Capriati faces assault charge
Former tennis world No. 1 Jennifer Capriati is facing battery charges and possible arrest after being accused of stalking and punching an ex-boyfriend on Valentine’s Day. Capriati, a three-time Grand Slam champion who won 14 titles and earned gold at the 1992 Olympics, had an altercation with Ivan Brannan at the Oxygen Health & Wellness gym in North Palm Beach, Florida, on Feb. 14, the local police department said. While Brannan was working out, Capriati, 36, “started screaming” at him, before punching him, a police report said. A yoga instructor then stopped the former tennis pro from continuing to punch Brannan and the 28-year-old locked himself in the men’s locker room and called 911. Brannan, a former Florida State University golfer, had red marks on his chest from the incident, the police report said. While filling out an affidavit, “his hands were physically shaking,” it added. “It was very apparent that he was in fear of physical harm.” Brannan, who dated Capriati from May 2011 to February last year, told police that Capriati began harassing and stalking him shortly after the couple broke up. He also later brought officers documentation of seven other altercations with the former tennis pro. The North Palm Beach Police Department requested an arrest warrant for Capriati, though it has not yet been issued by the court.
Police to question Singh
Police in India’s Punjab State reportedly plan to question Olympic boxing bronze medalist Vijender Singh as part of an investigation into a drug haul of more than US$25 million from an international network. Top police official Hardyal Singh Mann was widely quoted in the Indian media yesterday as saying one of two men arrested with 26kg of heroin told police that two boxers, sparring partners Vijender Singh and Ram Singh, were his clients. Ram Singh was expelled from India’s National Institute of Sports in the northern city of Patiala over the weekend after he admitted that he had used drugs, the Press Trust of India reported. He has not been charged. Vijender Singh has denied that he ever used drugs or that he had any links with the international drug ring.
Uchiyama, Kono to defend
WBA super featherweight champion Takashi Uchiyama and super flyweight champion Kohei Kono will defend their titles in May, their gym said yesterday. The two bouts will take place in Tokyo on May 6. It will be Uchiyama’s seventh defense of the title he wrested from Juan Carlos Salgado of Mexico in January 2010. Uchiyama, unbeaten at 19 wins, including 16 KOs and one draw, will take on 10th-ranked Jaider Parra of Venezuela. Kono will fight interim champion Liborio Solis of Venezuela, ranked top in the WBA.
Chapuis wins ski cross title
Jean Frederic Chapuis surprisingly won the men’s ski cross title at the freestyle world championships in Norway on Sunday, beating fellow Frenchman Bastien Midol in the final for his first major victory. John Teller of the US took bronze, while the fourth finalist, Jouni Pellinen of Finland, fell and failed to finish. Chapuis has never won a World Cup event, with a third-place finish in Germany last year his best finish. In the women’s race, 20-year-old Fanny Smith of Switzerland beat reigning World Cup champion Marielle Thompson of Canada, with Ophelie David of France taking bronze. Smith needed a strong comeback in the semi-finals, when she was in last position, but managed to finish second to reach the final.
Ronaldo scores brace
Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice to give Real Madrid a 2-1 win at RC Celta de Vigo on Sunday, lifting Jose Mourinho’s side provisionally into second place in La Liga. Except for Celta’s initial and last-gasp surges, Madrid had the better of the scoring chances at the Balaidos, despite Mourinho making several changes to his starting team. Ronaldo was well-positioned to score from a loose ball in the 61st minute. Striker Iago Aspas leveled against the run of play two minutes later, but the Portugal forward converted a spot-kick earned by Kaka in the 72nd. Ronaldo has 26 league goals this season, second only to Barcelona forward Lionel Messi with 40. Madrid trail Barcelona by 13 points. In other games on Sunday, Athletic Bilbao beat Valencia 1-0, while Levante UD and Getafe played to a goalless draw. Atletico Madrid lost 0-1 at Real Sociedad.
Lyon, Marseille lose ground
Olympique Lyonnais and Olympique de Marseille failed to make up ground on French league leaders Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) when they played out a tame goalless draw on Sunday. A point apiece leaves Lyon four adrift of PSG, while Marseille, in third place, are three points further back. Earlier, OGC Nice continued their bid for an unprecedented place in the Champions League, as a first-half brace from Stephane Bahoken carried them to a 2-0 victory over Montpellier Herault and into joint fourth with AS Saint-Etienne in Ligue 1. Nice, who won the last of their four French titles back in 1959, trail Saint-Etienne on goal-difference, but are just two points behind Marseille in the race for the third and final qualifying slot for Europe’s most prestigious competition. In the day’s other game, Europa League hopefuls Girondins de Bordeaux beat SC Bastia 1-0.
Bayern steam toward title
Bayern Munich finished the weekend 20 points clear in the Bundesliga and are now just three league wins from the title, while Eintracht Frankfurt stayed in the chasing pack after Sunday’s draw at Hannover 96. If they win their next three matches, Bayern are set to be crowned German champions on April 6 at Frankfurt, who were held to a goalless draw at wintry Hannover in heavy snow. Frankfurt drop to fifth following a fifth consecutive league match without scoring. In a scrappy game, Hannover’s ex-Manchester United striker Mame Diouf and Ivory Coast forward Didier Ya Konan both had chances up front for the team, who stay 10th. Hamburg SV moved up among the European places after they claimed sixth with a 1-0 win at VfB Stuttgart. Latvia’s Artjoms Rudnevs hit the 50th-minute winner for his 11th goal of the season.
Juventus get scrappy win
Substitute Emanuele Giaccherini struck in injury-time to snatch a 1-0 win for an uninspired Juventus at home to Catania on Sunday, to increase their Serie A lead to nine points. Giaccherini had only been on the field 15 minutes, during which time he had been booked for diving, when he shot home from the center of the box following a storming run by Paul Pogba down the right. That last-gasp goal completed a joyful day for the reigning champions, because their nearest challengers, SSC Napoli, crashed to a 2-0 defeat at struggling AC Chievo Verona. Other results on Sunday: Atalanta BC 2, Delfino Pescara 1936 1; Cagliari 3, UC Sampdoria 1; US Citta de Palermo 1, AC Siena 2; Parma 4, Torino 1; Inter 0, Bologna 1; SS Lazio 0, ACF Fiorentina 2.