Novak Djokovic picks new format

Novak Djokovic picks new format

SYDNEY – Former world number one Novak Djokovic will warm-up for a tilt at a record seventh Australian Open crown by playing in an innovative quickfire event at the Melbourne venue. Djokovic, who has been sidelined since July with a right elbow injury, is making his long-awaited return to the game at an exhibition tournament in Abu Dhabi from December 28-30. The Serbian world number 12 and volatile Australian Nick Kyrgios will headline the eight-man Tie Break Tens tournament at Margaret Court Arena on January 10. Each match will last for one tiebreak, with the first player to 10 points winning. The entire tournament will be completed on the night, and the winner will pocket US$250,000. The Australian debut of the novel format comes after three previous events in London, Vienna and Madrid. –AFP

Slovenian biathlete fails 2010 re-test

LAUSANNE – Slovenian biathlete Teja Gregorin has tested positive for doping after reanalysis of samples taken at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Gregorin, 37, is the only athlete to have been caught by retrospective testing at the 2010 Games. She tested positive for an anabolic steroid. A bronze medallist at Sochi 2014 she competed in five events in Vancouver, her best result fifth in the mass start. The IOC’s reanalysis of over 1,000 drug tests from the Olympics at Beijing in 2008 and London 2012 have uncovered more than 100 positive controls. The IOC has re-tested 70% of the 1,710 urine samples from Vancouver. “This wide ranging re-analysis is another demonstration of the IOC’s commitment to fight against doping and to protect clean athletes,” said IOC President Thomas Bach. –AFP

National Hockey in full swing in Sukkur

SUKKUR – The Pakistan Hockey Federation-endorsed 64th National Hockey Championship is in progress here at the Peoples Hockey Stadium Sukkur. On the fifth day of championship, Pakistan Wapda thrashed HEC 8-0, Fauji Fertilizer Company defeated Port Qasim 5-3, Pakistan Custom thumped PTV 3-0, Punjab Hockey routed FATA 9-2, Agriculture Development Bank beat Pakistan Railways 4-3 and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa trounced Baluchistan 6-0. Chief organiser M Ramzan Jamali said that Sukkur has honour of organising a great number hockey championships and it would continue to host more in a befitting manner. “In all, 24 hockey teams are participating in this championship while more than 50 international hockey players are representing their teams and departments. The event is being on the basis of league system.”–Muhammad Mehboob

Turkish player win friendly tennis match

ISLAMABAD – Turkish player Ergi Kirkin beat Pakistan’s Muzammil Murtaza by 7-5 in a friendly tennis match played here at Pakistan Tennis Federation (PTF) Complex on Wednesday. The PTF hosted the match to mark the 70 years of friendship between both the countries. Ambassador of Turkey to Pakistan Sadik Babür Girgin graced the occasion as the chief guest while PTF president Salim Saifullah Khan, Anwar Saifullah Khan, PTF officials, Director Ministry of Foreign Affairs, diplomats and other dignitaries also witnessed the match. The PTF chief thanked the Turkish Ambassador and lauded his role in cementing the bilateral relations between the two brotherly nations. He also thanked the Turkish Tennis Federation (TTF) for hosting the Pakistani players at Istanbul and to play the friendship series in October-November, this year. The Turkish Ambassador also thanked the PTF president and applauded his efforts for the promotion of tennis in the country and strengthening the bilateral ties between Pakistan and Turkey.–Staff Reporter


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