Indian reprieve unlikely
The Indian Boxing Federation’s (IBF) suspension is not likely to be lifted, as it has failed to call fresh elections needed for it to return to the international fold. The International Boxing Association, the sport’s world body, told The Associated Press by e-mail it has “worked to try and find a way forward for boxing in India,” but the process has become difficult due to problems among various factions of the IBF. The IBF was suspended in December last year for not following proper election procedures when it elevated previous president Abhay Singh Chautala to chairman of the body. It is also no longer recognized by India’s sports ministry.
Russian Tinkov buys team
The cycling team run by Bjarne Riis and containing two-time Tour de France champion Alberto Contador has been bought by Russian businessman Oleg Tinkov and will be known as Tinkoff-Saxo for the next three years. Tinkov’s purchase of Riis Cycling was confirmed on Monday at a news conference in London. Riis will stay on as general manager of the team, with Danish investment specialist Saxo Bank becoming the secondary sponsor. Riis says the deal secures “the long-term stability of the team,” which “now has the funding and foundation to continue to be a major player on the world tour and to further raise our ambitions.”
Olympic spots debated
The naming of Australia’s women’s Olympic figure-skating team has been delayed after Sochi hopeful Chantelle Kerry took a dispute over the selection of fellow prospect Brooklee Han to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The Australian Olympic Committee was expected to announce all of its figure skating positions today. Chantelle Kerry claims that US-born Han is ineligible for Sochi because she entered an event without the approval of the national federation. The CAS hearing is scheduled for next week. Han, who is based in Connecticut, was born and raised in the US, but can qualify for the Australian team through her father’s nationality.
Fighters swap microphones
British boxer Amir Khan will be in the arena when Devon Alexander defends his world welterweight title on Saturday, just not in the ring as the US champion had originally intended. Khan will serve as a ringside commentator for Showtime for the telecast of the card at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, replacing Paulie Malignaggi, the regular commentator, who will instead be in the ring against Zab Judah in a main-event showdown of hometown heroes. With a deal almost set, Khan decided against fighting US southpaw Alexander for the International Boxing Federation welterweight crown amid speculation that the Briton will be the next opponent for unbeaten Floyd Mayweather Jr in May.
First Test faces clash
England have released the dates and venues for their tour of New Zealand next year, confirming that they will take on the world champions in the first match without players involved in the Premiership final. The three Tests are in Auckland on June 7, Dunedin on June 14 and Hamilton on June 21 with a midweek game against the Crusaders on June 17 in Christchurch. The squad will depart on May 27 and, due to restricted training time and jet-lag recovery protocol, anyone involved in the May 31 Premiership final will not be considered for the first Test.