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Friday, May 4, 2007 - Page updated at 02:02 AM

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Briefs | Sampras wins; hybrid court prompts lawsuit


Sampras wins big in return: Pete Sampras routed Petr Korda 6-1, 6-2 in the opening round of the Champions Cup on Thursday in Boston, the 14-time major winner's first tournament in nearly five years.

In the first match, John McEnroe beat Tim Mayotte 6-1, 7-5. But the night belonged to Sampras, who hadn't played in a competitive match since beating Andre Agassi in the 2002 U.S. Open final.

"It was fun — it was nice playing in the crowd," said the 35-year-old. "I felt excited walking out there with a nice ovation. This is why I decided to play."

Teaching pro sues organizers over hybrid court: A South Carolina teaching pro has sued organizers of the recently concluded half-grass, half-clay tennis match between stars Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

Renata Marcinkowska, a former WTA tour player who now lives in Rock Hill, took action against management and marketing giant, IMG, and two advertising firms involved in Wednesday's exhibition in Palma De Mallorca, Spain.

The suit, which does not specify damages, claims Marcinkowska invented the idea of a tennis court of differing surfaces on either side of the net, received a patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in November 2004 and pitched the idea to IMG soon after she got the patent.

"IMG did not express interest in the Patent at the time," according to Marcinkowska's suit, filed Tuesday in federal court in Columbia.

Marcinkowska, 42, says in her suit she met with IMG in February "with the idea of having Roger Federer play Rafael Nadal on a hybrid court." Again, the suit said, IMG expressed no interest in going forward.

She learned of plans for the Federer-Nadal exhibition last month and made several calls to IMG and sent e-mails to the company to try and stop it, according to the suit

"I'm very disappointed," Marcinkowska said. "I don't want to say too much because I feel like they're a Goliath and I'm just a little David."

Nadal won 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (10).

College basketball

Pitino, Brey get extensions: Coach Rick Pitino signed a three-year contract extension with Louisville that could keep him at the school through 2012-13. The new deal increases Pitino's annual salary from $1.65 million to $2.25 million beginning next season, and will pay him $2.5 million a year if he stays until the end of the contract. The contract also boosted a loyalty bonus due Pitino on July 1 from $1 million to $1.75 million. He'll receive loyalty bonuses of $3.6 million in 2010 and 2013 if he remains with the school.

Also, Notre Dame coach Mike Brey signed a two-year contract extension to remain with the Irish through the 2012-13 season.


Ex-Charger pleads guilty: Former San Diego linebacker Steve Foley pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of driving with a blood-alcohol level above California's legal limit the night he was followed and shot by an off-duty police officer.

Foley was sentenced by Judge Charles Rogers to five years probation and ordered to submit to alcohol testing if requested by authorities. He also was ordered to pay a $1,756 fine and appear at a public event for Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Bills sign Scobey: Ex-Seahawk Josh Scobey signed with the Bills, providing Buffalo depth at running back and special teams.


Sevilla, Espanyol to play in all-Spanish UEFA Cup final: Sevilla and Espanyol will play in an all-Spanish UEFA Cup final.

Sevilla, the tournament's defending champion, advanced by beating Osasuna 2-0 in the second leg of the semifinals and 2-1 on aggregate. Espanyol reached the last game by beating Werder Bremen 2-1 and 5-1 on aggregate.

The final will be played at Hampden Park in Glasgow, Scotland, on May 16.

Track and field

Powell out: Asafa Powell, world 100-meter record holder, could be out of competition for several weeks because of knee tendinitis.


T-Mobile suspends 2 doctors: The T-Mobile cycling team suspended doctors Andreas Schmid and Lothar Heinrich, who allegedly supplied EPO to former Tour de France winners Bjarne Riis, Jan Ullrich and other riders.


Louis Vuitton Cup racing postponed: A lack of wind postponed Louis Vuitton Cup match racing for a day.

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