Fri, Sep 14, 2007 - Page 22 News List

Sports Briefs

AGENCIES

■ CYCLING

Petacchi wins sprint finish

Italian sprinter Alessandro Petacchi, of the Milram team, won the 11th stage of the Tour of Spain on Wednesday, a 191km race from Oropesa to Algemesi which ended in a bunch sprint. Russian Denis Menchov, of Rabobank, retained the race leader's yellow jersey. Petacchi came over the finish line a bike length ahead of fellow Italian and world champion Paolo Bettini, of Quick Step, with his teammate Erik Zabel finishing in third place.

■ FOOTBALL

Coach sorry for spying row

Patriots coach Bill Belichick apologized on Wednesday for the commotion surrounding his team following accusations that his club spied on the Jets during New England's season-opening victory in New York. Belichick said he spoke with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell this week about a "videotaping procedure" during last Sunday's game and "my interpretation of the rules." "At this point, we have not been notified of the league's ruling," Belichick said in a statement. "Although it remains a league matter, I want to apologize to everyone who has been affected, most of all ownership, staff and players. Following the league's decision, I will have further comment."

■ FORMULA ONE

McLaren facing sanctions

The FIA World Motor Sports Council was expected to decide late yesterday whether to sanction the McLaren team over the Formula One spy scandal. In a hearing before the Paris-based organization, McLaren was to face new evidence in the investigation into the team's alleged use of secret technical documents belonging to F1 rival Ferrari. If found guilty, McLaren could face a stiff punishment, ranging from expulsion from the championship this season and next, to deduction of points from the team or drivers Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso.

■ ATHLETICS

Gibilisco wins appeal

Former world champion pole vaulter Giuseppe Gibilisco on Wednesday won an appeal against a two-year ban for his involvement in a doping scandal. The 28-year-old was found guilty by the Italian Athletics Federation of having worked with Carlo Santuccione, an Italian doctor under investigation for supplying several high-profile sportsmen with doping products. Gibilisco, a bronze medalist at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, was accused of having taken or having attempted to take performance-enhancing drugs. However the Italian always protested his innocence and said Santuccione had only prescribed him substances which are legal.

■ ICE HOCKEY

Bell banned for 15 games

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mark Bell was suspended for 15 games without pay on Wednesday by the National Hockey League (NHL) after his plea last month of no contest to drunken driving and hit-and-run charges. "Playing in the National Hockey League is a privilege, and with that privilege comes a corresponding responsibility for exemplary conduct off the ice as well as on it," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said. "Yeah I think the length of the suspension was a surprise," Bell said at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto after the announcement. "I haven't been in contact with the league until about 48 hours ago, but I respect the decision the commissioner made and I look forward to moving on in a positive manner."

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