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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Hudson call up

AUCKLAND — Injured New Zealand Breakers centre Will Hudson will travel to Perth for the NBL champions' rematch with the only team to have beaten them this season. The club said scans showed no major damage to Hudson's left ankle, which he sprained in practice on Monday but had responded well to extensive treatment.

A decision as to whether the American, who backs up Alex Pledger, will play and how much court time he will get will be made closer to tip-off on Thursday night. The Breakers beat Perth in last season's grand final to take their second successive NBL title.

But they were mauled by the Wildcats 93-72 in Auckland on the opening night of the new campaign before embarking on their seven-match winning run.

Perth are looking to break a three-match losing streak that has dropped their record to 3-3.

Cycling crash

LONDON — British cycling star Mark Cavendish has said he is "relatively ok" after colliding with a car while training in Italy. Cavendish, the 2011 world road race champion, who has a home in Tuscany, told his Twitter followers on Monday: "Went & hit the back of a car that slammed on today in training. Wasn't ideal. Apart from a bruised arm, I'm relatively ok.

If anyone cares." Cavendish's accident happened less than two weeks after Tour de France winner Bradley Wiggins and British Cycling head coach Shane Sutton were knocked off their bikes in Britain. The 27-year-old Cavendish, who last month left Team Sky for Belgian outfit Omega Pharma-Quickstep, has now travelled from Tuscany to California.

It was an eventful weekend for the Isle of Man born rider who also announced his engagement to former model Peta Todd.

Mass trade

NEW YORK - Major League Baseball officially approved a controversial multi-player trade involving Miami and Toronto on Monday that many consider to be a salary dump by the last-placed Marlins. The Marlins agreed to send shortstop Jose Reyes, catcher John Buck, outfielder Emilio Bonifacio and pitchers Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle to Toronto.

In exchange, Miami receive shortstop Yunel Escobar, catcher Jeff Mathis, infielder Adeiny Hechavarria, pitcher Henderson Alvarez, minor league pitcher Anthony DeSclafani and a pair of prospects — outfielder Jake Marisnick and pitcher Justin Nicolino. The deal couldn't become official until league commissioner Bud Selig gave his approval.

The trade also involved cash. The Marlins finished last in the NL East after a spending spree that followed the building of a new ballpark.

No cheaters

LONDON — Drug cheats will definitely miss Olympic Games under the World Anti-Doping Agency's proposal to increase the suspension for serious violations from two years to four years.

WADA plans to double the standard penalty in the next edition of its global anti-doping code, which will come up for approval next year and go into effect in 2015.

WADA President John Fahey said on Monday there is "an overwhelming amount of support for the sanction to be strengthened" for use of steroids, human growth hormone and other serious doping substances and methods.

Some athletes and sports bodies have previously challenged four-year bans in court as being too severe and a restraint of trade. But Fahey said WADA took legal advice on the issue and believes the sanction will stand up in court.

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