Federer continues winning ways
CINCINNATI – World number one Roger Federer underlined his dominant position in the game by securing his sixth ATP title of the year with an impressive 6-0 7-6 win over Novak Djokovic in the Cincinnati Open final yesterday.
Federer’s 21st Masters 1000 title equals Rafa Nadal’s record in the elite series and his win against the Serbian world number two showed he is in optimum form heading into the U.S. Open later this month.
The 31-year-old Swiss held his serve throughout the tournament and did not even face a break point against the world number two.
Federer barely broke sweat in a first set which took just 20 minutes but it was a tighter affair in the second which the elegant Federer eventually won 9-7 in the tiebreak.
LONDON – Alex Song has completed his move to Barcelona from Arsenal.
The 24-year-old Cameroon international midfielder has signed a five-year contract at the Nou Camp after the clubs agreed a 15m deal.
Song, whose contract will contain a release clause of 80m euros (63m), passed a medical today.
Arsenal are close to signing 23-year-old Turkey international midfielder Nuri Sahin on a season-long loan deal from Real Madrid as a replacement.
Song did not play in Saturday’s 0-0 draw with Sunderland, after which Arsenal confirmed an agreement had been reached with Barca.
Armstrong’s lawsuit dismissed
TEXAS – A federal judge in Austin, Texas, threw out Lance Armstrong’s lawsuit against the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency on Monday, a decision that allows the agency’s drug case against the seven-time Tour de France winner to move ahead.
Armstrong, who repeatedly has denied doping, claimed in his lawsuit that USADA lacked jurisdiction and its arbitration process violates his constitutional rights.
U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks dismissed the lawsuit as speculative.
All-boys club reaches out to Rice
GEORGIA – Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and a financier named Darla Moore will become the first female members of Augusta National Golf Club in October.
The 80-year-old home of the Masters, under increasing criticism the last decade because of its all-male membership, invited both women to join when club opens for a new season in October.
Both have accepted.
“This is a joyous occasion,” Augusta National chairman Billy Payne said this afternoon.
The move likely ends a debate that intensified in 2002 when Martha Burk of the US National Council of Women’s Organisations urged the club to include women among its members.
Then club chairman Hootie Johnson stood his ground, even at the cost of losing Masters television sponsors for two years, when he famously said Augusta National might one day have a woman in a green jacket, “but not at the point of a bayonet.” Augusta National, which opened in December 1932 and did not have a black member until 1990, is believed to have about 300 members.
Cricketers knocked for breaking code
TOWNSVILLE – Three cricketers were reprimanded for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during their teams’ quarter-finals in the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2012 in Townsville on Monday.
Ehsan Adil of Pakistan and New Zealand’s Cam Fletcher and Michael Davidson were found to have breached clause 2.1.1 of the code which relates to “breach of the ICC’s Clothing and Equipment Regulations during an International Match”.
The charge against Ehsan was brought by on-field umpires Richard Illingworth and Enamul Hoque Moni, third umpire Peter Nero and fourth umpire Chris Gaffaney, while on-field umpires Johan Cloete and Ranmore Martinesz charged the two New Zealand cricketers.
The three cricketers accepted the Level 1 charge and accepted the sanction proposed by Roshan Mahanama of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees.