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January 14, 2022
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January 14, 2022
AP Sports


Update on the latest sports


Djokovic again faces deportation after Australia revokes visa
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) – Novak Djokovic (NOH’-vak JOH’-kuh-vich) faces deportation again after the Australian government revoked his visa for a second time.
Immigration Minister Alex Hawke says he used his ministerial discretion to revoke the 34-year-old Serb’s visa on public interest grounds three days before the Australian Open begins. Djokovic’s lawyers are expected to appeal in a federal court as they successfully did last week on procedural grounds.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison welcomed Djokovic’s pending deportation, saying Australia has achieved one of the lowest pandemic death rates, strongest economies and highest vaccination rates in the world.
Everyone at the Australian Open is required to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Djokovic is not and sought an exemption because he had COVID-19 in December.


In other tennis news:
– French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova (kreh-jih-KOH’-vah) saved seven match points before beating Anett Kontaveit 0-6, 6-4, 7-6 to advance to the final of the Sydney Tennis Classic. The tournament is one of several warmup events for next week’s Australian Open. The fourth-ranked Kontaveit dominated early before Krejcikova took charge in the second and held on through the tiebreaker.


– Alison Riske advanced to what will be an all-American final in Adelaide after semifinal opponent Tamara Zidansek withdrew. Riske will meet Madison Keys in Saturday’s final.


Anti-coronavirus measures tightened across China
BEIJING (AP) – China is tightening its anti-pandemic measures in Beijing and across the country as scattered outbreaks continue ahead of the opening of the Winter Olympics in a little over two weeks. The actions appear to reflect nervousness about a possible surge in cases ahead of the Beijing Games.
Beijing has ordered children at international schools to be tested starting next week and is barring air passengers who transited via a third point. Citizens are being told only to travel if absolutely necessary, with no guarantee they will be permitted to return if found to have visited a city or region where an outbreak occurred.
The city of Tianjin, about an hour from the capital, has ordered a third round of mass testing starting Saturday morning to be completed within 24 hours. A port and manufacturing center with 14 million people, Tianjin is one of a half dozen cities where the government is imposing lockdowns and other restrictions as part of a policy to track down every virus case. Its proximity to Beijing is particularly worrying and authorities have cut off all travel links between it and the Olympic host city following the discovery of 126 cases in recent days, all apparently of the highly contagious omicron variant.
Elsewhere, more than 20 million people are under lockdown, many restricted to their homes amid concerns over supplies of food and other daily necessities. Factories have been closed, affecting supplies of computer chips and other products.


NFL taps data science community to help track head impacts
UNDATED (AP) – The NFL is continuing to crowdsource new ways to track head and helmet impacts during games from data scientists and for the second straight year the winner of its artificial intelligence competition comes from outside the United States.
The league announced Friday that the NFL and Amazon Web Services has awarded $100,000 in prizes for this year’s competition and the top prize of $50,000 going to Kippei Matsuda of Osaka, Japan. The task for Matsuda and the rest of the data scientists who took part was to use artificial intelligence to create models that would detect helmet impacts from NFL game footage and identify the specific players involved in those impacts.
NFL executive vice president Jeff Miller, who oversees health and safety, said the league started manually tracking helmet impacts for a small number of games a few years ago. The tedious task of tracking every helmet collision, especially along the line of scrimmage, made it difficult to do more than just a small sampling of games as the league tried to gather more data on head impacts.
By sharing game film and information with the data science community, the league is hoping to continue developing better systems that can track those impacts more efficiently. The league estimates Matsuda’s winning system could detect and track helmet impacts with greater accuracy and 83 times faster than a person working manually.