Swiss, Finns make last eight
Switzerland stretched their unlikely streak to five wins at the ice hockey world championship on Saturday, beating Denmark 4-1 to secure a place in the quarter-finals. In Helsinki, co-hosts Finland also qualified for the last eight after hammering Austria 7-2. Tournament surprise package Switzerland are unbeaten and already boast the scalps of co-hosts Sweden and champions Russia among their victories. The US strolled to a 4-2 victory over France, pounding 36 shots on goal compared to 17 for their opponents. Germany claimed their second straight victory as they defeated Latvia 2-0 in Helsinki to go fifth in Group H and leave the losers rooted to the bottom. In Stockholm, Sweden managed just two goals from 40 shots, but they were enough to beat Slovenia 2-0. Norway finally netted a powerplay goal as they defeated Belarus 3-1.
Zimbabwe beat Bangladesh
Zimbabwe held off a late Bangladesh fightback to win the first Twenty20 international by six runs in Bulawayo on Saturday. Set 169 for victory, Bangladesh looked to be cruising at 120-1 before three wickets in five balls set them back. They still managed to make a tight game of it, though, needing 10 runs off the final over. After Zimbabwe won the toss, their opener Hamilton Masakadza blasted 59 from 48 balls and skipper Brendan Taylor added 40 from 25 deliveries to give the hosts a solid score. Malcolm Waller showed good power-hitting at the end to finish on 26 not out from 14 balls as the home batsmen found the boundary with regularity. All the Bangladesh bowlers suffered except Shakib Al Hasan, whose four overs went for just 20 and took the wickets of Masakadza and Taylor. Shamsur Rahman (53) and Shakib Al Hasan (65) added 118 in just 85 balls for Bangladesh’s second wicket, but the visitors lost four batsmen for just 10 runs. Prosper Utseya did the damage, removing both the half-centurions within three balls to turn the match in his side’s favor. Excellent hitting from Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim (28 from 14 balls) kept his side in the game, but when he fell off the first ball of the final over, Zimbabwe sealed the win.
McDonnell edges out Ceja
Jamie McDonnell won the vacant IBF bantamweight title when he edged the previously unbeaten Julio Ceja with a controversial majority decision in his home ring in Doncaster, England, on Saturday. The favored Ceja, who entered with a 24-0 record and 22 knockouts, threw meaty shots throughout the 12 rounds, none better than a left hook to McDonnell’s chin in the 11th. However, McDonnell absorbed everything thrown by the 20-year-old Mexican, and a strong final round persuaded the judges to give the local the fight with scores of 114-114, 115-113 and 118-110.
Burns retains title
Ricky Burns kept his minor WBO lightweight belt when unbeaten challenger Jose Gonzalez of Puerto Rico retired after the ninth round on Saturday in Glasgow, Scotland. Gonzalez, the winner of 22 fights, 17 by knockout, stayed on his stool because of a suspected broken wrist. Burns (36-2, 11 KO) started better, but Gonzalez troubled the champion in the sixth round and a brutal seventh, subduing the partisan crowd. Gonzalez was hesitant in the ninth, and though he quit afterward, he led on the judges’ scorecards. “I knew the rounds were close. The judges had me behind,” Burns said. “I couldn’t believe how awkward he is. “I take my hat off to him, he is a class, class opponent."