Names In The News
Sky Deutschland F1 commentator JACQUES SCHULZ "has announced his retirement due to private reasons" only days after Sky extended its F1 media rights deal until '15. Schulz leaves his position after 16 years and almost 300 grand prix with the Sky F1 team. He will be replaced by in-house GP2 commentator SASCHA ROOS (DWDL, 2/5). ... World No. 3 tennis player ANDY MURRAY insists that the sport must conduct more blood testing to "avoid being hit by the kind of doping scandals that have plagued cycling." Murray feels that the sport's authorities "need to invest more heavily in antidoping programmes -- even if it means siphoning funds from players' prize money" (REUTERS, 2/5). ... Olympic heptathlon champion JESSICA ENNIS "will not compete indoors" in '13, but will focus on the World Championships in Moscow this summer as her goal (London TELEGRAPH, 2/4). ... Portugal's Olympic committee has banned windsurfer CAROLINA BORGES for life for "concealing she was pregnant but attending the London Games anyway to see her husband." Borges traveled to London as part of the Portugal team but "then sent an email during the Games in July saying she was quitting before her RS-X event had even started" (REUTERS, 2/5).
BIG NAMES IN CHINA: Former Danish footballer and ManU "legend" PETER SCHMEICHEL had not even "officially entered Hong Kong before fans descended." As he "approached immigration on his visit to launch the club's friendly with Kitchee, the officer in charge abandoned his booth to get a photo." Schmeichel joked: "I'm not sure I should tell you this. Even his supervisor was taking pictures" (SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST, 2/5). ... The Zhejiang College of Sports has revealed that Chinese Olympic swimmer SUN YANG has been "punished for breaking a series of team rules." The college accused Sun "of a lack of discipline." The college's President LI JIANSHE said the institution withheld a month of Sun's allowance and "provisionally suspended" him from all social and commercial activities, including personal endorsements (CHINA DAILY, 2/5).
ATHLETE SIGNINGS: Barcelona striker LIONEL MESSI will sign a new contract with the club on Thursday. The Argentinian's new deal will run through June '18 (MARCA, 2/5). ... German Hockey League (DEL) club Cologne Sharks has signed former NHL player MARCO STURM. The 34-year-old, who has played in more than 1,000 NHL games, will join the team in mid-February. Sturm most-recently played for the NHL Florida Panthers (SID, 2/4).