Georgia to send team
Georgia has confirmed it will take part in next year’s Winter Olympics in Russia. Georgia’s participation in the Sochi Games had been in doubt because of lingering resentment over the short war between the countries in 2008. Sochi is located just north of the separatist Georgian territory of Abkhazia, from which the last Georgian forces were driven out in the war and which Russia and a handful of other countries now recognize as independent. Some members of Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili’s party strongly opposed sending a team to the Sochi Games, but the Georgian Olympic Committee on Thursday voted unanimously to take part.
T-Wolves fire Kahn
David Kahn was fired as the president of basketball operations for the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves on Thursday, the team announced two weeks after the end of a 31-51 season. The Timberwolves declined to pick up the one-year option in Kahn’s contract for the 2013-2014 campaign. He had been originally hired by the club in May of 2009. “These are always difficult decisions, but at this time, we believe it is in the best interest of our organization to make a change,” Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor said. The Timberwolves were last in the NBA Northwest division, 14 games behind the Los Angeles Lakers and the last Western Conference playoff berth. Only New Orleans, Sacramento and Phoenix had worse records in the West last season.
Top seed wins in Munich
Top-seed Janko Tipsarevic opened his campaign at the Munich ATP claycourt tournament on Thursday by easing into the quarter-finals with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Slovenia’s Grega Zemlja as four Germans reached the last eight. The Serbian, ranked 10th in the world, is aiming to clinch his second title of the year, having started the season with a win in Chennai. Tipsarevic, who captured his first clay title in Stuttgart last year, was due to play Germany’s Daniel Brands, who beat French wild-card Gael Monfils 6-3, 3-6, 6-0, for a place in today’s semi-finals. Veteran Tommy Haas was to take on compatriot Florian Mayer in the only all-German quarter-final after the 35-year-old beat Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis 6-4, 6-7 (3/7), 6-1 on his 10th appearance in Munich. Mayer, the sixth-seed and 2011 runner-up, rallied past Australia’s Marinko Matosevic 2-6, 6-4, 6-2. In the other quarter-final, fifth-seed Alexandr Dolgopolov was due to face Croatia’s Ivan Dodig.
La Liga match probed
The Spanish league is investigating a game between topflight teams UD Levante and RC Deportivo de La Coruna for possible match-fixing. League spokesman Juan Carlos Santamaria confirmed Spanish media reports yesterday that the league was examining Deportivo’s 4-0 win at Levante on April 13. Following the loss, Levante forward Jose Barkero apparently accused some of his teammates of a lack of effort in the match. He later publicly retracted his accusations. Levante issued a statement on their Web site saying they will “help and collaborate with any investigation.” Deportivo coach Fernando Vazquez said “our conscience is clean.” Match-fixing is a crime in Spain and can lead to prison time for individuals or expulsion of a club from official competition.