■ Soccer \nTop ref to accept doctorate \nJust call him Dr. Collina. Pierluigi Collina, widely considered the world's No. 1 soccer referee, will be awarded an honorary doctorate by England's University of Hull. The Italian will be presented with an honorary Doctor of Science degree at Hull city hall in July 2004, recognizing his contributions to the game. Collina, who officiated the 2002 World Cup final in Yokohama, Japan, is easily recognizable for his shaved head and piercing stare. \n■ Rugby Union \nWilkinson injured \nEngland star Jonny Wilkinson is expected to overcome a shoulder injury and be ready for the Six Nations rugby championship. The fly-half was helped off the field on Sunday after attempting a tackle for his club team Newcastle, his first match since kicking the winning drop goal in England's victory over Australia in the World Cup final five weeks ago. Wilkinson kicked three penalties before leaving the match Sunday, which Newcastle won 23-19 over Northampton. An X-ray afterward showed no broken bones. "It's a bit early to say at this stage how long he will be out, probably the next 48 hours will tell," Newcastle director of rugby Rob Andrew said. "I don't expect him to miss the Six Nations. He may well not play next week, but we're talking a few weeks probably rather than anything serious." \n■ Baseball \nSteinbrenner doing fine \nNew York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner was released from the hospital on Sunday, one day after he fainted at a memorial service, and his doctor described his health as excellent. The 73-year-old Steinbrenner was picked up by family members, hospital spokeswoman Lyn Cassan said. "He wanted to go home," Cassan said. "He wasn't very happy sitting in a hospital bed." Dr. Andrew Boyer, Steinbrenner's personal physician, said in a statement that Steinbrenner recovered in a few minutes after collapsing during the church service for football great Otto Graham. "He's doing well ever since," the doctor said. "To be sure that it was nothing more than a fainting spell he has had a very extensive cardiac and neurological work-up. All the diagnostic studies were normal," he added. "He's feeling well and his general health is excellent." \n■ Olympics \nS Korean official quizzed \nProsecutors questioned International Olympic Committee Vice President Kim Un-yong yesterday over allegations that he collected illicit money from former South Korean Olympic officials and embezzled funds from taekwondo organizations. "I will explain everything to prosecutors," Kim told reporters before entering the Seoul District Prosecutors' Office. Kim, the world's taekwondo chief, has been plagued by scandals involving him and his family. He has denied any wrongdoing. Earlier this month, South Korean prosecutors raided Kim's house and offices, seizing a private safe and documents. The move was highly unusual because Kim was a national legislator.
APPROPRIATE RESPONSE: The Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan expressed ‘sincere regret’ for publishing the image on its in-house magazine and Web site A satirical mock-up depicting the Tokyo Games logo as the novel coronavirus has been pulled from online after Olympic organizers branded it “insensitive” and said that it infringed copyright. The design combines the distinctive, spiky image of the coronavirus cell with the blue-and-white Tokyo Games logo. It appeared on the cover of the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan’s magazine. The Tokyo Games have been postponed until next year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has left hundreds of thousands of people dead and halted sport worldwide. Club president Khaldon Azhari yesterday said that the club had decided to withdraw the image and remove
The COVID-19 pandemic has stalled young Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas’ burgeoning career, but he remains philosophical about the tennis shutdown. The world No. 6 would have been preparing for the French Open that was originally scheduled to start this weekend, but was postponed to September. While he is missing life on the ATP Tour, Tsitsipas believes that the lockdown has given the planet a breather. “I actually think they should put us in lockdown once a year — it’s good for nature, it’s good for our planet,” Tsitsipas said in an Instagram Live conversation for At Home With Babsi on Eurosport’s Instagram page. “I
Uncertainty grips next year’s postponed Tokyo Olympic Games: Will there be fans or empty stadiums in 14 months? How will thousands of athletes, staff members and technical officials travel, be housed and stay safe amid the COVID-19 pandemic? And the Tokyo Games are not the only event. China, where COVID-19 was first detected, is to hold three mega-sports events in the year after the Tokyo Olympics are set to close. The World University Games in Chengdu, China, are to open, with up to 8,000 athletes, only 10 days after the Tokyo Games close. Next come the Beijing Winter Olympics beginning on Feb. 4, 2022,
When South Korea’s domestic women’s golf tour held its premier event last week — without spectators because of the COVID-19 pandemic — no fewer than three of the world’s top 10 players took part. The country of 52 million people has a disproportionate share of the women’s world golf rankings, providing eight of the current top 20. In a demonstration of their prominence, South Korean women have won at least one major every season since 2010, with coronavirus cancellations perhaps the biggest threat to their run this year. The phenomenon, players and commentators have said, results from driven parents, intense training, a highly