World Sports News in Brief

Xavi to retire at end of season

Friday, 2019-05-03 05:12:36
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Barcelona's Xavi Hernandez waves to supporters after their Spanish first division soccer match against Deportivo de la Coruna at Camp Nou stadium in Barcelona, Spain, May 23, 2015. (Photo: Reuters)
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Barcelona and Spain midfielder Xavi Hernandez will retire at the end of the season to move into coaching, calling time on a trophy-laden career spanning two decades.

Xavi, who has made a record 767 appearances for Barca and 133 for Spain, confirmed his retirement plans in an open letter sent to members of the Spanish media on Thursday.

* Kaetlyn Osmond announced her retirement from competitive figure skating on Thursday, ending her career as Canada's most decorated women's skater during which she won Olympic and world titles. Osmond represented Canada at two Winter Olympics, winning gold in the team event and bronze in the women's individual competition at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Games along with a silver in the team event in 2014 in Sochi. The 23-year-old skater was crowned world champion in 2018, becoming the first Canadian woman to capture the title in 45 years.

* Eighteen women racers will line up on the starting grid at Germany's Hockenheim circuit on Saturday for the debut of W Series, the first all-female championship that could ultimately help break Formula One's male monopoly. More than 100 women, ranging in age from 17 to 33, applied last year to compete in the series, which provides identical 1.8 litre Formula Three cars and has a US$1.5 million prize fund.

* Tiger Woods will receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom from U.S. President Donald Trump next Monday, the White House said on Thursday. Woods, 43, ended an 11-year major championship drought when he won the Masters on April 14.

* Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen did not suffer concussion during Tuesday's Champions League semi-final first leg against Ajax Amsterdam, the north London club said on Thursday. The 32-year-old Belgium international collided with team mate Toby Alderweireld while challenging Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana for the ball.

* Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri shrugged off speculation over his future on Thursday, saying that he had become used to rumours that he was about to leave throughout his five years at the club. The 51-year-old said he would meet club president Andrea Agnelli to discuss their next moves - just as he did at the end of every season.

* Leicester City manager Brendan Rodgers on Thursday said he has no extra motivation to do his former club Liverpool a favour in the Premier League title race when his side face Manchester City on Monday. Liverpool can return to the top of the table if they beat Newcastle United on Saturday but will only be in pole position to clinch the league title on May 12 if Rodgers' Leicester can claim a point or better at the Etihad Stadium.

* Ballon d'Or winner Ada Hegerberg, who has chosen not to play for Norway since 2017, has been left out of their squad for the Women's World Cup in France. The Olympique Lyonnais striker has not featured for Norway since they were knocked out of the Women's European Championship in 2017 without scoring a goal.

* Double Olympic champion Caster Semenya will run her last 800m on Friday before the International Association of Athletics Federations imposes new rules limiting testosterone in female athletes.

* Bolton Wanderers will play their Championship game at Nottingham Forest on Sunday after the relegated club confirmed their first team players would be available, the English Football League has said.

* Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey will miss the remainder of the season with a hamstring injury that also ends an 11-year career at the London club, Arsenal manager Unai Emery has said. The 28-year-old, whose Arsenal contract expires next month, is set to join Italian side Juventus after signing a four-year agreement with the Serie A champions in February.

* The FIFA Referees Committee has selected 15 video match officials representing 11 countries and regions for the FIFA Women's World Cup France 2019, it announced on Thursday.

Reuters, Xinhua