Hatanaka sets world record in wheelchair marathon
OITA, Japan (AP) _ Kazu Hatanaka of Japan won the women’s wheelchair marathon Sunday in a world record time of 1 hour, 39 minutes and 40 seconds.
Switzerland’s Heinz Frei captured the men’s title for the fifth consecutive year.
The 28-year-old Hatanaka broke the record of 1:42:00, set by Connier Hansen of Denmark in Switzerland in 1992.
Monica Wetterstrom of Sweden was runner-up to Hatanaka in 1:39:41, while Luise Sauvage of Australia was third in 1:46:58.
Frei’s winning time of 1:24:49 was 3:19 ahead of Saul Mendoza of Mexico. It was the 39-year-old Frei’s seventh victory in the yearly race.
The field included 433 competitors from 28 countries.
Braun criticizes FIFA over TV rights
HAMBURG, Germany (AP) _ Germany’s leading soccer official sharply criticized FIFA general secretary Sepp Blatter on Sunday over his country’s broadcast rights to the 2002 and 2006 World Cups being sold to pay TV.
``Soccer is a people’s sport. We can’t shut out a large part of our customers from the live experience,″ Egidius Braun, president of the German soccer federation (DFB) told the weekly Welt am Sonntag.
Soccer’s premier event, traditionally carried by public TV in Germany, was bought by the Sporis-Kirch media group, which plans to broadcast at least some matches on its pay-TV outlet, Premiere.
Since then, outrage has been growing in the country, with advocates that World Cup matches should be carried on free TV claiming the sport and the popular German national team are unifying forces in modern Germany.
Braun said that FIFA, soccer’s world governing body, needs to be more democratic and should stop taking unilateral actions.
``It’s not his (Blatter’s) job to make politics. The general secretary should only carry out what the member organizations decide,″ Braun said, adding money can’t be the only factor in granting World Cup broadcast rights. ``I’m extreme there and say, let’s go ahead and relinquish a billion (marks).″
American Brian Watts wins Philip Morris tournament
KATO, Japan (AP) _ Brian Watts of the United States shot 2-under-par 70 Sunday for an 8-under 280 total and a two-stroke victory in the $1.7 million Philip Morris golf tournament.
It was the 31-year-old Watts’ second victory on the Japan PGA tour this season and 10th overall in Japan.
Watts, who started the final round with a three-stroke lead, had three birdies, including a 35-foot putt on the par-4, 447-yard 2nd hole on the 7,176-yard ABC Golf Club course.
Kaname Yokoo, 25, of Japan shot the day’s best score, a 68, and was second at 282.
``I would like to present this victory to my son, born last July,″ said Watts, who collected $300,000.
Pete Jordan of the United States, who started the final round three strokes behind Watts, shot a 70 for a 283 total and tied for third with Roger Mackay of Australia, who also shot a 70.
Denmark’s Christensen wins Hong Kong Open
HONG KONG (AP) _ Peter Gade Christensen of Denmark, the world’s No. 1-ranked player, rallied from a game down to beat compatriot Thomas Stuer-Laurisden 7-15, 15-6, 15-4 Sunday in the final of the Hong Kong Open Badminton Championships.
Christensen, who replaced Olympic champion and fellow Dane Poul Erik Hoyer-Larsen as the world’s top player last week, controlled the second and third games with deft touches and powerful smashes.
``At the start, Thomas was controlling the net, but eventually I took control and I played a very good last game,″ said Christensen, who collected $11,050 for his victory.
Gong Ruina beat Wu Huimin 11-3, 8-11, 11-5 to win the women’s singles title in an all-Chinese final.
South Korea grabbed all three doubles titles. Ha Tae-kwon and Kim Dong-moon beat Indonesia’s Ha Mono and Hian Eng 15-4, 15-12 to win the men’s doubles crown; Ra Kyung-min and Chung Jae-hee defeated China’s Liu Lu and Qian Hong 15-7, 15-2 to win the women’s title; and Kim Dong-moon and Ra Kyung-min beat compatriots Ha Tae-kwon and Chung Jae-hee 15-12, 15-3 in mixed doubles.