Johan Botha retires from all forms of cricket
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Former South Africa all-rounder Johan Botha has announced his immediate retirement from all forms of cricket.
Botha's Australian Twenty20 league team, the Hobart Hurricanes, announced the news late Wednesday. It said Botha cited "wear and tear on his body and sheer physical fatigue."
Australia calls up Kurtis Patterson for 1st Sri Lanka test
SYDNEY (AP) — Batsman Kurtis Patterson has been added to Australia's squad for the first cricket test against Sri Lanka after making two centuries against the tourists in a warm-up match.
Patterson made 157 and 102 for a Cricket Australia XI in a pink ball match in Hobart last week. That earned him an immediate call-up to the squad for the day-night test beginning in Brisbane on Thursday.
American Sofia Kenin wins first WTA title at Hobart
HOBART, Australia (AP) — American Sofia Kenin won her first WTA title at the Hobart International on Saturday after beating Anna Karolina Schmiedlova 6-4, 6-0.
Playing her first top-level singles final, the 20-year-old Kenin took the first set with a break before running away with the match in 71 minutes.
Kenin, ranked 56th, didn't drop a set for the tournament and beat top-seeded Caroline Garcia and former Hobart champion Alize Cornet in her run to the title.
American Sofia Kenin advances to Hobart International final
HOBART, Australia (AP) — American Sofia Kenin advanced to the Hobart International final with a 6-2, 6-4 win over sixth-seeded Alize Cornet on Friday.
Kenin will play Anna Karolina Schmiedlova, who Belinda Bencic 7-6 (2), 4-6, 6-2 in an earlier semifinal.
Kenin hasn't dropped a set at Hobart this week and beat top-seeded Caroline Garcia in the opening round.
Alize Cornet advances to semifinals at Hobart International
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Former Hobart International champion Alize Cornet moved a step closer to another title in Tasmania with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Belgian qualifier Greet Minnen in the quarterfinals Thursday.
The sixth-seeded Cornet, who won the event in 2016 and hasn't dropped a set this year, overcame a fall and skinned knee to reach the semifinals.
Cornet served for the match at 5-2 in the second set but was broken as Minnen hit some clean winners.
Bencic advances at Hobart International
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Belinda Bencic eased into the quarterfinals at the WTA Tour's Hobart International, beating Australian wild card Zoe Hives 6-2, 6-4.
Hives pulled off an upset when she beat Johanna Larsson to reach the second round but couldn't repeat that form against a polished Bencic, who set up a quarterfinal against 18-year-old Ukrainian Dayana Yastremska.
Bencic follows Hopman Cup win with tough 1st-round in Hobart
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Belinda Bencic has followed up her title at the Hopman Cup with a 4-6, 6-3, 7-5 win over second-seeded Mihaela Buzarnescu in the first round of the Hobart International.
Bencic, who combined with Roger Federer to win the international mixed teams event in Perth, Western Australia, on the weekend, kept up her successful start to the season in Australia's southern island state.
Yastremska advances, Pavlyuchenkova ousted in at Hobart
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Teenager Dayana Yastremska has picked up in 2019 where she left off in 2018, beating Laura Siegemund 6-3, 6-1 in the opening round of the Hobart International.
Yastremska had a break-out year in 2018, forcing her way inside the top-100 for the first time. She showed why Monday with a dominant performance in windy conditions against Siegemund, who has been as high as No. 27 in the world.
Australia’s Bancroft returns to cricket after tampering ban
LAUNCESTON, Australia (AP) — Cameron Bancroft was out for just two runs on his return to competitive cricket following a nine-month ban for his role in the Australia test team's ball-tampering plot in South Africa in March.
Bancroft was selected by Perth Scorchers for the Big Bash League Twenty20 game against Hobart Hurricanes on Sunday after his suspension by Cricket Australia ended.
Wild Oats XI keeps line honors after protest dismissed
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Wild Oats XI has kept its Sydney to Hobart line honors victory after a protest against the yacht was dismissed by a five-person international jury on Saturday.
Runner-up Black Jack claimed after the race ended that Wild Oats XI did not have its Automatic Identification System (AIS) switched on and that they were disadvantaged because they did not know where the yacht was sailing.
Wild Oats XI wins Sydney to Hobart line honors
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Wild Oats XI won the 74th Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Friday, claiming line honors for the ninth time.
The Mark Richards-skippered super maxi crossed the line in Hobart shortly after 8 a.m. local time (2100 GMT Thursday) after taking the lead from defending line honors champion Comanche before sunrise.
The win came after Wild Oats XI was stripped of line honors in last year's race, with a rule breach and time penalty handing victory to Comanche.
Comanche regains lead in Sydney to Hobart
SYDNEY (AP) — Comanche regained the lead in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Thursday after rival Wild Oats XI had taken the overnight lead among a tight tussle of the four remaining supermaxis.
The line honors favorite Comanche currently holds a small lead with only half a dozen miles separating Black Jack, InfoTrack and nine-times winner Wild Oats XI, as the line honors contenders commenced their crossing of Bass Strait earlier Thursday.
Comanche takes lead in Sydney to Hobart
SYDNEY (AP) — Supermaxi Black Jack was the first yacht through Sydney Heads for the second successive year, but 2017 winner Comanche has surged into the lead in the 74th Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race on Wednesday.
After three hours of racing, line honors favorite Comanche was setting a fast pace of around 27 knots, benefiting from north-easterly winds along the New South Wales state coast and had a lead of four nautical miles from supermaxi rivals InfoTrack, Wild Oats XI and Black Jack.
American boat Privateer a top prospect in Sydney-Hobart
SYDNEY (AP) — One of the top prospects among 11 international entries in this year's Sydney to Hobart race is the New York Yacht Club's Privateer, which finished second in the Fastnet race in 2017.
The Cookson 50, built in New Zealand and racing for 12 years, is owned by Ron O'Hanley.
Weather conditions look good for Sydney to Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — Comanche skipper Jim Cooney is predicting a quick Sydney to Hobart yacht race but believes his 100-foot super maxi's line honors record will probably stand from last year.
The Bureau of Meteorology on Friday was forecasting light winds for the start of the Dec. 26 race in Sydney Harbour, but stiff north to northeasterly gusts of up to 35 knots later in the day.
Swimmer in Australia dies after being stung by stingray
SYDNEY (AP) — A swimmer in Australia has died of a heart attack after he was stung by a stingray.
Police say the 42-year-old man went into cardiac arrest on Saturday at Lauderdale Beach, east of Hobart in Tasmania, after he suffered a puncture wound to his lower abdomen.
He was swimming alone and close to shore when the attack happened. Friends pulled him from the water but failed in attempts to resuscitate him.
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Cricket Australia says spinner Arjun Nair has been cleared to resume all bowing after his ban due to an illegal action was lifted.
The Sydney Thunder allrounder was reported during the Big Bash Twenty20 match on Dec. 30 against the Hobart Hurricanes. He later received a three-month ban when his bowling action was deemed to be "markedly different" during biomechanical testing.
Australia beats England by 5 wickets in T20 Tri-Series
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Glenn Maxwell made an unbeaten 103 and took 3-10 as Australia beat England by five wickets in a tri-series Twenty20 cricket international Wednesday played on a turning pitch at Bellerive Oval.
Maxwell hit a six from Mark Wood's bowling with the scores tied to go from 97 to 103 and to carry Australia to 161-5 in reply to England's 155-9, a win with nine balls remaining. It was the lowest team total in which a player has scored a century in T20 internationals.
The Latest: No. 4 Svitolina into Aussie Open quarterfinals
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The Latest on Sunday from the Australian Open (all times local):
12:55 a.m. (Monday)
Fourth-seeded Elina Svitolina started her fourth-round match just before midnight Sunday at the Australian Open and was finished within an hour, beating Czech qualifier Denisa Allertova 6-3, 6-0 to reach the quarterfinals here for the first time.
Mertens successfully defends Hobart International title
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Second-seeded Elise Mertens broke Mihaela Buzarnescu's serve in the opening game and went on to beat the Romanian 6-1, 4-6, 6-3 Saturday to win the Hobart International title for the second consecutive year.
The match started late due to rain and there were two lengthy stoppages during the match.
Buzarnescu was attempting to win her first WTA title at the age of 29.
Defending champ Mertens facing Buzarnescu in Hobart final
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Elise Mertens will defend her Hobart International title in the final after eliminating 2015 champion Heather Watson 6-4, 1-6, 6-2 on Friday.
Mertens will play Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania, who has reached her maiden WTA final.
Buzarnescu beat fifth-seeded Lesia Tsurenko 6-2, 6-2 in her second career semifinal. She is guaranteed to break into the top 50 rankings for the first time on Monday.
Watson, Mertens, Tsurenko through to Hobart semifinals
HOBART, Australia (AP) — British qualifier Heather Watson won the first 11 games of the match in defeating Donna Vekic 6-0, 6-4 and advancing to the Hobart International semifinals on Thursday.
Leading 5-0 in the second set, Vekic won four games in a row before Watson clinched it.
"I knew she'd change something and swing freely because you've got nothing to lose at that point," Watson said. "I just had to stick with her."
2nd-seeded Mertens advances to Hobart quarterfinals
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Defending champion Elise Mertens beat Beatriz Haddad Maia 6-4, 6-4 on Tuesday to advance the Hobart International quarterfinals.
Mertens came from qualifying and No. 127 in the world in the 2017 Hobart event to win the title. She'll next meet last year's runner-up Monica Niculescu or American Varvara Lepchenko for a semifinal berth.
Mertens is the only seeded player left in her half of the draw and one of just three remaining in the tournament.
Eugenie Bouchard beaten in 1st round at Hobart International
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Eugenie Bouchard's poor run of form continued Monday when she was beaten by Belarusian teenager Aryna Sabalenka at the Hobart International.
Former Wimbledon finalist Bouchard was eliminated from the Australian Open warm-up event after losing 6-4, 6-3.
It was the latest in a long sequence of early losses for the Canadian, who was named the most improved player in women's professional tennis after reaching the Wimbledon final in 2014.
Former champs Cornet, Barthel out in 1st round at Hobart
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Former champions Alize Cornet and Mona Barthel were ousted in the first round of the Hobart International on Sunday, each losing in straight sets.
Mihaela Buzarnescu beat fourth-seeded Cornet 6-2, 6-4 and Varvara Lepchenko had a 6-0, 7-6 (4) win over 2012 winner Barthel.
Cornet was hampered by an upper leg injury but said she didn't think it would be a concern for the Australian Open, which starts Jan. 15.
Comanche wins Sydney-Hobart, Wild Oats XI stripped of title
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Super maxi LDV Comanche was awarded line honors in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Thursday after its protest against Wild Oats XI was upheld over an incident early in the race.
Wild Oats XI was found to have breached race rules over a tacking move at the start on Tuesday in Sydney Harbour. The eight-time winner was penalized one hour after lengthy deliberations by a five-person international jury in Hobart.
Wild Oats XI crosses line 1st in Sydney to Hobart race
HOBART, Australia (AP) — A protest could change the result of the line honors winner in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race after eight-time champion Wild Oats XI crossed the finish line first Wednesday in a tight duel with LDV Comanche over the final three hours.
Wild Oats XI crossed the line at Constitution Dock in Hobart about 16 minutes ahead of fellow super maxi LDV Comanche to take almost five hours off the record time set by Perpetual Loyal last year.
Near collision marks start of 73rd Sydney to Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — A near collision between two of the race favorites marked a dramatic start to the 73rd edition of the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Tuesday.
Supermaxis LDV Comanche and Wild Oats XI nearly collided after a tack from the eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats X1 15 minutes into the race start brought it within just a few meters of LDV Comanche, which raised a protest flag.
Wild Oats XI skipper likes Sydney to Hobart weather forecast
SYDNEY (AP) — Wild Oats XI skipper Mark Richards was extremely pleased after the weather briefing for the Sydney to Hobart race that he's won eight times.
"You couldn't ask for a nicer, more comfortable forecast, really," Richards said.
Light winds might favor smaller boats in Sydney-Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — The four super maxis entered in this year's Sydney to Hobart race might not have it all their own way — favorable wind conditions could produce a record for medium-sized boats but might slow down the 100-foot yachts as they chase line honors.
The 73rd edition of the 630-nautical-mile race from Sydney Harbor to the island state of Tasmania begins on Dec. 26 and has 102 entries, including 30 international boats.
Four super maxis set to contest Sydney to Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — Four super maxis will be among 107 yachts entered in the Sydney to Hobart race beginning Dec. 26 from Sydney Harbour.
Christian Beck, the new owner of last year's champion Perpetual Loyal, now known as InfoTrack, has never experienced an offshore race.
He'll be up against Mark Richards, who has skippered Wild Oats XI to a record eight line honors victories in the annual 630-nautical mile race to the island state of Tasmania.
Former Australian prime minister says he was head-butted
CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Australia's prime minister on Friday urged restraint in the nation's same-sex marriage debate after predecessor Tony Abbott said he was head-butted by a gay rights advocate and sustained a swollen lip.
Abbott said he was attacked in the Tasmania state capital Hobart on Thursday as he walked with a staffer to his hotel after attending an anti-gay marriage luncheon.
Qualifier Mertens is now a champion at Hobart International
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Belgian qualifier Elise Mertens' decision to forego singles qualifying for the Australian Open paid big dividends Saturday when she beat Monica Niculescu 6-3, 6-1 in the Hobart International final.
As the 21-year-old Mertens advanced through the Hobart field, including a win over top-seeded Kiki Bertens, she had a difficult decision to make: withdraw from the tournament and head to Melbourne for Open qualifying, or stay in the Tasmanian state capital and keep playing.
Giacomo wins handicap honors in Sydney to Hobart race
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Giacomo, a 70-foot New Zealand yacht skippered by winemaker Jim Delegat and whose teenage sons Nikolas and James were among its crew, was declared the handicap winner of the Sydney to Hobart race on Thursday, just over a day after it crossed the line second behind line honors winner Perpetual Loyal.
Perpetual Loyal wins Sydney to Hobart race in record time
HOBART, Australia (AP) — Supermaxi Perpetual Loyal has taken line honors in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race with its winning time nearly five hours faster than the previous record.
Skippered by Anthony Bell, Perpetual Loyal crossed the finish line at Constitution Dock in Hobart around 2:30 a.m. local time on Wednesday to complete the 630-nautical-mile race in 1 day, 13 hours, 31 minutes, 20 seconds.
Perpetual LOYAL leads Sydney to Hobart race on record pace
SYDNEY (AP) — Supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL remained on course Tuesday to win the Sydney to Hobart yacht race in record time after inheriting the lead when race favorite Wild Oats XI withdrew due to a hydraulic failure.
Perpetual LOYAL took the lead when eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats quit the race early Tuesday and for the second year in a row with a failure which affected its moveable keel.
Wild Oats XI retires from Sydney to Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — Eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats XI has been forced to retire from the Sydney to Hobart yacht race for the second straight year after suffering damage to a hydraulic ram.
Wild Oats takes lead in Sydney to Hobart
SYDNEY (AP) — Eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats XI overcame a botched start to take a narrow lead in the Sydney to Hobart yacht race on Monday as the fleet of 88 boats rushed down Australia's east coast at record-breaking speed.
Supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL was first through Sydney Heads for the second straight year after race favorite Wild Oats missed the start and was forced to pick its way through a fleet of smaller yachts.
Perpetual LOYAL takes early lead in Sydney to Hobart race
SYDNEY (AP) — Supermaxi Perpetual LOYAL was first through Sydney Heads for the second straight year after eight-time line honors winner Wild Oats XI botched Monday's start to the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race.
Skippered by Australia's Anthony Bell, Perpetual LOYAL lived up to its billing as the fastest supermaxi in the world as it led the 88-yacht fleet out of Sydney Harbour near the start of the 628 nautical mile passage to Hobart on the island state of Tasmania.
Slingsby looks to add Sydney to Hobart to race win resume
SYDNEY (AP) — Australian sailor Tom Slingsby has won the America's Cup and an Olympic gold medal. Still missing from his career resume is a line honors' victory in the Sydney to Hobart race.
Slingsby will be the master tactician aboard super maxi Perpetual Loyal when it leaves Sydney on Monday along with 88 other yachts in the annual 628-nautical mile race to Australia's island state of Tasmania.
Navigator: Sydney to Hobart race record could be broken
SYDNEY (AP) — The navigator for super maxi Wild Oats XI, which holds the Sydney to Hobart line honors race record, said Thursday the 100-foot yacht could finish three hours faster than the mark it set in 2012, based on weather bureau projections for Monday's start.
South Africa captain’s ball-tampering appeal dismissed
LONDON (AP) — Licking a boiled sweet has cost South Africa cricket captain Faf du Plessis his entire match fee for a test match against Australia last month.
The International Cricket Council dismissed Du Plessis' appeal after he was found guilty of changing the condition of the ball during the test in Hobart by applying spit to the ball while licking a boiled sweet.
10 Chinese men charged with drug smuggling in Australia
SYDNEY (AP) — Ten Chinese nationals were charged on Tuesday with drug smuggling in Australia after officials said they found a stash of cocaine worth more than 60 million Australian dollars ($44 million) on their ship.
Wild Oats XI wins Big Boat Challenge
SYDNEY (AP) — Wild Oats XI took line honors in the Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbor for a ninth time Tuesday, boosting its prospects of winning the Sydney to Hobart race later this month for a ninth time.
Gamble on youth buys time for Australia’s cricket recovery
ADELAIDE, South Africa (AP) — One win hasn't made a summer for Australian cricket. Nor has it entirely saved the players or the administration of the national team.
Australia ends 5-test losing streak with win vs South Africa
ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Steve Smith ushered his new-look Australia lineup to the brink of victory, then entrusted a pair of rookies to finish off the seven-wicket win over South Africa on Sunday that ended a demoralizing streak of five defeats.
Du Plessis out, South Africa relying on Cook in 3rd test
ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — Mitchell Starc struck with his fifth ball and returned to get the biggest wicket under lights, giving Australia a psychological edge over South Africa when he ended Faf du Plessis' impregnable run at the Adelaide Oval.
Du Plessis to face ball tampering hearing on Tuesdya
ADELAIDE, Australia (AP) — South Africa captain Faf du Plessis will answer a charge of ball tampering at an International Cricket Council hearing at the Adelaide Oval on Tuesday.
The charge, of breaching cricket's law 42.3, which relates to altering the condition of the ball, was brought by ICC chief executive Dave Richardson after the second test between South Africa and Australia in Hobart.
Selection chairman urges patience with new-look Aussie team
SYDNEY (AP) — Australia's chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns has called on the country's cricket fans to show patience with the new-look team named on Sunday for the third test South Africa.
South Africa show solidarity with captain Faf du Plessis
SYDNEY (AP) — South Africa's cricket team has rallied behind beleaguered captain Faf du Plessis as he faces allegations of ball tampering after the second test against Australia.
Du Plessis is subject to an International Cricket Council investigation, accused of shining the ball while having a sweet in his mouth during the match at Hobart, where South Africa won by an innings and 81 runs this week to clinch a 2-0 win in the three-test series.