- Azarenka to meet Serena in Madrid Open final-

Australian Open champion Azarenka took a step closer to a fifth title of 2012 when she dispatched Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2 6-4, before Williams, seeded ninth at the premier event in the Spanish capital, crushed Czech qualifier Lucie Hradecka 7-6 6-0.Belarussian Azarenka has now beaten third-ranked Pole Radwanska six times in six meetings this year and rarely looked troubled as she seeks to improve on her runners-up finish last year to Petra Kvitova.She battered 29 winners on the blue clay of the Manolo Santana show court, each accompanied by a trademark shriek of effort,authentic reebok nfl jerseys, before reflecting on her 6-1 losing record against Williams, who last topped the rankings in October 2010.”I was much younger and just coming on the tour (for many of our matches) but I have always been competitive against her and she is one of the toughest opponents to play against,” Azarenka told a news conference.”It’s going to be a different story this time,” the 22-year-old, who was beaten 6-1 7-6 by Williams in the U.S. Open third round last year, added.”We had a very good match last year at the U.S. Open so I can take some of the positive things out of that and it’s going to be the first time I play her on clay so we’ll see.”MUGGY MORNINGAzarenka has already netted more than $4 million in prize money this year and her only two defeats in 36 matches were to Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli in the last eight in Miami and Maria Sharapova in the Stuttgart final.On a muggy morning in Madrid,elite nfl jerseys, a mere handful of spectators turned out to watch the match in the futuristic Caja Magica (Magic Box) arena, which started around 0900 GMT.However, with the sliding roof open to the dull grey sky, the stadium filled out for the second semi-final as Hradecka went toe-to-toe with Williams in a closely-fought first set when neither player managed a break of serve.The 105th-ranked Czech was through to the last four of a premier-level event for the first time and after losing the tiebreak 7-5 her challenge fell away as Williams gave herself a chance of a second title of the season following her success on clay at Charleston last month.By reaching the final, the American 13-times grand slam singles champion, 30, is projected to climb to six in the rankings above Bartoli and Dane Caroline Wozniacki, another former number one.”I have been working really hard but I don’t want to stop at number six and I want to continue to do better,cheap jerseys,” Williams told a news conference.”Victoria obviously has been playing this whole year so consistent, so amazing and just nearly perfect so I am going into the final with nothing to lose.”She’s the top-ranked player and she’s going in there with everything to win

- Wild weather proves little hindrance for Manassero-

The 18-year-old Italian posted six birdies and a solitary bogey to compile a five-under 66 and match the score he carded in the opening round of last month’s Malaysian Open, a tournament he went on to win.”It was windy, really tough…putting wasn’t easy either but if you put the ball in play you did more than 50 percent of the job,reebok youth nfl jerseys,” Manassero told reporters at the European Tour’s flagship event.”I am getting more confident all the time. I have won twice and that gives me a lot of confidence,nike elite nfl jerseys, seeing yourself on the leaderboard gives you confidence,” added the Italian after finishing two shots adrift of early leader Luke Donald.Manassero, who also won the Castello Masters in Spain in October, said his game was still a work in progress.”I am still not where I want to be with my swing,” the teenager explained. “But it’s getting better all the time.”I’m also getting a big longer off the tee too.”Manassero, who has a similar physique to world number two Donald, is putting in long hours in the gym in order to build up extra strength.”I’m training physically more,reebok authentic nfl jersey,” he said. “I have no doubt that players like Luke and I can do really well.”Luke, I think, is the guy that’s playing the best golf (in the world) at the moment.”Manassero is looking forward to taking on the best players from both sides of the Atlantic when he makes his U.S. Open debut in Maryland next month.”The majors are still big for me,” he said. “I don’t know if the Congressional course will suit me or not but it will be a good experience

- Seahawks reach deal to return Terrell Owens to NFL-

Owens, who is 38 and has not played in the NFL since 2010, worked out for the team on Monday and the Seahawks later announced on their website (seahawks.com) that they will sign the six-time Pro Bowler.The deal is a one-year contract worth $1 million,authentic womens nfl jerseys, according to reports.Owens sat out last season after knee surgery and a lack of interest from teams around the league.His 15-year resume is unquestioned,custom nfl throwback jerseys, as he is second all-time in receiving yards (15,934) and TD catches (153),nike game nfl jersey, but his penchant for clashing with team mates has also dogged him during his stints with five other NFL teams.An aging Owens had long wanted to return to the league, and he tweeted his excitement as the news was announced.”God is good. Thankful. Grateful. To ALL my new team mates … Let’s do this!”(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Daniel Magnowski)Sports Tweet this Link this Share this Digg this Email

- Boxing- Kazakh Sapiyev pummels his way to gold-

Kazakhstan, a rising force in amateur boxing who will host next year’s world championships,cheap jerseys, pocketed a bronze and a silver elsewhere in the men’s draw but when Sapiyev bounded into the ring, it looked like he was fully intent on getting gold.”I have been waiting for this moment so long. In Beijing I lost in the quarter-finals and I was upset but I was dreaming about the next Olympics,” Sapiyev told reporters.The world championship silver medalist was much the quicker boxer in the opening exchanges, using his longer reach to keep Evans at bay with a right jab and scoring when he got in close with powerful right hooks.Evans,reebok premier nfl jerseys, who had been improving with every round, beating Ukraine’s world champion Taras Shelestyuk in the semi-finals, looked shocked as the Kazak easily took the second round to open up a 10-5 lead going into the last.Any slim chance Evans stood of adding to Britain’s bumper Olympic gold haul evaporated when the busy Sapiyev landed all the powerful shots in the final round, one of them knocking Evans’s gumshield out of his mouth.After three rounds of absolute domination, Sapiyev threw his hands in the air and screamed as he returned to his corner. He left the arena draped in the baby blue Kazakh flag as a tired Evans exited with his head hanging.”I beat the Ukraine world champion, the number one in the world. I’ve beat him. I’ve had four hard fights. That was my fifth but he was sharper today and obviously he came out on top,” Evans said.”I’m still young – I’m only 21,reebok replica nfl jersey, I’m one of the youngest seniors here so I’ve done well.”Losing semi-finalists Taras Shelestyuk of Ukraine and Andrey Zamkovoy of Russia joined the finalists on the medal podium to accept their bronze medals

- Wang upsets Indian hope, Denmark take bronze-

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Nehwal’s run to the semi-finals raised a tidal wave of expectation in her home country and she admitted to suffering an attack of nerves as she crumbled 21-13 21-13, despite the overwhelming support of the Wembley Arena crowd.China’s involvement in a match-throwing scandal that saw eight athletes disqualified this week has overshadowed the tournament and the second women’s semi-final between the team’s second-seeded Wang Xin and third seed Li Xuerui was played in a strangely subdued atmosphere.Li prevailed 22-20 21-18 to continue her stunning rise to the pinnacle of world badminton,nike nfl game jerseys, having come from nowhere to win 30 straight matches in the leadup to the Games. The final will be played on Saturday.Joachim Fischer and Christinna Pedersen won the mixed doubles bronze for Denmark,reebok replica nfl jersey, trouncing Indonesian pair Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir 21-12 21-12

- Johnson, Campbell claim hammer titles-

“Coming in I wanted to have a season-best throw and I got that so I am definitely happy,” Johnson told reporters.Johnson, whose fifth throw sailed 74.97 meters,reebok replica nfl jersey, will be joined on the American team for London by third-place finisher A.G. Kruger, whose best was 73.93.Runner-up Chris Cralle does not have the Olympic qualifying standard. He threw 74.36 on Thursday.Amber Campbell, Amanda Bingson and U.S. record holder Jessica Cosby made the women’s team.Campbell edged out Bingson by two centimeters,youth nfl jerseys, throwing 71.80 in the fifth round.”As soon as I let it go and hit it I knew it would be a good throw,” said the 2008 Olympian.Cosby’s best was 70.77, well below her national record of 74.19 earlier this month.The competition was held on a specially constructed hammer cage in the Portland suburb of Beaverton.The remainder of the 11-day trials begin on Friday in Eugene,cheap jerseys, more than 100 miles south of Beaverton

- Tyler recalls Berlin meeting with Hitler-

Now 92, Tyler, who won silver medals in Berlin and at the 1948 London Games, had hoped to take part in Friday’s opening ceremony back in London but ill health will keep her away.”They wanted me to do something but I can’t tell you what,” she told Reuters. “I was sworn to secrecy.”Tyler’s memories of the Berlin Olympics are vivid. She met Hitler at a party thrown for the women competitors by Joszef Goebbels.”He was just a little man in a big uniform,” said Tyler, who now lives in quiet retirement in Sanderstead, in the London suburbs. “Someone said that I should have slapped him but I think that might have got me into trouble.”The 1936 British team traveled to Berlin by boat and train. “The girls weren’t allowed to travel with the men,” Tyler, then Dorothy Odam,authentic nfl throwback jerseys, recalled.The schoolgirl had never traveled outside England before and was housed with the British team in a Berlin physical education college, where they were watched over by three strict,cheap premier nfl jerseys, German chaperones.”When we got there, there were 40-foot Nazi flags everywhere, everyone seemed to be in uniform. It was all very militaristic,” she said.”We were staying in a large dormitory. The first morning, I was woken up by the sound of marching, and outside there were hundreds of Hitler Youth parading.”There were just five individual women’s athletics events on the programme in 1936, with the high jump on the final day of competition.”I had to wait around all week,” said Tyler. “The only time the chaperones allowed us out, they took us shopping. When the shop assistant said ‘Heil Hitler!’ we just said back: ‘Hail King George’.”BLAZING SUNTyler competed in homemade vest and shorts. Because of interruptions from other events and medal ceremonies, her competition under a blazing sun lasted three hours.”The German girls got water from the crowd, but we had nothing. I didn’t even measure my run-up. I just picked a spot, ran and jumped over the bar. It was just something I did.”She remembers watching the sprint relays. “When the German girls dropped the baton, you could see Hitler – he nearly had a fit.”Had current tie-breaking rules been in force, Tyler would have won the gold medal in Berlin.In 1939, Tyler broke the world record set seven years earlier by American Babe Didriksen by jumping 1.66 meters, only to see it snatched away from her weeks later by one of her rivals from the 1936 Olympics,customized womens nfl jerseys, Dora Ratjen.”They wrote to me telling me I didn’t hold the record, so I wrote to them saying: ‘She’s not a woman, she’s a man’. They did some research and found ‘her’ serving as a waiter called Hermann Ratjen, so I got my world record back again.”During the Blitz on London in the Second World War, Tyler’s family home was bombed.She worked during the war as an auxiliary lorry driver and afterwards, in an era of sporting amateurism, took a secretarial course, “because secretaries don’t work on Saturdays”, enabling her to prolong her track career.By 1948 she was a wife and mother and still a world-class competitor, and she was part of the British Olympic team in 1952 and 1956.Until recently, Tyler, who was the official starter at this year’s London Marathon, played golf three times a week. She won the English national over-80s golf championship three times.Is there anything she was not good at? “I wasn’t any good at typing.” (Editing by Clare Fallon)Sports Tweet this Link this Share this Digg this Email

- NFL- Colts sign top draft pick Luck to contract-

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Terms of the deal were not disclosed by the Colts but a report on the NFL’s website said Luck agreed to a four-year contract with a fifth-year team option.Luck, a two-time Heisman Trophy finalist while playing at Stanford University, is considered one of the most polished quarterback prospects in recent years.He is taking over the reins of the Colts’ offense from four-time NFL Most Valuable Player Peyton Manning,nike elite nfl jersey, who joined the Denver Broncos this year after being released by Indianapolis.On Wednesday, the Washington Redskins signed quarterback Robert Griffin III, the second overall pick in the 2012 draft,nike nfl jerseys, to a reported deal worth $21.1 million over four years

- Sharks grab Wellwood off re-entry waivers-

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Wellwood,reebok nfl throwback jerseys, who played 25 games for KHL team Mytishchi Atlant this season, had agreed to a one-year contract with the St. Louis Blues on Monday but had to pass through the re-entry waivers where he was claimed by the Sharks.Taken in the fifth round of the 2001 NHL draft,nike limited nfl jersey, Wellwood spent four seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs before moving to the Vancouver Canucks in 2008.In 338 career NHL games, Wellwood has scored 63 goals and 160 points

- IOC confident Saudi women will compete in London-

The Saudis, Brunei and Qatar have never previously included females in their teams and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) is eager to see that situation change in London in July.The IOC said on Monday that Saudi Arabian Olympic Committee officials presented a list of potential candidates for the London Games during a meeting at its headquarters in Lausanne last week.”After the assessment of the level of each athlete by the IOC and the international federations concerned, a formal proposal will be submitted to the next meeting of the IOC executive board in Quebec City in May,” it said in a statement.”The IOC is confident Saudi Arabia is working to include women athletes and officials at the Olympic Games in London in accordance with the rules of the international federations.”Human Rights Watch criticized Olympic organizers last month for what it said was their tolerance of gender discrimination by the Gulf Arab states of Saudi Arabia and Qatar, as well as the tiny southeast Asian nation of Brunei.Qatar, bidding to host the 2020 Games,authentic nfl throwback jerseys, said last month it would send female athletes to the Olympics for the first time.The IOC has offered Qatar wildcard invitations for two female athletes to compete in London,nike nfl game jerseys, swimmer Nada Arkaji and sprinter Noor al-Malki.Sport in the patriarchal society of Saudi Arabia has long been reserved as an activity for men,reebok replica nfl jersey, with stadiums prohibiting females