Cilic downs Raonic in battle of big servers to win Istanbul title
Marin Cilic warmed up for this month’s French Open by capturing his first claycourt title in five years with a 7-6(3) 6-3 win over Canadian top seed Milos Raonic in the Istanbul Open final on Sunday. The Croatian second seed fired down nine aces and saved all seven break points he faced to emerge triumphant in the battle of the big servers.
German Zverev wins first ATP title on home soil
German Alexander Zverev stormed past Argentine qualifier Guido Pella 6-4 6-3 to win the Munich Open on clay on Sunday for his second title of the season, confirming his fine form ahead of this month’s French Open. The world number 20, who ousted second seed clay court specialist Roberto Bautista-Agut in the last four, needed just over an hour to capture his third tour title.
Sharapova survives Lucic-Baroni test to set up Bouchard showdown
Maria Sharapova set up an intriguing second-round clash with outspoken critic Eugenie Bouchard in the Madrid Open by seeing off Croatian Mirjana Lucic-Baroni 4-6 6-4 6-0 on Sunday. A sparse crowd turned out to see the five-times grand slam winner begin her second tournament after completing a 15-month suspension for testing positive for banned substance meldonium and the Russian was made to work for the win by world number 20 Lucic-Baroni, who took the first set.
Daly’s 13-year drought finally over with Champions Tour win
John Daly ended a 13-year drought when he posted his first victory on the 50-and-over Champions Tour on Sunday, a one-stroke triumph at the Insperity Invitational in Texas. Cutting an unmistakable figure in red, white and blue American flag pants, Daly tapped in his winning putt from one inch to finish at 14-under-par 202 at The Woodlands outside Houston.
Derby winner Always Dreaming heading to Preakness early
Always Dreaming, coming off an impressive win at the Kentucky Derby, will get an early start on preparations for the May 20 Preakness. The colt is expected to arrive at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore on Tuesday morning, hoping to avoid some early struggles adjusting to Churchill Downs when he arrived in Kentucky.
Harman makes stunning birdie to beat Johnson, Perez by one
Diminutive left-hander Brian Harman turned into a giant-killer when he rolled in a 30-foot birdie putt at the final hole to win the Wells Fargo Championship on Sunday and snuff out Dustin Johnson’s hopes of winning a fourth consecutive start. With Johnson watching on TV in the clubhouse at Eagle Point in Wilmington, North Carolina, Harman stroked a beautiful putt and erupted in delight when it dropped into the cup.
Qatar Airways signs World Cup sponsorship deal with FIFA
Qatar Airways said on Sunday it has signed a deal with global soccer body FIFA to be one of the official sponsors and the official airline of the next two World Cups, in Russia and Qatar. The state-owned carrier did not disclose the value of the deal, which it said would cover the Confederations Cup 2017, the 2018 World Cup in Russia, the Club World Cup and the Women’s World Cup in 2019 and the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Warriors coach Kerr’s back procedure went well, says GM
Golden State coach Steve Kerr’s spinal cord leak procedure went well, the team’s General Manager Bob Myers said on Sunday, but there is no timeline for his return. Kerr, 51, first hurt his back during the 2015 NBA Finals, and subsequent surgeries and associated pain kept him sidelined for the first 43 games of last season.
America coach La Volpe steps down after string of losses
America’s Argentine coach Ricardo La Volpe announced his departure on Sunday, a day after they failed to qualify for a chance to win the title in Mexico’s Clausura tournament. La Volpe, who steered Mexico to CONCACAF Gold Cup victory in 2003, the last 16 at the 2006 World Cup finals in Germany and won the Liga MX title with Atlante in 1993, is renowned for the quality of the football played by his teams.