Connecticut stay in race
Connecticut held off Missouri 82-75 to stay in the hunt for their third college basketball title, while Villanova upset Pittsburgh 78-76 to reach its first Final Four in 23 years on Saturday. Freshman Kemba Walker scored 23 points as top-seeded Connecticut earned a trip to Detroit as winner of the West Regional. The Huskies will play the Louisville-Michigan State winner in the Final Four. The Huskies blew an early 11-point lead but survived against frenetic third-seeded Missuori, which was denied its first Final Four berth. Connecticut clinched the victory by going 10-for-10 from the line in the final 1:02. The Huskies won their previous national titles in 1999 and 2004. Scottie Reynolds made a half-court dash for the game-winning shot with 0.5 seconds left to lead Villanova back to the Final Four for the first time since its run to the 1985 championship.
Armstrong training again
Seven-time Tour de France champion Lance Armstrong climbed back onto a bicycle on Saturday for the first time since suffering a broken collarbone. Three days after an operation to repair the injury suffered during an event in Spain, Armstrong mounted a stationary bicycle to begin a new phase of his rehabilitation work as he hopes to recover in time to continue his comeback. “I rode for half an hour on a stationary bike,” Armstrong said in a message filed on Twitter. The US cycling star has returned to his home in Austin, Texas, in hopes of getting himself into shape to compete at the Tour of Italy that starts on May 9 and in July’s Tour de France. Armstrong said it could take eight to 12 weeks to complete a full recovery.
Kim breaks 200 barrier
South Korean teenager Kim Yu-na emphasized her dominance by becoming the first woman to break the 200 point barrier at a world championships as she skated to individual gold on Saturday. Entering the night with a commanding lead of 8.2 points, the 18-year-old electrified the Staples Center with a stunning free skate that earned her 131.59 points for a combined total of 207.71. Her record haul was far out of the reach of Canadian silver medallist Joannie Rochette, who finished second with 191.29. The 2007 world champion, Miki Ando, leapfrogged her fellow Japanese and defending champion Mao Asada to claim the bronze.
China champs in S Korea
China’s Wang Bingyu won the women’s curling world championship in Gangneung, South Korea, yesterday with a clinical 8-6 victory over Sweden in the final. China stretched its winning sequence to 12 in a championship that featured 12 teams, earning a first world title for an Asian team in either women’s or men’s curling competition. The Chinese exchanged misses with Sweden’s Anette Norberg in the first few ends before scoring the first deuce in the fourth end for a 3-1 lead. Led by impressive Wang, who didn’t know what a curling stone was 10 years ago, drew for another pair in the sixth end when the Swedes missed a runback. Norberg closed the gap to 5-4 when she drew for two in the seventh end. Wang earned two points on measurement in the eighth end for a 7-4 lead before Sweden found its way to wrangle a deuce and closed the gap to one at the end of ninth. Sweden had one buried behind cover in the final end until Norberg’s last stone, which she elected to put into the rings as opposed to guard. Wang elected a takeout, made it perfectly, and China earned its historic win.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Friday said that he had called in the “third umpire” as he announced that recreational cricket would be allowed to resume next weekend. In a radio interview earlier on Friday, Johnson angered thousands of club cricketers by saying that the amateur game was still not safe to play amid the COVID-19 pandemic because of issues surrounding communal teas and dressing rooms. “It’s the teas, it’s the changing rooms and so on and so forth. There are other factors involved that generate proximity which you might not get in a game of tennis,” he said. Johnson had already
Hong Kong media reported that police briefly detained a man in a Liverpool team jersey who shouted “long live Liverpool” during anti-government protests on Wednesday, over suspicion that he was inciting independence. In-Media reported that the man was across the street from police officers who were conducting stop-and-searches on a group of protesters, when he shouted: “Long live Liverpool.” Others reportedly cheered and joined in the chant, before officers detained him. The man told In-Media that police had accused him of inciting Hong Kong independence, which now is a punishable crime. He said that he has been a fan of the English soccer
Indian police are investigating an alleged betting scandal in which a sham cricket tournament was held in an Indian village and passed off as a Twenty20 contest played in Sri Lanka. Players portrayed as Sri Lankan cricketers played two matches on Monday last week that were broadcast with live commentary on YouTube, media reports said, along with ball-by-ball coverage on top Indian sports Web sites. The organizers hung Sri Lankan advertisements at the ground for added authenticity and put up tents to block the view from outside the remote rural venue, set in farmland next to a busy highway. Police said that they
Raptors guard Fred VanVleet is already in Florida with the rest of his Toronto teammates, and he knows the time to take a stand and counter the NBA plan to restart the season has passed, but his opinion on the matter has not changed. “It sucks,” VanVleet said on Monday in a videoconference of his choice to return to the court during the COVID-19 pandemic and Black Lives Matter campaign. “It’s terrible timing, but that’s been 2020 for us. We all know the right thing to do is to not play, to take a stand. Morally, yes, that makes sense, but