Thursday, September 20, 2018
Sports

Sports in brief

Soccer

rowdies sign premier league star joe cole

The Rowdies on Wednesday announced a three-year deal with midfielder Joe Cole, a three-time English Premier League champion as a member of Chelsea.

"He's one of the most technically gifted players around,'' coach Stuart Campbell said.

The hope is Cole, 34, will clear through visa issues and be with the club for its next game, at home against Rayo OKC on May 14.

Cole became available when his Coventry City, playing in English third-level League One, wrapped up its season.

There was mutual interest as Cole took in a Rowdies training session in February while visiting St. Petersburg with his family (wife, Carly and children Ruby, 6, Harry, 4 and newborn Max). Cole also attended Tampa Bay's March preseason game in England against Stoke City.

"Everyone was lovely, they really made us feel welcomed," Cole told the team's website. "My desire to win football matches is still there. I'm not coming for an extended holiday."

Cole played for Chelsea from 2003-10 and had 56 national team appearances, playing for England in three World Cups.

MORE SOCCER: Host Real Madrid ground out a 1-0 victory over Manchester City to reach the Champions League final against city rival Atletico Madrid. The second leg of the semifinal was decided by Gareth Bale's shot from a tight angle that deflected off defender Fernando in the 20th minute and was marked down as an own goal. Madrid advanced with a 1-0 aggregate win after a scoreless first-leg draw in England last week. Real Madrid will be trying to win its 11th Champions League title in Milan on May 28.

et cetera

autos: The Mercedes Formula One team published an open letter to fans to counter speculation on social media that it favors Nico Rosberg over teammate Lewis Hamilton. Hamilton, the defending F1 champion, trails Rosberg by 43 points after four races — all of them won by Rosberg. Hamilton has been beset by engine problems and the British driver also had to slow down late in Sunday's Russian GP with a water pressure issue — just as he was closing in on Rosberg. Mercedes said team staff members are not working more "for one driver or the other," and that "there is no 'A' or 'B' team here."

tennis: Top-ranked Novak Djokovic eased into the third round of the Madrid Open by beating Borna Coric 6-2, 6-4. He next faces Roberto Bautista Agut. Nick Kyrgios beat fourth-seeded Stan Wawrinka 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (7-2), and Sam Querrey of the United States beat Lucas Pouille 6-7 (7-5), 6-3, 6-4. In the women's draw, fourth-seeded Victoria Azarenka pulled out with a back injury.

olympics: Marc Leishman joined Adam Scott in deciding not to play golf for Australia at the Rio Olympics. Leishman cited concerns over the health of his family because of the Zika virus. Leishman's wife, Audrey, nearly died last year from toxic shock syndrome, and he said her immune system is not 100 percent.

Darek Sharp, Times correspondent; Times wires

Comments
Are these guys threatening to turn AL wild card into a race? Just ask the Rays

Are these guys threatening to turn AL wild card into a race? Just ask the Rays

ARLINGTON, Texas — The Rays still have got a long way to go and a short time to get there if they're gonna do what they say can't be done.If the Smokey and the Bandit paraphrase doesn't work for you, then let's try another theatrical reference....
Updated: 4 hours ago
Lightning falls to Hurricanes again in preseason

Lightning falls to Hurricanes again in preseason

The Lightning did not fare much better in its second preseason crack at the Hurricanes.In fact, it did worse.It lost 6-1 Wednesday in Raleigh, N.C.Carolina put a much more veteran team on the ice than it did Tuesday in winning Tampa Bay's preseason o...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Jameis Winston’s Uber ride will never be forgotten, and shouldn’t

Jameis Winston’s Uber ride will never be forgotten, and shouldn’t

Just when you thought it was fun to be a Bucs fan again. Just when you were blissfully under the spell of FitzMagic. Just when the Bucs were becoming the cool kids in the NFL with the latest greatest show on turf.Just as the good times have arrived, ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Buccaneers-Eagles All-22: Why Ryan Fitzpatrick and Fitzmagic could be real

Buccaneers-Eagles All-22: Why Ryan Fitzpatrick and Fitzmagic could be real

It’s just a mirage.At any moment now, Ryan Fitzpatrick will come crashing back to Earth. He’ll go back to being the Fitzpatrick of 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017. Quarterbacks don’t t...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Rangers game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Rangers game

OF Tommy Pham is playing with a sore groin and a sorer right ring finger, but he is determined, in his words, to "salvage" his season, and his two home runs Wednesday give him 19 total, five in 28 games with the Rays since the trade to go with a .327...
Updated: 5 hours ago

Sports on TV/radio for Thursday, September 20

TODAYBaseballRays at Blue Jays7 p.m.Fox Sun; 620-AMRed Sox at Yankees7 p.m.MLBReds at Marlins7 p.m.FSFCollege footballTulsa at Temple7:30 p.m.ESPNCollege soccerWomen: Texas A&M at Arkansas7 p.m.SECGolfPGA Europe: Portugal Masters6:30 a.m.GolfWeb.com:...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Rays journal: Austin Meadows among final wave of callups

Rays journal: Austin Meadows among final wave of callups

ARLINGTON, Texas — The Rays will get their first look at OF Austin Meadows when he joins them Thursday in Toronto as part of the final wave of callups.And based on what RHP Tyler Glasnow, a former Pirates and now Rays teammate, said, they're go...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Second-round pick Gabriel Fortier among Lightning’s early cuts

Second-round pick Gabriel Fortier among Lightning’s early cuts

One round of cuts down, several more to go.The Lightning cut seven players on Wednesday, five of whom were training camp invitees, the team announced. All seven players were assigned to juniors.Gabriel Fortier was the most notable cut. The Lightning'...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Oh, baby! It’s Rays rookie dress up day

Oh, baby! It’s Rays rookie dress up day

Today was rookie dress-up day for the Rays, a long-standing, and recently by rule toned down, tradition among teams to embarrass their first-timers.Masterminded by veteran reliever Sergio Romo the Rays went with a fitting theme for the rookie-laden t...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Rays keep pressure on, beat Rangers 9-3 for fifth straight win

Rays keep pressure on, beat Rangers 9-3 for fifth straight win

ARLINGTON, Texas – The Rays still have a long way to go, and they are going to need a lot of help to get there.But they continue to do their part to try to make it a race for the final American League playoff spot, beating the Rangers 9-3 Wedne...
Updated: 9 hours ago