BASKETBALL

The Dallas Wings chose Charli Collier of Texas and Finnish player Awak Kuier with the first two picks of the WNBA draft on Thursday night.

It’s the first time in league history that a team had picks No. 1 and 2. The Wings acquired the top pick in a February trade after being awarded the second choice in the draft lottery.

The Wings also had the fifth pick and added Chelsea Dungee of Arkansas.

Between the Dallas picks, Atlanta chose Arizona guard Aari McDonald, who had a stellar NCAA Tournament, and Kysre Gondrezick of West Virginia went fourth to Indiana.

The 6-foot-5 Collier helped the Longhorns reach the Elite Eight. The junior center finished the season averaging 19.0 points and 11.3 rebounds per game, while shooting 51.1% from the field. Kuier, 19, played professionally in Italy, averaging 8.9 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.5 blocked shots.

For the second straight season, the draft was held virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic. Commissioner Cathy Engelbert announced picks from an ESPN studio in New York and players were at home appearing virtually when they were drafted.

TENNIS

MONTE CARLO MASTERS: Top-ranked Novak Djokovic lost 6-4, 7-5 to Dan Evans in the third round for his first defeat of the year, while No. 3 Rafael Nadal had no such problems, breezing past Grigor Dimitrov 6-1, 6-1 to reach the quarterfinals of a tournament he has won a record 11 times.

It was an unusually sloppy performance from Djokovic, the Australian Open champion who has 82 career titles compared to one for his unseeded British opponent.

Nadal broke Dimitrov’s serve five times in a lopsided contest. He next faces sixth-seeded Andrey Rublev, after the Russian beat ninth-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut, 7-6 (2), 5-7, 6-3.

Evans will play his first Masters quarterfinal against 11th-seeded David Goffin, who upset fifth-seeded Alexander Zverev, 6-4, 7-6 (7).

GOLF

PGA: Cameron Smith birdied the difficult 17th and 18th holes at Harbour Town to shoot a 9-under 62, his career low on the PGA Tour, and take a one-shot lead over Stewart Cink in the RBC Heritage at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.

Cink, 47, shot his lowest score in 75 career rounds at Harbour Town. He won there in 2000 and 2004.

SOCCER

EUROPA LEAGUE: Arsenal produced a devastating first-half performance to beat Slavia Prague and reach the Europa League semifinals.

Arsenal’s 4-0 win in the Czech capital – sparked by a three-goal burst in six minutes – clinched a 5-1 aggregate victory and set up a last-four match against Villarreal, which beat Dinamo Zagreb 2-1 and advanced 3-1 on aggregate.

Manchester United and Roma complete the semifinal lineup.

United is back in the last four for a second straight season after beating Spanish team Granada 2-0 for a 4-0 aggregate win. Roma drew 1-1 with Ajax of the Netherlands to squeeze through 3-2 on aggregate.

FIGURE SKATING

WORLD TEAM TROPHY: Three-time world champion Nathan Chen beat two-time Olympic gold medalist Yuzuru Hanyu in the men’s short program in Osaka, Japan.

Chen, winner of the past five U.S. titles, opened with a quadruple flip and added a triple axel and a quad toe loop-triple toe loop combination for a total of 109.65 points.

Local favorite Hanyu of Japan landed a quadruple salchow, a quad toe loop-triple toe loop combination and a triple axel for 107.12 points. Jason Brown of the United States landed all his jumps and finished third with 94.86 points.

World champion Anna Shcherbakova of Russia won the women’s short program with a score of 81.07. Compatriot Elizaveta Tuktamysheva was second with 80.35, while Japan’s Kaori Sakamoto was third with 77.78. Reigning U.S. champion Bradie Tennell was fifth with 67.40 followed by compatriot Karen Chen with 62.48.

Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia won the rhythm dance event with 86.66 points. Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri of Italy were second with 82.93, followed by Americans Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker with 76.79.

CYCLING

GIRO D’ITALIA: Italian cycling team Vini Zabù withdrew while awaiting a decision from the UCI over a possible suspension because of two doping cases.

The team said the decision comes “despite showing to the relevant bodies (we) have adopted the most strict measures” to fight doping. It adds that an “internal investigation has confirmed” the innocence of its athletes and the entire team regarding “any unfair practice.”

The UCI said last month that Matteo De Bonis has been provisionally suspended pending a disciplinary case after testing positive for the blood-boosting hormone EPO in a sample taken on Feb. 16. De Bonis was targeted for testing during training by the Lausanne-based International Testing Agency, the UCI said.

Vini Zabù also had rider Matteo Spreafico test positive twice for the trial drug ostarine in October at last year’s Giro. The UCI said it would “shortly refer the matter to the disciplinary commission which will render a decision in due course.”

Teams with two doping cases in a 12-month period can be banned from racing for 15 to 45 days. The three-week Giro starts on May 8. The team said it asked De Bonis to cooperate with the authorities and turn the case into an instrument that can fight against “organizations that make deals with the trade of banned substances.”


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