World Sports News in Brief

Marquez celebrates first MotoGP win in esports race

Monday, 2020-03-30 08:16:57
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Alex Marquez celebrates a first MotoGP win - even if only virtually - in a '#StayAtHomeGP' esports race featuring 10 top riders. (Reuters)
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Alex Marquez celebrated a first MotoGP win - even if only virtually - in a '#StayAtHomeGP' esports race featuring 10 top riders including older brother and six-time world champion Marc.

Sunday's light-hearted online race, with riders joining remotely, was put on by MotoGP organisers to give fans something to watch while reinforcing the message about staying safe at home.

* The International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) Executive Committee decided to suspend all planned ITTF events and activities involving international travel until June 30 as it discussed the effects of COVID-19 on the international table tennis event schedule on Sunday.

* Canada has put its doping control testing programme on hold until further notice in response to government directives intended to minimise the risk of exposure and spread of the coronavirus, the Canadian Centre for Ethics in Sport (CCES) said.

* Tottenham Hotspur striker Harry Kane said on Sunday that he could leave the Premier League club if the team does not progress in the right direction as he wants to win trophies "sooner rather than later". Kane has scored 181 goals for Spurs in all competitions - averaging 30 goals a season since his breakthrough into the starting lineup in 2014 - but he is yet to win a trophy with the London club.

* Tottenham forward Son Heung-min has been allowed to fly home to the Republic of Korea for "personal reasons". Although the UK is on lockdown due to the coronavirus, the Premier League club on Sunday (Mar 29) said Son has been given permission to return to Asia.

* With professional soccer at a virtual standstill around the globe, fans in need of their weekly fix are turning to the Belarusian Premier League to fill the void as it carries on with matches despite the coronavirus outbreak. The league, one of Europe's least glamorous competitions whose teams rarely reach the group stage of UEFA's elite Champions League, is drawing foreign fans' attention and a string of new broadcast deals.

* Former Turkey goalkeeper Rustu Recber has been taken to hospital after testing positive for the coronavirus and is currently in a "critical period", his wife said late on March 29. Rustu, who is Turkey's most-capped player having made 120 international appearances, shone as they reached the semi-finals at the 2002 World Cup. He is revered at Turkish giants Fenerbahce, where he played for more than a decade.

* While most global sport has shut down over the coronavirus pandemic, a US third-level women's golf tour is playing through, aided by a ruling declaring Arizona courses as essential businesses - and where a winner's prize recently included a toilet roll. The Cactus Tour will stage its 12th 54-hole event of the year, and third since major US sports league went silent, starting Tuesday at Sun City Country Club in Arizona.

Reuters, CNA