Brazilians seek 1.2m tickets
Brazilians have applied for about 1.2 million tickets for next year’s Rio Olympics a week after tickets went on sale, organizers said on Tuesday. The organizing committee said residents of the host nation had applied from around the country for all sports, with the most popular events to date being volleyball, soccer — which is being held in six cities — and basketball. In all, 7.2 million tickets are to be sold and last week saw the start of a two-stage lottery for applications via the official Web site. About 70 percent of the tickets for the first Olympic Games to be held in South America are to be reserved for residents of Brazil.
Arango suspended over bite
Former Venezuela international Juan Arango has been suspended for two matches for biting an opponent in the Mexican league last weekend. A local disciplinary commission banned the veteran Tijuana playmaker after TV images showed he bit Monterrey midfielder Jesus Zavala on the left shoulder during a game on Saturday. Tijuana officials on Tuesday said that the club also punished Arango for his actions, but they did not say how. The referee and the rest of the officiating crew did not see the incident during the match in northern Mexico. The 34-year-old Arango, who played for Mallorca in Spain and Borussia Moenchengladbach in Germany, participated in five Copa America editions with Venezuela.
Two suspended after uproar
Canterbury Bulldogs captain James Graham and forward David Klemmer have been suspended after pleading guilty to “contrary conduct” charges against a National Rugby League referee, which led to dozens of water bottles being thrown at match officials at Sydney’s Olympic stadium on Friday last week. South Sydney won the match 18-17 after referee Gerard Sutton awarded a last-minute penalty to the Rabbitohs. Graham, who received a four-match ban on Tuesday, and Klemmer, suspended for three games, verbally abused Sutton when the match ended. Sutton and the other match officials had to be shielded from the bottles by security staff as they left the pitch. One official sustained a broken shoulder when he fell trying to avoid a bottle.
Phelps to return at Mesa
Michael Phelps is scheduled to return to competition next week in Arizona after serving a six-month suspension following a drunken-driving conviction, USA Swimming said on Tuesday. Phelps is to be joined by Olympic gold medalists and world-record holders Katie Ledecky and Ryan Lochte at the April 15-18 Arena Pro Swim Series at Mesa. “My suspension is finally up! Time to get back in the pool and race again! Looking forward to #mesa !!” Phelps, the most decorated Olympian of all time, said on Twitter.
World Cup referees revealed
Welshman Nigel Owens headed a list of 12 referees to officiate at the World Cup in September and October, which was announced by World Rugby on Tuesday. France lead the way with three referees, while there are also two from England, New Zealand, South Africa and Ireland, as well as Owens from Wales. Owens is the most experienced having officiated 60 tests in his career, followed by England’s Wayne Barnes (57), South Africa’s Craig Joubert (55) Frenchman Romain Poite (39) and Ireland’s George Clancy (38).
Japanese couple Rikiya and Ayumi Kataoka had their honeymoon wrecked by the COVID-19 pandemic, but their resourcefulness in enforced exile in Cape Verde has won them appointments as ambassadors for its Olympic team. The Kataokas had completed a third of their round-the-world trip when a suspension in long-haul flights stranded them for five months in the archipelago of 10 tiny islands off the coast of West Africa. Unable to resume their journey to Europe and then home to Japan, and unwilling to head to the African mainland, where virus cases are spiking, they had to trade their skills with domestic businesses to
WEEKEND MATCHES: While Tatung FC made good on their chances early on, Taiwan Steel rallied to win the game 2-3 and move to the top with Taichung Futuro Sunday’s action saw Taichung Futuro, Taipower FC and Taiwan Steel tied for first place on 30 points in the Taiwan Football Premier League, while Hang Yuan FC picked up a point to take the No. 4 spot on 25 points after holding Taipower to a scoreless draw. In Taoyuan, Tatung FC hosted Taiwan Steel. It was an exciting matchup, as the visitors rallied from 2-0 down to take the game with three goals. Tatung made good on their chances early on. Honduran midfielder Elias Argueta opened the account 15 minutes into the game with a low shot from the right. Three minutes
Ronnie O’Sullivan delivered a scathing attack on the next generation of snooker players after he made the quarter-finals of the World Snooker Championship on Sunday, ending Chinese star Ding Junhui’s world championship dream. The mercurial 44-year-old Englishman won an enthralling high-quality second-round encounter 13-10 to set up a quarter-final clash with three-time champion Mark Williams. When asked by the BBC whether he thought he would remain at the top of the game for this long, the Briton, who turned professional in 1992, said the poor quality of younger players had secured his position and that something drastic would have to happen
Max Verstappen informed his Red Bull team that he would not be driving “like a grandma” in Formula One’s 70th Anniversary Grand Prix on Sunday — and he was as good as his word. The Dutch 22-year-old seized his opportunity at Silverstone, ending dominant Mercedes’ run of four successive wins this season and moving up to second place overall, 30 points behind leader Lewis Hamilton. Verstappen’s confidence shone through early on, after slotting into third place behind the two Mercedes, when he was told by race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase to take care of his tires. “Mate, this is the only chance of being