Serbian player banned
A Serbian player has been hit with a two-match ban after making a racist gesture during a match against Thailand, the International Volleyball Federation (FIVB) said on Wednesday. Sanja Djurdjevic was photographed pulling at the corners of her eyes with her fingers, a derogatory gesture toward Asians during her side’s 3-0 victory over the Thai team at the Volleyball Nations League in Rimini, Italy, on Tuesday last week. The FIVB said its disciplinary committee found that she “violated the FIVB Disciplinary Regulations following a gesture made during the” match. The Volleyball Federation of Serbia was also fined 20,000 Swiss francs (US$22,337).
NZ backs trans inclusion
Inclusion should be the starting point for any discussion about the participation of transgender people in the sex class of their choice, New Zealand Minister for Sport and Recreation Grant Robertson said yesterday. Robertson was responding to an open letter from 43 former Olympic champions and athletes calling on the government to widen consultation on Sport New Zealand’s guidance on the participation of transgender players. “If we can all agree that we want all New Zealanders to have the opportunity to be part of sport ... I think that’s a good starting point, and then we can work from there,” he told Radio New Zealand. “Of course we’ve got to consider overall everybody’s safety and everybody’s comfort, but an approach based on inclusion is the one I want.”
NBA fines Heat’s Riley
The NBA on Wednesday fined Miami Heat president Pat Riley US$25,000 for contravening anti-tampering rules over comments made on Friday last week about Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James. In a radio interview, Riley thought a question about Dwyane Wade, a former Heat star guard, was instead about James. Riley, according to the Miami Herald and Sun-Sentinel, joked about leaving LeBron a key if he should ever wish to return to the Heat. “I would leave the key under the doormat if he would call me and let me know that he’s coming,” Riley said. Riley, 76, even predicted his fate after his remarks about 36-year-old James, who is under contract with the Lakers for the next two seasons. “This will just get me fined for tampering,” he said in the radio interview.
Super League six fined
The six rebel English clubs that signed up to the European Super League have reached a financial settlement with the Premier League worth a combined ￡22 million pounds (US$31 million), the league said on Wednesday. Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur announced themselves as founder members of the competition in April, but the project quickly collapsed after widespread opposition. “The six clubs involved in proposals to form a European Super League have today acknowledged once again that their actions were a mistake, and have reconfirmed their commitment to the Premier League and the future of the English game,” the Premier League said in a statement.
Taiwan on Monday lost their seventh consecutive qualifying match for next year’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar, falling 1-5 to Australia in Kuwait. The loss means that Taiwan will finish last in the five-team Group B with one match left to play in the second round of Asian qualifiers on Tuesday next week against Kuwait. Australia lead the group with six straight wins and appear certain to clinch the top spot and an automatic berth in the next qualification round. Taiwan head coach Henry Von said his team showed fighting spirit against the group’s best team, improving from their 0-2
OPPORTUNITY: After winning a Symetra Tour title last month, Lee was in position to become the first to follow a Symetra victory with an LPGA Tour win in her next start Taiwan’s Min Lee on Saturday capped a stellar outing by rolling in a 15-foot putt for a birdie on 18 to grab a two-shot lead heading into the final round of the LPGA Mediheal Championship. Lee birdied three of her final four holes, including the par-five 18th, for a four-under-par 68 and a total of nine-under 207. “I just tried to play my game and tried to be smart on the golf course, because the golf course is very hard,” Lee said. “There are some pin placement that you want to be on the fat side of the green if you miss
Naomi Osaka on Monday pulled out of next week’s Berlin WTA 500 grasscourt tournament, raising doubts about the four-times Grand Slam champion’s participation at Wimbledon later this month. The decision comes after Japanese world No. 2 Osaka pulled out of the French Open last week on mental health grounds. “We have received notification Naomi Osaka cannot start in Berlin. After consulting her management, she will take a break,” Berlin organizers said in a statement ahead of the event which begins on Monday. Osaka has not revealed when she plans to play next, casting doubt on her participation at Wimbledon, which starts on June
Shohei Ohtani on Tuesday hit the longest homer of his major league career in the first inning, and the surging Los Angeles Angels pounded a season-high five homers in an 8-1 victory over the Kansas City Royals. Ohtani’s 17th homer of the season was a 470-foot (143.25m) shot deep into the outfield bleachers off Kansas City starter Kris Bubic (1-1). Angels manager Joe Maddon, who first arrived at Angel Stadium in 1994 as a coach, had never seen anything like it. “That’s the farthest ball I’ve ever seen hit here,” Maddon said. “I’ve never seen one hit there before... It has an impact