Briefs | Venus Williams ends season with victory
Tennis Williams beats Zvonareva in final: American Venus Williams rallied to win the WTA Tour's Sony Ericsson Championships for the first...
Williams beats Zvonareva in final: American Venus Williams rallied to win the WTA Tour's Sony Ericsson Championships for the first time, defeating Vera Zvonareva of Russia 6-7 (5-7), 6-0, 6-2 Sunday at the season-ending event in Doha, Qatar.
The Wimbledon champion took command in the last two sets with powerful serving, smashes and aggressive groundstrokes.
"I'm so excited," said Williams, who earned $1.34 million. "That was a hard-fought match, every point, right down to the end."
Williams' world ranking will improve to No. 6 from No. 8, and the ninth-ranked Zvonareva also will move up two spots. The two were the lowest-ranked players at the eight-player tournament.
Williams beat top-ranked Jelena Jankovic of Serbia in the semifinals.
Zvonareva became increasingly frustrated and collapsed to the court in tears when Williams broke her in the final set to go ahead 3-1. Williams has a 6-1 record in their matches.
In the doubles final, Cara Black of Zimbabwe and Liezel Huber of South Africa defeated Kveta Peschke of the Czech Republic and Rennae Stubbs of Australia 6-1, 7-5.
Djokovic, Davydenko win Masters Cup matches: Novak Djokovic of Serbia fed off the crowd's cheers at the ATP Tour's season-ending Masters Cup in Shanghai, China. For Nikolay Davydenko of Russia, a handful of backers was enough.
Djokovic, who won the bronze medal at this year's Beijing Olympics, generated a huge roar by saying "Thank you" in Chinese after starting round-robin play with a 7-5, 6-3 victory over Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina.
Davydenko beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France 6-7 (6-8), 6-4, 7-6 (7-0).
Pettitte files for free agency: Left-hander Andy Pettitte of the New York Yankees filed for free agency after repeatedly saying he hopes to return to the team.
Pettitte went 14-14 this year with a 4.54 earned-run average — his highest ERA since 1999. General manager Brian Cashman said last week he wants Pettitte, 36, to return next season.
Pettitte likely would have to agree to a cut from last season's $16 million salary.
Yankees officials said they expect right-hander Mike Mussina to announce soon whether he will retire. Mussina, 39, was 20-9 with a 3.37 ERA this year.
Seibu Lions win Japan Series: Former Mariner Hiram Bocachica hit a solo home run in the fifth inning to help the Seibu Lions win their first Japan Series title since 2004.
The Lions defeated the Yomiuri Giants 3-2 in Game 7.
Layoffs in Arizona: The sluggish economy is impacting the front office of the Arizona Diamondbacks.
The team cut 31 employees from its front office, moves team president Derrick Hall said were a result of rising expenses and a sluggish economy.
U.S. women beat Canada in shootout in Four Nations Cup final: Erica McKenzie beat Charline Labonte in the sixth round of a shootout, and Jessie Vetter stopped Meghan Agosta with a glove save to give the United States a 3-2 victory over Canada in the Four Nations Cup final in Lake Placid, N.Y.
Vetter didn't allow the six Canadian shooters to score a goal in the tiebreaker, though two shots hit posts.
U.S. captain Natalie Darwitz and Julie Chu scored in regulation, and Caroline Ouellette and Jayna Hefford countered for Canada.
Davis finishes second in World Cup event: American Olympic champion Shani Davis of Chicago narrowly lost to Stefan Groothuis of the Netherlands in the opening 1,000-meter race of the World Cup season.
Groothuis finished the race in Berlin in 1 minute, 9.13 seconds, 0.20 seconds ahead of Davis.
Christine Nesbitt of Canada won the women's 1,000 in 1:16.86.
Williams, Kauble prevail: Walter Ray Williams Jr. of Ocala, Fla., earned his 45th career PBA Tour title, defeating Bill O'Neill of Levittown, Pa., 246-202 in the Lake County Indiana Golden Anniversary Championship final in Hammond.
In the PBA Senior Tour final, Timothy Kauble of Marion, Ohio, beat Hugh Miller of Seattle 235-185 in the first televised PBA senior event since 2001.
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