Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Sports

Sports in brief

tennis

djokovic, federer in semis

LONDON — Novak Djokovic reached the semifinals of the ATP World Tour Finals by extending his dominance over Tomas Berdych, 6-3, 7-5 Thursday in their last round-robin match to stay on course for a fourth straight title.

Roger Federer overcame Kei Nishikori 7-5, 4-6, 6-4 to finish the round-robin stage unbeaten and claim first place in the group.

Djokovic is 21-2 all-time against Berdych.

He faces Rafael Nadal on Saturday. The Spaniard has beaten Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka in the other group as he continues a late-season resurgence.

"It's a fact that he's been playing better and he's been raising his level ever since the U.S. Open," Djokovic said of Nadal. "I know that, I've been watching."

Federer, playing with a weeklong stubble, faced more questions after the match about his beard than about getting his serve broken five times. Will it stay if he keeps winning?

"If it itches too much, I'll take it off," Federer said. "If my girls can't stand it, I'll take it off. If I look in the mirror and I don't like it, I'll take it off. Maybe I'll think of Santa and keep it."

As for his wife, Mirka, "she's fine with it. I do make decisions by myself sometimes."

OBITUARY

Whitfield, gold medalist and Tuskegee Airman, dies at 91

Mal Whitfield, a sleek middle-distance runner who won three Olympic gold medals for the United States, at one point as a Tuskegee Airman, and later became a U.S. goodwill ambassador promoting athletics abroad, died in Washington. He was 91. His daughter Fredricka Whitfield, an anchor at CNN, confirmed his death. Orphaned as a child in Los Angeles, Mr. Whitfield set records while running for Ohio State. During World War II he was a member of the racially segregated Tuskegee Airmen, part of the U.S. Army Air Forces. In Korea, he once trained for the Games between bombing missions, running on runways at night with a .45-caliber automatic strapped to his side. He was a staff sergeant when he set an Olympic record in the 800 meters at the 1948 London Games. He won another gold in the same Olympics anchoring the 4x400 relay. Four years later, at the Helsinki Games, he won the 800 again.

soccer

Orlando a site for next year's Copa America Centenario

The Citrus Bowl in Orlando is among the 10 venues announced for the June 3-26, 2016 Copa America Centenario. The 16-team tournament includes Argentina, Brazil and the rest of the 10 members of the South American confederation, known as CONMEBOL, plus six teams from CONCACAF: the United States, Mexico, Costa Rica, Jamaica, and the winners of playoffs between Cuba and Panama, and Haiti and Trinidad and Tobago.

MORE SOCCER: New York's Luis Robles was voted MLS's goalkeeper of the year. … The French national anthem will be played at all games in the English Premier League this weekend as an act of remembrance and solidarity with France after the terrorist attacks in Paris.

et cetera

DOPING: The International Weightlifting Federation ruled that Bulgaria is not eligible to participate the 2016 Olympics because of its steroids doping record. ... Spain's Marta Dominguez was banned for three years and stripped of her 2009 world steeplechase title for blood doping.

SKIING: The U.S. team will honor two prospects killed in an avalanche in January by naming them to the squad this season. The team will recognize Bryce Astle, 19, and Ronnie Berlack, 20, during a ceremony Saturday.

Times wires

Comments
Rays DFA Rob Refsnyder to make room for Kevin Kiermaier

Rays DFA Rob Refsnyder to make room for Kevin Kiermaier

The Rays made official after Monday's game that CF Kevin Kiermaier would be activated on Tuesday.And to make room on the 40- and 25 man rosters, they designated for assignment OF Rob Refsnyder.Acquired from the Indians for cash considerations just be...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Rays journal: A 4-0 lead disappears in loss at Houston

Rays journal: A 4-0 lead disappears in loss at Houston

HOUSTON — The Rays brought up several of their top prospects so they can get as much experience as possible.And Monday that included seeing how the relentless defending champion Astros worked their way back from an early four-run deficit to sco...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Devil Rays manager Lou Piniella pondered upside-down pitching in 2005

Devil Rays manager Lou Piniella pondered upside-down pitching in 2005

HOUSTON — Well before the idea of using a reliever to open games, as the Rays did against the Astros Monday for the 12th time, and then bringing in a starter was even a gleam in the eyes of the current Rays staff, former manager Lou Piniella wa...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays-Astros

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Rays-Astros

RHP Ryne Stanek continues to look comfortable and confident as the game opener, retiring all five batters he faced. His six starts now cover a complete game, and he has allowed only two runs in the nine innings.OF Carlos Gomez's feelings about not li...
Updated: 10 hours ago

Sports on TV/radio for Tuesday, June 19

TODAYBaseballOrioles at Nationals7 p.m.MLBRays at Astros8 p.m.Fox Sun; 620-AMMarlins at Giants10 p.m.FSFDiamondbacks at Angels10 p.m.ESPNCollege baseball, World SeriesFlorida vs. Texas2 p.m.ESPNTexas Tech vs. Arkansas7 p.m.ESPNGolfPGA Professionals c...
Published: 06/18/18
Iceland World Cup Fever … catch it!

Iceland World Cup Fever … catch it!

TAMPA — Iceland isn't what it used to be. Literally. The Nordic island country is shrinking, what with global warming. Iceland's glaciers are getting smaller. If you took all that ice and laid it end to end, well, you clearly have nothing bette...
Published: 06/18/18
For starters: Rays at Astros, trying to stop a streaking champion

For starters: Rays at Astros, trying to stop a streaking champion

UPDATE, 6:40: Cash said he had a good talk with Hechavarria, and that he understood the situation. Cash said Hechavarria will get to play some, and when he does it will be at short. … RHP Chris Archer (abdominal strain) is slated to throw a bul...
Published: 06/18/18
Kevin Kiermaier set to rejoin Rays Tuesday

Kevin Kiermaier set to rejoin Rays Tuesday

CF Kevin Kiermaier is here in Houston and will work out with the Rays today, and said that if all goes well he will be activated on Tuesday.That would be a couple days ahead of his most recent timetable, which had him slated to return to Friday.Kierm...
Published: 06/18/18

Captain’s Corner: Tips on targeting American Red Snapper

American Red Snapper (ARS) season opened a few days ago and some types of bottom are holding bigger schools of ARS then other bottom types. The hard bottom areas that most fishermen prefer are holding large schools of ARS, but the fish have yet to m...
Published: 06/18/18
Barry Trotz resigns as coach of Stanley Cup-winning Capitals

Barry Trotz resigns as coach of Stanley Cup-winning Capitals

Barry Trotz abruptly stepped down as coach of the Washington Capitals on Monday after failing to agree to terms on a new contract, a stunning move that left the newly minted Stanley Cup champions without a coach with the draft later this week and wit...
Published: 06/18/18