McIlroy defeats Woods in head-to-head golf duel
McIlroy defeats Woods in 1-on-1 duel
Rory McIlroy shot a 5-under-par 67 to beat Tiger Woods by one stroke in a head-to-head, 18-hole exhibition match on Monday between the world’s two top-ranked golfers at the Jinsha Lake Golf Club in Zhengzhou, China. McIlroy, the world No. 1, took an early lead with two birdies on the first three holes and held on to beat Woods, who had two bogeys to go along with his six birdies for the day. The 14-time major winner finished with a 68. Both players had to make long journeys to central China after competing elsewhere on Sunday. McIlroy finished second to Peter Hanson in the European Tour’s BMW Masters at Shanghai, while Woods tied for fourth in the PGA Tour’s CIMB Classic in Malaysia. The 18-hole medal match, dubbed ‘‘Duel at Jinsha Lake,’’ marked the first time the two had played head-to-head without other competitors . . . Germany will host the Solheim Cup for the first time after the St. Leon-Rot course was awarded the 2015 tournament. The club, near Frankfurt, has previously hosted the European Tour’s Deutsche Bank SAP Open, where Woods was a three-time champion.
Michigan’s Robinson expected to play
Michigan coach Brady Hoke said quarterback Denard Rob inson (right elbow nerve) is expected to play against Minnesota Saturday . . . Florida receiver Solomon Patton, who broke his left arm in Saturday’s 17-9 loss to Georgia, is out for the season. . . . Iowa State senior linebacker Jake Knott is likely out for the season after undergoing surgery for a torn left shoulder. Knott, the Big 12 defensive player of the week, was a first-team All-Big 12 pick in 2011 . . . Wisconsin quarterback Joel Stave is done for the season after breaking his left collarbone against Michigan State . . . Texas coach Mack Brown is sticking with slumping David Ash as quarterback. Ash was replaced by Case McCoy against Kansas on Saturday and McCoy drove the Longhorns to the winning touchdown in a 21-17 win . . . Montana tackle Trevor Poole was suspended indefinitely following his arrest on a felony drug charge in Missoula, Mont., over the weekend. Court records say when officers approached Poole, he told them he had two ‘‘molly’’ pills in his pocket that he had purchased that night. ‘‘Molly’’ is the street name for a form of the drug ecstasy.
Indiana’s Zeller heads All-Americans
Seven-foot sophomore center Cody Zeller, the main reason Indiana is the preseason No. 1 for the first time in 33 years, was one vote shy of being a unanimous selection for the Associated Press preseason All-America team. Zeller, who averaged 15.6 points and 6.6 rebounds per game, received 64 votes from the national media panel which selects the weekly Top 25. Also on the team were junior forwards Doug McDermott of Creighton and Deshaun Thomas of Ohio State and three guards — seniors Isaiah Canaan of Murray State and C.J. McCollum of Lehigh, and sophomore Trey Burke of Michigan . . . Georgia Tech athletic director Dan Radakovich was hired as Clemson’s AD.
Djokovic takes year-end No. 1 ranking
Novak Djokovic clinched the year-end No. 1 tennis ranking for the second straight year. Djokovic lost the top spot to Roger Federer in July but will return to No. 1 next week. The ATP said Federer will drop points from his 2011 title wins at the Swiss Indoors and Paris Masters. He lost in the Swiss Indoors final Sunday to Juan Martin del Potro, and then pulled out of next week’s Paris tournament. Federer will not be able to earn enough points to finish the year ahead of Djokovic . . . Kim Clijsters will play a ceremonial farewell match in Antwerp, Belgium, on Dec. 12 against Venus Williams. Clijsters, a four-time Grand Slam winner, retired after the US Open in August . . . Top-ranked Victoria Azarenka and Serena Williams will open their 2013 campaigns at the World Tennis Invitation exhibition tournament on Dec. 29 in Hua Hin, Thailand.
Catchings not ready to call it a career
Eight days after winning her first WNBA championship with the Indiana Fever, finals MVP Tamika Catchings said she plans to keep playing as long as her body allows. Catchings, 33, finished eighth in the league in scoring (17.4 points), seventh in rebounding (7.6), and was named the WNBA’s defensive player of the year for a record fifth time — all after spending the Olympic break in London leading the US to a gold medal. In 2011, Catchings was league MVP . . . Lionel Messi is in the running for a fourth consecutive FIFA world soccer player of the year award, which will be announced Jan. 7. Messi was joined on the list of 23 candidates by Barcelona teammates Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta, Gerard Pique, and Xavi Hernandez. Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney is again the only England player on the list . . . Team Sky sports director Steven de Jongh left the British squad after admitting to doping during his cycling career. The Dutchman’s departure comes after the team asked staff and riders to confirm whether they had any links to doping in the wake of the Lance Armstrong scandal.