Here is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Soccer-Messi names France and Brazil as favorites to win the World Cup
Argentina captain Lionel Messi says defending champions France and Brazil are favorites to win the World Cup in Qatar because they have a core group of players who have played together for a long time. Messi says Brazil, Germany, France, England and Spain are still favorites to win, but the 35-year-old striker believes France and Brazil are the two best teams ahead of the 20 November December. 18 tournament.
Tennis-Rybakina still on track for WTA Finals with win over Pliskova
Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina remained in contention for a spot in the WTA Finals with a 7-6(5) 6-2 victory over Karolina Pliskova in the first round of the Guadalajara Open on Tuesday. Pliskova served for the first set at 5-3 but the Czech couldn’t finish the job as Rybakina fought back to force a tiebreaker.
Elnaz Rekabi: Iranian mountaineer returns from Seoul tournament amid hijab controversy
An Iranian climber who entered an international competition without a headscarf said she did so unintentionally, after it was widely believed to have expressed support for protests in Iran. Footage of Elnaz Rekabi, 33, had shown her climbing a wall without covering her head during the Asian competition in South Korea as she represented Iran, which was swept away by protests sparked by the death of Mahsa Amini in police custody.
NHL roundup: Jackets rally in overtime as Canucks slump again
Vladislav Gavrikov scored 3:21 into overtime as the Columbus Blue Jackets rallied for a 4-3 home win over Vancouver on Tuesday as the Canucks blew a multi-goal lead and lost for a fourth record consecutive game to open the season. In a two-on-one, Yegor Chinakhov (two assists) slipped a cross pass to Gavrikov, who missed Vancouver goaltender Spencer Martin (29 saves) for the Blue Jackets’ first win in four tries this season.
Tokyo Prosecutors Arrest CEO of Olympics Advertising Company ADK – Kyodo
Tokyo prosecutors on Wednesday arrested the chairman and two former employees of Japanese advertising firm ADK Holdings Inc for alleged corruption related to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Japanese media reported. The arrests mark the latest expansion of a corruption scandal involving Olympic sponsors, centered on a former board member of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, but which has spread to all of Japan’s businesses.
Injuries between cricket and Sri Lanka worsen ahead of Netherlands clash
Sri Lankan leader Dushmantha Chameera has been ruled out of Thursday’s T20 World Cup clash against the Netherlands with a calf sprain in another blow for the former champions. Chameera took three wickets in Tuesday’s big win against the United Arab Emirates in Geelong but hobbled off the field after pulling out of the way on his fourth pitch.
Former TE Titans Delanie Walker announces retirement
Three-time Pro Bowl tight end Delanie Walker announced his retirement from the NFL on Tuesday. Walker, 38, began his 14-season NFL career with the San Francisco 49ers in 2006. He spent seven seasons with the 49ers before signing a four-year, $17.5 million contract with the Titans of Tennessee in 2013.
Neymar says court not involved in Barcelona transfer talks
Brazilian soccer star Neymar Jr told a court on Tuesday that he had not been involved in negotiations over his transfer to “childhood dream” club Barcelona from Santos in 2013, but had signed what his father had told him. Besides Neymar, 30, eight other defendants are on trial for transfer fraud and corruption, including his parents, representatives of both clubs, former Barca presidents Josep Maria Bartomeu and Sandro Rosell, and former Santos president Odilio Rodrigues .
Yankees OF Aaron Hicks (knee) will miss the remainder of the playoffs
New York Yankees left fielder Aaron Hicks will miss the rest of the playoffs with a left knee injury. Hicks left Game 5 of the American League Division Series against the Cleveland Guardians after colliding with rookie shortstop Oswaldo Cabrera in the third inning on Tuesday. An MRI revealed that Hicks’ injury will take six weeks to heal.
Cricket-Campher heroism keeps Ireland in contention for Super 12 stage
Ireland’s Curtis Campher and George Dockrell combined in an unbroken 119-run stand to take their side of an unlikely six-wicket win over Scotland in the T20 World Cup victory in Hobart and keep them in the hunt to qualify for the Super 12 stage. The Irish appeared to be heading for a second straight defeat in Group B when they were reduced to 61-4 in the 10th on the pursuit of a daunting 177-point goal to stay alive in the tournament before Campher and Dockrell reunited in the crease.
(With agency contributions.)