in red-ball cricket.

Enter Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum - the new captain and coach duo clearly worked their magic as England made light work of New Zealand across three Test matches at Lord's, Trent Bridge, and Headingley.

There were many great performances throughout the series - Joe Root, freed from the captaincy burden, was able to express himself with the bat, while Jonny Bairstow was also in fine fettle in re-establishing himself in the Test team.

With the ball Matt Potts has proven to be a worthy addition with pace options ruled out through injury, while spinner Jack Leach's luck might just be turning following a stunning ten-wicket haul in the final match.

England aren't the finished article - they still need some form from their top-order batsmen, but overall it was a hugely promising start to the new era.

They finish off their Test series from last summer against India on Friday and are 5/6 to win at Edgbaston, with India 5/2 and the draw 7/2.

Tennis: British disappointment at SW19

Even though Wimbledon has only just kicked off, the biggest British stars from the men's and women's singles draws are already packing their rackets away for another year.

Andy Murray came into the tournament with an upturn in form as he seeks to relive past glories despite being in the twilight of his career.

However, he suffered his earliest Wimbledon exit at the hands of giant American John Isner, who used his serve to devastating effect in a four-set win.

US Open champion Emma Raducanu's preparation for Wimbledon was far from ideal as she recovered from a side injury and she was outclassed and outpowered by French former world number four Caroline Garcia.

Cameron Norrie is flying the flag for Britain after getting in round three courtesy of wins against Spanish duo Pablo Andujar and Jaime Munar, while Katie Boulter enjoyed a superb victory over Karolina Pliskova - who was runner - up to Ash Barty last year.

The month had started with the almost too predictable sight of Rafael Nadal dominating to win the French Open for a record-extending 14th Paris title, while the seemingly unbeatable Iga Swiatek claimed the women's honours.

Golf: Fitzpatrick seals US Open success

The US Open has not been kind to British golfers over the years, so it was a stunning success when Matt Fitzpatrick won at Brookline to secure his first Major title.

The Sheffield star kept ice cool during the final round as he was put under pressure by Will Zalatoris, another man seeking a maiden Major.

Fitzpatrick safely holed out on the last and needed Zalatoris to miss to avoid a play-off, which he duly did.

Now, he will be hoping to win the 150th Open Championship at St Andrews next month and he is priced at 20/1 to win consecutive Majors, with plenty of golf action available to follow on the bet365 Live Golf Tracker.

F1: Verstappen opens championship gap

June saw the F1 calendar head to Azerbaijan and Canada and the gap at the top of the standings is looking very healthy for defending champion Max Verstappen.

The Dutchman won both races and he has been a big beneficiary from Ferrari's recent unreliability.

Charles Leclerc retired from the Baku street race, while Carlos Sainz pulled up in Montreal - Ferrari's reliability issues are mirroring those of Red Bull from the start of the season.

The British Grand Prix comes up next and Verstappen is 1/1 to take the chequered flag at Silverstone, with Leclerc 2/1.

Darts: Van Gerwen ends TV hoodoo

Michael van Gerwen went the whole of 2021 without a TV title, something no one would have expected to happen back in 2020.

For the confidence of the 33-year-old Dutchman, it was imperative that run ended soon enough and he sealed a last-leg decider in the Premier League final against Joe Cullen in Berlin.

Van Gerwen has since gone under the knife for wrist surgery due to carpal tunnel syndrome, but he is back on the mend and he can be backed at 4/1 to win the World Championship at the end of the year.

Rugby Union: Tigers seal Premiership crown

Leicester Tigers had gone nine years without a Premiership crown before their meeting with Saracens, with a last-minute drop goal from Freddie Burns sealing a dramatic 15-12 win.

It has been a remarkable turnaround from Steve Borthwick's side, who celebrated their 11th title in rugby union's domestic top-flight.

June Highlights

Football

15/06 - Nations League: What we learned

14/06 - Five outsiders to make England's WC squad

Cricket

29/06 - England v India - Fifth Test preview

28/06 - Morgan bows out with credit in the bank

27/06 - England in top shape after sealing NZ whitewash

Tennis

25/06 - Wimbledon men's preview

24/06 - Wimbledon women's preview

05/06 - French Open men's final review

05/06 - French Open women's final review

Golf

28/06 - The Open: What makes links golf so special?

20/06 - US Open: Five Things We Learned

Formula 1

30/06 - Lights Out - What to look for at the British GP

19/06 - Formula 1: Chequered Flag - Canada GP Review

12/06 - Formula 1: Chequered Flag - Azerbaijan GP Review

Darts

14/06 - Premier League Reaction: What we learned from Premier League Finals

Rugby Union

17/06 - Premiership Final - Rugby Union: Preview

Horse Racing

20/06 - Royal Ascot: Five to follow for next year

Basketball

17/06 - NBA Finals Review

Ice Hockey

28/06 - Avs quash Lightning's three-peat dreams

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