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Update June 2018


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Update June 19, 2018

Late header from Kane gives England 2-1 win over Tunisia

England's Harry Kane, left, celebrates his winning goal with England's Ashley Young during the group G match between Tunisia and England at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Volgograd Arena in Volgograd, Russia, Monday, June 18. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Rob Harris

Volgograd, Russia (AP) — Twice wrestled to the ground during the match, England captain Harry Kane finally evaded the Tunisian defense just as time was running out.

Kane found an open area of space at the far post and used his head to meet Harry Maguire's flick-on, scoring the winning goal Monday in a 2-1 victory at the World Cup.

It was relief for Kane and Gareth Southgate, who leapt into the air in delight as his World Cup debut as a coach got off to a winning start.

"The best teams in the world keep that belief in what they're doing," Southgate said, "and in the end they break the opposition down."

England shouldn't have found it so tough in their Group G opener against such opposition. Not after Kane got England off to a perfect start with an 11th-minute tap in. But after Kyle Walker softly conceded a penalty that Ferjani Sassi converted in the 35th, many of the fouls went against England.

"Maybe there was a bit of justice at the end," Kane said.

Finally, Kane showcased on the international stage the predatory instinct in front of goal that has served Tottenham so well. Only two years ago, the striker failed to find the net at the 2016 European Championship, which ended in humiliation with a loss to Iceland in the last 16.

The team has been transformed by Southgate since then. For all the placidness and togetherness within the group, Southgate has added persistence and doggedness.

"It shows the work we have put in these last few weeks," Walker said. "Togetherness and believing in ourselves."

At the last World Cup, England couldn't even win a game. Low expectations for this year's overhauled team were dispelled early in Russia when Kane reacted quickly to score after John Stones' header was saved. But England struggled to finish it off.

When Walker's flailing arm caught Fakhreddine Ben Youssef, a penalty was awarded and Sassi slotted it in to equalize.

England's players later thought they deserved the same verdict when Kane was grappled to the ground twice by Tunisians on either side of the halftime break. Both times, the referee decided against punishing the culprits.

Despite it all, Kane remained patient and delivered in the first minute of stoppage time.

"You go until the last second," Kane said, "and I'm absolutely buzzing."


Belgium wake up in 2nd half, roll past Panama 3-0

Panama's Armando Cooper, left, and Belgium's Jan Vertonghen fight for the ball during the group G match between Belgium and Panama at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, Monday, June 18. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

Tim Booth

Sochi, Russia (AP) — Unlike the other World Cup favorites that struggled through their opening matches, Belgium looked every part title contenders.

Having Dries Mertens and Romelu Lukaku capable of scoring the way they did against Panama helps.

"People know I am supposed to score goals," Lukaku said. "The most important thing to me is to win matches."

Lukaku scored twice in a six-minute span in the second half after Mertens' perfectly struck volley gave Belgium the lead, and the Red Devils beat overmatched Panama 3-0 Monday.

Saddled with massive expectations and a lineup of talent the envy of other teams in the tournament, Belgium showed flashes of being a team worthy of title consideration.

A shaky first-half performance by Belgium was replaced by a confident, attacking group in the second that was finally able to find gaps in Panama's defence and convert those chances into goals.

"In the World Cup you have to play 90 minutes. You have to be aware that in any game you go into, if you don't score early on, you have to be prepared to work hard and go through periods in which you are tested," Belgium coach Roberto Martinez said.

The two goals from Lukaku came shortly after Mertens scored from about 18 yards in the opening moments of the second half, finally relieving some pressure after Belgium were unable to break down Panama for the first 45 minutes.

Lukaku's first goal came 20 minutes later, but the pass from Kevin De Bruyne made it possible. Rather than shooting through a crowd of Panama defenders, De Bruyne cut a pass with the outside of his right foot onto Lukaku's head and into the net.

Lukaku added a second on a breakaway minutes later, chipping Panama goalkeeper Jaime Penedo as he left his net.

"For me it's important to have the right line in the box," Lukaku said. "Usually I'm in the right position at the right time."

Belgium are now unbeaten in their last six World Cup openers, dating back to a 1986 loss to Mexico.

Panama were unable to duplicate what Senegal accomplished in 2002 as the last team to win in a World Cup debut. The Central Americans played their style — physical, aggressive, sometimes looking more like wrestling than soccer — and managed to hang with the Red Devils for more than an hour. But they never created threatening scoring chances — Panama scored only nine goals in 10 World Cup qualifying matches — and eventually Belgium finished their opportunities.


Sweden get benefit of video review, beat South Korea 1-0

Sweden's Viktor Claesson, left, is fouled by South Korea's Kim Min-woo conceding a penalty kick for Sweden during the World Cup group F match between Sweden and South Korea at the Nizhny Novgorod stadium in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, Monday, June 18. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)

Gerald Imray

Nizhny Novgorod, Russia (AP) — Sweden got the break they needed from the video review system, and team captain Andreas Granqvist didn't waste the chance.

Granqvist slid his penalty kick into the bottom right corner of the net in the 65th minute to give Sweden a 1-0 victory over South Korea on Monday at the World Cup.

"I was calm. I waited for the goalie and then I put it in the corner," said Granqvist, a central defender. "We got the penalty, we scored, and then it was just a fight to the end."

The Swedes, playing in their first World Cup since 2006, were awarded the penalty after Salvadoran referee Joel Aguilar consulted a video screen on the sideline. Aguilar had originally waved play on after South Korea substitute Kim Min-woo slid into a tackle and collided with Viktor Claesson. But he took another look and decided Kim had tripped Claesson as he tried to clear the ball.

"There was no doubt it was a penalty and should have been called right away," Sweden coach Janne Andersson said.

It was the third penalty to be awarded because of a video review in the first 12 games at this year's World Cup. France and Peru also benefitted from the technology, though the Peruvians missed their penalty kick.

The video review system, making its World Cup debut in Russia, appears to be working so far.

"We do agree that it was a good call," South Korea coach Shin Tae-yong said.

Sweden are now tied for first place in Group F with Mexico, who beat Germany 1-0. The Swedes will next face the Germans on Saturday, while South Korea play Mexico on the same day.

Although Sweden used the video review to win, they were the better team and showed most of the attacking intent. The Swedes just couldn't beat goalkeeper Jo Hyeon-woo until the penalty.

Jo saved a close-range shot from Marcus Berg midway through the first half, using his right leg to make the block and then jumping back up to punch the ball away with both hands. He also stopped a powerful, dipping header from Ola Toivonen in the second half.

Shin fielded Jo, the team's third-choice goalkeeper, because he is the tallest of the three keepers and the Koreans wanted to use his height against the Swedes.

Shin also gambled on a three-man attack of Son Heung-min, Hwang Hee-chan and 6-foot-6 striker Kim Shin-wook.

South Korea, who have won only two World Cup matches since their incredible run to the semifinals in 2002, had a chance to level in injury time but Hwang put a header wide from in front of goal.


Murray excited to end 11-month absence at Queen's this week

Britain's Andy Murray smiles during a practice session on day one of the Queen's Club Championship at the Queens Club in London, Monday June 18. (Steven Paston/PA via AP)

London (AP) — Andy Murray is excited to be returning at the pre-Wimbledon Queen's Club event this week after the former top-ranked player in the world experienced the "lowest point" of his career during an 11-month absence from tennis.

The 31-year-old Briton, who has been out of action with a hip injury since losing in the 2017 Wimbledon quarter-finals, has been drawn to meet Australia's Nick Kyrgios in the first round at Queen's.

"I'm really looking forward to playing again," Murray said in his regular BBC Sport column. "While I will be nervous, it will be great to finally step back on the court.

"With sport you play to win, but when you are away from something you love doing for almost a year, you realize you're playing because you love it.

"I didn't start playing to win Wimbledon or get to number one in the world. I never believed that was something I was going to do, or something I thought about when I was a kid growing up. I played tennis because I loved it and continued doing that throughout my whole career."

Murray, who won the Wimbledon title in 2013 and 2016 and the U.S. Open crown in 2012, had an operation on his hip in January.

"When, after six months of not competing, you're still not good enough to be where you want to be and looking like you're going to have to have surgery, it's the lowest point you can get to in your professional career," he said.

"People might say, 'oh, you've got it great' - which I'm aware that we do, and I'm very lucky I get to play tennis for a living. But that's what I've been doing since I was a child, and when you're not able to do something that you love it's tough."

Wimbledon starts on July 2.


Update June 18, 2018

Brooks Koepka wins US Open, 1st repeat winner in 29 years

Brooks Koepka kisses the trophy after winning the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Sunday, June 17, in Southampton, N.Y. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

Doug Ferguson

Southampton, N.Y. (AP) — One was about power. The other was about patience.

Brooks Koepka has a game for the U.S. Open no matter the course, no matter the test, no matter the circumstances.

He never lost hope when he began his title defense with a 75 and was 7-over par midway through the second round. He didn't lose his mind in the most punishing third round of a U.S. Open in nearly two decades.

And with a cool head and a hot putter, he didn't give anyone a chance down the stretch Sunday at Shinnecock Hills.

Koepka pulled away from a four-way tie for the lead with three birdies in five holes, held off Tommy Fleetwood and his record-tying 63 and closed with a 2-under 68 for a one-shot victory to become the first repeat U.S. Open champion in 29 years.

"I don't want to say I didn't think I could do it," Koepka said. "But I knew that it was going to be that much more difficult. And to finally do it, it's much more gratifying the second time. I can really appreciate how hard it is to win a major."

Koepka won with birdies on spacious Erin Hills last year. The signature moment from this U.S. Open was a trio of putts to escape trouble on the back nine — two for par, one for bogey.

"I enjoy being pushed to the limit," Koepka said. "Sometimes you feel like you are about to break mentally, but that's what I enjoy. I enjoy hard golf courses. I enjoy playing about the toughest in golf you are ever going to play."

Shinnecock Hills was every bit of that, particularly on Saturday when conditions were so severe that the last 45 players to tee off shot over par. The USGA conceded the course was over the top and pledged to add water to slow it down. Fleetwood raced into U.S. Open history with a 63, without making birdie on the two par 5s and missing an 8-foot birdie putt on the final hole.

That cost him more than the record. It cost him a chance in a playoff.

Koepka took a two-shot lead with a wedge to 3 feet for birdie on the par-5 16th, allowing him a safe bogey on the final hole to finish at 1-over 281. It was the first time since 2013 at Merion that no one broke par, and it was 13 shots more than his winning score at Erin Hills.

Curtis Strange, the last player to go back-to-back in this major in 1988 and 1989, watched the entire final round as the Fox Sports reporter on the ground, and they shared a brief hug off the 18th green.

"Hell of a job," Strange said to him.

Fleetwood was one shot behind when he finished, and Koepka still had 11 holes to play as Shinnecock Hills began to get crisp under another sunny sky.

With a putting performance and calm demeanor reminiscent of Retief Goosen when he won the previous U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills, in 2004, the 28-year-old Koepka began the back nine with three pivotal putts — one for birdie, one for bogey, one for par.

The biggest might have been his bogey on the nasty little par-3 11th.

Koepka pulled a pitching wedge to the left, down the slope and into thick grass. He chopped that up the slope with so much speed that it raced across the green and into the bunker. He blasted that out to 8 feet and made the putt to keep his lead at one shot.

"I think that was like making a birdie, maybe even making an eagle," he said. "Because it could have been a big momentum shift there, and we could have been playing tennis just going back and forth. To make bogey there was pretty incredible and I think kind of the reason why we won."

He wasn't through. He hacked out of the hay over the green at No. 12, pitched beautifully to 7 feet and made the par. Two holes later, after another drive into grass so thick he wasn't sure he could get it out, Koepka rolled in an 8-footer for another par save.

Fleetwood played with Koepka in the final group last year at Erin Hills. He finished his round as Koepka was finishing up the par-3 seventh.

"The best players in the world are up there trying to win a U.S. Open, and watching them down the stretch, you've got nothing but respect for how well Brooks did, just to hole the putts at the right time," Fleetwood said. "He kept it together, and he's a world class player. One of the best players in the world. It wasn't great for me, but it was great as a golfer to watch how he did it."

Koepka moved to career-best No. 4 in the world with his fifth victory, this one coming two months after he returned following torn tendons in his left wrist that kept him out the first part of the season, including the Masters.

Dustin Johnson, part of the four-way tie for the lead to start the final round, couldn't keep up with one of his best friends. Johnson was one shot behind at the turn until a trio of three-putt bogeys on the back nine. A birdie on the final hole gave him an even-par 70 to finish alone in third and remain No. 1 in the world.

A year ago, Johnson called him on the eve of the final round to offer advice. On Sunday, they were playing side by side without exchanging words, each trying to play a course that was considerably softer than the previous day.

"We didn't really speak too much," Koepka said. "He was busy grinding his tail off and I was busy grinding mine. We're extremely close. I love the guy to death. It would have been fun to duel it out with him coming down the end, having to make some putts."

Only one of them did. Koepka took 14 fewer putts than Johnson on the weekend.

Masters champion Patrick Reed flirted with the second leg of the Grand Slam. He was tied for the lead when he ran off five birdies in his opening seven holes. Reed spent too much time in the high grass on the back nine and closed with a 68 to finish fourth.

Americans have won the last five majors — all of them in their 20s — and Koepka joined an elite group as only the seventh player to go back-to-back in what is regarded as golf's toughest test. Next up is Pebble Beach, and a chance to join Willie Anderson as the only player to win three in a row. Anderson won his third straight in 1905. Ben Hogan won three straight that he played, missing in 1949 after nearly getting killed when his car struck a bus.


Mexico beat defending champions Germany 1-0 at World Cup

Mexico's Hirving Lozano celebrates scoring his side's winning goal during the World Cup group F match against Germany at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, June 17. (AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)

James Ellingworth

Moscow (AP) — Defending World Cup champions have been finding it hard to get out of the group stage lately, and Germany are proving no exceptions.

The 2014 champions, ranked No. 1 in the world, were exposed defensively and surprisingly beaten by Mexico 1-0 on Sunday, putting their hopes of advancement in doubt.

Well, not everyone is in doubt.

"We will make it," Germany coach Joachim Loew said. "There's no reason to fall apart because you lose one game."

Hirving Lozano scored the lone goal in the 35th minute, picking up Javier Hernandez's pass inside the penalty area and beating Mesut Ozil before shooting past German goalkeeper Manuel Neuer from 10 yards.

The goal decided the match — a match Germany didn't expect to lose.

"I don't know if it's the biggest victory in (Mexico's) history, but one of the biggest for sure," Lozano said. "My teammates and I did some great work. We all ran our hearts out. This is the result of all that hard work."

Three of the previous four defending World Cup champions failed to reach the knockout stages, France, Italy and Spain. Two of them lost their opening matches while the Italians had to settle for a draw.

The Germans are bidding to become the first team to retain the World Cup title since Brazil in 1962, but have now won only one of their last seven games in all competitions. They hadn't lost an opening game since the then-West Germany fell 2-1 to Algeria in 1982.

Mexico had never beaten Germany in a competitive match but were transformed from the team which lost to the Germans 4-1 in last year's Confederations Cup, conceding twice in the opening eight minutes.

Lozano, a 22-year-old forward nicknamed "Chucky," got Mexico going with a deflected shot over the bar in the first minute. That set the tone for Mexico to torment Germany on the counterattack, with Lozano taking full advantage of right back Joshua Kimmich's tendency to go forward.

"We were nervous and we weren't playing the game we wanted to play," Loew said. "We need to see what caused this."

After Lozano's goal, Mexico goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa pulled off a spectacular save to keep the score even, palming Toni Kroos' shot onto the crossbar.

With key players tiring in the second half, Mexico pulled back and substituted both Lozano and Carlos Vela. Germany then dominated but when they broke through the Mexican defence, the shooting was poor.

Seeking defensive reinforcement, Mexico coach Juan Carlos Osorio brought on 39-year-old veteran Rafael Marquez to play in his fifth World Cup.

"You had the feeling that the ball just wouldn't go in anyhow," Loew said. "Everyone's very disappointed."

Mexico still have to play South Korea and Sweden, which Osorio called "a tough nut to crack."

Germany need points from matches against Sweden on Saturday and South Korea on June 27 to avoid elimination.

Neuer, who started his first competitive game since September, said his teammates are aware that another loss would end their World Cup run.

"We're already in the knockout stages," Neuer said, "because we only have finals now."

In Sunday’s other fixtures, Brazil were held to a 1-1 draw by Switzerland and Serbia defeated Costa Rica 1-0.


Fernando Alonso wins on debut in 24 Hours Le Mans race

Drivers of the Toyota TS050 Hybrid No8 of the Toyota Gazoo Racing Team Sebastien Buemi of Switzerland, right on the car and Fernando Alonso of Spain celebrate after winning the 86th 24-hour Le Mans endurance race, in Le Mans, western France, Sunday, June 17. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

Le Mans, France (AP) — Two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso won the 24 Hours Le Mans on his debut in the classic endurance race on Sunday to move closer to motorsport's unofficial Triple Crown.

The Spanish driver, together with teammates Kazuki Nakajima of Japan and Sebastien Buemi of Switzerland, completed 388 laps in their Toyota hybrid car, two more than Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez in the other Toyota hybrid.

Alonso is bidding to match British driver Graham Hill's feat of completing the Triple Crown, including wins at the Monaco Grand Prix and Indianapolis 500. Alonso is a two-time winner in Monaco.

"Le Mans once a year is not enough! It needs to be every three weeks," joked Alonso, who looked to be in trouble when Buemi was penalized for speeding in a caution zone late Saturday.

Alonso's car was left more than two minutes behind the other Toyota but the Spaniard managed to claw back the difference through the night, putting Nakajima in position to retake the lead from Kobayashi early on Sunday.

"I felt great tonight," Alonso said after his final stint driving. "I don't know exactly how, but I managed to make the tires work for us at the right time despite the cool air temp. Our pace has been good and I was lucky with the traffic as well."

It was Toyota's first victory at the 20th attempt, and the first win for a Japanese manufacturer since Mazda's success in 1991.

Former Formula One champion Jenson Button raced for the private SMP team, but the Briton's non-hybrid car faced early problems with engine trouble that forced its retirement in the final hour.

Some 60 factory and private teams competed in the 86th edition of the race.


Spence keeps IBF title at home with quick knockout of Ocampo

Carlos Ocampo goes down after being hit by Errol Spence Jr. during the first round of a welterweight boxing match Saturday, June 16, in Frisco, Texas. (AP Photo/Richard W. Rodriguez)

Schuyler Dixon

Frisco, Texas (AP) — Errol Spence Jr. gave the home folks the knockout he figured they wanted. There just wasn't much of the show he hoped would go with it.

Spence stopped Carlos Ocampo to retain his IBF welterweight title, dropping the Mexican challenger with a right hand to the body as the first round was ending Saturday night.

Fighting at the Dallas Cowboys' practice facility after growing up in the suburbs as a fan of America's Team, Spence improved to 24-0 with his 11th straight knockout and 21st overall.

The crowd might have been left wanting more, as Cowboys owner Jerry Jones jokingly suggested after winking at the camera while celebrating with the 2012 U.S. Olympian in the ring.

"He can fight again tonight if someone wants to step up and fight him," Jones said.

Ocampo crumpled to the canvas after taking the body shot. He tried to get up but went down to his knees and was counted out in the battle of unbeaten fighters.

"I was a little disappointed," Spence said. "I wanted to give the crowd their money's worth. I wanted him to sustain a bit and give him some punishment, but the body shot got him and I dropped him."

The 28-year-old Spence was fighting in front of a sellout crowd in the 12,000-seat football stadium that doubles as the indoor practice facility for the Cowboys at their headquarters about 30 miles north of Dallas.

Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott and several teammates were in the crowd along with Jones.

"This room was full of Dallas Cowboys football players supporting you," Jones said. "They share your passion. I saw a guy in this ring who knew what he wanted. When you knock a guy out by hitting him once on the side of his back, you're bad to the bone."

It was the second defense of the 147-pound title that Spence won last summer in Englishman Kell Brook's hometown.

Ocampo (22-1) was fighting professionally outside his home country for the first time.

"l got a lot of experience out of fighting Errol," Ocampo said. "It would have been a very difficult fight for me. I got overconfident at the end of the round and he caught me."

The buildup for the right was all the crowd got, with Spence taking the ring to big cheers with a big Cowboys star logo on the front of his robe. Earlier, Spence got a good roar when he was shown on camera alongside Jones near his locker room.

"This moment is a dream," Spence said. "I wanted to play for the Dallas Cowboys and now I'm fighting in front of the Dallas Cowboys and Jerry Jones."

Spence battered Lamont Peterson in his first title defense in New York in January, winning in the eighth round. Last summer in Sheffield, England, Spence broke Brook's orbital bone and knocked him down in the 10th round before the fight was stopped in the 11th.

This was Spence's first fight as a co-promoter, the other reason besides the hometown crowd that the show was part of the story line.

"We'll definitely be back after I unify some titles," Spence said. "We'll make this an annual thing where I fight here."

Spence's victory came a week after Terence Crawford took the WBO crown from Jeff Horn, who had beaten Manny Pacquiao a year earlier. But Spence's focus is on the expected August fight between Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter for the WBC title.

"I definitely want to make that a unifying fight," Spence said. "We both have the same management. Why not make that happen?  I definitely want that fight whenever it's available."

In the previous fight, WBA super bantamweight champion Danny Roman won a unanimous decision over Moises Flores. Roman would have retained the belt regardless of the outcome because Flores didn't make weight.

"I went for the body because we knew he was so drained from cutting weight," Roman said. "Him missing weight and not being able to win my belt didn't change anything."

A 10-round junior welterweight fight between Javier Fortuna and Adrian Granados ended in a no-decision after Fortuna appeared to hit his head while falling backward out of the ring during the fourth round. Fortuna was placed in a neck brace and taken away on a stretcher.

The 28-year-old Fortuna went to a hospital and was diagnosed with a concussion.

"I didn't push him," Granados said. "I think he was looking for an excuse on his way out. We were both battling, but I knew he could feel I was getting stronger. Let's do the rematch."


Update June 16 - 17, 2018

Ronaldo scores hat trick, Portugal draw 3-3 with Spain

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo slides on the ground to his bench after scoring his second goal during the group B match between Portugal and Spain at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, Friday, June 15. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)

Tales Azzoni

Sochi, Russia (AP) — Cristiano Ronaldo used the World Cup to show everyone he's the GOAT.

Ronaldo rubbed his chin after scoring minutes into Portugal's opener against Spain, implying he is the Greatest of All Time. Then he scored two more goals, including a perfectly placed 88th-minute free kick that gave his team a 3-3 draw Friday.

Spain, the 2010 World Cup champions, dominated much of the match but were unable to contain Ronaldo.

"When I play against a player like Ronaldo, these things can happen," newly appointed Spain coach Fernando Hierro said. "It's very fortunate for whatever team has Cristiano Ronaldo."

Ronaldo had twice given European champions Portugal the lead with first-half goals at Fisht Stadium, but Diego Costa equalized with a goal in each half. Nacho Fernandez then put the Spanish ahead with a superb strike from outside the area in the Group B match.

Ronaldo became the fourth player to score in four World Cups, joining Pele, Miroslav Klose and Uwe Seeler. He also became the first Portuguese player to appear in four World Cups, and at 33 became the oldest player to score a hat trick in tournament history.

He used his first goal to send a message to the world in an apparent reaction to Adidas' "GOAT" promotion with Lionel Messi, featuring the Argentine with a real goat. Ronaldo and Messi have split the last 10 player of the year awards.

"I've said it so many times, Cristiano is the best in the world," Portugal coach Fernando Santos said.

Ronaldo downplayed his sixth international hat trick.

"To me, the most important (thing) is to highlight what the team has done," Ronaldo said.

Spain looked to have successfully overcome their dramatic coaching change on the eve of the tournament but Ronaldo curled a late shot from about 25 yards over the wall. The ball went into the top corner as Spain goalkeeper David de Gea watched.

The Spanish federation fired coach Julen Lopetegui for accepting a job with Real Madrid without letting it know in advance. Hierro, a former player acting as Spain's sporting director, replaced Lopetegui and was on the bench despite no significant previous coaching experience.

"It wasn't an easy situation. When you have this staff and these young players, they make it much easier," Hierro said.

It was an exciting start to one of the group-stage's most anticipated matches and it didn't take long before Ronaldo struck first.

Ronaldo made a nice stepover move to get past Fernandez, his Real Madrid teammate, and was fouled at the edge of the area. He then calmly sent his shot to the right corner as De Gea went the other way.

As Ronaldo returned to midfield for the restart, he and Fernandez appeared to exchange words, and the Portuguese star smiled.

"It's always great to have somebody wonderful playing like that," Portugal coach Fernando Santos said. "I'm glad he's Portuguese."

Portugal threatened on counterattacks as Spain struggled to get near Rui Patricio's goal, but a great long pass by Sergio Busquets allowed Costa to even the match. The striker collided with Pepe and used several neat moves to clear other defenders before firing a low shot into the corner from inside the area.

Portugal loudly complained Costa had fouled Pepe, and replays showed there was contact by the Spaniard's arm with Pepe's body. Referee Gianluca Rocchi allowed the play to continue.

Portugal wanted the play to be reviewed, and Rocchi at one point put a hand to his ear, apparently indicating the assistant referees didn't see a clear error.

Goal-line technology came into play a few moments later when a Francisco "Isco" Alarcon's shot struck the crossbar and dropped straight down on the goal line. After Isco complained, Rocchi pointed to his watch, which receives goal confirmations.

Ronaldo's second goal came after a blunder by De Gea, who let the ball bounce off his hands and into the net after a routine shot from outside the area just before halftime.

Busquets and Costa combined for Spain's equalizer in the 55th. After a cross by Andres Iniesta, Busquets headed the ball back across the area and Costa touched it into the open net.

Three minutes later, Fernandez redeemed himself for the penalty on Ronaldo with a streaking shot after a ball cleared by the defense got deflected toward him. The ball struck the post before going into the goal.

GROUP DYNAMICS

The teams arrived in Russia as favorites to share first and second in the group, but the draw leaves them two points behind Iran, who defeated Morocco 1-0 earlier Friday.

Spain, trying to rebound from disappointing eliminations at the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 European Championship, will next face Iran, while Portugal play Morocco.


Johnson takes 4-shot lead into weekend at US Open

Ian Poulter, of England, plays a shot from a bunker on the sixth hole during the second round of the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Friday, June 15, in Southampton, N.Y. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Doug Ferguson

Southampton, N.Y. (AP) — Shinnecock Hills is no longer the only challenge at this U.S. Open.

On a course that can cause problems in any weather, where triple bogeys or worse have been recorded on all but six holes, perhaps the most daunting prospect going into the weekend is Dustin Johnson with a four-shot lead.

Johnson played smart on the few occasions he was out of position, holed a 45-foot birdie putt on the par-3 seventh green and endured wind and two hours of rain Friday morning for a 3-under 67.

He was at 4-under 136, the only player still under par going into the weekend. Scott Piercy (71) and Charley Hoffman (69) were at even par.

"You've got to play really good golf if you want to shoot a good score, and I like where par is a good score on every hole, no matter what club you've got in your hand, what hole it is," Johnson said.

Only six other players in the U.S. Open have led by as many as four shots after 36 holes. All but one — Tom McNamara in 1909 — went on to win.

Even so, there's plenty of reminders of how it can all go wrong — some of them from Johnson's own experiences, most of them from the final few hours Friday afternoon in perfect weather from those trying to catch him.

Shinnecock can punish anyone in a New York minute.

"There's a disaster on every single hole," Ian Poulter said moments after he went through one.

Poulter was one shot out of the lead and in the middle of the fairway with two holes to go when one bad shot led to a few more that were just as worse — a bunker shot that sailed over the green, a chunked chip into the hay, a chop short of the green and a triple bogey on No. 8. He made bogey on his last hole for a 72.

"I felt stupid knifing the first one," he said. "I felt even more stupid semi-chunking the next one, and I didn't do much better on the next one, either. So maybe it makes a few people happy out there that, you know, we kind of mess up just as good as everyone else."

Poulter didn't lose sight of being in a tie for fourth, five shots out of the lead.

Hoffman was the only other player under par until he missed the 18th fairway and had to chop it down the fairway and make a 5-foot putt to escape with bogey.

"Dustin plays a whole different golf game than I play, so I'm not going to play the guy," Hoffman said. "I'm just going to keep playing my game. You're going to try to hit fairways. Because if you don't hit the fairway, you're not getting to the green."

Tiger Woods won't be around to see how it unfolds, and plenty of star power joined him on the way out of town.

Woods closed with back-to-back birdies to salvage a 72. He still missed the cut in a major for the fifth time in his last eight tries, this time by two shots. Rory McIlroy missed the cut for the third straight year in the U.S. Open, unable to recover from his opening 80. Jason Day opened with a 79 and missed the cut.

Jordan Spieth joined them in the most unlikely fashion. He took three shots to get up the slope and onto the 10th green, making double bogey. He was three shots over the cut line with six holes to play when he ran off four straight birdies to get inside the number — only to three-putt for bogey on the 17th, stub a chip from the collar of a bunker on the 18th and miss the par putt for a 71. He had not missed the cut in a major since the 2014 PGA Championship.

Piercy, a runner-up to Johnson at Oakmont two years ago, had a 71 and will play in the final group with him Saturday. Piercy's day was not without regrets, especially when he three-putted from 4 feet for bogey on the par-5 16th.

Defending champion Brooks Koepka made six birdies over his last 11 holes for a 66, matching Tommy Fleetwood for the low round of the tournament. They were at 141, along with Henrik Stenson and Justin Rose, each with a 70, and Poulter.

Koepka and Johnson are close friends, so he should know as well as anyone what will make it hard to catch him.

"This golf course," Koepka said. "There's not many birdies. There's a disaster around every corner. I mean, all it takes is one shot in the fescue, and you could be in there for a while. But you need a good round tomorrow just to give yourself a chance. Anything within three shots of the lead on the back Sunday, anything can happen."

Rose also was under par until closing with successive bogeys. With 36 holes to play, he wasn't overly concerned about tracking down the No. 1 player in the world.

"You just saw what happened to Ian Poulter five minutes ago. That could happen to DJ," Rose said. "I'm not saying it's going to, but it could. That's the nature of the U.S. Open. So hang around is often the best form of attack."

Johnson knows that all too well.

He had a three-shot lead at Pebble Beach in the 2010 U.S. Open and lost it all on the second hole with a triple bogey, and then compounded mistakes by trying to drive the green on the next two holes. He shot 82. He has endured more than his share of bad luck, bad breaks and bad shots in the majors.

His outlook at Shinnecock Hills has been built on patience and being practical.

"I never want to make doubles," Johnson said. "Around here, it seems like when I do get out of position, I'm just trying to do everything I can to get it back into position, not try to push it, and just give myself a decent look ... something on the green where I can have a look at par.

"I want to make things as easy as possible, even though they don't get any easier."

But this is far from over. Johnson knows that as well as anyone. So does Rose, who overcame an eight-shot deficit against Johnson in the final round in Shanghai last fall at the HSBC Champions.


Afghanistan lose maiden test to India by innings in 2 days

India's Ravindra Jadeja, right, celebrates with teammate Cheteshwar Pujara, left, the dismissal of Afghanistan's Rashid Khan, center, during the second day of one-off cricket test match in Bangalore, India, Friday, June 15. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

Chetan Narula

Bangalore, India (AP) — Afghanistan succumbed to top-ranked India by an innings and 262 runs inside two days of their maiden cricket test on Friday.

India completed their first innings in the morning on 474 then bowled out the Afghans for 109 and 103 for its biggest win by innings.

It was the fourth instance in test history of a team being bowled out twice in one day.

Left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja took six wickets, including 4-17 in the second innings, and Ravichandran Ashwin claimed five, including 4-27 in the first.

India stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane believed better days were ahead for Afghanistan.

"Afghanistan have some good bowlers and in time they will be able to trouble the opposition more," Rahane said.

"The more matches they play, the more they will learn. This is just the beginning so you cannot really blame them. Test cricket is about attitude and patience. If two or three batsmen can spend some more time in the middle, it will help their batting."

Most sides have struggled in their first test. South Africa made 84 in their very first test innings and, more recently, Ireland 130. But they made their (losing) test debuts at home, and didn't face world No. 1 India, who have lost only one test at home in nearly six years.

"We were swayed a bit by the occasion," Afghanistan coach Phil Simmons said. "I would say 30 percent, especially in the first couple hours of play on day one.

"There is an air of disappointment in the dressing room, but it is not about losing. It is more about the manner of losing. But we have learnt a lot in these two days, and we wouldn't have learnt as much if we played this maiden test against a lower-ranked (eighth or ninth) side."

Test cricket's newest entrants were faced with a mountain to climb after India finishing batting.

The first innings was all over in less than 28 overs. Mohammad Nabi top-scored with 24, the only batsman to cross 20.

The innings total of 109 was the lowest in a test at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, eclipsing the 112 by Australia in 2017.

But forced to follow on, Afghanistan lowered the record again, to 103 in 39 overs.

Umesh Yadav removed the openers and Nabi to reduce Afghanistan to 24-4 within seven overs. Yadav had Mohammad Shahzad (13) caught behind, and removed Javed Ahmadi (3) and Mohammad Nabi (0) in the space of five balls in the sixth over.

Unlike in the first innings, there was some semblance of resistance from the middle order. Hashmatullah Shahidi (36 not out) and captain Asghar Stanikzai (25) put on 37 runs for the fifth wicket.

More importantly, they sucked up 103 deliveries and underlined their approach to play out time.

Shahidi was unbeaten at the end after facing 88 balls, including six boundaries.

But India's bowling was tough to contend with. Jadeja ran through the lower order, and Ashwin finished off proceedings by bowling Wafadar for a seven-ball duck about 10 minutes before the scheduled close of play.

That was Ashwin's 316th test wicket, good for third on the all-time list of Indian bowlers, above Zaheer Khan with 311.

In the first innings, Yadav became the 22nd India bowler to take 100 test wickets.

"Before, we had not played a test match, and now (we know) ... what we need to do," Stanikzai said. "We were surprised with the match ending in two days because our team is good. Disappointed with the batting, but it is good for the future."

Earlier, India completed their first innings from 347-6 overnight.

Ashwin (18) and Hardik Pandya (71) took their seventh-wicket partnership to 35 runs before Ashwin became pacer Yamin Ahmadzai's third dismissal.

Pandya scored his third test half-century off 83 balls. Overall, he faced 94 balls and hit 10 fours.

Ahmadzai took 3-51, and Wafadar and legspinner Rashid Khan took two wickets each.

India begin a tour of Ireland and England at the end of the month.


Spence to defend title at home in Texas vs Mexico's Ocampo

In this Jan. 17, 2018, file photo, Errol Spence Jr. warms up during a workout at Gleason's Gym in the Brooklyn borough of New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Schuyler Dixon

Frisco, Texas (AP) — Errol Spence Jr. wanted to defend his IBF crown back home in Texas as soon as possible after taking the title from Kell Brook in the Englishman's hometown a year ago.

The 2012 U.S. Olympian gets that chance Saturday night against Mexico's Carlos Ocampo in a mandatory defense between undefeated fighters. Spence's second fight as a champion will be the first title bout in the 12,000-seat football stadium that is the indoor practice field for the Dallas Cowboys at team headquarters 30 miles north of Dallas.

"I feel like I've definitely earned this hometown fight," said Spence, who grew up in DeSoto, a suburb south of Dallas. "To go to another country and fight a champion in his hometown, and to win the belt, I think I deserve to defend my belt in front of my fans."

Spence (23-0 with 20 knockouts) won his first defense in the 147-pound division against Lamont Peterson in January in New York. The fight was stopped in the eighth round — Spence's 10th straight knockout.

Ocampo (22-0, 13 KOs), fighting professionally outside his home country for the first time, is largely an afterthought amid talk of Spence taking on other welterweight champions. Keith Thurman holds two titles, and Terence Crawford just took the WBO crown from Jeff Horn nearly a year after Horn beat Manny Pacquiao.

"That's what other people talk about," Spence trainer Derrick James said. "When we come to the gym, we talk about Carlos Ocampo. We never look past the guy. He's a very dangerous opponent. He's coming to upset, to be the wild card, to do exactly what we did to Kell Brook."

This is the second of what the 28-year-old Spence figures will be three fights in 2018. It's also his first as a co-promoter with his new company, Man Down Promotions — another reason that putting on a show is at least part of the story line while Spence tries to keep the focus on winning first.

"Don't try to do anything out of the norm," Spence said. "Don't try to do anything different just because I'm fighting at home or try to go for the quick knockout. There's really nothing he can do as long as I'm focused and as long as I stay true to my own game."

The 22-year-old Ocampo was a two-time silver medalist at the Mexican Olympiad, an amateur tournament. His pro victories includes bouts against former world title challengers Jorge Paez Jr. and Charlie Navarro. Ocampo's most recent win was a seventh-round stoppage against Dario Ferman in November.

"It's supposed to be tough with the crowd against me and I know I'm the underdog, but my mind is only on the fight," Ocampo said. "I'm just fighting one man, not a whole crowd."

The undercard includes Daniel Roman facing Moises Flores in a super bantamweight fight and former champion Javier Fortuna against Adrian Granados in a 10-round bout at 140 pounds.


Update June 15, 2018

Putin and Russia get their 1st win at the World Cup

Russia's Denis Cheryshev celebrates after scoring his side's fourth goal during the group A match between Russia and Saudi Arabia which opened the 2018 soccer World Cup at the Luzhniki stadium in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, June 14. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

James Ellingworth

Moscow (AP) — Vladimir Putin craves sporting glory, and he got another taste of it in the opening match of the World Cup.

Russia ended a 16-year wait for victory in the tournament by routing Saudi Arabia 5-0 Thursday in Group A, with the Russian president watching from the VIP box alongside FIFA president Gianni Infantino and the Saudi crown prince.

It was the host nation's first World Cup win since 2002, and it raises the hope that Russia can get past the group stage for the first time since the Soviet era.

Yuri Gazinsky initially put Russia ahead with a header from Alexander Golovin's cross when the Saudis failed to clear a corner in the 12th minute. Gazinsky charged forward to meet the ball as Saudi player Taisir Al-Jassam stumbled, leaving a simple finish.

Putin and Infantino smiled and shrugged as they sat next to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Putin then reached over to shake the prince's hand.

Substitute Denis Cheryshev soon scored the first of his two goals. He chipped the ball over two Saudi defenders in the 43rd minute and shot over goalkeeper Abdullah Al Muaiouf's right side to make it 2-0. He later chipped the ball in for Russia's fourth goal in stoppage time.

"I have never done anything like this," Cheryshev said. "I already felt very happy when I knew I could come here with my squad, but I never, ever dreamed of something like this."

After Cheryshev's first goal, Artyom Dzyuba made an instant impact off the bench to make it 3-0 in the 71st with a header from Golovin's cross. Golovin added the fifth from a free kick.

Following a lavish opening ceremony featuring British singer Robbie Williams, Putin welcomed visiting fans and promised Russia would be a "hospitable and friendly" host.

Putin has made no secret about his desire for success in international sports, especially at the Olympics. But high points for Russian athletes have been rare since the country's image was tarnished by doping, with numerous Olympic medals stripped for drug use.

In a World Cup first, the video assistant referee system was available for the match between the tournament's lowest-ranked teams, though it wasn't used for an official review.

The Saudis, who last won a match at the World Cup in 1994, failed to get a single shot on target.

GROUP DYNAMICS

The win for Russia is a big boost to its hopes of advancing, but it will still face a tough test against Egypt on June 19 and Uruguay six days later.

With the five goals against the Saudis, a draw could be enough against either of its two remaining opponents.

Saudi Arabia's route to the knockout round is much more difficult. The Saudis will face Uruguay on June 20 and then Egypt on June 25. Egypt and Uruguay play Friday in Yekaterinburg.

KEY TO SUCCESS

Russia's players were significantly taller and heavier than the Saudis, a help when challenging for the ball and when the penalty area was crowded.

That had an effect on Gazinsky's goal, which came after the Saudis struggled to clear a Russian corner, and the header from the tall and stocky Dzyuba.

One concern for Russia is that creative midfielder Alan Dzagoev picked up a suspected hamstring injury, but that was what allowed Cheryshev to come off the bench and change the game.

FRINGE PLAYERS TRIUMPH

Russia's bench players had their day of glory.

Dzyuba had played only once for Russia since 2016, while Cheryshev and Gazinsky made two appearances in that time.

Raised in Spain, where his father Dmitry taught at Real Madrid's youth academy, Cheryshev showed his technical skills by beating the two Saudi defenders before his first goal.

Dzyuba spent half the season on loan after reported disputes with Zenit St. Petersburg management, but forced his way back into the Russia team with strong play.

QUOTABLE

Saudi coach Juan Antonio Pizzi: "We were not doing what we wanted to do. The opposing team did not have to make a huge effort to win."

Golovin: "For us, each game is like the last."

SERIOUS STATS

It was Russia's third win from 10 World Cup matches since the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991. Cheryshev hadn't scored for Russia in his 11 previous appearances. Saudi Arabia has now lost a game by four or more goals at each of its last four World Cup visits, including an 8-0 rout at the hands of Germany in 2002.


Johnson shares lead in a US Open that plays like one

 

From left, Justin Thomas, Dustin Johnson and Tiger Woods walk off the 12th tee during the first round of the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Thursday, June 14, in Southampton, N.Y. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Doug Ferguson

Southampton, N.Y. (AP) — The U.S. Open lived up to its reputation in the return to Shinnecock Hills.

So did Dustin Johnson.

Fresh off a six-shot victory last week, Johnson managed all aspects of his game Thursday on a classic U.S. Open course that required nothing less. He wasn't perfect, but he was under par — barely — and shared the lead at 1-under 69 in an opening round of strong wind, high anxiety and scores that made this feel like a U.S. Open again.

"You had to focus on every single shot you hit — putts, everything. It was just difficult all day," Johnson said. "Every day out here is going to be difficult."

It was plenty tough for Tiger Woods, who started with a triple bogey and added a pair of double bogeys on the back nine for a 78.

Phil Mickelson, Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth — the only three active players with three legs of the career Grand Slam — made only six birdies among them. They were a combined 25-over par, with Mickelson the low man in the group at 77.

Johnson, Ian Poulter, Scott Piercy and Russell Henley were the only players under par. That's a sharp contrast from last year at Erin Hills, where 44 players broke par in the opening round to set a U.S. Open record.

Jason Dufner nearly joined them. He settled for a 70 with no complaints.

"I think it's in fifth place," he said. "So beat about 151 guys."

Most everyone else felt beat up on a course where wind that gusted to 25 mph made the fairways shrink and the rough look even taller. McIlroy needed a dozen people help him find a tee shot in the rough. He found the next shot on his own because he advanced it only 6 feet. Mickelson asked an official if there was a rule that allowed a player to see the ball as he was trying to hit it.

"People talk about the fairways are 'more generous' for an Open," Charles Howell III said after a 71. "When the wind starts blowing this way, they're not generous."

Woods ran into problems on the short grass — it took him three shots to reach the putting surface behind the first green on his way to a triple bogey, and he four-putted on No. 13 for the first of successive double bogeys.

"It was pretty evident nobody was making any birdies in the morning — lots and lots of bogeys and 'others,'" Woods said. "My game plan was not to make any 'others,' and I made three of them. So didn't do very well there."

Piercy, the last man in the 156-man field as an alternate from qualifying, was so disgusted with his game in his final practice round that he walked off the course. He dropped only two shots, both on par 3s, and was the first to post a 69. Poulter also played in the morning, while Johnson and Henley played in the afternoon as the wind reached its full strength.

Henley was the only player to reach 3 under at any point, and he promptly gave that back with a double bogey on No. 10.

Even those at 71 felt as though they put in a hard day's work, a group that included Justin Rose and Henrik Stenson.

"It's a different kind of enjoyment, right?" Rose said. "I enjoy the battle. I enjoy the fight. I enjoy the grind, really. When you get a bit cut up and bruised, it can change pretty quick."

Johnson holed medium-length putts for birdies, a few nervy, short putts for par and picked up a bonus when his shot from a front bunker on the par-4 eighth rattled and rolled into the cup. He also got a break on the fifth hole. The only way he found his ball in the rough was that former PGA champion and Sky Sports reporter Rich Beem stepped on it. He still made bogey, but it beat having to go back to the tee to play his third shot.

It didn't take long to figure out what kind of test this was going to be, with the 15 flags atop the grandstand next to the 18th green already flapping as the first group teed off, and they were crackling by the afternoon.

Spieth missed a 4-foot par putt on No. 10 to start his round, and then tried to get that shot back by playing a bunker shot at the flag on the par-3 11th. It trickled over the green and down the slope, and Spieth didn't get back on the green until he played three more shots. He salvaged a triple bogey and shot 78.

McIlroy was 10 over after 11 holes.

From the middle of the first fairway, Woods went long over the green. He chipped once and it rolled back down the hill. Another try, same result. Finally, he rapped his putter up the hill and by the hole and missed the putt. He held it together until a four-putt on No. 13, the last three of those putts from 6 feet.

"Shoot something in the 60s tomorrow, and I'll be just fine," Woods said. "I just think today was the toughest day we'll have all week. But then again, I think they're going to let these greens firm out a little bit. They'll start to pick up a little bit of speed, and it will be a good U.S. Open again."

That already appears to be the case.

The U.S. Open has gone to new courses two of the last three years, and Jack Nicklaus is among those who feared it had lost its identity. Even with wider fairways, Shinnecock Hills resembled a U.S. Open course from past years. And it played like one.


Afghanistan hit back after 2 centuries for India in test

Afghanistan's Mujeeb Ur Rahman, left, celebrates with teammates the dismissal of India's Cheteshwar Pujara during their one-off cricket test match in Bangalore, India, Thursday, June 14. (AP Photo/Aijaz Rahi)

Chetan Narula

Bangalore, India (AP) — Afghanistan hit back with five wickets after Shikhar Dhawan and Murali Vijay scored centuries for India to finish day one of the one-off cricket test on 347-6 on Thursday.

India were cruising at 280-1 after two rain delays when they suddenly lost Vijay and Lokesh Rahul in the space of three deliveries and five wickets in all in the last session.

In their maiden test, Afghanistan's spinners struggled in the first two sessions while the seamers made the early breakthroughs before the spinners got their lengths right and took the last two wickets.

India lost five wickets for 54 runs in the final session. Ravichandran Ashwin, 7 not out, and Hardik Pandya, 10 not out, were at the crease.

Shikhar Dhawan made 107 and fellow opener Vijay 105.

Dhawan earned his seventh test hundred off 87 balls, and became the first Indian batsman to score a century in the first session of the opening day of a test. Overall, he's the sixth batsman in history to achieve this feat. The most recent was last year by David Warner against Pakistan.

"I didn't know that I had achieved that feat until I was back in the dressing room (during lunch)," Dhawan said. "It is a great feeling. I have been batting well, in the tests against Sri Lanka and then in the IPL, too."

Dhawan helped India reach lunch on 158-0, then added only three more runs to his tally before he was dismissed by Yamin Ahmadzai, who entered the history books as the first Afghanistan bowler to take a test wicket. Mohammad Nabi caught Dhawan at first slip, with some juggling help from the second slip fielder.

"They attacked us in the morning, especially the spinners, and were successful in scoring quickly," Ahmadzai said. "There were some nerves and we gave too many loose balls in the first two sessions.

"This was a dream come true for our nation. It was enjoyable but there were also a little stress. Getting a test cap is the most important thing in the life of a cricketer. So I can't really put it in words. When we first went onto the field, there was excitement and some nerves as well."

Vijay was on 94 before the first rain delay, and 99 before the second. He quickly got to his 12th test hundred, off 143 balls.

Vijay was trapped by Wafadar (1-53) in the 52nd over and lost his video review. He and Lokesh Rahul put on 112 for the second wicket.

Just two balls later, Rahul played on off Ahmadzai (2-32) and was out for 54.

Afghanistan showcased better control with the ball in the final session and the scoring rate came down to 4.4 by stumps. The bowlers troubled the batsmen regularly, which resulted in a few more wickets than India anticipated.

India crossed 300 in the 60th over but then lost stand-in skipper Ajinkya Rahane.

After conceding 100 runs off 99 balls in his first test outing, legspinner Rashid Khan (1-120) trapped Rahane lbw in the 67th over and should have had another wicket, but Mohammad Nabi dropped Cheteshwar Pujara at slip two overs later.

Pujara was on 31 then and added four more runs until he was dismissed by Mujeeb Ur Rahman (1-69) from Nabi's superb catch.

Dinesh Karthik was run out on 4 late in the day.


Australia name unchanged side for 2nd test against Ireland

Kurtley Beale of Australia, center, attacks during the International rugby match between Australia and Ireland in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, June 9. (AP Photo/Tertius Pickard)

Melbourne, Australia (AP) — Australia named an unchanged 23 for Saturday's second rugby test against Ireland after winning the first match 18-9 last weekend in Brisbane, while Ireland made eight changes.

Rugby Australia said Thursday that coach Michael Cheika resisted the urge to change a winning formula despite the return of flanker Ned Hanigan (knee injury) and lock Rory Arnold (suspension).

It marked the first time that Cheika has named an unchanged 23 for back-to-back matches in his 46 games in charge of the Wallabies since taking the head coaching job in November 2014.

"That was our first game of the season, and we had to rush and crammed a lot last week," Cheika said. "So I'd just like to give those guys another opportunity to get out there and try and do better. We need to raise the bar on ourselves and on our own standards."

Star playmaker Johnny Sexton, meanwhile, returns among the sweeping changes to Ireland's starting team. Sexton replaced flyhalf Joey Carbery, re-establishing his successful scrum-base partnership with halfback Conor Murray.

Coach Joe Schmidt made big changes to his forwards with a new front row of Cian Healy, Niall Scannell and Tadhg Furlong while Dan Leavey comes in at openside flanker ahead of Jordi Murphy and Devin Toner joins James Ryan in the second row.

Outside center Gary Ringrose comes in, with Robbie Henshaw switching to inside center and Andrew Conway takes over on the right wing from Jacob Stockdale.

Defense coach Andy Farrell said Ireland was left "angry" by the Brisbane loss which ended the team's 12-match winning streak which had seen it win the Six Nations title and Grand Slam.

"They are walking round like a bear with a sore head," said Farrell. "We've had a couple of meetings and they understand why, individually and collectively, certain things happened."

The third and final match in the series is scheduled for June 23 in Sydney.

____

Lineups:

Australia:  Israel Folau, Marika Koroibete, Samu Kerevi, Kurtley Beale, Dane Haylett-Petty, Bernard Foley, Will Genia; Caleb Timu, Michael Hooper (captain), David Pocock, Adam Coleman, Izack Rodda, Sekope Kepu, Brandon Paenga-Amosa, Scott Sio. Reserves: Tolu Latu, Allan Alaalatoa, Taniela Tupou, Rob Simmons, Lukhan Tui, Pete Samu, Nick Phipps, Reece Hodge.

Ireland: Rob Kearney, Andrew Conway, Garry Ringrose, Robbie Henshaw, Keith Earls, Johnny Sexton, Connor Murray, C.J. Stander, Dan Leavy, Peter O'Mahony (captain), James Ryan, Devin Toner, Tadhg Furlong, Niall Scannell, Cian Healy. Reserves: Rob Herring, Jack McGrath, Andrew Porter, Tadhg Beirne, Jordi Murphy, John Cooney, Joey Carbery, Jordan Larmour.


Update June 14, 2018

North American trio beats Morocco to host 2026 World Cup

Delegates of Canada, Mexico and the United States celebrate after winning a joint bid to host the 2026 World Cup at the FIFA congress in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, June 13. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

Rob Harris and Graham Dunbar

Moscow (AP) — North America will host the 2026 World Cup after FIFA voters overwhelmingly opted Wednesday for the financial and logistical certainty of a United States-led bid over a risky Moroccan proposal for the first 48-team tournament.

The soccer showpiece will return to the U.S. for the first time since 1994 after gaining 134 votes, while Morocco got 65 at the FIFA Congress in Moscow, where the 2018 tournaments starts on Thursday.

"Thank you for entrusting us with this privilege," U.S. Soccer Federation President Carlos Cordeiro told the congress. "The beautiful game transcends borders and cultures."

U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted after the victory : "Congratulations, - a great deal of hard work!"

While Trump has been feuding with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau over tariffs and policy after the G-7 meeting and with Mexican leaders about his proposed border wall, the heads of state are not heavily involved in this World Cup bid. Even if Trump wins re-election, his presidency would end before the 2026 World Cup.

The vote by national football federations was public, in contrast to secrecy surrounding the 2010 vote when FIFA's elected board members picked Russia to host in 2018 and Qatar in 2022, defeating the U.S.

The regional bid proved more appealing this time and the North Americans even collected 11 votes from Africa.

"The United bid was strong and if it was just the United States, I think Morocco would have beaten them," said Cameroon federation official Kevin Njomo, whose country voted for Morocco. "People have a soft spot for Mexico, especially looking at Mexico as a little bit under-developed and giving them a chance. Canada is a good tourist destination.

"But I think where it had the advantage was the World Cup would be more profitable in America and it is a capitalist world."

North America is optimistically promising to deliver $14 billion in revenue helped, while the tournament won't require major construction work required on the 16 planned stadiums, all of which already exist.

The U.S. proposed staging 60 out of the 80 games in 2026, when 16 teams will be added to the tournament, leaving Canada and Mexico with ten fixtures each. But FIFA President Gianni Infantino suggested the split of games could change.

"They have made a decision among themselves but ultimately it will be up to FIFA to decide," Infantino said.

Morocco appeared too hazardous as a potential host when all 14 venues had to be built or renovated as part of a $16 billion investment in new infrastructure. The vote leaves Morocco reeling from a fifth failure in a World Cup hosting vote, with the continent's sole tournament coming in 2010 in South Africa.

Moroccan Prime Minister Saad Eddine El Othmani shared the national disappointment but tweeted his thanks to the bid organizers for "this common dream."

Moroccan sports journalist Omar Chraybi acknowledged that "technically speaking, it's understandable - the U.S. bid capacity surpasses Morocco's." Yet he didn't lose hope, saying, "The world still looks at Africa as an underdog, but we can't afford to give up."

While Morocco's combined tickets and hospitality revenue projected to be $1.07 billion, according to FIFA analysis, North America would generate $2 billion more.

Canada will host men's World Cup matches for the first time, while Mexico gets its first taste of the event since 1986.

"To have a message coming from football that says actually Mexico, Canada and the United States together can organize the biggest sporting and social event together," Infantino said. "It is a nice message."

The 87,000-capacity MetLife Stadium outside New York — home of the NFL's Giants and Jets — is proposed for the final. It's just miles from where federal prosecutors spearheaded an ongoing investigation into FIFA corruption. More than 40 soccer officials and businesses indicted, convicted or pleaded guilty.

The bribery scandal put the governing body on the brink, Infantino told the congress ahead of Wednesday's vote.

"FIFA was clinically dead as an organization," Infantino said, reflecting on his election in 2016 before announcing plans to another four-year term in 2019. "Two years later, FIFA is alive and well, full of joy and passion and with a vision for its future."

The North American victory suggests current FIFA leaders don't hold grudges against a country whose government has jailed corrupt sports leaders.

"When they help us fight against corruption, of course, we are pleased," Infantino said.

The North America bid also had to overcome concerns about the impact of policies from the Trump administration, including attempts to implement a ban on travel by residents of six majority-Muslim countries.

FIFA now has the final say on which cities are selected to host games and whether all three countries are guaranteed a place at the tournament. Victor Montagliani, the Canadian who leads CONCACAF, wants them to take three of the seven guaranteed qualification slots reserved for the region as host. Both the United States and Canada failed to qualify for this year's World Cup.

There is also a chance to send an eighth team via an inter-continental playoff. North America will host the six-team playoff tournament in November 2025 to decide the last two places in the 48-team lineup.


Lowly-ranked Russians, Saudis meet to kick off World Cup

In this June 8, 2018 file photo Saudi Arabia's Salem Al-Dawsari, right, duels for the ball with Germany's Joshua Kimmich during a friendly soccer at BayArena in Leverkusen, Germany. (AP Photo/Martin Meissner)

James Ellingworth

Moscow (AP) — The World Cup is set to start and finish with games at the opposite ends of the spectrum.

The lowest-ranked teams at the tournament will meet in the opener Thursday when Russia host Saudi Arabia at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, which is also venue for the July 15 final.

The No. 70-ranked Russians got an automatic spot as tournament hosts and the Saudis, at No. 67, have the lowest ranking of the 31 countries which secured places via qualifying. They're the longest of long shots to reach the final.

The home team will likely need to win to have a realistic hope of advancing from Group A, and are expected to have Russian President Vladimir Putin in the crowd for support as they bid to end a winless streak of seven games. Only one World Cup host nation has failed to get past the group stage — South Africa in 2010.

The other two teams in the group, Egypt and Uruguay, boast star forwards in Mohamed Salah and Luis Suarez who could cause major problems for the Russian and Saudi defences.

The Saudis lost their last three games but remain upbeat at their first World Cup appearance for 12 years.

CLASH OF COACHES

Juan Antonio Pizzi and Russia's Stanislav Cherchesov bring very different personalities and coaching tactics to the tournament.

Pizzi won the 2016 Copa America title with Chile using an all-action style with constant pressure on the opposition. He'll struggle to replicate that with a Saudi team he took over after it had qualified for the World Cup.

Cherchesov favors a more defensive approach. Cherchesov, known for his prickly demeanor in interviews, responded to questions about what he'd say to Russian fans who are nervous about their team's poor form by saying he's "no psychologist, to go around calming people down."

RUSSIA'S REPLACEMENTS

Injuries disrupted Russia's World Cup preparations, with forward Alexander Kokorin and defenders Georgy Dzhikiya and Viktor Vasin sustaining severe knee injuries earlier this year.

That forced Cherchesov into some late shake-ups. Expect Fyodor Smolov to start up front and for more tinkering with the defence. Cherchesov abandoned his usual three-man backline with wing-backs in favor of a four-man defence against Austria last month, but Russia lost 1-0 and failed to register a shot on target.

VINTAGE

The average age of players in the Russia and Saudi Arabia squads is almost 29 — among the oldest in the tournament — and each boasts a pair of players with more than 100 international appearances.

For the Russians, there's captain and goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev with 105 caps, plus the 38-year-old central defender Sergei Ignashevich (121).

Osama Hawsawi has played 135 times for Saudi Arabia, and midfielder Taiseer Al-Jassim has 132 caps.

DOPING SHADOW

Russian football was embroiled in the country's doping scandal, with whistleblower Grigory Rodchenkov claiming his Moscow laboratory covered up failed drug tests.

Rodchenkov has said one player benefited from the cover-up, but didn't identify him or specify whether the player made Russia's final 23-man World Cup squad.

Defender Ruslan Kambolov, who was in the preliminary squad, was investigated by FIFA over alleged doping, but lawyers said FIFA dropped the case. FIFA hasn't confirmed that.


Spain fire coach Lopetegui 2 days before World Cup opener

In this June 9, 2018 file photo, Spain's national soccer team coach Julen Lopetegui shouts during a friendly match between Spain and Tunisia in Krasnodar, Russia. (AP Photo)

Tales Azzoni

Krasnodar, Russia (AP) - Spain coach Julen Lopetegui was fired Wednesday, two days before the country's opening World Cup match against Portugal and a day after he accepted the job to coach Real Madrid next season.

Spanish soccer federation president Luis Rubiales did not name a replacement.

Rubiales said firing Lopetegui wasn't the best solution for the national team but it was needed after being caught by surprise by Real Madrid's announcement.

"The federation cannot be left out of a negotiation by one of its workers and be informed five minutes before the press release," Rubiales said. "We have been compelled to act."

Rubiales, who took over as president last month, said the federation's values were broken and it was the only decision he could make.

"It's a difficult situation, but we are not the ones who determined the action that had to be taken. The federation has its values and it has to maintain them," he said. "It may look like a weakness now, but with time this will make us stronger."

Lopetegui did not attend the news conference in Krasnodar.

"We have to work on a series of decisions that come just two days before the opener," Rubiales said. "There's a lot to do."


Ali, Rashid set up England's 3-wicket win over Australia

England's David Willey shakes hands with Australia captain Tim Paine, third right, after hitting a six to win the one-day cricket match between England and Australia at the Oval cricket ground in London, Wednesday, June 13. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)

London (AP) — Spinners Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid shared five wickets and set up England's three-wicket win over new-look Australia in the first one-day international on Wednesday.

Ali ran through the top order with 3-43 and Rashid took 2-36 as Australia were bowled out for 214 in 47 overs after they won the toss and elected to bat.

Glenn Maxwell top-scored with 62 and gave the total some respectability by sharing an 84-run sixth-wicket stand with Ashton Agar, who made 40.

A century stand between captain Eoin Morgan (69) and Joe Root (50) saw England cruising along at 153-3 before they lost three wickets in four overs and stumbled to 163-6 in the 32nd over.

But David Willey scored a career-best unbeaten 35 and guided England to 218-7 with six overs to spare as he raised the victory with a straight six off seamer Michael Neser.

"Very pleased, particularly with the bowlers, thought they did amazingly well," Morgan said. "The spinners turned the momentum in our favor, they've been a great combination for us in the middle. Moeen had a few left-handers to bowl at (and) he always gives you options, like Ben Stokes. He's had a great day."

Ali grabbed all his three wickets in his first five overs and when Rashid had Marcus Stoinis caught behind Australia slumped to 90-5 in the 20th over.

Ali had Aaron Finch caught at short third man off his fourth ball and then had Shaun Marsh clean bowled off a straight delivery before captain Tim Paine tried an ambitious sweep only to lob another gentle catch to Mark Wood at short third man.

Maxwell and Agar rebuilt the innings with a half century stand before Australia lost their last five wickets for 40 runs with Liam Plunkett (3-42) picking up three of those wickets.

The slide started when Maxwell flicked Plunkett straight to Jonny Bairstow at midwicket and Agar was trapped leg before wicket by Rashid.

England, who suffered a shocking defeat against Scotland last Sunday, faltered early in their run-chase against Australian seamers Billy Stanlake (2-44) and Neser (2-46) and slipped to 38-3 in the eighth over.

Morgan, who hit 11 boundaries, and Root shared a 115-run stand and put the chase back on track before both were caught behind. And in between those crucial wickets Jos Buttler, dropped early on by Paine, also offered a tame catch at mid on.

Willey ensured England didn't suffer another hiccup and took England home with 36 balls to spare for a 1-0 lead in the five-match series.

"England's batting line is really deep, a hard side to bowl out, but our bowlers did a terrific job," Paine said. "Our top four or five didn't get the job done. Maxi has been hitting the ball well in the nets and nice to see him translate that to the middle. Thought it was simple today, our top order didn't get the job done."


Update June 13, 2018

Questions of loyalty cast shadow over German World Cup squad

The German national soccer team poses for photos before a friendly match against Austria in Klagenfurt, Austria, Saturday, June 2. (AP Photo/Ronald Zak)

Ciaran Fahey

Berlin (AP) — The public backlash over players mixing sport and politics ensured the Germany squad left for its World Cup defense under a cloud of its own making.

Debate over issues of integration, national pride, and what it means to represent the country has damaged the German soccer federation (DFB)'s push to promote inclusion and tolerance.

Germany midfielder Ilkay Gundogan was jeered by German supporters during the team's warmup game against Saudi Arabia last Friday.

Despite coach Joachim Loew's appeals for the player to be applauded as he sent him onto the pitch, Gundogan was jeered as he went on as a substitute, and again every time he touched the ball in Germany's last friendly before the World Cup.

The taunting came in the wake of Gundogan and his German teammate Mesut Ozil posing for photos with Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan in London last month.

Both players, who were born in Germany to families of Turkish descent, presented Erdogan with jerseys from their clubs, with Gundogan dedicating his Manchester City jersey to "my revered president."

Erdogan is hoping to cement his grip on power in an election this month and some 1.4 million expatriate Turks are eligible to vote in Germany.

Beatrix von Storch, a lawmaker for Germany's far-right AfD party, posed a question on social media asking why Gundogan was playing for Germany if Erdogan was his president.

Gundogan said it was never his intention to make a political statement. And in the wake of the Saudi game, he posted a tweet saying "Last game before the World Cup ... and still grateful to play for this country."

Ozil remained on the bench against the Saudis because of a knee injury and wasn't subjected to jeers.

Loew said the crowd reaction "hurt me because a team lives from every player being supported."

"For a national player to be whistled," he said, "that helps nobody."

It's not the first time Loew has criticized the behavior of fans. Loew was incensed with supporters in Prague during World Cup qualifying last September when a group of around 200 chanted Nazi slogans and abusive chants.

"They are not our fans," Loew said at the time.

But the jeering of Gundogan didn't appear to be restricted to right-wing hooligans.

The DFB possibly enflamed the situation with its public admonishment of Gundogan and Ozil — DFB president Reinhard Grindel criticized both players and demanded an explanation.

Grindel later tweeted a photo of himself, Loew and team manager Oliver Bierhoff sitting down for talks with Gundogan and Ozil, saying the players "have informed us that they stand for and identify with our values on and off the pitch."

But the jeering of Gundogan and the criticism and insults leveled at both players has indirectly affected other players in the team.

The DFB prides itself on Germany's multicultural team, but a spotlight has now been directed on the dedication of players with roots from outside the country such as Sami Khedira, Antonio Ruediger and Jerome Boateng.

Whether or not players sing the national anthem has been another contentious issue for the AfD, which has questioned the commitment to German of players who don't sing along.

Forward Mario Gomez has appealed for the debate not to be blown out of proportion.

"I ask people to remember that we want to be world champions. For that we need Illy, we need Mesut," Gomez said. "There shouldn't be an attempt to drive a rift, but rather an attempt to build a bridge so we can go with whole other thoughts to the World Cup."


Woods looking for win, the final piece of his return to golf

Tiger Woods tees off the fourth hole during a practice round for the U.S. Open Golf Championship, Tuesday, June 12, in Southampton, N.Y. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

Doug Ferguson

Southampton, N.Y. (AP) — Tiger Woods returned to the U.S. Open for the first time in three years and hardly anyone noticed.

Then again, it was late Sunday afternoon. Shinnecock Hills was practically empty.

"A bizarre experience," said Jordan Spieth, who played nine holes with him.

Such a quiet moment was rare for Woods in his celebrated return following four back surgeries. A year that began with intrigue soon gave way to hysteria over anticipation of his first victory in nearly five years.

That time has not arrived as Woods heads into the second major of the year.

"Golf is always frustrating," Woods said Tuesday after going nine holes with Dustin Johnson and Bryson DeChambeau, winners of the last two PGA Tour events. "There's always something that isn't quite right, and that's where we as players have to make adjustments. You've seen the tournaments I've played this year. There's always something. Hopefully, this is one of those weeks where I put it all together and even it out. And we'll see what happens."

It has been 10 years since Woods won his last U.S. Open, his 14th and last major. All it takes for him to temper any frustrations is to look back at last year, when he didn't know if he would even play another U.S. Open.

He was at a low point in his career and his personal life. While recovering from fusion surgery — his fourth surgery on his back in three years — he was arrested on a DUI charge and found to have a mixture of two painkillers, the sleeping aid Ambien, the anti-anxiety drug Xanax and the active ingredient for marijuana in his system. He entered a clinic to get help and pleaded guilty to a reckless driving charge that kept him out of jail.

Asked about the video of his arrest and how his life has changed, Woods replied, "It's gotten better."

That seems like longer than a year ago because Woods has been such an active part of the PGA Tour again. In some instances, he looks like the same Woods.

He hit one drive past Johnson on the par-5 fifth hole Tuesday that left him a 2-iron to the front of the green. He had two chances to win in March, missing a long birdie putt on the last hole in Innisbrook and hitting a drive out-of-bounds on the 16th hole at Bay Hill the following week.

But no trophies. No fist pumps.

"There's two ways of looking at that," Woods said. "I've given myself chances to win, which I didn't know if I was ever going to do again. And then again, not happy with the fact that I didn't win because I loved how it felt being there. ... And so, yeah, I've had my opportunities. Also, I'm very thankful to have had those opportunities. I didn't know if I was going to have them again."

What kind of opportunities will Shinnecock Hills offer?

Tuesday was the busiest day of practice under a clear sky, warm weather and a course that just about everyone is raving about.

Woods played nine holes in the afternoon Sunday and Monday — a change from the days when he would sweep the dew off the grass first thing in the morning — and nine holes Tuesday morning.

And while the crowd was relatively sparse for his morning round, there is no mistaking when Woods is around.

Jason Day was on the putting green when only a few people were around. And then suddenly, there was a gathering.

"He rolls up and there's 30 guys on the putting green, and it was hard to do your work," Day said. "But that's just the Tiger effect, and everyone wants to see him. Everyone wants to see what he looks like and how big he is or just see, I guess, the myth behind Tiger Woods. ... It is definitely bigger, always bigger when he's in contention on Sundays. And if he's in contention this Sunday, then it's going to be huge."

Woods last played in the U.S. Open in 2015 at Chambers Bay. He was coming off the highest score of his career, an 85 in the third round at the Memorial, and never stood a chance on the course built over a former gravel pit. He shot rounds of 80-76 and was gone by the weekend, and before long, he was gone from golf with the first of his back surgeries.

Three years from his last U.S. Open, five years from his last victory, and so much has changed.

Johnson returned to No. 1 in the world with his six-shot victory last week at the St. Jude Classic, the 18th of his career, all since Woods won his last U.S. Open. He replaced Justin Thomas, the PGA champion who turned 25 in April.

Woods will play with both of them when the first round begins on Thursday.

"I can see that there may be a sense of ... this is the last kind of push that he needs for his career," Day said. "But at the same time, I know that he's still hungry. I think he's hungry for that next win and trying to get — not the monkey off his back, because he's done it so many times — but just coming back and competing and playing well against our generation now. And I think that's what he's looking forward to."


Playoff disappointments make Cup parade sweeter for Capitals

Washington Capitals Alex Ovechkin, from Russia, holds up the Stanley Cup trophy during the NHL hockey team's Stanley Cup victory celebration, Tuesday, June 12, at the National Mall in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

Stephen Whyno

Washington (AP) — Nine early playoff exits paved the way for the Capitals' unexpected Stanley Cup run and made the trip down Constitution Avenue all the more satisfying to the NHL champions and their fans.

Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom rode the final bus down the mile-long parade route, lifting the Cup to roaring cheers and waving to seas of red in the crowd.

Five days after capturing the franchise's first title and the first of any kind by a Washington team in the major four professional sports since 1992, this was their day to soak in winning following so much disappointment.

"Because we waited so long, I think it feels even better," Backstrom said.

Hundreds of thousands of fans lined Constitution and filled the National Mall on Tuesday to celebrate a long journey fulfilled. One fan held up a sign reading, "Worth the Wait," but before the end of the rally, T.J. Oshie already had the crowd thinking about next season.

"There's been a lot of chants," Oshie said. "There's been, "Let's Go Caps," there's been, "We Want the Cup." We've heard in the streets, "We've got the Cup." We've got a new one for you today — "Back-to-back."

The serious work of getting geared up for the 2018-19 season begins in the coming days and weeks with decisions on coach Barry Trotz, defenseman John Carlson and other free agents. But for players such as Ovechkin and Backstrom who have been through eliminations at the hands of the Penguins, Rangers, Lightning, Canadiens and Flyers dating to 2008, the partying leading up to the parade isn't close to ending.

"It just started," Backstrom said.

Much like the Capitals did over the weekend by taking the Cup to local bars and restaurants, the parade was a chance to celebrate with a fan base that had to endure 42 seasons without a Cup.

Fans congregated on the National Mall hours before the parade began, filled the steps of the National Archives and lined up 20 deep in some areas to catch a glimpse of players riding more than three dozen buses from 23rd Street to 7th.

"Look at this — look at the people that's here" Ovechkin said. "We thought it was going to be crazy, but it's basically nuts. You guys are killing it."

Ovechkin, Backstrom, veteran Brooks Orpik, owner Ted Leonsis and team president Dick Patrick took up the most prominent place in the parade on the last bus with the Stanley Cup. Chants of "Ovi! Ovi!" alternated with pleas of "Raise the Cup!" which Ovechkin, Backstrom and Orpik did off and on while sipping from beer bottles.

Trotz threw beads from his double-decker bus, but the pending free agent coach saved potentially his most meaningful impact of the day for his speech at the rally.

"I know our years of adversity has sort of came to an end," Trotz said. "We did this together and it feels so special. Love this, love the community. We're going to do it again."

There's no certainty about Trotz unless he signs a new contract, but the Capitals should have much of their core intact as they try to complete the difficult task of repeating. Before rival Pittsburgh went back-to-back in 2016 and 2017, no team had done it since Detroit in 1997 and 1998.

Of course, that didn't stop players from bringing it up to the delight of the crowd that stretched down the Mall almost to the Washington Monument.

"I couldn't see the end of people from the stage," winger Tom Wilson said. "It's unbelievable to give back the least we could and just celebrate with them."

Beyond the scripted — two high school marching bands, an F-16 flyover, Budweiser Clydesdales and past greats such as Olie Kolzig and Peter Bondra — backup goaltender Philipp Grubauer sprinted around with the D.C. flag, Oshie chugged a beer through his jersey and Ovechkin and fellow Russian Evgeny Kuznetsov dropped F-bombs on stage.

Trotz invoked Martin Luther King Jr. by saying, "We had a dream, and we did it." Leonsis quoted John F. Kennedy's "Ask Not" speech. Wilson brought it back to the title by shouting, "Everybody says what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, but we brought the Cup home!"

By the end of the sun-soaked rally, Capitals players swayed together and sang Queen's "We Are the Champions," a song they've been belting out renditions of with varying sobriety over the past few days.

"It's been a long time since we had a championship here in this city," Backstrom said. "To be able to after all these years to bring it, it's great. It's a sports city. There's not another city that deserves a championship more than D.C."


FIFA urges referees to take their time for video review

Referee Nestor Pitana of Argentina gestures during a training session in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, June 12. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin)

Graham Dunbar

Moscow (AP) — World Cup referees must ensure all the time used for video review is played at the end of each half — even if a stoppage takes 10 minutes.

FIFA's instructions to more than 100 match officials in Russia were outlined Tuesday, two days ahead of the often-contentious technology making its World Cup debut.

"All the minutes, all the seconds, lost by VAR (video assistant referees) will be added at the end," Massimo Busacca, FIFA head of refereeing, said at a news conference. "We don't want to lose any seconds lost by any interruption."

The process for reviewing one of the most complex incidents that can be reviewed — a running confrontation involving all players — will take as long as needed.

"We will take all the possible time to see if there is a clear red card," said Busacca, who was a 2010 World Cup referee. "When it is related to match confrontation and not respecting the image (of football), we can even stay 10 minutes at the video to see exactly what happened."

The first referee in the spotlight is Nestor Pitana of Argentina, who handles the Russia-Saudi Arabia match in Moscow on Thursday.

FIFA picked Pitana for duty, with Massimiliano Irrati of Italy leading a four-man video review team. They will work at a FIFA control center in the Moscow suburbs, several miles from the Luzhniki Stadium.

Referees can call for reviews of possible clear errors and serious incidents missed in game-changing situations: goals scored, red cards, and penalty awards, plus mistaken identity.

FIFA's advice could lead to more decisions reviewed — and potentially overturned — having asked officials to let play flow and keep the option of a later review.

"He is respecting the instructions that were given him on purpose by keeping the flag down," said Pierluigi Collina, chairman of FIFA's referees committee. "If he puts a flag up, everything is finished."

Video review still has doubters after a first full season in top leagues such as Germany's Bundesliga which opted to use the technology.

Teams and fans have been angered by some slow and confusing decision-making process, repeating problems seen in Russia at FIFA's Confederations Cup warmup tournament last year.

"It is ready for the World Cup but don't think it will be perfect," said Busacca of a system that has been tested since 2016 and formally approved only in March.

Collina stressed that the outcome of decisions "is what really counts at the end of the day." And the 2002 World Cup final referee has opted for experience to set the tone in the first of 64 games.

Pitana refereed four games at the 2014 World Cup, and Irrati is from Collina's native Italy which also used video review in Serie A.

In a 90-minute news conference, Collina opened by making reference to corruption allegations against two match officials FIFA selected for World Cup duty but had to drop in recent weeks.

The cases of Saudi Arabian referee Fahad Al Mirdasi and Kenyan assistant Aden Range Marwa "surprised us a lot," he said. "We will continue to be clear and strict when something similar will occur."


Update June 12, 2018

Mickelson trying not to look ahead at another US Open chance

U.S. golfer Phil Mickelson. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky/File)

Doug Ferguson

Southampton, N.Y. (AP) — Phil Mickelson is running out of time.

Mickelson doesn't need to be reminded that this is his 27th appearance in the U.S. Open, more than any of the 156 players at Shinnecock Hills. He wouldn't want to be reminded that 65 players — including the last four major champions — were not even born when Mickelson was low amateur in his first U.S. Open in 1990 at Medinah.

"I just can't believe that time has flown by so fast," he said Monday.

The desire hasn't changed, only the emphasis.

Mickelson didn't win a major until he was 33 and in his 12th full year on the PGA Tour. Back then, any major would have sufficed. A year after he won the 2004 Masters, he added a PGA Championship. And then in 2013 at Muirfield, he surprised even himself by capturing the British Open.

One to go for the career Grand Slam, the one that has vexed him the most.

He has more runner-up finishes in the U.S. Open than the other three majors combined. So when Mickelson was asked if he had unfinished business at Shinnecock Hills, he paused briefly before delivering an obvious answer.

"I can say that a few times in this tournament," he said.

It helps that Mickelson has a strong history at Shinnecock Hills, which he refers to as one of his favorite courses.

He had a one-shot lead with two holes to play in 2004 when Retief Goosen made a 12-foot birdie putt in the group behind him on the par-5 16th, and then Mickelson put his tee shot in the bunker on the par-3 17th, blasted out to 5 feet and took all the air out of the Hamptons when he three-putted for double bogey.

In his first U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills in 1995, he was one shot out of the lead going into the final round, closed with a 74 and finished four shots behind. More than a tough final round was playing the par-5 16th hole in 6 over for the week.

"If I played that hole even, I could have won," Mickelson said.

This is not a time for Mickelson, who turns 48 on Saturday, to be looking behind.

He doesn't want to look forward, either.

Never mind that Mickelson has played well on the next three U.S. Open courses — Shinnecock Hills, Pebble Beach and Winged Foot. Or that with a victory earlier this year at the Mexico Championship that his confidence level is higher than the four previous years when he didn't win at all.

Mickelson only cares about posting a score in the opening round Thursday that will keep him in the mix, and then repeating the process Friday. It's a message he delivered on four separate occasions during his interviews.

"These three (courses) provide me a great opportunity to finish out this final leg," he said. "Certainly, with the way I've been playing this year and at the consistent level, as well as at a much higher level than I've played the last few years, it gives me a great opportunity. But the last thing I'm thinking about right now is trying to win. I'm trying to get myself in position for the weekend. Because when you try to go out and win a U.S. Open, you will lose it quick."

Asked if he had ever tried to win a U.S. Open on Thursday, he replied, "Yes, and I was home Friday night."

Mickelson hasn't had a chance since his sixth runner-up finish in 2013 at Merion, where he twice made bogey with a wedge in his hand over the last six holes. This is the longest stretch — three U.S. Opens — that he has failed to even feature on the weekend.

The oldest player to win the U.S. Open was Hale Irwin, who was 45 when he won at Medinah in 1990 — Mickelson's first major.

"That's the marvelous thing about Phil Mickelson. You don't put anything beyond his talents," said David Duval, who has competed against Mickelson since college.

In the last few weeks, Mickelson has said he doesn't want to get too wrapped up in how the golf course sets up, other than he think it's the best ever for a U.S. Open. The fairways are slightly wider, which should help. Most of the rough around the green has been shaved down, playing to another of his strength because he has such a wide variety of short-game shots instead of just hacking out of thick grass.

"I feel as though the luck of a courses has been taken out as much as possible to where skill is the primary factor," Mickelson said. "I think we're going to have a great leaderboard and a great tournament."

All he cares about is being part of that leaderboard on the weekend, and then take his chances from there.


Mercedes lose ground in Formula One race

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, comes through the Senna corner during the Formula One Canadian Grand Prix auto race in Montreal, Sunday, June 10, in Montreal. (Ryan Remiorz/The Canadian Press via AP)

Jimmy Golen

Montreal (AP) — Mercedes arrived at the Canadian Grand Prix without the correct tires or an expected engine upgrade and left Montreal trailing in the Formula One championship standings.

Ferrari returned to the top of the podium at the track named for Gilles Villeneuve for the first time since 2004, with Sebastian Vettel going from the pole to the checkered flag to finish six seconds ahead of Valtteri Bottas' Mercedes on Sunday. Erstwhile points leader Lewis Hamilton, who was aiming for a record-tying seventh victory in Montreal, struggled to finish fifth and fell one point behind Vettel in the standings.

Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff said. "I think this is a major wake-up call for every member of the team. Everybody needs to assess how to improve performance. ... Those marginal gains are going to make all the difference."

Despite having the championship leader and the three-time defending Montreal champion, Mercedes leave Canada second-guessing their strategy to bring fewer sets of the softest tires to the track, a move that Wolff conceded left Hamilton and Bottas at a disadvantage in qualifying. The team also were unable to deliver a reliable engine upgrade in time for the race.

Without it, Hamilton found himself losing power even up until the end. Adding to his problems was a cooling issue that required an early pit.

"From the start I was down on power and my engine was overheating. I couldn't get the temperatures down, so I just thought it was going to fail," he said. "Every single lap I was waiting for the power to just drop away and disappear, but it kept going."

Vettel was never really challenged, picking up his third victory of the season and 25 points to erase Hamilton's 14-point lead.

"It was a tough day in the office today, but I'm just very grateful that I finished today's race and score some points," Hamilton said. "I'm sure in the next couple of days it will get more and more painful. But it could get a lot worse. I could have had a DNF (did not finish). I'm just grateful the engine made it."

Hamilton said he would never doubt the team's ability to fix its problems.

"That would be the first sign of weakness, and my mind is not weak," he said. "I have complete confidence in my guys, and I'm putting all my energy toward them."


After long wait, Afghanistan prepares for first cricket test

Afghanistan cricket player Samiullah Shinwari plays a shot during the T20 cricket match between Afghanistan and Bangladesh in Dehraduni, India, Friday, June 8. (AP Photo/Anupam Nath)

Chetan Narula

Bengaluru, India (AP) — When Afghanistan plays its inaugural cricket test match against top-ranked India starting Thursday, it's an event that has been 17 years in the making.

Afghanistan was made an affiliate member of the International Cricket Council (ICC) back in 2001, at a time when it was the only sport that was approved by the oppressive Taliban regime. But after 9/11, even cricket became just an afterthought as the country spiraled into war.

Yet the game survived somehow among the Afghan people, who continued living in refugee camps lining the border to cricket-loving Pakistan. And it led to the rise of players like national-team captain Asghar Stanikzai, all-rounder Mohammad Nabi, hard-hitting wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Shahzad and pacer Shapoor Zadran.

All of them learned to play in the dusty outskirts of Peshawar, the home in exile of Afghan cricket, and are now preparing to step into the limelight of a five-day test match for the first time. Such matches can only be played between countries who have been given test status by the ICC, with Afghanistan set to become only the 12th official test nation.

"It's a great moment for us as we embark on our test journey. To be playing our first test against India is a great honor and we hope to give a good account of ourselves," Stanikzai said. "To be competing against the best on the test rankings table is something to be proud of and we will try to do our best in whatever chances we get and exhibit the skills the players possess individually as well as collectively as a team."

In the past year or so, Afghanistan's reputation has grown as they played at Lord's in London against an MCC XI led by Brendon McCullum, drew an ODI series in West Indies, beat Ireland and Zimbabwe away, and then came back from the brink to win the ICC 2019 ODI World Cup Qualifier in Zimbabwe. Consequentially, an increasing number of Afghan cricketers have gained prominence.

Among their biggest stars is Rashid Khan, the 19-year-old leg-spin bowler who is one of the world's most sought-after players in the shorter Twenty20 form of the game.

Born in Nangahar in eastern Afghanistan in 1998, Khan's family moved to Pakistan to escape the war and then returned to Jalalabad a few years later. Back in his home country, Khan continued to sharpen his bowling and advanced to represent Afghanistan on the international stage in a one-day international in October 2015, a month after his 17th birthday.

Nicknamed the "Afghan Afridi" for his wicket-taking celebration mirroring those of Pakistan's mercurial all-rounder Shahid Afridi, Khan has taken world cricket by storm with successes in major T20 competitions like the Indian Premier League, the Caribbean Premier League and the Big Bash in Australia. Khan was named the 2017 ICC Associate Cricketer of the Year, and now can't wait to move to test cricket.

"There is immense happiness back home (regarding the rise of Afghan cricket). Our players are doing well in the IPL and everywhere across the world. It shows the Afghanistan cricket team is slowly rising through the ranks," Khan told The Associated Press in an interview last year. "Ultimately, the goal is to play test cricket. Maybe, I will get to play Afghanistan's first-ever test. Hopefully that day isn't far away."

In fact it arrives this week.


Sara Errani's doping suspension increased to 10 months

Italian tennis player Sara Errani.
(AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino, file)

Lausanne, Switzerland (AP) — Past French Open finalist Sara Errani's doping suspension was increased Monday from two months to 10 months, a decision that left her "disgusted by this matter" and questioning if she will play again.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport announced its rulings on appeals by Errani and Italy's national anti-doping agency, which asked for up to a two-year punishment.

The 31-year-old Italian tested positive for the banned substance letrozole in an out-of-competition drug test at her family home in February 2017. Errani was told about the result in April 2017 but continued to compete with the hope of winning on appeal.

Her original two-month ban was served from August to October 2017. That period will count toward her new 10-month suspension.

Errani had to wait seven months for the decision.

"I have dedicated my life to this sport and I don't think I deserve all this," she wrote on Twitter. "I feel powerless against such an injustice. ... All of this is a total nonsense! ... I don't know if I will be able to find the strength and desire to play tennis again, after all this."

The sports court ruled that the letrozole came from medicine taken by Errani's mother "that found its way into the family meal prepared by the athlete's mother and eaten by the entire family, including the athlete" in February 2017. But the court said Errani needed to be more careful and that her mother's fault "is imputed to her."

Errani lost the 2012 final at Roland Garros to Maria Sharapova and was ranked as high as No. 5 in singles the next year. Errani also completed a career Grand Slam in doubles with Roberta Vinci.

Errani is ranked 72nd this week. She lost in the first round of the French Open.


Update June 11, 2018

Nadal beats Thiem for 11th French Open title

Spain's Rafael Nadal celebrates winning the men's final of the French Open tennis tournament against Austria's Dominic Thiem in three sets 6-4, 6-3, 6-2, at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, Sunday, June 10. (AP Photo/Michel Euler)

Howard Fendrich

Paris (AP) — In full control of the French Open final, a rather familiar position for him, Rafael Nadal suddenly was worried.

He led by two sets plus a break early in the third, when the middle finger on his racket-wielding left hand was cramping so badly he couldn't straighten it. After serving a fault, Nadal took the unusual step of heading to the sideline in the middle of a game.

"Tough moment," Nadal would say later. "I was very scared."

Up in the stands, Nadal's uncle Toni, his former coach, was nervous, too, "because I thought maybe we can have a problem," he said. "But in the end, it was not too difficult."

It rarely is for Nadal at a place he has lorded over the way no other man ever has at any Grand Slam tournament. Nadal dealt with that ultimately minor inconvenience and claimed his record-extending 11th French Open championship Sunday by displaying his foe-rattling excellence in a 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 victory over No. 7 seed Dominic Thiem.

"There is a reason why he won 11 times here," said Thiem, a 24-year-old Austrian appearing in his first major final. "It's definitely one of the best things somebody ever achieved in sport."

Thiem was on the couch, watching on TV, in 2005, when Nadal earned his first Grand Slam trophy in Paris at age 19. That began a run of four consecutive French Open triumphs through 2008. He added five straight from 2010-14 and now has two in a row.

Throw in three titles at the U.S. Open, two at Wimbledon and one at the Australian Open, and Nadal is up to 17 majors, second among men only to Roger Federer's 20. The two stars have combined to win the past six Slams.

The victory also allowed the 32-year-old Nadal to hold onto the No. 1 ranking, ahead of Federer.

If there were any reason for a bit of intrigue entering Sunday, it was this: Thiem beat Nadal on red clay at Rome in May 2017 and again at Madrid last month.

But those are not quite the same as the French Open, where Nadal is 86-2 for his career.

"I am sure you will win here in the next couple of years," Nadal told Thiem afterward.

Against many other opponents — maybe ANY other — Thiem would have made things interesting. He pounded huge serves that topped 135 mph (220 kph) — about 25 mph (40 kph) better than Nadal's fastest — and translated into seven aces but also had five double-faults. He took the biggest of big cuts on groundstrokes, his feet leaving the ground as he threw his whole body into them, as if the very outcome — not of any individual point, but the whole shebang — depended on the strength of that one whip of his white racket. That led to 34 winners (eight more than Nadal) but also 42 unforced errors (18 more than Nadal).

It worked. For a bit.

Until 4-all, 15-all in the opening set, to be precise. Nadal held for 5-4, and Thiem basically handed over the next game — and the set — with four mistakes. A volley into the net. A forehand wide. A forehand into the net. A forehand long.

"Terrible misses," Thiem acknowledged.

Just like that, Nadal was off on a five-game burst to lead 3-0 in the second set.

By then, Nadal was finding his spots. One down-the-line forehand winner landed right at the baseline, leaving Thiem sagging his shoulders and muttering. Another forehand winner from Nadal found a corner, and Thiem yelled toward his coach.

It was a cloudy and steamy afternoon, with the temperature at 77 degrees (24 Celsius) and the humidity approaching 70 percent. Midway through the opening set, Nadal's aqua T-shirt was so soaked with sweat it stuck to him. Those conditions might have contributed to the cramping that affected Nadal about two hours into the final, at 2-1 in the third set.

"I was not able to move the hand, the finger," Nadal said. "I was not (in) control of my finger."

His uncle thought wrapping around Nadal's left forearm was too tight. When he first halted play, Nadal removed that tape, which he said let his circulation improve. At the following changeover, he was given a salt pill by a doctor and had his left forearm massaged by a trainer. After guzzling water during that break, Nadal felt better and was back to playing his unmistakable brand of nearly unbeatable clay-court tennis.

Shortly, he'd be holding the silver trophy, the one he knows so well, and crying.

A few hours earlier, as Nadal and Thiem warmed up, the booming voice of the announcer at Court Philippe Chatrier detailed the bona fides of both. Nadal's introduction included a year-by-year accounting of every time he'd already won the French Open.

The crowd responded at the mention of 2005, initially offering polite applause. It added more voices by the time 2008 rolled around. The crescendo rose to a full-throated roar for 2017.

Go ahead and 2018 to the lengthy list.

"If you tell me seven, eight years ago that I will be here ... having this trophy with me again, I will tell you that is something almost impossible," Nadal said. "But here we are."


Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel wins the Canadian Grand Prix

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel of Germany crosses the finish line to win the Canadian Grand Prix Sunday, June 10, in Montreal. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)

Jimmy Golen

Montreal (AP) — Sebastian Vettel led from the pole to the checkered flag — and then some — to claim a long-awaited Ferrari victory at the Canadian Grand Prix.

The four-time world champion sped on after the checkered flag was waved one lap too early, finishing his wire-to-wire victory at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on Sunday to claim his third win of the year and the lead in the Formula One standings.

"I was a bit confused. I told them I don't think the race is over yet," said Vettel, who confirmed on the counter in his car and with his team that he was only completing his 69th of the scheduled 70 laps.

"Some of the marshals were already celebrating," he said. "I was just worried that people don't jump on the track and start celebrating. We're still going at full pace."

Canadian model Winnie Harlow blamed race officials for telling her the wrong time to wave the flag. Formula One regulations say that if a checkered flag is waved too early, the race is over as of the last completed lap, making the results official as through 68 laps.

F1 spokesman Matteo Bonciani said there was confusion getting the message from a course official to Harlow on the platform.

"WHEN THEY TELL YOU TO WAVE THE FLAG A LAP TOO EARLY!" Harlow wrote on Instagram. "You had one job sir!!! Hahaha but so grateful everyone was safe today and no one got hurt!"

Had any passing occurred on the 69th or 70th laps, they would not have counted, Bonciani said. But there was not, and Vettel picked up the 50th of his career, his second in Montreal and the first for Ferrari at the track since Michael Schumacher won three in a row from 2002-04.

Mercedes was second with Valtteri Bottas — not erstwhile championship leader Lewis Hamilton — about six seconds back after never really challenging for the win. Max Verstappen was third and the other Red Bull car, driven by Daniel Ricciardo, was fourth.

Hamilton, who was fifth on Sunday, fell from the top of the Formula One standings and now trails Vettel by one point, 121-120. He had been going for a record-tying seventh victory in Montreal and a third win in four races.

"I'm the opposite of confident," said Mercedes executive director Toto Wolff, whose team failed to deliver with an engine upgrade in time for the weekend and also botched its tire strategy in practice.

"I think this is a major wake-up call for every member of the team," he said. "Everybody needs to assess how to improve performance. ... Those marginal gains are going to make all the difference."

Starting cleanly, Vettel was pulling away from the field when a crash between Brandon Hartley and hometown favorite Lance Stroll brought out the safety car in the very first lap. On the restart, Sergio Perez skidded onto the grass but managed to straighten himself out and rejoin the race.

Vettel had no such trouble, leaving the jostling behind him as he steered through the 2.71-mile (4.36-km) track named for the Ferrari driver and Montreal native who earned his first Formula One victory here 40 years ago.

"Grazie," the German said to his Italy-based team before grabbing a red and yellow Ferrari flag and waving it on his way to the podium.

"They've been waiting long enough for Ferrari to win here," Vettel said. "Forty years after Gilles won his Grand Prix here, it's nice to show Ferrari is still alive. It's nice to become part of that story, hopefully a little bit more in the future."

Bottas finished second for the fourth time in seven races this season. The fifth place finish was Hamilton's worst of the year, but he said his engine was giving him problems all season and he was happy he was even able to finish.

"It could get a lot worse. I could have had a DNF (did not finish)" which would have put him another 10 points behind Vettel, he said. "I'm just grateful the engine made it."

Verstappen's podium was his second of the year, and it eases some of the pressure he has felt with a series of mistakes that cost him and the Red Bull team in Azerbaijan and Monaco. After arriving in Montreal, Verstappen half-jokingly threatened to head-butt any reporter who asked about the crashes.

The day was less positive for two-time world champion Fernando Alonso, who was celebrating his 300th Formula One race. He retired to the garage after 43 laps — the eighth time he failed to finish in Montreal.

It was also a short day for Stroll, a Montreal native who locked up with Hartley heading into Turn 5 on the first lap. A year ago, Stroll picked up the first Formula One points of his career in his hometown.


Crawford scores TKO over Horn, wins WBO welterweight title

Terence Crawford, right, lands a punch on Jeff Horn, of Australia, in a welterweight title boxing match, Saturday, June 9, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)

W.G. Ramirez

Las Vegas (AP) — With a bevy of punches in the ninth round, Terence Crawford solidified his case as one of the best pound-for-pound boxers in the world.

Crawford dropped Jeff Horn with 50 seconds left in the ninth and sent him into the ropes with a slew of punches, ending the fight and winning the WBO welterweight title.

Referee Robert Byrd stopped the fight with 28 seconds left in the round.

"Like I said before, I was the stronger guy," said Crawford, who landed 48 percent of his power shots, according to CompuBox. "He did everything we expected him to do. He came in there with the intentions of roughing me up and getting aggressive. But the thing he didn't understand was how strong I was. I think they underestimated me a little bit.

"I'm stronger than him. I just had to get in the ring and prove it. You saw what I did in there. Now I want all the champions at welterweight."

Crawford (33-0, 24 knockouts) moved up to the 147-pound division and became the sixth fighter in boxing history to win titles at lightweight, junior welterweight and welterweight. Considered by many as boxing's best pound-for-pound fighter, Crawford relinquished the four major belts he held in the junior welterweight division to move up to a stacked welterweight division.

The 30-year-old from Omaha, Nebraska, improved to 11-0 (eight knockouts) in world title fights, the most wins by an active American fighter.

The 30-year-old Horn (18-1-1, 12 knockouts) struggled to make weight one day prior to the bout, hitting 148 pounds on his first try at the weigh-in Friday. He originally won the belt by decision from Manny Pacquiao last July in his hometown of Brisbane, Australia. He fought once since, stopping Gary Corcoran in Brisbane in December to retain his title.

He wasn't so fortunate against Crawford, who out-landed Horn 155-58, according to CompuBox. Horn landed just 6.4 punches per round. Crawford's previous 10 opponents landed 7 per round.

"He was hard to tag, and he just kept me guessing," Horn said. "He's a classy fighter who fought a great fight."

And while Horn's trainer Glenn Rushton said Crawford was sharp by remaining patient for counter punches, he didn't think it was as dominating a fight as everyone else.

"When you're away from home, you have to win your rounds more clearly. I thought there were some close rounds in there, and it was definitely a premature stoppage," Rushton said. "Terence would just get that odd shot, just that little bit more. He got hit harder by Pacquiao."

Crawford, a traditional right-hander who fought southpaw most of the bout, dominated from the start, using both hands to pepper Horn throughout. Effortlessly, Crawford absorbed the hard-charging Horn the entire fight, while dodging the big blows and countering effectively to wear down his opponent. A big left in the second round by Crawford got things going, while an impressive right cross to Horn's left temple in the third round showed his keen ability as a tactician.

Though he never appeared frustrated, Horn couldn't find a rhythm against Crawford, who chuckled in the middle in the fourth, the same round he opened a small cut on Horn's left eyebrow. As slick and surgical as Crawford was, he showed his power in the fifth round, using a thunderous left uppercut to Horn's jaw, and moments later landing a left hook to the body.

The sixth round was as close to a winning round that Horn would see, but Crawford continued to serve a shutout by blocking punches and countering with stinging jabs to the face.

Crawford's skills came to life in the eighth round, as he went upstairs-downstairs near the end of the round, working the head and the body before closing the round with a monster right that staggered Horn.

The two fighters were originally scheduled to meet April 14, but Crawford injured a hand in training, which resulted in the fight being postponed. Though it's been close to one year since Crawford has been in the ring, when he fought at 140, he looked every bit the part of a hard-hitting welterweight.

"I compare him, and it's the highest praise that I can give a fighter ... that he reminds me of Sugar Ray Leonard," promoter Bob Arum said. "And that to me is a great, great compliment because I always thought that Leonard was the best. And this guy is equal if not better than Ray was. The future is unlimited."

The fight marked the first attempt to attract boxing fans to ESPN's new $4.99 per month app, which allowed them to watch the bout from the MGM Grand Garden.

In the co-main event, Jose Pedraza defeated Antonio Moran by unanimous decision for a regional lightweight title. With the win, it opened the door for Pedraza to challenge WBO lightweight world champion Ray Beltran in August.


Dustin Johnson reclaims world's top spot with St. Jude win

Dustin Johnson watches his drive on the first hole during the final round of the St. Jude Classic golf tournament Sunday, June 10, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Teresa M. Walker

Memphis, Tenn. (AP) — Dustin Johnson is back in his spot as the world's top-ranked golfer thanks to a dominant victory capped by an absolutely amazing hole-out for eagle.

"What a cool way to end the day," Johnson said.

Johnson shot a 4-under 66 on Sunday making the St. Jude Classic his second PGA Tour victory this year and 18th of his career to take back the No. 1 ranking he held for 64 straight weeks before falling to No. 2 behind Justin Thomas a month ago . Johnson won the event for the second time, finishing with the eagle, three birdies and a bogey for a 19-under 261 total.

"It means a lot," Johnson said of reclaiming the No. 1 ranking. "It was a long way to get there, and I held it for a long time and obviously JT took it from me for a little while. It was nice to finish like that and get it back."

Andrew Putnam started the final round with a share of the lead for the first time in his career. He shot 72 and finished at 13 under.

"I feel like I steadied the ship a little bit after a rough start," said Putnam, who secured his card for the year with his best finish yet.

Preparing for the U.S. Open, Johnson took the lead to himself with a par on No. 1, while Putnam double-bogeyed, and cruised to the $1.18 million winner's check. Johnson turned in the lowest score under par by a winner here since David Toms at 20 under in 2003 — before the course was redesigned dropping par from 71 to 70 after the 2004 tournament.

Johnson, who won the U.S. Open in 2016, heads to Shinnecock Hills after stringing together four straight rounds in the 60s. He went 67, 63 and 65 before wrapping up a final round that felt almost like a practice round with the only question remaining how low Johnson would go until his final dramatic shot.

Nobody has ever won on the PGA Tour and followed by winning the U.S. Open. The way Johnson's playing, he sees no reason why he couldn't be the first.

"I know what it takes," Johnson said. "I'm going to have to play a lot like I did this week if I want to win next week."

Topping his walk-off eagle won't be easy. In the intermediate rough to the right of the fairway, Johnson hit 9-iron and watched as the ball bounced twice before rolling into the cup to bring fans to their feet. Johnson said he couldn't tell if the ball went in for a few seconds.

"Luckily I did watch him hit that last shot and that was pretty special, so that was fun to see," Putnam said of Johnson's eagle.

J.B. Holmes (67) was at 9 under. Stewart Cink (72) and Richy Werenski (71) tied at 8 under. Brandt Snedeker (70) and Retief Goosen (66) tied four others at 7 under.

Phil Mickelson had a 65 and was at 6 under.

Putnam, a two-time winner on the Web.com Tour, had only one bogey through his first three rounds. He pushed his opening tee shot into the right rough and his approach in the rough left of the green. He wound up three-putting for double bogey. Johnson rolled in a 4-footer for par and a two-stroke lead at 15 under on a sizzling day with the temperature feeling like 99.

Johnson worked on keeping the ball in the fairway, hitting 3-wood off the tee on the first of the course's two par 5s. Even with the 3-wood, Johnson had the second-longest drive of the day, hitting 333 yards on the 554-yard hole.

Even when Johnson three-putt No. 5 to drop to 15 under, Putnam also bogeyed protecting Johnson's lead at three strokes. Putnam pulled within two strokes with a birdie on No. 7, rolling a putt 11 feet after Johnson parred the hole.

Johnson hit an iron 307 yards off the tee at No. 10 . After hitting iron off the tee at No. 12 and going left of the cart path, Johnson saved par with a 16-foot putt to protect his two-stroke lead. Then Johnson hit a drive 359 yards on the par-4 No. 13, leaving him 95 yards to the pin. Johnson then hit his approach to 3 feet for his second birdie to go 16 under.

He previewed his dramatic finish on the par-5 16th. Johnson's tee shot found the trees right of the fairway, and he threaded a shot through a couple trees to just off the green. He chipped to 5 feet and birdied for a four-stroke lead.
 


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HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

Late header from Kane gives England 2-1 win over Tunisia

Belgium wake up in 2nd half, roll past Panama 3-0

Sweden get benefit of video review, beat South Korea 1-0

Murray excited to end 11-month absence at Queen's this week


Brooks Koepka wins US Open, 1st repeat winner in 29 years

Mexico beat defending champions Germany 1-0 at World Cup

Fernando Alonso wins on debut in 24 Hours Le Mans race

Spence keeps IBF title at home with quick knockout of Ocampo


Ronaldo scores hat trick, Portugal draw 3-3 with Spain

Johnson takes 4-shot lead into weekend at US Open

Afghanistan lose maiden test to India by innings in 2 days

Spence to defend title at home in Texas vs Mexico's Ocampo


Putin and Russia get their 1st win at the World Cup

Johnson shares lead in a US Open that plays like one

Afghanistan hit back after 2 centuries for India in test

Australia name unchanged side for 2nd test against Ireland


North American trio beats Morocco to host 2026 World Cup

Lowly-ranked Russians, Saudis meet to kick off World Cup

Spain fire coach Lopetegui 2 days before World Cup opener

Ali, Rashid set up England's 3-wicket win over Australia


Questions of loyalty cast shadow over German World Cup squad

Woods looking for win, the final piece of his return to golf

Playoff disappointments make Cup parade sweeter for Capitals

FIFA urges referees to take their time for video review


Mickelson trying not to look ahead at another US Open chance

Mercedes lose ground in Formula One race

After long wait, Afghanistan prepares for first cricket test

Sara Errani's doping suspension increased to 10 months


Nadal beats Thiem for 11th French Open title

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel wins the Canadian Grand Prix

Crawford scores TKO over Horn, wins WBO welterweight title

Dustin Johnson reclaims world's top spot with St. Jude win

 



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