Wed, Mar 23, 2016 - Page 18 News List

SPORTS BRIEFS

Agencies

ATHLETICS

Donato cleared of doping

Olympic triple jump bronze medalist Fabrizio Donato was among eight Italian athletes, including several hoping to compete at the Rio Games, cleared of doping violations on Monday by the country’s anti-doping tribunal. Donato, the 2007 world long jump silver medalist, Andrew Howe and Daniele Greco, the 2013 European indoor triple jump champion, had been part of a group of 26 athletes facing two-year bans after they were accused of failing to provide doping samples. In December last year, Italy’s anti-doping agency called for the athletes to be suspended for “evading, refusing or failing to submit themselves to provide samples,” as well as breaching rules about informing doping authorities of their out-of-competition whereabouts. The cases were then sent to the national anti-doping court, with a decision over the remaining 18 athletes expected to be returned in the next few weeks. No reason was given for the court’s decision on Monday, but Italian media reported that the national anti-doping agency is likely to appeal the ruling.

CYCLING

Bouhanni wins first stage

French sprinter Nacer Bouhanni made up for his Milan-San Remo disappointment over the weekend by dominating the opening bunch sprint at the Volta a Catalunya on Monday. The Cofidis rider pulled on the leader’s jersey after crossing a full length ahead of Britain’s Ben Swift, who finished second in the Milan-San Remo, after the 175km stage around Calella. Several escape bids were reeled in over the afternoon, including a wily late bid from Ireland’s Nicolas Roche, whom Sky went after and neutralized with 1km remaining. Top-drawer competitors Chris Froome, Alberto Contador, Nairo Quintana and Richie Porte all went through the motions on Monday on a stage favoring a highly competitive cast of sprinters. It was a third win of the season for the 25-year-old Cofidis captain after he won a stage of the Vuelta a Andalucia and another on the Paris-Nice.

MOTORCYCLING

Smith to join KTM next year

British motorcycle racer Bradley Smith is to quit Yamaha after four seasons of MotoGP in favor of Austrian mark KTM for the 2017 and 2018 seasons. The Austrian manufacturer is planning to join the MotoGP circuit next year alongside the likes of Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Ducati and Aprilia. The 25-year-old, whose three grand prix wins all came at the 125cc level, ended last season in sixth place in the world championship standings and was eighth in Sunday’s season-opening Commercial Bank Grand Prix of Qatar.

SOCCER

Brazil train by truck’s light

Brazil’s Olympic soccer team on Monday trained in the headlights of a truck after the floodlights failed at their training ground, local news media reported. Officials called for a truck to be parked alongside the pitch after the lights went out at the Estadio Engenheiro Alencar Araripe, allowing the players to practice ahead of tomorrow’s friendly against Nigeria. The match is to be played in Espirito Santo, a small coastal state where no games were held during the 2014 World Cup. Brazil built or renovated 12 stadiums for the competition. Rafinha Alcantara (Barcelona), Andreas Pereira (Manchester United) and Felipe Anderson (SS Lazio) are among the biggest names in a squad that is to try to win Olympic gold for the first time in August in Rio de Janeiro.

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