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TIGER hopes to follow PAL Federer's example

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Tiger Woods is looking to old friend Roger Federer for some inspiration.

The 40-year-old American hasn't won a major since 2008, while the 35-year-old Federer claimed his 18th Grand Slam title Sunday at the Australian Open, beating Rafael Nadal in the final in Federer's first tournament after a six-month injury layoff.

"What (Roger) has done is he's been dominant for so long," Woods said Wednesday as he continues his comeback from 16 months off at the PGA European Tour's Dubai Desert Classic, which starts today. "To compete against (Novak Djokovic), to compete against Rafa, and now Andy (Murray) is playing well. He's had a litany of guys who have won (Grand Slams). And no one wins slams at his age."

Woods has won 14 majors, the last coming at the 2008 U.S. Open. After three back surgeries in recent years, Woods is hoping to emulate Federer and get back to his best.

"As you get older, you change your game and you do things slightly different, and he did that," Woods said of Federer. "Am I going to do that? Yeah, I'm not going to be hitting balls like some of these guys, 340, out there. I watched Dustin (Johnson) carry a ball last week when it was cold, wet and damp … 335. Jason (Day) and I just looked at each other going, 'We don't have that.' "

SOCCER

Manchester United draws

Manchester United missed a chance to gain ground on its rivals for Champions League qualification by drawing 0-0 at home to Hull City. It was the third straight league draw for United. The top four teams — Chelsea, Tottenham, Arsenal and Liverpool — all dropped points Tuesday, but Man U couldn't take advantage against a team that started the game in last place. Meanwhile, Manchester City thrashed visiting West Ham 4-0. The win moved City into a tie with fourth-place Liverpool.

Spain: Luis Suarez and Lionel Messi did the damage for visiting Barcelona, scoring first-half goals as the defending champion beat Atletico Madrid 2-1 in the first leg of their Copa del Rey semifinal.

ET CETERA

TENNIS: Top seed Simona Halep won her first match since a first-round exit at the Australian Open, 6-4, 7-6 (7-2) over Ana Konjuh at the St. Petersburg (Russia) Ladies Trophy. … Americans Serena Williams and Venus Williams and German Angelique Kerber will sit out the Fed Cup first-round matches between the countries. The best-of-five series is Feb. 11-12 in Hawaii.

AUTOS: NFL great LaDainian Tomlinson has been named honorary starter for the Daytona 500 on Feb. 26. The former Chargers running back and 2006 MVP is a finalist for the 2017 Hall of Fame class, which will be announced Saturday.

Times wires

Sports in brief 02/01/17 [Last modified: Wednesday, February 1, 2017 10:47pm]
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