World Sports News in Brief

Esports: Van Buren wins all-star battle after Verstappen pulls out

Sunday, 2020-03-22 10:01:12
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FILE PHOTO: Formula One F1 - Australian Grand Prix - Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit, Melbourne, Australia - March 12, 2020 Red Bull's Max Verstappen arriving to the Circuit. (Reuters)
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Red Bull Formula One driver Max Verstappen pulled out of the second All-Star Esports Battle on Saturday but Rudy Van Buren, the 'World's Fastest Gamer' in 2017, made sure there was a Dutch winner anyway.

The 20-lap race on a virtual Indianapolis road course featured a cast of top drivers and gamers, competing remotely, after the fast-spreading coronavirus outbreak brought motorsport to a standstill.

* Manchester United and Manchester City have joined forces to donate a combined £100,000 (US$117,000) to help local foodbanks affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

* The International Olympic Committee (IOC) should review plans to go ahead with the Tokyo Olympics during the coronavirus pandemic and ensure dialogue with athletes, the Sport and Rights Alliance (SRA) and the World Players Association (WPA) said on Saturday.

* Spain-based China international Wu Lei has confirmed he has tested positive for coronavirus but says he is on his way to making a full recovery. The Chinese Football Association announced on Saturday that Wu, who plays for Espanyol in La Liga, had contracted the coronavirus and the 28-year-old confirmed he is now self-isolating.

* The NBA plans to pay full salaries to players as scheduled on Apr 1 but could begin cutting salaries to recover money from canceled games by Apr 15, ESPN reported Saturday (Mar 21). The NBA halted its season on Mar 11 after Utah's Rudy Gobert tested positive for the coronavirus pandemic, which has shut down sports league throughout the United States.

* Pressure mounted on Olympic organisers to postpone the 2020 Tokyo Games on Saturday (Mar 21) after the powerful US track and field federation urged this summer's event be pushed back due to the coronavirus pandemic.

* Former Real Madrid president Lorenzo Sanz has died aged 76, his son Lorenzo said on Saturday (Mae 21). The former Real president was taken to hospital on Tuesday, with newspaper El Mundo saying he had been suffering from the novel coronavirus.

* Juventus and Argentina soccer forward Paulo Dybala has tested positive for coronavirus but has no symptoms, the Italian Serie A club said on Saturday (Mar 21), making him one of the most high-profile players to be infected so far. Teammates Daniele Rugani and Blaise Matuidi have also tested positive for the disease which has claimed almost 5000 lives in the country.

Reuters, CNA