WADA seeks outside experts
The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) wants three outside experts to oversee the cleanup of Russia’s anti-doping system. A WADA report in November last year accused Russia of operating a state-sponsored doping program in track and field and also led to the national anti-doping agency RUSADA being stopped from carrying out tests, following accusations that it covered up drug use by Russian athletes. As RUSADA tries to earn back its right to run Russia’s anti-doping operation, WADA says it will appoint two “international experts” to oversee the process and wants a third to sit on RUSADA’s board. The UK Anti-Doping Agency on Wednesday said it is close to signing a contract to run Russia’s doping test system across all sports while RUSADA is suspended.
Brook to fight Bizier
Britain’s Kell Brook will make the third defense of his IBF welterweight title against Canadian mandatory challenger Kevin Bizier in Sheffield, England, on March 26, he announced on Wednesday. Brook, 29, has overcome the rib injury that obliged him to cancel a prospective fight with Diego Chaves in October last year. “While I was gutted to miss out on fighting in October, I’ve fully recovered from the injury and feel stronger than ever,” Brook said. “I’ve been working hard in the gym and working on new things, and I cannot wait to put on another explosive performance for my hometown fans and prove I am the best 147lb fighter on the planet.” Brook (35-0-0) last fought in May last year, when he pulled off a comfortable six-round win over compatriot Frankie Gavin. Bizier, 31, has won 25 of his 27 bouts (25-2-0), but lost in 2014 to Romania’s Ionut Dan Ion, who Brook beat in four rounds in March last year.
Ref ‘asked player out’
A soccer player in Spain who said a referee tried to ask her out during a game will not file a formal complaint because it is her word against his. Romanian defender Elena Pavel accused referee Santiago Quijada Alcon of trying to provoke her by asking her on a date in Sporting Huelva’s first-division game against Santa Teresa on Sunday. Pavel told the Marca newspaper she felt “humiliated,” but will not take further action, partly because nobody else witnessed the incident. According to Pavel, the referee said he wanted to grab a cup of coffee with her after the game. She said she told him to keep the focus on his officiating. The referee denied saying anything to Pavel, and the local referee’s association on Wednesday said it might take action against Pavel because of her accusation. In 2012, Pavel was accused of racist insults against an opposing player, prompting Sporting Huelva to release an official statement defending her. The 31-year-old Pavel is a former player on Romania’s national team.
Rastar takes over Espanyol
Chinese model car maker Rastar Group on Wednesday completed its takeover of La Liga side RCD Espanyol as the old board of the Barcelona-based club announced their resignation.The deal will see Rastar, which also specializes in toys and video games, invest 50 million euros (US$54.51 million) for a 54 percent stake. Rastar announced when the deal was first struck in November that they would buy between 45.1 and 56 percent at 78 euros per share. Espanyol are currently in 14th place in La Liga, just five points above the relegation zone.
The NBA said was re-evaluating its training program in China following allegations of abuse of young players by local staff and harassment of foreign staffers at a facility in Xinjiang. The comments come after a report by ESPN that quoted unnamed American coaches as saying that Chinese coaches hit young players. One American coach who worked at a camp in Xinjiang complained of harassment by local police, the sports network said. “The allegations in the ESPN article are disturbing,” NBA deputy commissioner Mark Tatum said in an e-mail statement on Thursday. “We ended our involvement with the basketball academy in Xinjiang in June
Taiwan Steel on Sunday grabbed three points with a narrow 1-0 win against Hang Yuan FC, to move into the No. 2 spot on the Taiwan Football Premier League (TFPL) log, while Taipower FC beat NTUS 2-0 to maintain first place. Taking advantage early in the match of opposition defenders who had not yet settled down, Taiwan Steel’s attacking trio of Wu Chun-ching, Marc Fenelus from the Turks and Caicos Islands, and Benchy Astama from Haiti pushed forward with good passes. After only one minute of play, Fenelus dribbled from the right flank, feeding a short pass inside the penalty area to
LEAVING IT LATE: Rakuten added late runs last night to add to wins on Wednesday against the Brothers and the Lions on Friday that went down to the last batter The Rakuten Monkeys rallied to post three late runs for another close win, prevailing 5-3 over the Uni-President Lions yesterday as Taiwan’s second-half CPBL season got started with lower scoring output, but exciting finishes. It was Rakuten’s third win in a row. In two games this week, they seized victory in dramatic fashion with their last at-bat and have drawn level with the CTBC Brothers on top of the table after yesterday’s results, 0.5 games in front of the Fubon Guardians and 1.5 games ahead of the Lions. It was tied at 1-1 early, with Rakuten hosting the Lions at the Taoyuan Intenational
STAYING COOL: Hamilton said that his ‘heart nearly stopped’ when he noticed the puncture, but he kept going to beat Alain Prost’s total of six home wins in France Lewis Hamilton said he feared he might not make it home when a last lap puncture almost derailed his charge to a record seventh British Grand Prix victory on Sunday. “I didn’t think I would make it round the last two corners,” the world champion said. The front left tire of his Mercedes had delaminated and deflated on his final lap, leaving the six-time world champion to nurse his vehicle to the finish as second-placed Max Verstappen hunted him down. “I just can’t believe it,” Hamilton said. “It was heart-stopping. I backed off and stayed chilled and was so glad it happened on