Sports News in brief
AUCKLAND - Bundee Aki and Patrick Osborne will make their Super Rugby debuts when the injury-hit Chiefs begin their title defence against the Highlanders in Dunedin on Friday. Aki will wear the No.12 spot vacated by Sonny Bill Williams's return to the NRL, while Osborne will be on the right wing. Tim Nanai-Williams usually used at wing or fullback, will operate at outside centre, while Gareth Anscombe, recruited as back-up five-eighth, will play fullback. The Chiefs are missing fullback Robbie Robinson, centre Richard Kahui, utility Andrew Horrell and halfback Brendon Leonard through injury.
LOS ANGELES, California - Joe Johnson provided the clutch plays as the Brooklyn Nets fought their way to a dramatic 113-111 NBA victory over the visiting Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday. Johnson nailed a three-pointer to send the game into overtime before delivering the game-winning jumper at the buzzer. With the game squared at 111-111, and just 5.2 seconds remaining in the extra five-minute session, Johnson took the inbound pass and used a crossover dribble to create separation from Luc Richard Mbah a Moute before launching the difference-maker at the free throw line. The win let the Nets snap a 13-game slide against the Bucks dating back to March 30, 2009.
CHICAGO, Illinois - The Chicago Blackhawks matched an NHL record start to a season on Tuesday, beating the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 to post their 16th consecutive game where they earned at least one point. Chicago is now 13-0-3 this season and have tied the 2006-07 Anaheim Ducks' record of points from consecutive games. The Blackhawks host the San Jose Sharks on Friday where they will have an opportunity to beat the record.
DUBAI - Defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska and Australia's Samantha Stosur led a parade of top seeds into the Dubai Open quarter-finals on a day overshadowed by the abrupt withdrawal of Serena Williams with a back injury. Williams, who became the oldest top-ranked woman on Monday, said she's had a sore back and ankle since the Australian Open, though she still reached the final in Doha last weekend. Her departure, announced 45 minutes before she was due to face 11th-ranked Marion Bartoli, came a day after second-ranked Victoria Azarenka, who beat Williams in the Doha final, withdrew with a right foot bone bruise. "I've just had some back problems the past couple weeks. It didn't get better," Williams said. "I thought it would get better as the week went on, but it didn't. I don't want to keep pushing it and make it worse."
Change of guard
LONDON - David Gill is to step down as chief executive of Manchester United on June 30, the English soccer giants have announced. In a statement on the club's website, the 55-year-old Gill said his post-season exit would allow the Premier League leaders to "refresh themselves with new management and ideas". United added that executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward would replace Gill. Gill is a vice-chairman of England's governing Football Association and one of the country's most highly regarded soccer administrators.