Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 17th 2018 Contents sports A45
Saturday, March 17, 2018
Southwest Division title
HOUSTON — James Harden scored 24
points, Eric Gordon added 23 and the
Houston Rockets outlasted the Los An-
geles Clippers for a 101-96 victory on
The Clippers scored six straight
points, with four from Austin Rivers, to
cut the lead to a basket with less than a
minute left. But on the next possession,
Harden stepped back and knocked
down a long 2-pointer with Rivers in his
face to make it 100-96.
Rivers missed a 3-pointer after that
before Harden made one of two free
throws with 6.2 seconds left to secure
It’s Houston’s third straight win and
snaps a three-game winning streak
for the Clippers. The victory, coupled
with a loss by the Pelicans to the Spurs,
wrapped up the Southwest Division title
for the Rockets.
Tobias Harris led the Clippers with 29
points and Rivers had 20.
In PORTLAND, Oregon, CJ McCollum
scored 29 points and Portland won its
NBA-best 11th straight game with a vic-
tory over Cleveland.
Damian Lillard added 24 points for
the Blazers, on their longest run since
also winning 11 in a row in 2013. It was
the Blazers’ eighth straight win at home.
LeBron James had 35 points, includ-
ing a highlight-reel dunk in the first
quarter that had the fans at the Moda
Center momentarily stunned. He also
had 14 rebounds for his sixth straight
double-double. Kyle Korver added 19
Bangladesh reaches tri-series final
COLOMBO — Mahmudullah smashed
a six off the second-to-last delivery
in a dramatic final over for Bangla-
desh to beat Sri Lanka by two wick-
ets yesterday and qualify for the
Twenty20 tri-series final.
Tournament host Sri Lanka will
miss the climax of its own party.
Bangladesh will face India in the
Bangladesh needed 12 off the
last four balls and nearly left the
field and forfeited the match after
protesting that the umpires did not
award them a no ball.
However, when play resumed
Mahmudullah hit 4-2-6 off left-arm
medium-pacer Isuru Udana. The
winning hit was over backward
square leg, and Mahmudullah
was mobbed by his teammates.
Sri Lanka and its fans were left
Bangladesh won the toss, made
Sri Lanka bat first, and the host tal-
lied a competitive 159-7.
Sri Lanka slumped to 41-5 but
Kusal Perera and Thisara Perera
shared 97 runs for the sixth wicket
off 61 balls to lift their team.
Perera top-scored with 61 off 40
deliveries including seven bounda-
ries and a six, and Perera hit three
sixes and three boundaries for a 37-
Left-arm seamer Mustafizur Rah-
man took two wickets for 39 runs
Bangladesh also lost two wickets
early in its chase but Tamim Iqbal
and Mushfiqur Rahim shared 64
runs for the third wicket.
When Rahim was out for 28 in
the 13th over, Bangladesh was com-
fortably placed needing 63 runs off
45 deliveries with seven wickets re-
However, they stumbled to be
The last over began with Bangla-
desh needing 12 to win. Mustafizur
Rahman whiffed at the first short
delivery, and again at the second
bouncer. But he and Mahmudullah
ran a single, only for Mustafizur to
be run out at the bowler’s end.
But a dispute arose with the um-
pires for not awarding Bangladesh
a no-ball as Udana exceeded the
solitary bouncer allowed per over.
Bangladesh captain Shakib Al
Hasan called his batsmen off the
field as players from both teams en-
gaged in heated arguments.
When faced with forfeit and dis-
qualification, Bangladesh relented,
and the batsmen returned to the
And Mahmudullah completed the
chase in emphatic fashion, with a
boundary through the covers, two
runs from a shot to deep midwicket,
and the six from what appeared to
be a mere flick.
Tamim, who launched the chase,
scored 50 off 42 balls including
two sixes and four boundaries,
and Mahmudullah finished with
a match-winning 43 not out off 18
Brazil’s Luis could make it to W/Cup
MADRID — Brazil left back Filipe
Luis is expected to recover in time
for the World Cup after undergoing
surgery to repair a broken left leg
Atletico Madrid said Luis was
expected to be sidelined for about
two months after doctors success-
fully installed a plate in the left
fibula he broke on Thursday in the
The injury put in doubt Luis’ par-
ticipation in the World Cup in Rus-
sia, depending on the severity.
Brazil’s first game at the World
Cup is against Switzerland on June
The 32-year-old Luis had been
called up by Brazil coach Tite for
friendlies against Russia in Moscow
on March 23 and against Germany
in Berlin on March 27. The Brazilian
federation said Luis was replaced
by Juventus left back Alex Sandro.
Luis was injured on Thursday
while trying to prevent Lokomotiv
Moscow forward Eder taking a shot
from inside the area in the 60th
minute. He successfully cleared the
ball but his leg was hit from behind.
He was taken off on a stretcher.
Atletico won the last-16 match 5-1
and advanced 8-1 on aggregate after
the victory in Russia.
Also, Atletico said defender Juan-
fran Torres injured a hamstring in
explaining why he left the match at
halftime. The club did not say how
long Torres will be sidelined.
Atletico is eight points behind
Spanish league leader Barcelona
with 10 matches remaining. Its
next league match is tomorrow at
Reus, Goetze out
for Spain, Brazil
BERLIN — Germany coach Joachim
Low kept Marco Reus out of the
national team squad for upcoming
friendlies against Spain and Brazil,
saying it was in the player’s own in-
Both Reus and Borussia Dort-
mund teammate Mario Goetze
failed to make the 26-player squad
yesterday for the defending world
champion’s games against Spain
in Duesseldorf on March 23 and
against Brazil in Berlin four days
Low said that Reus, who only re-
cently returned from a serious knee
injury sustained in the German Cup
final last May, needs to continue his
recovery without extra pressure.
The 29-year-old Reus, who
missed Euro 2016 and the 2014
World Cup with injuries sustained
shortly before both tournaments,
has just 29 appearances for Ger-
many. However, he has scored
three goals in five Bundesliga ap-
pearances since his return last
Reus had to go off during Dort-
mund’s Europa League exit in
Salzburg on Thursday with a groin
Dortmund coach Peter Stoeger
said yesterday that Reus might miss
the side’s Bundesliga game against
Hannover tomorrow, but he was
not “definitely” ruled out.
Goetze, who scored Germany’s
winning goal in the 2014 World Cup
final, has not yet returned to his
previous level after missing much
of last season with a metabolic
Low called up three forwards in
Leipzig’s Timo Werner, Stuttgart’s
Mario Gomez and Bayern Mu-
nich’s Sandro Wagner. Jonas Hec-
tor and Leon Goretzka return after
overcoming injuries, while Amin
Younes of Ajax was not recalled.
Germany’s No 1 goalkeeper Manuel
Neuer remains injured.
Germany begins its World Cup
defense against Mexico in Moscow
on June 17. (AP)
roll into Indian
INDIAN WELLS — The seniors are
rolling into the semifinals at the
BNP Paribas Open in California.
Roger Federer and Venus Wil-
liams won in straight sets on
Thursday night, extending the
36-year-old Swiss superstar’s bid
for a record sixth title in the de-
sert and the 37-year-old Ameri-
can’s attempt to win her first.
Federer defeated Chung Hyeon
7-5, 6-1 and equal his career-best
start of 16-0 from 2006.
Williams beat Carla Suarez
Navarro 6-3, 6-2 in the event
where she first broke out as a
16-year-old qualifier in 1997.
Federer won the Australian
Open in January and has regained
the No. 1 ranking. Williams re-
turned to the top 10 last year after
being runner-up at the Australian
Open and Wimbledon.
“I’m just happy that I’m able
to keep up a good level. Same
for Venus,” Federer said. “Really
happy for her that she’s really
consistently easily making all
these semis and finals and win-
Next up for Federer is Borna
Coric of Croatia, who upset No 7
seed Kevin Anderson 2-6, 6-4, 7-6
(3) for his first win in four tries
against the South African.
Williams has never reached the
final of the desert tournament
and to do she’ll have to get by
20-year-old Russian Daria Kasat-
kina, who has yet to drop a set in
four matches at Indian Wells.
Miami with injury
KEY BISCAYNE — Five-time Grand
Slam champion Maria Sharapova
has withdrawn from the Miami
Open that begins next week be-
cause of a left forearm injury.
Sharapova announced the deci-
sion yesterday. She’ll be replaced
in the main draw by American
Sharapova lost in the first round
at Indian Wells last week and in
the third round of the Australian
Open in January. She returned to
the tour last year after a 15-month
doping ban. (AP)
Venus Williams celebrates after
defeating Carla Suarez Navarro, of
Spain, during the quarterfinals at
the BNP Paribas Open tennis
tournament, Thursday in Indian
Germany coach Joachim Low
Houston Rockets’ James Harden (13) celebrates with the crowd during the
closing seconds of the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los
Angeles Clippers Thursday in Houston. The Rockets won 101-96. PICTURE AP
RAPTORS 106, PACERS 99
SPURS 98, PELICANS 93
76ERS 118, KNICKS 110
NUGGETS 120, PISTONS 113
JAZZ 116, SUNS 88
HORNETS 129, HAWKS 117
BULLS 111, GRIZZLIES 110
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