Snooker: World number seven Neil Robertson suffered an early exit at the hands of Ryan Day (picture, right) at the Shanghai Masters, yesterday. Both players struggled to find their best form, however it was Day who managed to gain the upperhand in a scrappy encounter. Amid some uncharacteristic misses, the Welshman won three frames in a row to move into a 4-1 lead. It was an advantage which Day wouldn’t relinquish and he ran out a 5-2 winner. 2014 winner Stuart Bingham got this year’s Shanghai campaign off to a strong start as he raced to a 5-0 win over Jamie Jones.
Ice Hockey: Canada ended US hopes of escaping the preliminary round of the World Cup of Hockey by thrashing their North American rivals 4-2, clinching a semi-final berth for the hosts and Team Europe. After an upset loss to Europe in their tournament opener, the US (0-2) came into the showdown with Canada (2-0) needing a win to keep alive hope of advancing out of Group A. But after opening the scoring, they conceded four goals, including two in 14 seconds, dooming them to another early exit from a major international competition.
Olympics: Rome’s new mayor, Virginia Raggi, has decided to withdraw the city’s backing for a bid to host the 2024 Olympic Games in the Italian capital, a city hall official said yesterday. The decision effectively sinks Rome’s bid and narrows the field of Olympics bidders to Paris, Los Angeles and Budapest. Raggi’s anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, which won control of Rome in June, had always expressed doubts about staging the sporting spectacular, saying the heavily indebted city could ill afford to finance the investment needed.
Tennis: French tennis player Constant Lestienne has been suspended for seven months and fined $10,000 after admitting to charges of betting on 220 matches, the Tennis Integrity Unit (TIU) said yesterday. A TIU investigation confirmed that the 24-year-old placed bets on matches through online accounts between February 2012 and June 2015. None of the bets involved matches in which Lestienne, a career-high 164th in the men’s singles world rankings, played. The TIU was established in 2008 to enforce the sport’s zero tolerance policy towards gambling related corruption.
Motorcycling: Valencia will host the final round of the MotoGP season until at least 2021 after agreeing a new five-year deal with promoters Dorna. The Spanish city’s Ricardo Tormo circuit has been on the calendar since 1999 and became the season-ender for the first time in 2002. This year’s season-ending race is scheduled for November 13. Spanish riders have won the last four MotoGP titles, with Yamaha’s Jorge Lorenzo taking his third at Valencia last November. Spaniards have also won seven of the last 10 races at the circuit outside the Mediterranean port city.