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Sky Sports takes a look at the winners and losers from the last seven days in sport

Last Updated: 07/07/14 10:52am

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Historic Howarth welcomed the riders

Historic Howarth welcomed the riders

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So much can change in a week of sporting action and, sure enough, there have been numerous highs and deflating lows over the past seven days.

Lewis Hamilton raced to glory at the British GP, Tim Krul proved a World Cup super-sub and millions turned out as Yorkshire hosted an unforgettable two stages of the Tour de France.

But GB rider Mark Cavendish crashed out in agonizing fashion and Andy Murray’s Wimbledon defence ended in disappointing fashion.

Good Week

Historic Howarth welcomed the riders

Yorkshire

God’s own county hosted the start of cycling’s most famous spectacle and the event lived up to its pre-race hype – and then some.

More than two million people are thought to have turned out to support the race, with an estimated 285,000 people descending on Leeds alone for the start of the first stage and tens of thousands more gathering at the finish line in Harrogate.

In between, the roadsides were often six and seven people deep as fans flocked to see the Tour on only its second ever visit to Britain.

There were so many fans on the ascents of Buttertubs Pass and Grinton Moor that many stood on the road itself in scenes normally reserved for iconic Tour climbs such as Alpe d’Huez and Mont Ventoux, while the same was true on day two, with thousands at the start in York and finish in Sheffield, while an estimated 60,000 crowd gathered on the category-two ascent of Holme Moss.

Marcel Kittel sprinted to victory in Harrogate and Vincenzo Nibali claimed victory in Sheffield and even the weather stayed fine in an unforgettable two days which showed Yorkshire – and its people - in the very best light.

Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton raced to victory in Sunday’s British GP to close to within four points of leader Nico Rosberg in the World Championship standings.

The British ace was close to tears in the immediate aftermath of arguably one of the most important - and popular - wins of his career.

As a fast-charging Hamilton rapidly closed in on his team-mate, Rosberg retired from the lead of the race, a broken gearbox denying a packed Silverstone crowd of a grandstand finish.

This allowed Hamilton to cruise to the chequered flag half a minute clear of Valtteri Bottas, sparking scenes of jubilation among the home support.

“I was gutted not to have a wheel-to-wheel race,” Hamilton told Sky Sports F1 afterwards. “I went to the prime tyre and he was on the options and yet I was catching him at the time. I knew then that at the end of the race on the option tyre I was going to be in a position to fight to him and I was so excited for that. But it wasn’t meant to be this weekend.”

Tim Krul

The Newcastle keeper became the toast of the Netherlands on Saturday as he handed his country a place in the World Cup semi-finals.

After neither the Dutch nor Costa Rica could break the deadlock heading to 120 minutes of action in the Arena Fonte Nova, Krul was brought on for Jasper Cillessen by Louis van Gaal for the spot-kicks finale.

The coach’s big decision proved the right one, with Krul saving from Bryan Ruiz and Michael Umana to put the Dutch through to a last-four clash with Argentina.

Afterwards, van Gaal explained why he had replaced Cillessen with Krul, saying: "We all thought Tim was the best keeper to stop penalties. He is taller and has a longer reach. It worked out. That was beautiful. I'm a bit proud of that.”

And Krul himself revelled in his moment of opportunity, saying: “Tonight I have realised a dream. What I've experienced is an incredible emotion.

"Van Gaal had warned me. It was something prepared and I knew that I would have this chance."

Angel Cabrera

The Argentine recorded his first ever non-major victory on the PGA Tour at the Greenbrier Classic, a second successive 64 earning him the title in West Virginia.

Cabrera finished on 16 under par – two shots ahead of George McNeill - to finally end a long barren run that stretched back to his 2009 Masters success, with his only other triumph on American soil coming at the 2007 US Open at Oakmont.

After a superb six-under score on Saturday had moved him up into second place, Cabrera pushed on, managing three birdies on his front nine and then moving past the clubhouse lead set by McNeill with back-to-back birdies from the 11th hole onwards. 

Despite successive bogeys cutting his advantage to one by the time he stood on the 16th tee, another birdie at the par-five 17th sealed his victory.

"I'm very happy to have won," Cabrera said. "I've been working really hard, and I needed this.

"I hit it very solid today, and was under control. The work I've been doing the last few weeks paid off."

Bad Week

Andy Murray lost in straight sets to Grigor Dimitrov

Andy Murray

The Wimbledon champion’s title defence came to a limp end with a straight sets defeat to 11th seed Grigor Dimitrov in the quarter-finals.

Hopes were high the Scot could again triumph given his easy progress to the last-eight, with Murray cruising through the first week without dropping a set.

However, the man who had sparked rapturous celebrations across the country a year ago when he became the first home-grown men's champion in 77 years, never managed to find anything like his best form against the Bulgarian.

He appeared to sleepwalk through a one-sided first set, threatened to fight back in the second and was simply outclassed in the third as he slumped to a 6-1 7-6 6-2 defeat to Dimitrov, who then went out to eventual champion Novak Djokovic.

“I'm disappointed, especially disappointed with the way I started the match,” Murray said.

“If I had managed to come back with him having been a break up in that (second) set and got it, maybe I would have been able to find a way back, but it wasn't a great day."

Mark Cavendish

The British rider was left “absolutely devastated" after being forced to withdraw from the Tour de France due to the injury he sustained in a crash on stage one.

Racing into his mother’s home town of Harrogate, a potential dream moment became a nightmare as he fell 250m from the finish line following a collision with Australian rider Simon Gerrans.

He dislocated his right collarbone in the heavy fall, which left the 29-year-old slumped on the ground in agony for several minutes before he got up to complete the stage.

A subsequent medical examination revealed the extent of the damage and Cavendish took the decision to withdraw on Sunday morning.

He said: "We kind of knew last night. I knew straight away. I normally bounce back from crashes quite well. I lie there, I assess my body and yesterday, for the first time in my career, I knew something was wrong.”

Neymar

Injury has also brought a halt to Brazilian poster-boy Neymar’s World Cup dream as the host’s 2-1 quarter-final win over Columbia came at a cost.

The 22-year-old has been ruled out for between three and six weeks after he was hit in the lower back during an aerial challenge with Colombia defender Juan Zuniga in the latter stages of the game in Fortaleza.

But it could have been worse - the forward at first feared he was paralysed as he had no sensation in the lower part of his body as he lay on the turf moments after the challenge.

Scans revealed he had fractured a vertebra following the collision and the player, who is now back at home, is thankfully expected to make a full recovery and will be fit for the start of the domestic season with Barcelona.

However, the hosts will miss his goal-scoring prowess as they take on Germany in the latest step towards a sixth world crown.

Bradford Bulls

Whitehead: Scored against the Bulls

Bradford Bulls hopes of pulling off a miracle and avoiding the Super League drop took another big blow with a last-gasp defeat to Catalan Dragons on Sunday.

The hosts were leading 24-12 at one stage but a converted try from former Bradford player Elliott Whitehead three minutes from time helped the visitors claim a dramatic 32-30 comeback victory.

A win would have provided a boost, especially as third-from-bottom Salford had shocked Huddersfield 36-10 the day before to open up an 11 point gap, while fourth-from-bottom Wakefield also won.

However, new Bradford boss James Lowes refused to get too downcast, saying: “We're in a tough situation and what is going to happen seems inevitable but if we keep playing like that we will get some reward before the end of the year."

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