News Summaries from The Sports Network - Sunday, May 19th|
Dodgers activate Mark Ellis
Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - The Los Angeles Dodgers activated infielder
Mark Ellis from the 15-day disabled list Sunday.
Ellis strained his right quadriceps during a 7-5 win against the Milwaukee
Brewers on April 26. Prior to the injury, he was batting .342 with two home
runs and 11 RBI in 20 games.
The 36-year-old Ellis is in the starting lineup and batting second for
Sunday's scheduled series finale against the Atlanta Braves.
"Everybody tells me he's good to go and OK to play," said Dodgers manager Don
In addition, the Dodgers optioned catcher Tim Federowicz to Triple-A
Albuquerque. He was 3-for-17 in 10 games as a backup to starting catcher A.J.
Nadal captures 7th Rome title in rout of Federer
Rome, Italy (Sports Network) - Even the great Roger Federer couldn't quell
Rafael Nadal's momentum.
The fifth-seeded Spaniard dominated his rival on Sunday and captured a seventh
Italian Masters title with a 6-1, 6-3 victory.
After Federer held to open the match, Nadal won nine straight games to seize
The second-seeded Swiss superstar continued to fight, consolidating a break at
love in the seventh game of the second set with a hold. Nadal, though, closed
out the lopsided bout with a love service game.
Nadal, who is now 41-2 all-time at the Foro Italico, played in his eighth
final in as many events this year since returning from a seven-month layoff
because of a knee injury. He is in superior form heading into the French Open,
which begins next Sunday.
"I don't want to think about Roland Garros yet. Let me enjoy this victory,"
The victory gave Nadal his sixth title of 2013 and upped his career total to
56. It was also his 41st clay court crown, moving him past Thomas Muster for
the second-most in the Open Era. Only Guillermo Vilas has more with 46.
Federer's serve was ineffective against Nadal, who converted all but one of
his six break points. Federer, a Rome runner-up in 2003 and 2006, had been
broken just twice en route to reaching his first final of the year.
"It didn't go how I hoped and I was missing too many easy forehands and
crucial points," Federer said. "He does an incredible job returning form the
back of the court and it is hard because he covers the court so well. You need
to serve accurately."
Sunday's match marked the 30th between the decorated players and the 20th with
a title on the line. Nadal improved 20-10 against Federer, including a 13-2
mark on clay.
Serena extends career-best run, wins Rome title
Rome, Italy (Sports Network) - Another impressive performance by the seemingly
indomitable Serena Williams.
The world No. 1 ran her career-best win streak to 24 matches in Sunday's final
at the Italian Open with a 6-1, 6-3 thumping of Victoria Azarenka, the last
player to beat the American superstar.
Azarenka snapped a nine-match slide in the series against Williams in the
final of the Qatar Open back in February. Since that setback in Doha, followed
by an injury withdrawal in Dubai, Williams has captured four straight titles,
upping her career total to 51.
The third-seeded Belarusian got off to a promising start on the outdoor red
clay at the Foro Italico, winning the first three points on serve in the
opening game. Williams battled back, however, and capitalized on her third
break point chance.
Williams also struggled during her initial service game. Unlike her opponent,
she was able to hold after fighting off a pair of break points, then broke
again to go up 3-0.
Azarenka earned a break in the next game when a Williams shot went awry, but
Williams won the next three games to claim the first set.
The second set remained on serve until Azarenka sent a backhand wide, giving
Williams a break and a 4-2 lead. Azarenka broke back at 15, but a double fault
enabled Williams to serve for the title. Williams closed out the match with a
love service game.
The 31-year-old Williams fired eight aces and compiled 41 winners to just 12
for Azarenka. She is now 33-1 on clay since the start of last year's clay
court season, with the lone loss coming to Virginie Razzano at Roland Garros.
Williams dropped only 14 games en route to her second Rome crown, adding to
her triumph in 2002. She became the first top seed to win the title at this
event since Dinara Safina four years ago.
Azarenka, 23, fell to 2-12 in head-to-head meetings against Williams and 1-6
in clay court finals.
Rosol falls in Dusseldorf opener
Dusseldorf, Germany (Sports Network) - Fifth seed Lukas Rosol was a first-
round loser Sunday at the inaugural Power Horse Cup, a final French Open
Rosol, the only seeded player to see action on the red clay at Rochusclub,
lost 6-4, 6-3 to German Daniel Brands.
Brands will face another Czech in the second round after Jan Hajek saved all
six breaks points in a 6-2, 6-2 win over Russian Evgeny Donskoy.
Croat Ivan Dodig also beat Slovenia's Blaz Kavcic 7-5, 6-4 on Day 1.
Dusseldorf used to play host to the ATP World Team tournament.
Berankis knocks off Istomin in Nice opener
Nice, France (Sports Network) - Ricardas Berankis was a first-round winner
Sunday at the $530,000 Nice Open, a final clay-court French Open tune-up.
Berankis topped Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin, the No. 8 seed, 6-2, 6-2 at the
Nice Lawn Tennis Club.
The Lithuanian will play Edouard Roger-Vasselin in the second round. The
French wild card advanced when Colombian Alejandro Falla retired with a left
calf injury after dropping the first set 7-5.
Spaniard Nicolas Almagro captured a second straight Nice title by beating
American Brian Baker in last year's finale.
McDowell rallies for World Match Play win
Kavarna, Bulgaria (Sports Network) - Graeme McDowell battled back from an
early deficit and claimed the World Match Play Championship title on Sunday
with a 2 & 1 victory over Thongchai Jaidee.
McDowell, last year's runner up, was 2-down through four holes at Thracian
Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort before eventually squaring the match at the 12th.
The world No. 8 took his first lead with a par on the 14th and then went 2-up
on the 15th courtesy of a deft approach to five feet.
The advantage held after both players parred the 16th, and when Thailand's
Jaidee missed a long and challenging birdie putt on 17, McDowell was able to
lock up his eighth European Tour victory with a tap-in par.
"Obviously a nice day and a great trophy," said McDowell. "I talked about it
all week about the prestige of this event and how many great champions, and
nice to add my name to that list of legends."
McDowell became the first Irishman to win this event, and he exacted some
revenge along the way.
Beaten by Nicolas Colsaerts in last year's title match and the 2011
quarterfinals, McDowell atoned for that on Saturday with a 2 & 1 victory over
the Belgian, then rolled to his second straight final appearance with a 3 & 2
triumph over South African Branden Grace in Sunday's semis.
Jaidee, who was seeking his sixth European Tour title, clinched a finals berth
by taking down Thomas Aiken for the second time in the week. Having already
defeated Aiken in Friday's second round, the Thai golfer once again made a
victim of the South African with a 3 & 2 semifinal triumph.
Neither player had dropped a match entering the championship round, and Jaidee
was in fine form early, grabbing control with a winning birdie putt from 25
feet on the second hole and a 5-foot birdie make on the fourth after
McDowell's miss from double that distance.
Jaidee nearly went 3-up when at the par-5 fifth when McDowell's approach found
an unplayable patch of rough. The 2010 U.S. Open champion salvaged par with a
12-foot putt and avoided falling further behind when Jaidee's birdie roll
from six feet went awry.
McDowell finally got on the board with a short birdie putt on the seventh, and
the next four holes were halved, with McDowell draining lengthy par putts on
Nos. 9 and 10 before squaring the match with a birdie on the 12th.
"It was tough to keep that level of golf up all weekend, and the key putts
really this afternoon were with the par saves on nine and 10 -- they were
massive," said McDowell. "I sensed from Thongchai after that that he was
starting to fatigue a little bit. I really sensed a bit of an opening."
McDowell grabbed his first lead with a par on the 14th, where Jaidee drove
into a bush, played out sideways and eventually settled for a bogey.
On the next hole, McDowell dropped a deft approach within seven feet and
drained the downhill birdie putt to go 2-up. The Irishman closed out the
victory with back-to-back pars.
"This feels really, really like a special win," said McDowell, who was playing
his first European Tour event of the year after posting four top-10 finishes
on the PGA Tour, including a victory at the RBC Heritage.
"This is a special moment in my career, no doubt about it," he continued.
"Wins are super special -- two in five weeks, that's great. I'm feeling pretty
good right now."
NOTES: Jaidee entered the event having recorded top-10 finishes in four of his
eight European Tour starts this season ... Brett Rumford was eliminated in the
third round. Coming off back-to-back victories at the Ballantine's
Championship and China Open, he was looking to join Nick Faldo and Seve
Ballesteros as the only players in European Tour history to win three
consecutive events ... Ian Poulter, the 2011 champion and European Ryder cup
hero, was eliminated on Friday. He won the WGC-Accenture Match Play title in
2010 ... The 24-man field was divided into eight groups of three players, with
everyone playing two matches and the top two players from each group advancing
to the single elimination matches on Saturday and Sunday.
Da Silva wins Zambia Open
Lusaka, Zambia (Sports Network) - Adilson da Silva carded an even-par 73 on
Sunday and claimed a 1-stroke victory at the Zambia Open.
Da Silva, the overnight leader and 2010 titlist at this event, finished 72
holes at 11-under 281, one shot ahead of Alex Haindl (70) and Martin du Toit
(72) at Lusaka Golf Club.
"It's absolutely great to seal the win," said da Silva, who secured his 11th
Sunshine Tour title. "Mentally it was a big thing to stay calm today and
focus. I've been in this situation a couple of times, and I'm learning how to
Doug McGuigan, the 2011 Zambia Open champion, recorded a final-round 74 and
ended in a tie for fourth place with Desne van den Bergh (73), Titch Moore
(71), Ryan Cairns (69) and Anthony Michael (67) at 9-under.
The 41-year-old da Silva entered the final round with a 1-stroke lead and held
the advantage, countering three bogeys with a hatrick of birdies en route to
the narrow victory.
Kim rallies for win in Chiba
Chiba, Japan (Sports Network) - Hyung-Sung Kim fired a 6-under 65 on Sunday
and rallied to win the PGA Championship Nissin Cupnoodles Cup by a single
A third-round 75 dropped Kim nine shots off the pace, but the 33-year-old
stormed back on Sunday and finished 72 holes at 5-under-par 279, one shot
ahead of overnight leader Hideki Matsuyama (75), Hiroyuki Fujita (69) and
Yoshinori Fujimoto (68) at Sobu Country Club's Sohbu Course.
Satoshi Kodaira carded a final-round 72 and ended alone in fifth place at 2-
under, while Yusaku Miyazato (68) and Toru Taniguchi (71) tied for sixth at
Kim, who earned his second Japan Tour victory, stormed to a 29 on his outward
nine, establishing a 1-shot lead over Matsuyama by the time the overnight
leader reached the 10th tee.
The victor's 65 marked the low round of the day by three strokes.
05/19 14:43:55 ET