Hamilton signs with Tinkoff
Disgraced US cyclist Tyler Hamilton has signed a one-year deal with the Tinkoff team, the Italian-Russian outfit announced on Friday. Hamilton's two-year ban for blood doping at the 2004 Tour of Spain ended in September but until recently he was suspected of being implicated in a Spanish doping investigation which marred most of the this year. Hamilton said: "There have been mistakes and the price that I had to pay was very high. Now I am ready to put myself back into competition. I passed excruciating long months and have come out on top thanks to the help of my family and my close friends."
■ Ski Jumping
Flying Finn wins opener
Finland's Arttu Lappi won the World Cup opener on Friday in an event reduced to one jump because of wind and heavy snow. Lappi, jumping fifth, went 141m for 154.8 points. Former double Olympic champion Simon Ammann of Switzerland took second with a 136m jump for 145.7 points. Ammann's superior style helped him beat Norwegian rookie Anders Jacobsen, who came third with 137.5 meters for 145.5 points. "The event should have been canceled halfway through the first round," said Finland's Janne Ahonen, who only managed 90m. World Cup champion Jakub Janda hit 95.5m and was 56th.
Woods' wife files libel suit
Tiger Woods' wife Elin started libel proceedings against an Irish magazine for publishing fake nude pictures of her during September's Ryder Cup tournament in Ireland, her lawyer said on Friday. The former model filed a summons against The Dubliner magazine at Dublin's High Court, he said. The September edition of The Dubliner carried bogus nude pictures of Elin Woods alongside a story on some of the US Ryder Cup wives under the headline "Ryder Cup filth for Ireland." The listings magazine, which later apologized for the article, which it called satirical, also falsely linked her to a number of porn sites.
■ College Football
Miami Hurricanes fire Coker
Larry Coker's tumultuous and disappointing season at the University of Miami ended with his dismissal as head coach. Coker was fired on Friday, a move that was expected for weeks and came one day after the Hurricanes finished a 6-6 regular season by beating Boston College, snapping a four-game losing streak and becoming bowl-eligible. Coker will coach the team in a bowl game, if Miami is invited, athletic director Paul Dee said. "We all recognize Larry's contributions to this program and all that he's accomplished," Dee said. Coker said after the game he expected to remain at Miami "a long time," but he was fired less than 12 hours later.
Astros sign Carlos Lee
The Houston Astros, seeking a power hitter to bolster their weak offense, signed Carlos Lee to a six-year deal worth a reported US$100 million on Friday. The Astros, ranked last in the National League with a .255 batting average last season and have been among the worst in the league over the last three years, should receive a big boost from the 30-year-old Lee, who split this year between Milwaukee and the Texas Rangers. Lee batted a combined .300 with career highs of 37 homers and 116 RBI. He also stole a personal-best 19 bases and struck out just 65 times -- the lowest total of his eight-year career.
Rooney queried over fight
Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was questioned by police on Friday about a scuffle outside a Manchester night spot last month. Manchester police said the 21-year-old England forward was interviewed -- but not arrested -- over allegations that a photographer was assaulted outside the Panacea Restaurant and Bar in downtown Manchester on Oct. 15. Police said they would prepare a file for the Crown Prosecution Service, which decides whether charges should be filed. Rooney trained earlier on Friday with Manchester United, which leads the Premier League and faces second-place Chelsea today at Old Trafford.