Staff linked to Lance Armstrong doping get long bans

(Reuters) – Lance Armstrong’s former cycling team manager Johan Bruyneel, doctor Pedro Celaya and trainer Jose “Pepe” Marti have all been handed long bans from sports for their involvement in doping, the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) said on Tuesday. Bruyneel was banned for 10 years, while Celaya and Marti got eight-year bans after the decision by the American Arbitration Association North American Court of Arbitration for Sport (AAA), USADA said in a statement. The […]

Bulls’ Noah named NBA defensive player of the year

(Reuters) – Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah was named the National Basketball Association’s defensive player of the year on Monday, the first player from the franchise to earn the award since Michael Jordan in 1988. Noah, whose father Yannick won the 1983 French Open tennis championship, was the centerpiece of a Chicago defense which held opponents to a league-low 91.8 points per game during the 2013-14 regular season. The 29-year-old received 555 out of a […]

Raptors drop opening playoff game to Nets

(Reuters) – Sparked by a stinging expletive the NBA playoffs got off to an explosive start as the Brooklyn Nets landed the first blow in a suddenly bitter Eastern Conference first round match-up with a 94-87 win over the Toronto Raptors on Saturday. Out of the playoffs since 2008, Toronto’s return to the postseason was both eventful and controversial, upping the ante in the best-of-seven series. With A list celebrities, including rappers Drake, Jay-Z and […]

Hamilton wins Chinese GP

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has won his third consecutive Formula One race, taking the checkered flag at the Chinese Grand Prix. His team-mate, Nico Rosberg came in second. The British former drivers’ champion led the race at the Shanghai circuit from start to finish on Sunday, having secured the pole position and pulling away from the pack before the first curve. Rosberg’s second place finish allowed the German Mercedes driver to retain first place in the drivers’ […]

Korean K.J. Choi beats bad weather to take Heritage lead

Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:04pm EDT (Reuters) – South Korean K.J. Choi wielded a hot putter to vault into the lead before torrential rain and strong winds halted the second round at the $5.8 million RBC Heritage in South Carolina on Friday. Choi made use of his advantageous early tee time, holing out three times from outside 20 feet on his way to a four-under-par 67 to post a five-under 137 halfway total at Harbour […]

Nadal’s claycourt streak ended by bold Ferrer

Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:53pm EDT (Reuters) – Rafael Nadal’s 30-match claycourt winning streak ended on Friday when the world number one was stunned 7-6(1) 6-4 by fellow Spaniard David Ferrer in the Monte Carlo Masters quarter-finals. Sixth seed Ferrer, who had beaten Nadal on clay only once 10 years ago and was brushed aside by the muscular left-hander in the French Open final last year, relied on his devastating forehand to prevail in over […]

‘Renaissance man’ Gasol happy to control his own destiny

By Mark Lamport-Stokes LOS ANGELES Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:01pm EDT (Reuters) – Considered by many to be the ‘Renaissance man’ in the National Basketball Association (NBA), Spanish forward Pau Gasol is delighted finally to be the sole architect of his ‘revival’ as he eyes his playing future. The 33-year-old from Barcelona has faced more than his fair share of trade rumors since joining the Los Angeles Lakers in February 2008 but now he can […]

Djokovic cruises, Nadal claims 30th clay win in a row

Thu Apr 17, 2014 1:50pm EDT (Reuters) – Novak Djokovic lost just one game to join Roger Federer in the Monte Carlo Masters quarter-finals after Rafa Nadal breezed to his 30th consecutive win on clay on Thursday. Nadal barely broke sweat in his 6-1 6-3 thrashing of Italy’s Andreas Seppi while Federer recovered from a break of serve in the first set to beat Czech Lukas Rosol 6-4 6-1. Champion Djokovic demolished Spain’s Pablo Carreno […]

Brazil unveils $10 billion infrastructure budget for Rio Olympics

(Reuters) – Brazilian authorities unveiled an infrastructure budget of 24.1 billion reais ($10.76 billion) for the Rio 2016Olympic Games, 25 percent more than planned, as they try to reassure the world they can deliver facilities on time. The budget covers 27 projects in urban development and public transport, including 8 billion reais for a newly added fourth metro line for Rio, Brazil’s congested second largest city, where getting around town is an ordeal. Other initially envisaged […]

Nadal recovers from shaky start to go through

Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:06pm EDT (Reuters) – Claycourt machine Rafael Nadal recovered from a stuttering start to beat Russian qualifier Teymuraz Gabashvili 6-4 6-1 and reach the third round of the Monte Carlo Masters on Wednesday. The world number one, whose eight-year reign in the principality ended last year, conceded an early break but eventually proved too much to handle for Gabashvili on centre court. Nadal, who is on a 29-match winning streak on […]

Tippett to coach Canada at world championship

Wed Apr 16, 2014 8:14pm EDT (Reuters) – Dave Tippett, coach of the National Hockey League’s Phoenix Coyotes, will coach Canada’s men’s ice hockey team at next month’s world championship, Hockey Canada said on Wednesday. Tippett, who represented Canada at two Olympics as a player, serving as captain in 1984 and winning a silver medal 1992, will be assisted by fellow NHL head coaches Paul Maurice (Winnipeg Jets) and Peter DeBoer (New Jersey Devils). “As […]