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April 21, 2020
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April 21, 2020
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VIRUS OUTBREAK-DJOKOVIC
Djokovic says he may reconsider stance on vaccination
BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) – Novak Djokovic has reiterated he is against taking an anti-coronavirus vaccination if it becomes mandatory to travel, but says he’s open to changing his mind.

 

The top-ranked Djokovic caused a stir when he suggested in a live Facebook chat over the weekend that if a vaccination becomes compulsory on the world tennis tour then he “wouldn’t want to be forced by someone” to take it.

 

Djokovic says in a statement emailed to the AP that despite his personal objection to a vaccine, “if it becomes compulsory, I will have to make a decision whether to do it or not.”

 

BASEBALL-TICKET LAWSUIT
LOS ANGELES (AP) – A pair of fans in New York have sued Major League Baseball, Commissioner Rob Manfred and the 30 teams, asking for their money back for tickets and for certification of class-action status.

 

The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Los Angeles by Matthew Ajzenman, who said he bought a partial season plan for more than 20 Mets games; and Susan Terry-Bazer, who said she purchased six tickets for a May 9 game at Yankee Stadium against Boston.

 

Ticketmaster, Stubhub, Live Nation and Last Minute Transactions are among the defendants.

 

MLB has said it is awaiting government and medical direction, and it does not know when the season can begin. The league and the players’ union have discussed the possibility of playing at neutral sites or in empty ballparks, but no decisions have been made.

 

OLYMPICS-POSTPONMENT COSTS
Conflict over who will pay for the Olympic delay
TOKYO (AP) – An open conflict has broken out between Tokyo Olympic organizers and the IOC over who will be paying for the unprecedented year-long postponement.

 

Tokyo spokesman Masa Takaya says the organizing committee asked the Switzerland-based IOC to remove a comment from its website suggesting that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe agreed that Japan would pay most of the postponement costs.

 

Media reports in Japan estimate the year-long delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic will cost $2 billion to $6 billion.

 

Takaya says it was not appropriate for Abe’s name to be linked. The IOC removed the reference.

 

SOUTH KOREA-BASEBALL
South Korean season to begin in May without fans
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) – South Korea’s professional baseball league has decided to begin its season on May 5.

 

The games will be played without fans until the risk of infection from the coronavirus is gone.

 

The league plans to maintain a 144-game regular-season schedule but has decided scrap its all-star game and shorten the first round of the playoffs from a best-of-five to best-of-three series.

 

The KBO says it could shorten the regular season if infections erupt. The league will advise players to wear face masks in locker rooms and require them to download smartphone apps to report their daily health status to league officials.

 

SOCCER-BARCELONA STADIUM
Naming rights to be sold to iconic Barcelona stadium to benefit virus fight
BARCELONA (AP) – Barcelona’s soccer team will sell the title rights to its famed stadium for one year in an effort to raise money for the fight against the coronavirus.

 

The Spanish club’s executive board says it will donate the entire fee raised by selling the title rights to the Camp Nou to fighting the global pandemic. The Camp Nou has never had a sponsor since it opened in 1957.

 

NFL-OBIT-CURTIS
Former Colts linebacker Mike Curtis dead at 77
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) – The hard-hitting, no-nonsense linebacker Mike Curtis has died. He died Monday in St. Petersburg, Florida.

 

Son Clay says on Twitter his father died of “complications from CTE,” a degenerative brain disease.
Curtis helped the Colts win a Super Bowl during a 14-year career spent predominantly in Baltimore. He earned the nickname “Mad Dog” because of his fierce play in the middle of a strong Baltimore defense.

 

His interception in the waning minutes of the 1970 Super Bowl set up the winning field goal in the Colts’ win over Dallas.

 

Mike Curtis was 77 years old.

AP-WF-04-21-20 1502GMT