Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Job not done yet, says Tour de France leader Roglic
Primoz Roglic is taking nothing for granted despite holding a comfortable lead in the Tour de France on Wednesday evening with four competitive stages left. The Jumbo-Visma rider is in complete control of the race after extending his overall lead to 57 seconds over fellow Slovenian Tadej Pogacar, with one mountain stage and a partly uphill time trial to come.
Djokovic back to winning ways in Rome after U.S. Open default
Novak Djokovic said he was relieved to turn the page on his contentious U.S. Open exit as he began his claycourt season with a solid victory in his first match at the Italian Open on Wednesday. The world number one, who was disqualified in New York after accidentally hitting a line judge with a ball during his fourth round match, defeated Italian wildcard Salvatore Caruso 6-3 6-2 to move into the third round in Rome.
Big Ten to start its college football season next month
The Big Ten Conference changed course on Wednesday saying there will be college football this year after having earlier postponed play amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. The Big Ten, which includes football powerhouses Ohio State and University of Michigan, said it will begin play the weekend of Oct. 23-24.
Nadal makes fast start in Rome, Tsitsipas out
Nine-times champion Rafa Nadal showed little signs of rust when he played his first match in 200 days as he beat fellow Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta 6-1 6-1 in the Italian Open in Rome on Wednesday. Nadal, who received a bye into the second round, has not played a tournament since winning his 85th singles title in Acapulco, having skipped the Western & Southern Open and the U.S. Open in New York due to COVID-19 concerns.
LeBron, Giannis unanimously selected to All-NBA First Team
Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James and Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo unanimously were selected to the 2019-20 All-NBA First Team, the league announced Wednesday. James set the NBA record with his 16th All-NBA Team selection, surpassing the 15 set by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan.
Halep through in Rome despite sluggish start, Pliskova, Azarenka advance
Top seed Simona Halep overcame a couple of hiccups in her first match at the Italian Open in Rome to beat wildcard Jasmine Paolini 6-3 6-4 and move into the third round on Wednesday. The 28-year-old Wimbledon champion has only lost twice this year but found herself a break down in both sets before she recovered to seal her first victory since winning the Prague Open a month ago.
Peyton Manning headlines 2021 Hall of Fame nominees
Quarterback Peyton Manning headlines the list of 14 first-year eligible players for the Pro Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2021, released Wednesday. The NFL's only five-time Most Valuable Player, Manning is joined on the list of Modern Era nominees by: running back Steven Jackson; wide receivers Calvin Johnson, Wes Welker and Roddy White; tight end Heath Miller; offensive linemen D'Brickashaw Ferguson and Logan Mankins; defensive linemen Jared Allen, Justin Tuck and Kevin Williams; linebacker Jerod Mayo; and defensive backs Charles Tillman and Charles Woodson.
MLB to begin 2021 Spring Training exhibition in February
Major League Baseball's 2021 Spring Training will begin on Feb. 27 in Florida and Arizona with each of the 30 clubs in action on the first day of exhibition play, officials said on Wednesday. Select exhibition games will be played at MLB ballparks and Spring Training facilities from March 28-30, the league said in a statement.
U.S. Open nearly moved to Los Angeles in December due to COVID-19
This week's U.S. Open at Winged Foot in Mamaroneck, New York, would likely have been played in December in Los Angeles had the British Open not been cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the United States Golf Association said on Wednesday. The USGA, whose flagship event was originally set for mid-June, only settled on a September date once organisers of the British Open, which were also considering rescheduling for the same month, decided to cancel the 2020 edition.
Ex-head of world athletics Diack given jail sentence for corruption
Lamine Diack, once one of the most powerful people in athletics, was convicted in France on Wednesday of running a clique that covered up Russian doping in return for bribes worth millions of dollars and sentenced to spend at least two years in jail. The 87-year-old former head of world athletics' governing body was found guilty of taking kickbacks from athletes in return for concealing positive drug tests, which enabled them to continue competing, including at the 2012 London Olympics.