Update on the latest in sports:
PARIS (AP) – All France is talking about is the World Cup. “Eternal Happiness” said today’s headline of sports daily L’Equipe, summing up the mood of many who can’t imagine the euphoria will ever fade.
France is readying to welcome home the national soccer team for a parade down the Champs-Elysees, where tens of thousands thronged after the team’s 4-2 victory over Croatia Sunday.
Heroes’ welcome despite loss
ZAGREB, Croatia (AP) – Croatia fans have poured in from throughout the country to give a heroes’ welcome today to the national team despite its loss to France in the World Cup final.
They’re attending celebrations at the central square in the capital Zagreb, following the players match in Russia.
The small country of 4 million people has been gripped in euphoria since its team beat England to reach its first World Cup final, where Croatia lost 4-2 to France.
Croatia’s state railway company cut ticket prices in half so fans could travel to Zagreb, while city authorities in the capital say public transportation is free today.
NHL’s Emery dies at 35
UNDATED (AP) – Retired NHL goaltender Ray Emery, who helped the Ottawa Senators reach the final in 2007 and won the Stanley Cup with the Chicago Blackhawks in 2013, drowned in his hometown of Hamilton, Ontario. He was 35.
Hamilton Police say Emery was identified as the victim of a swimming accident Sunday morning. His body was recovered in the afternoon. Hamilton Police say a cause of death would be confirmed after a post-mortem.
Nicknamed “Razor” for his aggressive style, Emery played parts of 11 seasons with the Ottawa Senators, Philadelphia Flyers, Chicago Blackhawks and Anaheim Ducks from 2003-2015. He helped the Senators reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2007 and won it as a backup with the Blackhawks in 2013.
Joshua to fight Povetkin in London in September
LONDON (AP) – Anthony Joshua will defend his WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles against Alexander Povetkin of Russia in London on Sept. 22.
Povetkin is the mandatory challenger to the WBA title and will take on Joshua at Wembley Stadium.
The 28-year-old Joshua beat Joseph Parker in Cardiff, Wales, on March 31 in his last fight.
The Briton has been in training while negotiations with WBC champion Deontay Wilder stalled, but could yet face the American in April 2019.
BLACK FOOTBALL PLAYER HONORED
Ohio honors 1st documented black pro football player
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) – The state of Ohio has approved legislation creating a day to honor the first documented, black professional football player, known by the nickname “The Black Cyclone.”
Republican Gov. John Kasich (KAY’-sik) signed the legislation designating Feb. 3 as Charles Follis Day. The Akron Beacon Journal reports Follis was born on Feb. 3, 1879, and grew up in Wooster – helping to organize the first varsity football team at his high school in 1899.
After graduation, Follis played with an amateur Wooster team and in 1904 he signed a contract with the Shelby (Ohio) Blues of the American Professional Football Association.
He sustained a career-ending injury a few years later and began playing baseball before he died from pneumonia in 1910 at age 31.