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Highlights from the world's press

Compiled by Carlyle Laurie
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(CNN) -- The New York Times focuses on the Zambia's presidential elections, calling it the, "wildest and most entertaining presidential campaign in memory."

"In part, this may be because this election has weathered one candidate who suffered a stroke, another who died and a third, Mr. Sata, who has proved himself a showman on the campaign trail."

The Washington Post is less disparaging, speculating that Thursday's vote "could be the closest in the copper-rich country in southern Africa since it won independence from Britain in 1964."

Hair apparent

Britain's Guardian focuses on Australian cricket umpire Darrell Hair, saying that his career hangs in the balance after an International Cricket Council hearing rejected his allegations of ball-tampering against Pakistan's captain, Inzamam-ul-Haq, which brought last month's Oval Test to a halt.

Shaharyar Khan, the Pakistan Cricket Board's president, complained again of Hair's "attitudes" and said he had been "a timebomb waiting to go off".

Pakistan's Dawn leads with the headline, "Hairy saga ends as Inzi cleared of ball-tampering."

It says that Hair's umpiring career is "increasingly disappearing down the abyss" after the ICC decided to exclude him from the Champions Trophy for reasons of his "personal safety" in India.

"Khan, who represented the Pakistan camp at the press conference that followed the hearing, was visibly delighted that the "stain of cheating" had been removed from Pakistan cricket," the paper said.

Bunged up

Britain's Daily Star tabloid focuses on Colin Gordon, the agent of young soccer star Theo Walcott and England boss Steve McClaren -- who says the English game is the "most corrupt" in Europe.

He claims millions of pounds go into the pockets of agents and bosses in dodgy deals -- known as bungs -- every year and even the taxman is being cheated by the massive scams. "In the most explosive revelations yet about the national game, Colin Gordon says he has been offered suitcases stuffed with money."

"We're not talking about old brown paper envelopes stuffed with a few notes. We are talking about millions upon millions of pounds," he said.
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