Sports News Roundup: Olympics-China's 'father of skiing' hopes games will attract more ordinary folks to the sport; Australian firm identifies an employee who leaked news anchors' rant on Djokovic and more
The bespectacled skier is technically retired, but thanks to his nickname as China's "father of skiing", he has been a prominent icon in the country's campaign to encourage an interest in winter sports as it gears up to host the Winter Olympics from Feb. 4-20. Australian firm identifies employee who leaked news anchors' rant on Djokovic Australia's Ai-Media Technologies, which provides captioning and transcription services, said on Friday it had identified the employee who leaked a video of two news anchors privately criticising tennis star Novak Djokovic.
Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Olympics-China's 'father of skiing' hopes games will attract more ordinary folks to the sport
Shan Zhaojian stretches his arms and legs to warm up as the 83-year-old prepares to ski down a mountain just outside China's capital of Beijing. The bespectacled skier is technically retired, but thanks to his nickname as China's "father of skiing", he has been a prominent icon in the country's campaign to encourage an interest in winter sports as it gears up to host the Winter Olympics from Feb. 4-20.
Australian firm identifies an employee who leaked news anchors' rant on Djokovic
Australia's Ai-Media Technologies, which provides captioning and transcription services, said on Friday it had identified the employee who leaked a video of two news anchors privately criticizing tennis star Novak Djokovic. The expletive-laden video, leaked this week, showed anchors at Seven West Media's 7NEWS discussing Djokovic's COVID-19 status and visa application in an off-air conversation, condemning him as being deceptive.
Texans fire head coach David Culley
The Houston Texans fired first-year head coach David Culley, he confirmed Thursday. "I'm disappointed, but it's part of the business," Culley told SportsTalk 790 in a radio interview. "I understand and I move on."
U.N. chief to attend opening of Beijing Winter Olympics
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Thursday that he would attend the opening of the Beijing Winter Olympics next month with the message that the event "must be an instrument of peace in the world." His confirmed attendance comes amid a U.S.-led diplomatic boycott to protest China's human rights record, joined by Australia, Britain, Canada and Japan. China denies rights abuses and condemned the boycott as betraying Olympic principles.
Motorcycling-Former world champion Marquez cleared to return to training
Six-times MotoGP world champion Marc Marquez was given an all-clear to return to training following an off-road accident in November, Repsol Honda said. Marquez had been suffering from vision problems since the training accident, which forced him to miss the Algarve and Valencia Grands Prix towards the end of the 2021 season.
Djokovic practises for Australian Open as he waits for visa ruling
World tennis number one Novak Djokovic took to the court on Friday to practise for the Australian Open as he waited to hear whether Australia will cancel his visa for a second time, threatening his bid for a record 21st major tennis title. A relaxed looking Djokovic practised his serves and returns with his entourage on an empty court at Melbourne Park, occasionally resting in a chair to wipe sweat from his face.
Olympics-U.S. turns to college ranks to fill out men's ice hockey roster
With the National Hockey League having pulled out of the Beijing Olympics, the United States turned to the college ranks to fill out its men's ice hockey roster on Thursday, calling up 15 university players for next month's Winter Games. The U.S. squad that was expected to be packed with high-profile NHLers instead included a mostly anonymous group cobbled together from colleges, European professional and North American minor leagues.
Gymnastics-Competition may be over for 'King Kohei' Uchimura but gymnastics goes on
Japanese two-time Olympic all-around champion Kohei Uchimura, one of the best male gymnasts of all time, said on Friday that while he's retiring from competition, he hopes to keep on with gymnastics for as long as his body will let him. Dubbed "King Kohei" for his outstanding success, Uchimura won a total of seven Olympic medals, including three golds, at Beijing, London and Rio, but came away empty-handed from the Tokyo Games last year after deciding to concentrate on horizontal bar and crashing out in the qualifying rounds.
First-timers dominate NHL All-Star Game rosters
The NHL All-Star Game on Feb. 5 will be a celebration of the next generation after 18 of the 36 players named to represent their respective divisions by the league's hockey operations department were chosen for the showcase contest for the first time. The midseason game at Las Vegas still will have its fair share of star power among the four captains selected by fan vote. Selected to head their squads were the Washington Capitals' Alex Ovechkin (Metropolitan Division), the Toronto Maple Leafs' Auston Matthews (Atlantic), the Colorado Avalanche's Nathan MacKinnon (Central) and the Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid (Pacific).
Exclusive-Olympics-African slider's hopes of competing in Beijing dashed by IOC
African winter sports athletes have suffered a blow after the International Olympic Committee denied a request to reinstate continental quotas in bobsleigh and skeleton for the Beijing Games, according to a letter seen by Reuters on Thursday. Ghana's Akwasi Frimpong was just outside the skeleton top 60, a prerequisite to qualify for the Feb. 4-20 Beijing Olympics, when his chances faded after he tested positive for COVID-19 while training for his last three qualifying races.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)