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Briefs

Plug pulled on virtual competition

SYDNEY — Australia’s triathlon world champion Mirinda Carfrae has found virtual reality competitions created to sustain sport amid the novel coronavirus outbreak have unexpected hazards.

The three-time world ironman champion was competing against Jocelyn McCauley of the United States, Canada’s Angela Naeth and Jeanni Seymour of South Africa in the inaugural Ironman VR Pro Challenge women’s race when disaster struck.

Carfrae was doing well on the 55 mile bike stage when she suffered a virtual mechanical failure. Husband Tim O’Donnell tripped over the cord of her smart trainer, disconnecting it and putting her out of the race.

“He decided to bring my trophies in here as motivation and when he walked around the back he kicked out the plug. What an idiot,” Carfrae said.

McCauley won the race, which was shown live on Facebook, with Naeth finishing second and Seymour third.

Player sentenced for flouting curfew

BELGRADE, Serbia — Serbian soccer player Aleksandar Prijovic has been sentenced to three months of home detention for flouting a curfew imposed to curb the spread of coronavirus.

The 29-year-old striker who plays for Saudi Arabian club Al-Ittihad pleaded guilty at a video link trial in Belgrade on Saturday.

Police had arrested Prijovic and 19 others for gathering at a hotel lobby bar in Belgrade on Friday and violating the country’s 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. lockdown orders.

He is the second Serbian soccer player to be caught violating the stay-at-home orders after Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic flouted the state of emergency decree when he attended his girlfriend’s birthday party at a Belgrade cafe last month.

Those who violate the restrictive measures could face up to three years in jail.

Trump reassures Little Leaguers

President Donald Trump is reassuring Little L

eague baseball players that they should be playing the game again soon.

“To all of our youth who are missing the start of their @LittleLeague seasons, hang in there! We will get you back out on the fields, and know that you will be playing baseball soon,” he tweeted Saturday. “We will get through this together, and bats will be swinging before you know it. In the meantime, take care of mom and dad, and know that this will not be forever!”

Little League president and CEO Stephen Keener reassured that the players would be back soon. Little League, like the major leagues, has suspended activities until mid-May, when the situation will be assessed, according to the Little League website.

The Little League website said officials “will continue to consult with appropriate medical advisors, government health officials and our volunteer leaders around the world, and we are committed to doing the best we can for the safety and well-being of our players, families, volunteers, and fans.”

Verlander to donate paycheck

HOUTSON — Houston Astros ace Justin Verlander says he will donate his weekly paycheck during the coronavirus shutdown to organizations that are helping with relief efforts.

Verlander and wife Kate Upton made the announcement in an Instagram post. The couple said it would pick an organization each week and highlight its work.

The AL Cy Young Award winner is among a group of major leaguers getting $4,775 a day for 60 days, a total of $286,500. Verlander’s salary this year is $33 million, which is $177,419 a day for the 186-day season.

Soccer star sorry after ‘lockdown party’

MANCHESTER, England — England defender Kyle Walker is facing disciplinary action from English Premier League team Manchester City after appearing to break lockdown conditions during the coronavirus pandemic.

The 29-year-old Walker apologized on Sunday after it was widely reported he held a party involving two sex workers at his home last week, breaking the government’s rules on social distancing. The country is in the middle of a three-week lockdown.

“I want to take this opportunity to issue a public apology for the choices I made last week which have resulted in a story today (Sunday) about my private life in a tabloid newspaper,” Walker’s statement read.

“I understand that my position as a professional footballer brings the responsibility of being a role model. As such, I want to apologize to my family, friends, football club, supporters and the public for letting them down.”

As of Sunday, Britain has recorded more than 4,900 virus deaths overall among nearly 48,000 reported cases.

From wire reports

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