Police to quiz IOC head in ticket probe

RIO DE JANEIRO - Brazilian police said Thursday they want to question International Olympic Committee head Thomas Bach as a witness in investigations of a suspected ticket scam by officials during last month's Games. Rio de Janeiro police official Ronaldo Oliveira said investigators had seen an email that the top suspect in the probe, Ireland's Olympic chief Patrick Hickey, sent to Bach requesting tickets. "We want to question Thomas Bach as a witness because he features in the emails and we want to clear up certain uncertainties," Oliveira said. Bach caused a stir this week by failing to turn up for the opening ceremony of the Paralympic Games in Rio on Wednesday. Another investigator, Ricardo Barbosa de Souza, said Hickey emailed Bach in July 2015 asking to increase his allocation of tickets.–AFP



Clijsters in Hall of Fame contention

NEW YORK - Former world number ones Kim Clijsters of Belgium and Andy Roddick of the United States were among nominees announced Thursday for 2017 induction into the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Also placed on the ballot for consideration next year were Paralympic champion Monique Kalkman, 52, a noted 1990s Dutch wheelchair player, and contributors Vic Braden, an instructor who died in 2014 at age 85, and Steve Flink, a journalist and historian. "Kim Clijsters and Andy Roddick are two incredibly dynamic athletes who certainly left their mark on tennis history," said Hall of Fame president Stan Smith. Voting will take place later this year with inductees announced early next year and enshrinement set for July of 2017 at the Hall of Fame in Newport, Rhode Island.–AFP



Englishman Evans sets pace at Dutch Open

SPIJK - Englishman Ben Evans holds the lead at the Dutch Open after a six-under-par opening round of 65 put him a shot clear of the chasing pack at Spijk on Thursday. The 29-year-old, ranked 524th in the world, started his round on the back nine of the inland links course and sank seven birdies in all, including four in a row from the 12th. A bogey at the 17th proved to be the only blemish of his day in the Netherlands and he finished with five successive pars to ensure he will be the man to catch in the second round. "I holed a lot of putts early on in the round to get me to two under and then hit a few nice wedges in close to get off to a pretty fast start. The putting was the difference today -- I holed a lot of mid-range putts, which I haven't been doing a lot of lately," said Evans.–AFP



Jawad crowned as new street style champ

LAHORE - Jawad Blunt from Lahore crowned Pakistan's Red Bull Street Style Champion 2016. Jawad will now represent Pakistan at the Red Bull Street Style World Finals in London, which is the most important and awaited event for freestylers around the world. The final showdown of the Pakistan edition brought the best freestylers from Karachi, Lahore and Islamabad on one platform to showcase their skills and impressed fans and judged to win a chance to become 'Red Bull Street Style Pakistan Champion 2016'. After a tough contest, Lahore’s Jawad outplayed the winners from Karachi and Islamabad, including the wildcard entry, to earn the top honor to represent his country through his freestyling skills on a global platform at the Red Bull Street Style World Finals in UK (November 7,8, 2016).–Staff Reporter



Pacquiao would relish Mayweather rematch

BEVERLY HILLS - Manny Pacquiao said Thursday he would welcome the opportunity of a second fight against Floyd Mayweather but questioned whether the American could be lured out of retirement for a money-spinning rematch. Speaking at a press conference to launch his comeback fight against Jessie Vargas in Las Vegas on November 5, the Filipino boxer said he would be ready to fight Mayweather again if there was a demand for it from fans. "If the fans want it, and he wants it, then I'm open to it. I'm open to any fight," Pacquiao told reporters in Beverly Hills. However Pacquiao -- who abruptly ended his own retirement in August following what was billed as his farewell bout against Timothy Bradley in April -- said he suspected only money would tempt Mayweather to get back in the ring.–AFP