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Reuters Sports News Summary

17 Sep 2020 / 15:57 H.

    Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.

    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.

    Murray backs calls to remove Margaret Court's name from arena

    Andy Murray thinks the Australian Open should consider removing Margaret Court's name from the arena at Melbourne Park as he says the multiple Grand Slam champion's values are at odds with what tennis stands for. The 78-year-old Court, who holds the all-time record of 24 major singles titles, has been heavily criticised for voicing her religious-based opposition to same-sex marriage and transgender athletes.

    Eneos says likely to extend Tokyo Olympics sponsorship deal at year-end

    Japan's Eneos Holdings Inc is likely to extend at the end of the year its sponsorship deal for the Tokyo Olympics, which has been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic, the firm's chairman said on Thursday. "It is not likely an option not to extend our sponsorship at the end of this year as Tokyo Olympics is scheduled to be held next year," Tsutomu Sugimori told a news conference.

    Svitolina says best preparation on clay in years not adding to pressure

    Elina Svitolina said her extended preparation for the claycourt swing after opting out of the U.S. Open was not a guarantee of success and she will not put herself under pressure ahead of the French Open this month. Svitolina beat Marie Bouzkova to seize her first title of the season at the Monterrey Open in Mexico in March before the season was suspended due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.

    MLB roundup: Dodgers first to clinch playoff spot

    Will Smith drove in three runs and AJ Pollock and Chris Taylor hit solo homers Wednesday afternoon as the visiting Los Angeles Dodgers defeated the San Diego Padres 7-5 in the rubber match of a three-game series, in the process becoming the first team to clinch a playoff spot this season. The win increased the 35-15 Dodgers' edge on the Padres (32-19) to 3 1/2 games in the National League West and gave Los Angeles a 6-4 edge in the season series.

    Djokovic meets ATP chief Gaudenzi, says players body moving ahead

    Novak Djokovic had a chat with ATP chief Andrea Gaudenzi ahead of the Italian Open in Rome regarding his breakaway players body, the world number one said, reiterating that the new association could be a "positive addition" to the men's Tour. In a stunning move Djokovic stepped down as head of the ATP player council last month along with members Vasek Pospisil, John Isner and Sam Querrey and announced the formation of the Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA).

    NFL: Two players among seven new positive COVID-19 tests

    Two players and five members of staff have tested positive for COVID-19 in the latest round of testing, the National Football League (NFL) said on Wednesday. The league said it had conducted 40,479 tests on players and staff from Sept. 6 through Saturday and that those who had returned positive results would go into self-isolation until they are reassessed.

    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.

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