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~Vettel wins Korean GP to take F1 lead from Alonso

© Reuters

: World champion Sebastian Vettel won the Korean Grand Prix in a Red Bull one-two finish on Sunday to take the overall Formula One lead from Ferrari's Fernando Alonso with four races remaining.

Vettel's third win in a row, fourth of the season and 25th of his career, left him on 215 points with third-placed Alonso now on 209.

Australian Mark Webber, who had started on pole position but was overtaken by his team mate off the grid into the first corner, finished second to anchor the first one-two of the season by any team.

South Korea's 'Gangnam Style' rapper Psy waved the chequered flag as Vettel crossed the finish line and thanked his team for a "great race, great job on the pit wall" before screaming in delight.

"The start was very important. we started from the dirty side," said Vettel. "I had a very good launch and could see that Mark was struggling a little bit. I was able to get side by side and then had the inside into turn one.

"It was a perfect start for myself," added the German, who spent the closing laps fretting about the tyres and making sure they held up.

With no need to attack his title-chasing team mate in the closing stages, Webber finished 8.2 seconds behind Vettel.

Starting fourth, Spaniard Alonso got ahead of McLaren's Lewis Hamilton at the start but could not close the gap with the Red Bulls on an afternoon where the outcome was effectively decided in the first few seconds. He crossed the line 13.9 seconds behind Vettel.

"I think we have to be happy with the performance today," said Alonso, whose Ferrari team (290 points) overtook McLaren (284) for second place in the constructors' standings behind Red Bull (367).

"We are moving in the right direction. We just need a little last step to be as competitive as Red Bull."


Brazilian Felipe Massa continued his late season resurgence with fourth for Ferrari.

Kimi Raikkonen chalked up his 13th successive points finish with fifth in the race for Lotus to consolidate third place overall and stay in the reckoning.

McLaren's Jenson Button was an early casualty, his race ending on the first lap when Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi sideswiped his car and smashed the front right suspension as well as puncturing the tyre.

Kobayashi, who also ended the race for Mercedes' Nico Rosberg in the same incident, made it back to the pits on three wheels and a rim.

The Japanese, who finished a memorable third at home last weekend, collected a drive-through penalty for causing the collision and retired in the pits on lap 18.

Button, now 84 points off Vettel, declared his remote title hopes to be defunct.

"No, definitely not," said the Briton when asked whether he could still win the championship. "I'm going to enjoy myself over the next few races. Points for the team would have been really important, but it's out of our hands."

Germany's Nico Hulkenberg was sixth for Force India with Frenchman Romain Grosjean, steering well clear of trouble after a spate of first lap smashes, seventh for Lotus.

Frenchman Jean-Eric Vergne was eighth for Toro Rosso, with Australian team mate Daniel Ricciardo ninth.

Hamilton, who had a ripped off strip of astroturf trailing from a sidepod in the closing laps, just kept off Sauber's Mexican Sergio Perez - the man who replaces him at McLaren next season - for 10th place after starting third.

#Cape Verde upset Cameroon to qualify for Nations Cup

The tiny Cape Verde Islands eliminated former World Cup quarter-finalists Cameroon on Sunday to win a place at the African Nations Cup soccer finals for the first time despite losing 2-1 in the second leg of their final-round qualifier.

A country with a population of 500,000 pulled off one of the biggest shocks in the competition's history with their 3-2 aggregate triumph after winning the first leg at home 2-0 last month.

Cape Verde had expected a rampant response from Cameroon's Indomitable Lions in Sunday's return but were met instead with a nervy and muted showing, allowing them to extend their aggregate lead 22 minutes into the game with a free kick from Portuguese-based striker Heldon.

Cameroon were back level minutes later through Achille Emana but still needed three more goals to overturn the deficit, a task that seemed beyond their dispirited performance.

The hosts got their second goal four minutes into stoppage when 16-year-old substitute Fabrice Olinga came on to score at the end of a cross from Samuel Eto'o.

The return of four-times African Footballer of the Year Eto'o and a change of coach ahead of the second leg did little to resurrect Cameroon's fortunes.

They now miss out on the Nations Cup for a second successive tournament, suggesting the era of a regular role as one of African football's superpowers is at an end.

Cape Verde, with a team drawn from their extensive diaspora in Europe, toyed at times with their much-vaunted hosts, passing the ball around at pedestrian pace in the second half to waste time.

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+Hamilton bowled out by Button

Lewis Hamilton's plans for a night out at a bowling alley with his mechanics were skittled after the McLaren driver discovered they had already agreed to go running with team mate Jenson Button.

The 2008 Formula One champion told British reporters at the Korean Grand Prix that he had also still not spoken to former boss and mentor Ron Dennis since the decision to move to Mercedes next season.

The move, as a replacement for seven times champion Michael Schumacher, was announced on Sept. 28.

Hamilton, who lives in Monaco and has been away from Europe since last month's Singapore Grand Prix, had wanted to treat his mechanics at last weekend's Japanese Grand Prix and also explain why he was leaving.

"I booked 16 lanes at the bowling alley for Saturday night, but something else came up so the guys weren't able to do it," said the 27-year-old. "They were already committed before. They went for a run with JB or something like that."

Button is a keen triathlete and along with many others in the paddock is a regular participant in a charity track run on Saturday evenings at race weekends.

The morning after the race in Japan, Hamilton caused a stir on social media site Twitter when he posted messages that accused Button of showing disrespect by 'unfollowing' him.

"Just noticed @jensonbutton unfollowed. that's a shame. After 3 years as teammates. I thought we respected one another but clearly he doesn't," said the opening Tweet.

The message was followed by another apologising after he discovered that his fellow-Briton had never followed him in the first place.

Hamilton, who has been backed by McLaren since he was 13-year-old, is expected to be at their Woking factory next week.

"Of course there will be people who are happy I am going, some who are unhappy I am going," said Hamilton, who qualified third for Sunday's race in Korea which he starts 42 points adrift of Ferrari's championship leader Fernando Alonso.

"Some who will be sad, some who will be supportive. That's how things are."

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Easy win puts Mali in Nations Cup finals

A rampant Mali side beat Botswana 4-1 on Saturday to ensure their progress to next year's African Nations Cup finals.

Goals from Cheikh Tidiane Diabate, Modibo Maiga, Mahamadou Samassa and Abdou Traore secured a 7-1 aggregate triumph in their final round qualifying tie in Lobatse.

Mali led 1-0 at halftime.

The match marked the re-opening of the reburbished stadium in Lobatse but there was little for the home fans to celebrate until a consolation goal in stoppage time at the end of the match from Mmusa Ohilwe.

Mali finished third at the last Nations Cup finals.

Earlier on Saturday Ghana became the first side to advance from a brief qualifying competition and into the field for the 2013 tournament in South Africa.
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Real's Marcelo faces three months out with foot injury

Brazil and Real Madrid full back Marcelo has fractured the fifth metatarsal in his right foot while on international duty, his club said in a statement on Sunday.

The Brazilian Football Federation said in a separate statement they estimated the player would be out of action for around three months.

Marcelo picked up the injury while training with Brazil in the Polish city of Wroclaw ahead of Tuesday's friendly against Japan.

He will return to Madrid immediately where a decision would be taken on the treatment required, Real said.

Losing Marcelo comes as a double blow to Real coach Jose Mourinho with his other left back Fabio Coentrao also returning to the Spanish capital after picking up a muscle injury while on duty with Portugal.

Coentrao had to be substituted in the first half of Friday's 1-0 World Cup qualifying defeat in Russia and has been ruled out of Tuesday's visit of Northern Ireland, Real said.

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