Kaliese Spencer's anti-doping case set for May 15

KINGSTON Reigning Commonwealth Games 400 metres hurdles champion Kaliese Spencer's anti-doping hearing will begin May 15 in Jamaica, the panel overseeing the case said on Wednesday.

Spencer, who has denied the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission's claims that she refused or evaded a drug test, will also learn sometime over the next week whether her request to have the provisional ban lifted is granted.

Her hearing will be conducted before Jamaica's Independent Anti-Doping Disciplinary Panel. The maximum penalty is a four-year suspension.

Ronaldo Airport overshadowed by dodgy statue

FUNCHAL Madeira renamed its airport in honour of Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday - although it is a new statue of the four-times world player of the year that is likely to grab the headlines.

The Atlantic island is where Ronaldo grew up, and the airport in its capital Funchal will now be known as "Aeroporto Cristiano Ronaldo".

The ceremony followed Portugal playing their first match on the island for 16 years, the hosts losing 3-2 to Sweden despite an early Ronaldo goal in the friendly on Tuesday.

Tottenham's Lamela out for the season, to undergo hip surgery

Tottenham Hotspur's attacking midfielder Erik Lamela will miss the rest of the season with a hip injury and is set to have surgery on Saturday to rectify the persistent problem.

The 25-year-old Argentina international, who joined from AS Roma in 2013, has not featured since October and, with two years left on his contract, has been linked with Inter Milan.

"Erik Lamela is to undergo surgery on his hip on Saturday. This will result in Erik returning to action next season," the Premier League club said in a statement on Wednesday.

Motor racing - Timberlake follows Swift as F1 Austin crowd-puller

LONDON Singer Justin Timberlake has been confirmed as the headline act at this year's U.S. Formula One Grand Prix as organisers seek to build on the crowd-pulling success of Taylor Swift's appearance at the 2016 race.

Timberlake, whose Oscar-nominated song 'Can't Stop the Feeling' won him a 10th Grammy Award, will appear on stage on Saturday Oct. 21 at Austin's Circuit of the Americas (COTA) after qualifying.

Last year's race ended a trend of declining audiences and drew a record crowd of 269,000 with Swift's first concert of the year watched by some 80,000 people.

Man United's Smalling and Jones to miss West Brom game

Manchester United defenders Chris Smalling and Phil Jones will miss Saturday's Premier League game against West Bromwich Albion after sustaining injuries on international duty with England.

United will be without at least five first-team players for the match at Old Trafford as Smalling and Jones join midfielder Paul Pogba and captain Wayne Rooney on the treatment table.

Smalling, who withdrew from the England squad last week, was photographed by British media wearing a leg brace on Monday after suffering his third injury of the campaign. Jones has a toe problem.

Motor racing - Timberlake follows Swift as F1 Austin crowd-puller

LONDON Singer Justin Timberlake has been confirmed as the headline act for this year's U.S. Formula One Grand Prix at Austin's Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in October.

Last year's event ended a run of disappointing attendances for the race by pulling in a record crowd of 269,000, partly down to singer Taylor Swift's appearance drawing 80,000 fans.

Race organizers are hopeful the appearance of multiple-Grammy winner Timberlake after qualifying on Oct. 21 will build on that success.

Figure skating - Medvedeva on track to emulate Kwan

By Pritha Sarkar
| HELSINKI

HELSINKI A nerveless and haunting short programme by Evgenia Medvedeva kept the Russian teenager on track to become the first skater since American Michelle Kwan in 2001 to win back-to-back women's titles at the world championships on Wednesday.

At 17, Medvedeva is one of the youngest competitors in the field but after arriving in Helsinki by stringing together nine successive wins, and with world record scores to boot, the Russian is already considered a goliath in the sport.

Motor racing - U.S. GP boss says F1 should own some circuits

By Alan Baldwin
| LONDON

LONDON U.S. Grand Prix promoter Bobby Epstein says it would make sense for Formula One's new American owners Liberty Media to buy some circuits as part of their long-term strategic plans for the sport.

The Circuit of the Americas (COTA) co-founder and chairman whose Austin, Texas, track is the country's sole purpose-built F1 facility, told Reuters he would be happy to do a deal "at the right price".

FA neglects players from smaller clubs - Palace chairman

Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha was not given an England call-up because the FA is biased towards players from the more "glamorous" Premier League clubs, according to Palace chairman Steve Parish.

England manager Gareth Southgate recently voiced his frustration with Zaha, who switched his international allegiance to Ivory Coast last year after not being selected for any England squad since 2013.

Zaha, who made two friendly appearances for England, committed to playing for Ivory Coast before Southgate's permanent appointment in November.

Golf - Red-hot Rahm tired but ready to roll in Houston

Jon Rahm may have been too tired to play a full practice round this week but there was no chance the red-hot Spanish rookie was going to skip the final pre-Masters tune-up at this week's Shell Houston Open.

Rahm, who will make his Masters debut next week, played 108 holes in seven rounds over five days during his run to the WGC-Dell Match Play final, and fatigue forced him to end Tuesday's practice round after nine holes.

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