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Ukraine wins, England and France draw in Euro 2012 openers

Andriy Shevchenko scores twice to give Ukraine a 2-1 victory over Sweden.

June 11, 2012|Wire reports

Andriy Shevchenko is determined to turn the European Championship into a farewell performance to remember, and so far he's putting on quite a show.

Shevchenko one-upped Zlatan Ibrahimovic on Monday in a battle of past and present star strikers, scoring on two great headers to give co-host Ukraine a 2-1 win over Sweden in their opening match at Euro 2012 in Kiev.

"I feel that I am 10 years younger today," the 35-year-old Shevchenko said. "I think that it's a great day for Ukraine. This is a historical win."

From having been considered over the hill, Shevchenko and his Ukraine team are now king of the hill in Group D — temporarily at least.

Ukraine entered the tournament as a massive underdog to make it to the second round, but looks to have a real chance of extending its stay past the group stage after France and England drew 1-1 in their game earlier Monday at Donetsk, Ukraine.

In that game, Joleon Lescott scored England's lone goal on England's lone shot on target a few minutes before Samir Nasri evened the score for France.

"I think we have to be happy with that," France Coach Laurent Blanc said. "We were too timid at the start. There was a bit of pressure that got to us, and then we got better actually after we conceded the goal. That's when we started playing."


Grizzlies sold to Silicon Valley billionaire

Memphis Grizzlies majority owner Michael Heisley said Monday that he has an agreement to sell his NBA team to a group headed by California billionaire Robert J. Pera.

Heisley made the announcement after published reports that he finally had found a buyer for the team he moved from Vancouver to Memphis in 2001.

"I am confident that the franchise will continue its development toward being a perennial championship contender and an important member of the Memphis community," Heisley said in a statement. "I am particularly gratified that we have put together a team which is poised to continue its development. We have an outstanding team of players, coaching staff and basketball and business management."

The sale is subject to approval by the NBA Board of Governors and other conditions.

Heisley bought the Grizzlies in 2000, moved the team to Memphis in 2001 and finally into the FedExForum in 2004. The Grizzlies are coming off their two best seasons with their first postseason wins in franchise history. reported the sale would be for about $350 million.

Pera, 34, is a former Apple engineer who left in 2005 to start Ubiquiti Networks, a communications technology company based in San Jose that makes WiFi networking equipment. He became a billionaire in October 2011 when his company went public. A stock dip earlier this month has left Pera worth an estimated $980 million, but he has been described as a big basketball fan who loves to play the game.


The Big East sued TCU for failing to pay the conference $5 million after the school reneged on an agreement to become a member and chose to join the Big 12 instead.

The Big East filed the lawsuit Monday in U.S. District Court in Washington.

TCU agreed in November 2010 to join the Big East, beginning this July. The Big East contends TCU agreed to pay the league $5 million if it did not follow through on that agreement.


Receiver Chad Ochocinco has had a tryout with the Miami Dolphins four days after his release by the New England Patriots.


A Cuban sports official said three-time Olympic boxing gold medalist Teofilo Stevenson died Monday of a heart attack. Stevenson was 60.


Beach volleyball legend Gene Selznick has died in Los Angeles at 82.

Dane Selznick said his father died Sunday at Kindred Hospital in Los Angeles after a series of health issues culminating in pneumonia.


Yutaka Shimizu, a second-generation Japanese-American who coached basketball in Los Angeles for more than 50 years and spent three years in an internment camp during World War II, died on Sunday at a Lakewood hospital after a lung ailment. He was 84.

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