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Del Potro beats Roger Federer at ATP Finals, barely makes it to next round

Del Potro, Federer and Andy Murray were locked in a three-way tie in the round-robin stage of the ATP World Tour Finals, but Murray is eliminated after winning the lowest percentage of games.

November 27, 2009|Staff And Wire Reports
  • Juan Martin Del Potro returns a shot against Roger Federer in their ATP World Tour Finals match on Thursday.
Juan Martin Del Potro returns a shot against Roger Federer in their ATP World… (Clive Brunskill / Getty…)

Juan Martin del Potro squeaked into the semifinals of the ATP World Tour Finals by beating Roger Federer, 6-2, 6-7 (5), 6-3, on Thursday -- the slimmest possible margin to advance and knock Andy Murray out of the tournament.

That result means Del Potro and Federer advance after a three-way tie in Group A. All three players finished the round-robin stage with two wins and identical 5-4 set records. However, Murray was eliminated after winning the lowest percentage of games. Had Del Potro lost one more game against Federer, Murray would have advanced at the Argentine's expense.

Murray beat Fernando Verdasco, 6-4, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (3), earlier Thursday.

In Group B, Robin Soderling has already clinched a semifinal spot, while Nikolay Davydenko and Novak Djokovic are still in contention ahead of today's matches. Rafael Nadal was eliminated after two straight losses.


Blue Jays sign Gonzalez

The Toronto Blue Jays signed shortstop Alex Gonzalez to a one-year deal worth $2.75 million, which includes a club option for 2011.

The move came a day after backup shortstop John McDonald agreed to a $3-million, two-year deal that effectively marked the end of free agent Marco Scutaro'stime with the club.

The 32-year-old Gonzalez split last season between Cincinnati and Boston, batting .238 with eight home runs and 41 runs batted in. The Venezuelan was an All-Star in 1999.

His club option would be worth $2.5 million if exercised.


O'Neal pays for funeral

Shaquille O'Neal paid for the funeral of a 5-year-old North Carolina girl after being moved by national news coverage of the case of Shaniya Davis, who police say was kidnapped and killed.

The Cleveland Cavaliers center was touched by the stories he saw and got in touch with the family to see what he could do to help, a spokeswoman for O'Neal said.

More than 2,000 people attended the girl's funeral Sunday.

Green Bay Packers cornerback Charles Woodson donated $2 million to the new University of Michigan Mott Children's Hospital and Women's Hospital, the school announced.

The money will support pediatric research by the Charles Woodson Clinical Research Fund at the hospital, scheduled to open in 2012.

European soccer leaders have unanimously backed a proposal to limit participation in future Olympic Games to players under the age of 21.

The International Olympic Committee wants to keep the status quo of under-23s plus three overage players.

But UEFA's strategy council of clubs, national associations, leagues and players' unions unanimously agreed that the men's Olympic tournament should be changed to under 21.

Bryan Clauson of Noblesville, Ind., took the lead from Josh Wise on Lap 41 and went on to win the Lucas Oil Turkey Night Grand Prix USAC Midget 98-lap feature race at Toyota Speedway in Irwindale. Despite finishing 28th in the race, Brad Kuhn of Avon, Ind., clinched the USAC National Midget Championship. In other racing action, Cole Whitt of Alpine, Calif., won the 40-lap Sprint Car feature race and Garrett Peterson of West Sacramento, Calif., won the Ford Focus 40-lap feature race.

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