Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Soccer-Japan ‘sounded out’ about hosting the 2023 Asian Cup
The Japan Football Association (JFA) has been informally approached about the possibility of replacing China as hosts of next year’s Asian Cup, Chairman Kozo Tashima told Nikkan Sports.
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced last Saturday that China had pulled out of hosting the 24-team continental championship, citing the COVID-19 situation in the country.
Golf-After earning a ‘life-changing’ LPGA Tour card, Saso set for US Women’s Open defense
Earning an LPGA Tour card following her maiden major triumph at last year’s U.S. Women’s Open was a “life-changing” experience for Yuka Saso, the Japanese-Filipino golfer told Reuters on Wednesday. Saso battled back from a horror start to win the title in a sudden-death playoff in San Francisco last June, earning a five-year Tour card and announcing herself as a new force in women’s golf, which is largely dominated by South Koreans.
Ukrainian boxing great Wladimir Klitschko calls for IOC ban on Russian athletes
Ukrainian former world boxing heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko has called on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to ban Russian athletes, following the Russian invasion of his homeland. Global sports governing bodies have moved to suspend Russian and Belarusian athletes since the invasion began in February, while the IOC has recommended that the athletes do not take part in international competitions or compete under a neutral flag.
Swimming-Pop singer Simpson upstages Chalmers at Australian trials
Australian pop singer-turned-swimmer Cody Simpson is on track for a remarkable world championships debut after upstaging Olympic freestyle gold medallist Kyle Chalmers at national trials in Adelaide on Wednesday. Simpson, 25, won his heat in the 100 meters butterfly in a personal best time of 51.79 seconds, qualifying second for the final later on Wednesday behind defending champion Matt Temple (51.64).
Golf-Stronger, better-prepared Woods says he can win PGA Championship
Tiger Woods’s comeback after nearly losing his leg in a car crash continues at the PGA Championship this week and the 46-year-old believes he is capable of hoisting the Wanamaker Trophy for the fifth time. Very few athletes, especially ones returning from career-threatening injuries, can get away with such bravado, but Woods, as he has proven time and again, is no ordinary athlete.
Baseball-Milwaukee pitcher Mejia handed an 80-day suspension
Milwaukee Brewers pitcher J.C. Mejia has received an 80-day suspension after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance, Major League Baseball (MLB) said on Tuesday. The commissioner’s office said he would be suspended without pay effective immediately for testing positive for Stanozolol, a synthetic steroid.
Getting Griner home the ‘number one priority for NBA, WNBA, says Silver
National Basketball Association (NBA) Commissioner Adam Silver said getting WNBA player Brittney Griner home was the “number one priority,” after a Russian court extended her pre-trial detention last week. The 31-year-old twice Olympic champion was arrested at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport in February, allegedly in possession of cannabis-infused vaporizer cartridges.
MLB roundup: Astros hit record-tying 5 HRs in one inning
Kyle Tucker punctuated his second career multi-homer game with his second career grand slam as the Houston Astros matched a major league record en route to a 13-4 road victory over the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday. Tucker hit the second of five second-inning home runs as Houston became the eighth team to club five homers in an inning. The Astros did their damage against Red Sox right-hander Nathan Eovaldi (1-2), the third pitcher to allow five home runs in an inning.
Tennis-Medvedev downplays French Open title chances after Geneva exit
World number two Daniil Medvedev has downplayed his chances of mounting a serious challenge at the French Open after the Russian went down to Richard Gasquet at the Geneva Open on Tuesday in his first match back since hernia surgery. The U.S. Open champion, who last played at the Miami Open at the end of March, was beaten 6-2 7-6(5) by Gasquet at the ATP 250 claycourt event.
Golf-Masters champ Scheffler hungry as ever at PGA Championship
Masters champion Scottie Scheffler said on Tuesday that despite figuring out a winning formula that has produced one of the best runs in recent memory, he remains as hungry as ever going into this week’s PGA Championship. World number one Scheffler, a co-favorite for this week’s PGA Championship at Southern Hills Country Club, said other than more requests for his autographs and people hollering his name, life has remained mostly the same.
(With inputs from agencies.)