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Americans top Belgium for Hopman Cup tennis title

Roger Federer wins Qatar Open with a straight-set victory over Nikolay Davydenko.

January 08, 2011|Wire reports
  • John Isner and Bethanie Mattek-Sands defeated Justine Henin and Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium in Saturday's mixed doubles final to give the U.S. its sixth team tennis title in the Hopman Cup at Perth, Australia.
John Isner and Bethanie Mattek-Sands defeated Justine Henin and Ruben… (Paul Kane / Getty Images )

Bethanie Mattek-Sands and John Isner beat Belgium's Justine Henin and Ruben Bemelmans, 6-1, 6-3, in mixed doubles Saturday to give the United States its sixth team tennis title in the Hopman Cup at Perth, Australia.

Isner evened the title contest 1-1 with a 6-3, 6-4 win over Bemelmans after Henin won the final five games of her match against Mattek-Sands, 7-6 (6), 6-3.

Belgium advanced as a surprise finalist from Group A when first-place finisher Serbia could not play the final due to an abdominal injury to Ana Ivanovic.

Isner's booming serve and all-court cover put the Americans in control in the mixed doubles decider. Mattek-Sands replaced Serena Williams, who pulled out of the American team in late November because she is recovering from a foot injury.

"It's been an amazing week, my first visit to Perth, and I couldn't have finished it in a better way," Mattek-Sands, who was attired in her usual brightly colored dress, said at the trophy presentation.

Roger Federer won the Qatar Open without dropping a set when he beat defending champion Nikolay Davydenko, 6-3, 6-4, in a 79-minute final.

Federer became the first three-time winner at Doha, following titles in 2005 and 2006.

Asked about his chances at the Australian Open this month, Federer said, "I am not ready now. I will be when I get there

Top-seeded Robin Soderling will meet defending champion Andy Roddick in the final of the Brisbane International in Australia after defeating former title holder Radek Stepanek, 6-3 7-5.

American Roddick later outgunned the 6-foot, 8-inch Kevin Anderson, 6-2 4-6 6-2, in a battle of big servers.

Rising Czech Petra Kvitova beat Germany's Andrea Petkovic, 6-1 6-3, to win the women's title at the $600,000 Australian Open warmup.

Stanislas Wawrinka beat top-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic, 6-4, 6-1, to advance to his second straight final at the Chennai Open in India.

The third-seeded Swiss will play seventh-seeded Xavier Malisse of Belgium on Sunday.

In the other semifinal, 2007 champion Malisse rallied to beat Serbia's Janko Tipsarevic, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Vera Zvonareva topped Caroline Wozniacki, 6-1, 6-0, at the Hong Kong Classic exhibition tournament, winning a matchup of the world's top two female players ahead of the Australian Open.

The second-ranked Russian broke in the first and fifth games to go up 4-1. Denmark's Wozniacki, seeded No. 1, saved a set point at 5-1 but missed a forehand to give her opponent the set.

Vonn wins downhill event

Lindsey Vonn won the women's World Cup downhill competition at Altenmarkt-Zauchensee, Austria, for her fourth victory of the season.

The defending overall champion skied well off course in a sharp right turn but recovered in time to finish the 3-kilometer Kaelberloch course in 1 minute 46.39 seconds to beat Sweden's Anja Paerson by 0.43.

It's American's 20th career downhill title and 37th overall.

Austria's Anna Fenninger was 0.98 seconds back in third, while World Cup leader Maria Riesch took fourth — another 0.07 back.

Ligety's win streak ends at three

Ted Ligety lost control and then the American lost his unbeaten streak in World Cup giant slaloms, leaving Aksel Lund Svindal of Norway and Cyprien Richard of France to tie for the victory at Adelboden, Switzerland.

Svindal and Richard each had a combined two-run time of 2 minutes 25.28 seconds on the Kuonisbaergli course. Ligety was seeking to extend his impressive start to the giant slalom season with a fourth straight win, and was fastest in the morning run.

Enes Kanter, Kentucky lose appeal

The NCAA announced that it denied the University of Kentucky's appeal seeking to restore the eligibility of freshman basketball player Enes Kanter.

In its appeal, Kentucky had asked the NCAA to reconsider Kanter's eligibility in light of the ruling that Auburn quarterback Cam Newton could continue playing even though his father acknowledged trying to sell the son's services to Mississippi State.

Kentucky argued that Kanter was unaware of any financial arrangements set up with the professional team based in his native Turkey that he played for in three seasons.

Last fall, the NCAA ruled Kanter permanently ineligible because he received $33,033 in excess of permitted compensation for necessary expenses in his third and final season with Fenerbahce Ulker.

Red Wings' Stuart has broken jaw

The Detroit Red Wings are calling for the NHL to come down hard on Calgary's Tom Kostopoulos after he broke the jaw of Detroit defenseman Brad Stuart.

Stuart was injured during the third period of Detroit's 5-4 shootout victory at Calgary on Friday night. He will be sidelined six to eight weeks.

Cubs complete trade for Garza

The Chicago Cubs completed a deal to acquire right-handed pitcher Matt Garza from the Tampa Bay Rays in an eight-player trade.

The Rays get two of the Cubs' top prospects, right-hander Chris Archer, a 15-game winner in two minor league stops last season, and shortstop Hak-Ju Lee. Also going from Chicago to Tampa Bay are catcher Robinson Chirinos and outfielders Sam Fuld and Brandon Guyer.

Rio de Janeiro soccer club Flamengo and AC Milan have nearly reached an agreement on Ronaldinho's transfer from the Italian team back to Brazil, according to the leadership of both teams.

Spain's leading broadcaster said Saturday it will no longer show the country's centuries-old tradition of bullfighting in order to protect children from viewing violence.

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