Sports News Roundup: Canada withdraws team from world half-marathon championships; IOC 'very worried' by reported ousting of IWF interim head and more
With the 2020 Summer Olympics pushed back a year, American Vonn, who retired in 2019 having claimed a women's record 82 World Cup victories, said the challenges athletes are facing in the coronavirus era go beyond any norm.
Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Athletics: Canada withdraws team from world half-marathon championships
Canada has pulled its team out of the world half-marathon championships in Poland this weekend over COVID-19 health and safety concerns, Athletics Canada said on Wednesday. A five-member team was due to take part at the event in Gdynia, but with Poland seeing a second spike in COVID-19 cases Athletics Canada decided it could not put "our athletes, coaches and staff in harm's way".
IOC 'very worried' by reported ousting of IWF interim head
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) said on Wednesday it was "very worried" by the reported ousting of the interim president of weightlifting's troubled governing body. The sport, rocked by revelations of doping cover-ups and decades of corruption, was warned by the IOC in June that it risks losing its place at the Paris 2024 Olympics and future Games.
Pro Bowl game will not take place, league says
The 2021 NFL Pro Bowl game will not take place in its standard format, the league said on Wednesday, amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic that has forced numerous safety precautions and adjustments during the season. The Pro Bowl game brings together top players to compete in January, after the playoffs conclude and in the days leading up to the Super Bowl, but this year will be replaced by "a variety of engaging activities", the National Football League said.
Alpine skiing: Vonn urges athletes to be mindful of wellbeing amid unprecedented challenges
Winter Olympic athletes are facing enormous challenges ahead of the 2022 Beijing Games, former Olympic Alpine skiing downhill champion Lindsey Vonn told Reuters, as the COVID-19 pandemic has upended "normalcy" across the globe. With the 2020 Summer Olympics pushed back a year, American Vonn, who retired in 2019 having claimed a women's record 82 World Cup victories, said the challenges athletes are facing in the coronavirus era go beyond any norm.
Loaded field in Las Vegas for CJ Cup as Masters looms
Defending champion Justin Thomas returns to action at this week's CJ Cup in Las Vegas where four of the world's top six players head an elite field warming up for next month's Masters. The tournament is usually part of the PGA Tour's Asian swing but was moved this year to Shadow Creek Golf Course from Nine Bridges in South Korea because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Japan's Dentsu lobbied for and funded campaign for Tokyo games, documents show, despite Olympics contract
Dentsu Group Inc donated more than $6 million to Tokyo's successful campaign to host the 2020 Olympics, according to bank records seen by Reuters, and it lobbied members of the International Olympic Committee on behalf of the city, according to three people involved in the lobbying. The activities created a potential conflict of interest for the Japanese advertising company, which had a separate contract with the IOC to market the games. To assist in its effort, Dentsu endorsed the hiring of a Singaporean consultant by the Tokyo Olympic campaign. The company's role is laid out in transcripts of interviews company executives gave to investigators appointed by the Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) to examine whether there had been any wrongdoing in the course of Tokyo's campaign. French prosecutors investigating corruption in global sports suspect that consultant, Tan Tong Han, played a role in bribing Olympic voters for Tokyo in 2013, according to two people familiar with the French probe. Tan did not respond to requests for comment from Reuters.
Fognini tests positive for COVID-19
Fabio Fognini of Italy withdrew from the Forte Village Sardegna Open after testing positive for COVID-19. Fognini, who is ranked 16th in the world, announced the news on Wednesday in an Instagram story.
Cycling: Cavendish plays down retirement talk
Britain's Mark Cavendish has said he is in no rush to end his cycling career, just days after suggesting that last Sunday's Gent-Wevelgem might have been his final race. The 35-year-old Bahrain-Mclaren sprinter had told Sporza in a post-race interview on Sunday: "That's perhaps the last race of my career now".
Cycling: Demare sprints to another Giro stage win
Frenchman Arnaud Demare's prolific Giro d'Italia continued as he claimed his fourth stage victory in this year's race after a bunch sprint at the end of Stage 11 in Rimini on Wednesday. The 29-year-old Groupama-FDJ rider was taken to the front by his lead-out men and finished the job in style.
McGregor accepts UFC offer to face Poirier on January 23
Faced with a take-it-or-leave-it offer, Conor McGregor has apparently decided it was too good to pass up. McGregor, via a social media post Wednesday, confirmed he has accepted the UFC's offer for a bout against Dustin Poirier on Jan. 23, 2021.
(With inputs from agencies.)