Star going to college
Three-time French Open champion Gustavo Kuerten is going to college. Kuerten, a former top-ranked player who retired from the circuit last year, found out on Monday that he had won admission to attend a theater college in his hometown of Florianopolis in southern Brazil. He is scheduled to begin classes on Feb. 16, spokeswoman Clarissa Machado Santos said. Kuerten is one of Brazil’s biggest sporting idols, and when he took the admission test last year security was needed to prevent fans from bothering him. The 32-year-old Kuerten gave up professional tennis last year because of a chronic hip injury that required surgery in 2002 and 2004. He won 20 singles titles in his 15-year career, including at Roland Garros in 1997, 2000 and 2001.
President praises sumo
Bulgarian President Georgi Parvanov told Japanese Emperor Akihito on Monday that the traditional Japanese sport of sumo wrestling is bringing their two countries closer together, officials said. Parvanov made the remark when he and his wife were received by Akihito and Empress Michiko at the Imperial Palace on the second day of their visit to Japan, the Imperial Household Agency said. Bulgarian wrestler Kotooshu, 25, whose real name Kaloyan Mahlyanov, last year became the first European to win a bimonthly professional sumo tournament. In 2005, he became the first European to become reach the rank of ozeki, the second-highest in sumo. “Thanks to Kotooshu, sumo is well known in Bulgaria and people are feeling closer to Japan,” Parvanov was quoted by the agency as telling the emperor and the empress. Kotooshu has a huge following in Japan and is adored for his good looks.
English team loses 194-3
Coventry Saracens suffered the worst-ever defeat in an English league match at the weekend when they lost 194-3 to Alcester but won praise from their opponents for playing the match despite having only eight players. “We dropped three forwards out of the scrum to make it five against three in the scrums but all credit to Coventry Saracens for honoring the fixture,” Alcester captain Scott Carmichael told the Rugby Football Union. “A lot of clubs would have cried off, but they turned up and insisted that the game went ahead so they deserve a lot of credit. They have gone up in our estimation and we appreciated their efforts,” he said. Alcester ran in 32 tries in the Midlands West Six match to surpass the previous highest score in a game in England, 177-3 set by Norwich in a Norfolk Cup match against Eccles & Attleborough 13 years ago. The tally fell well short of the world record score of 350-0 set by French third division side Lavardac against Vergt in 1984 when the losers refused to tackle in protest at having players suspended. Vergt conceded 66 tries, which were then valued at four points each.
Ancelotti blasts Mourinho
AC Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti turned up the title heat on Inter rival Jose Mourinho by accusing him of a lack of respect. Mourinho was sent to the stands by referee Domenico Celi after he charged out of his dug-out to protest a decision during Sunday’s 1-0 win over Sampdoria. He later accused Celi of lacking experience and being afraid of giving a decision to Inter but Ancelotti hit out at the former Chelsea boss. “I don’t believe Celi was afraid. And I believe Mourinho has lacked respect in his manner of confronting the referee and I believe the decision to send him off was justified,” he said.