Melbourne, Jan 2 : Maria Sharapova outlasted Estonian Kaia Kanepi 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 in Brisbane International tennis quarter-finals.
Kanepi, at one stage appeared to silence Sharapova, but the four-time grand slam champion regained her composure to book a likely semi-final showdown with world No. 1 Serena Williams.
According to The Age, Sharapova launched into her trademark screams on each point but little else resembled the world No. 4 as she struggled to find her serving groove against the hard-hitting Kanepi.
New Delhi, Dec 26 : For Indian sport, 2013 was a year of controversies and low-key performances, the country's image globally taking a beating with the suspension of the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) by the apex body of world sport. Amid the gloom, Pusarla Venkata Sindhu provided some cheer.
It could have been worse as the IOA came perilously close to getting expelled from the International Olympic Committee (IOC). In this brinkmanship, the athletes were the biggest losers as the fight for the control of the country's top sports body heated up.
New Delhi, Dec 19 : Saina Nehwal’s poor form this season has also started showing in her rankings as the Olympic bronze medallist dropped two places to No. 8 in the women’s singles rankings released by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) Thursday.
Saina dropped two places and was overtaken by South Korean Yeon Ju Bae and Chinese Taipei’s Tai Tzu Ying. However, P. V. Sindhu maintained her position at No. 11.
In men’s singles, Parupalli Kashyap retained the 14th position while Ajay Jayaram moved up a place to 24th.
No Indian figures in the top 25 of the men’s, women’s and mixed doubles rankings.(IANS)
Salvador (Brazil), Dec 6 : The 2014 World Cup champions will receive $35 million in prize money, world football's governing body FIFA announced here Thursday.
The value represents a 17 percent increase in the prize money handed to Spain for winning the 2010 tournament in South Africa, reports Xinhua.
FIFA will award the second placed side $25 million while the third will receive $22 million.
Each of the tournament's 32 teams will receive $1.5 million before the tournament begins to help cover their preparation costs.
Shanghai, Oct 12 : Defending champion and top seed Novak Djokovic reached the final of the Shanghai Rolex Masters with a 6-2, 7-5 victory over seventh seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France here Saturday.
The Serb will take on either World No. 1 Rafael Nadal or sixth seed Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, who play their semifinal later Saturday, reports Xinhua.
If the Spaniard wins, the final will be the 39th meeting of the Nadal-Djokovic rivalry, which is the most in the Open Era. The two last met in last week's China Open title match, which Djokovic won 6-3, 6-4.
Beijing, Oct 5 : Rafael Nadal of Spain was guaranteed of returning to the World No. 1 spot for the first time since July 2011 after his opponent Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic retired from their semifinal clash at the China Open here Saturday.
Current No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia will take on Frenchman Richard Gasquet in the other semifinal and no matter the result of the match, he will lose the top spot to Nadal.
Nadal had two breaks while Berdych had one in the first six games and the Czech seemed to twist his back hitting the ball while trailing at 2-4. And after five minutes' medical time, the Czech opted to quit.
London, Oct 5 - Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere was reportedly approached by an electronic cigarette company to become the face of their brand after he was photographed outside a nightclub smoking a cigarette.
Wilshere has defended himself against the pictures by tweeting pictures of Zinedine Zidane smoking, although Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has publicly criticised the England international.
Berlin, Sep 28 : German swimmer Britta Steffen announced her retirement from swimming.
The 29-year-old Steffen is one of the most successful German swimmers with 23 medals, reports Xinhua.
"I conclude my career in the knowledge that I belong to the best in the world. My health and the support of my family, friends, partners and companions made it possible to stretch my body to the limit," Steffen said Friday.
Madrid, Sep 26 : Spanish Primera Liga football club Valencia has decided to temporarily suspend the club's French international defender Adil Rami.
Until the club reaches a decision over what to do with Rami, the 27-year-old will not train or receive his salary from the club, reports Xinhua.
Meanwhile, Rami was sent back to Valencia from Granada, where he was with the team to play the local side Wednesday night.
The central defender slept in a different hotel to his team-mates and left the city in the early hours of the morning, arriving back in Valencia at 11:00 am.
Sydney, Sep 24 - Australian cyclist Damien Howson has won the world under-23 time-trial title at the UCI Road Cycling World Championships in Italy.
Howson blitzed the 43km course in 49 minutes 97 seconds, 57 seconds faster than Frenchman Yoann Paillot and won the gold medal in Florence Monday, while Danish top seed Lasse Norman Hansen finished third, reports Xinhua.
"I'm obviously really happy to take away the win," Howson said.
Belfast, Sep 7 : Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick as Portugal fought back from behind to beat Northern Ireland 4-2 in their World Cup Group F qualifier at Windsor Park here.
Bruno Alves put the visitors ahead after 21 minutes with a volley following Joao Moutinho's corner but Gareth McAuley headed Northern Ireland's leveller 15 minutes later from a Shane Ferguson corner Friday, reports Xinhua.
Barcelona, Aug 29 : Barcelona won the Spanish Super Cup after a tough goalless match at Camp Nou.
The first leg held last week at the Vicente Calderon finished on a 1-1 draw with Barcelona's Neymar and former Barcelona player David Villa scoring.
Barcelona won their 11th title thanks to the away goal rule.
The fourth-time world player, Lionel Messi, played Wednesday evening, having been recovering from a thigh bruise that prevented him from the Malaga game Sunday.
Messi was withdrawn at halftime in the Supercup first leg. (IANS)
Cincinnati (Ohio), Aug 19 : Second seed Victoria Azarenka defeated World No. 1 Serena Williams to win her first Western and Southern Open tennis title.
Having lost 12 of their 14 previous meetings, Victoria edged out Serena in a third set breaker, 2-6, 6-2, 7-6(6) here Sunday.
"Obviously a big win. It was a great match. I'm really, really pleased with the way I pulled it out. It was a great battle. Nothing was given away. It was pure fight. I'm really happy," Victoria was quoted as saying by the tournament website.
Toronto, Aug 12 : Serena Williams cruised to victory in the Rogers Cup final beating Sorana Cirstea to capture her third title here.
Williams won 6-2, 6-0 in a match that lasted only 65 minutes on Sunday, reports Xinhua.
With three career Rogers Cup titles, Williams sits second behind Monica Seles and Chris Evert, who both have four Rogers Cup titles in the modern era. Her previous victories were in 2011 and 2001.
"For me, this is a big tournament. This is one of the big stops of the year," said Williams after the match.
Guangzhou, Aug 9 : P. V. Sindhu assured India of at least a bronze medal in the World Badminton Championships Friday defeating former World No. 1 Shixian Wang in the women's singles quarterfinals event here.
The World No. 12 beat the seventh seeded Chinese 21-18, 21-17 in 55 minutes at Tianhe Indoor Stadium.
This will be only the third instance that an Indian will bring home a medal at the Worlds.
Prakash Padukone won the men's singles bronze in 1983 at Copenhagen while Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa won another bronze in the women's doubles event in the last edition at London in 2011. (IANS)
New Delhi, Aug 8 : India's top shuttler Saina Nehwal dropped a place to No. 4 in the Badminton World Federation (BWF) rankings released Thursday.
Saina, who advanced to the women's singles quarterfinal at the World Championships in Guangzhou, was overtaken by Thailand's Ratchanok Intanon. Saina's city mate P. V. Sindhu retained her No. 12 position.
In the men's singles, Parupalli Kashyap slipped four places to No. 17 while R. M. V. Gurusaidutt jumped a place to a career-high No. 20. Mumbai's Ajay Jayaram was static at No. 24.
Barcelona, August 1 : Sun Yang wrote his name in the record books of the World Swimming Championships when he became only the second man to defend his gold medal in the 800 metres freestyle with a comfortable victory at the Palau St. Jordi here.
Sun Yang swam the fastest time of the year (7:41.36) Wednesday to finish 2.27 seconds ahead of American Michael McBroom, who was a second ahead of Canada's Ryan Cochrane. The Chinese led the race from start to finish but was content to maintain a lead of around a metre until around 150 metres from the finish when he upped his pace to stretch out his lead, reports Xinhua.
Barcelona, July 25 : Russia's Svetlana Romashina won the gold medal in the solo free routine of synchronized swimming at the World Swimming and Diving Championships here.
The 24-year-old Romashina scored a total of 97.340 points in a Marilyn Monroe-inspired routine which allowed her to win her third gold medal in Barcelona after her success in the solo and duet technical routine here Wednesday, reports Xinhua.
Puebla (Mexico), July 17 : Mexican Uriel Adriano lifted the men's 74kg title while Chanatip Sonkham of Thailand won the women's 49kg at the 2013 World Taekwondo Championships here.
Adriano brought Mexico its first gold at these Championships when he came back from 0-1 down to beat Russia's Albert Gaun Tuesday, reports Xinhua.
"My dream has come true in a very perfect way, I always wanted to be world champion and I achieved for my country, today I want to thank everyone," said Adriano, who became the seventh Latin American taekwondo world champion in the event.
Washington, July 12 : Defending champions Mexico beat Canada 2-0 for their first win at 2013 CONCACAF Gold Cup.
Raul Jimenez headed in the first goal for Mexico after 42 minutes, before Marco Fabian de la Mora converted a penalty to seal the victory on Thursday, reports Xinhua.
Panama edged Martinique 1-0 in an earlier match.
Panama topped group A with six points after the first two rounds. Mexico and Martinique had three points apiece to stay at the second and third.
Mexico would meet Martinique in the next round to fight for a quarter-final berth. (IANS)