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  |   May 16, 2007 at 6:00 PM
WASHINGTON, May 16 (UPI) -- Hingis withdraws from French Open

PARIS, May 16 (UPI) -- Martina Hingis, the No. 6 ranked women's tennis player in the world, will miss this year's French Open because of a hip injury, event organizers say.

Hingis complained of the hip problem last week during a tournament in Germany.

Hingis, 26, has five Grand Slam titles but the French Open is the only Grand Slam event she has not won.

She retired in 2002 but returned to the tour in 2006 and advanced as far as the French quarterfinals last year. She was the French Open runner-up in 1997 and 1999.

The French Open is set for May 27-June 10 in Paris. Justine Henin, ranked No. 1 in the world, is a two-time defending champion.


Report: Adelman being eyed by Houston Rockets

HOUSTON, May 16 (UPI) -- Three-time NBA Coach Rich Adelman has emerged as one of the top candidates to replace Jeff Van Gundy in Houston if Van Gundy does not return next season.

Adelman, who has held the same post with Sacramento, Golden State, and Portland, was called the Plan B choice in a report Wednesday by the Houston Chronicle if Van Gundy does not come back.

In 16 seasons, the 60-year-old Adelman is 752-481 with 14 playoff appearances and four division titles.

Van Gundy is 430-318 in 11 seasons, including 182-146 in four seasons with the Rockets, where his post-season record is 40-44.

Several reports have after a recent first round playoff loss against Utah that Van Gundy has pondered retirement. He is under contract with Houston for another season.

The Chronicle report said Rockets assistant coach Tom Thibodeau is the leading candidate should there be an opening and team General Manager Daryl Morey told the newspaper that Van Gundy is "aware of the process."


Italians go up 2-1 on U.S. boat

VALENCIA, Spain, May 16 (UPI) -- Italy's Luna Rossa led throughout Wednesday to take a 2-1 lead over the U.S. entry in the America's Cup challenger semifinal series off the coast of Spain.

In the other challenger series, Spain's Desafio Espanol grabbed its first victory of the series and trailed Emirates Team New Zealand 2-1. All America's Cup series are best-of-nine. The challenger semifinals are to resume Friday.

The semifinals winners advance to the challenger final series June 1-11. The victor in that series faces Alinghi, from Switzerland, in the championship beginning June 23.

Luna Rossa led from the first leg of Wednesday's race and sailed to a 31-second victory over BMW Oracle. The Italian boat had a 45-second lead going into the final leg and BMW Oracle could only cut 14 seconds off the advantage by the end of the race.

Spain's Desafio Espanol trailed badly in the early sections of the first two races against New Zealand but led by 14 seconds at the first turn Wednesday. The Spanish entry pushed its advantage to 44 seconds going into the final leg and won by 1 minute, 14 seconds.


NASCAR penalizes Earnhardt

Daytona Beach, Fla. May 16 (UPI) -- DEI Enterprises driver Dale Earnhardt, Jr. and company owner Teresa Earnhardt were penalized 100 points by NASCAR for failing a pre-race inspection last week.

In a statement Tuesday, NASCAR said the infraction occurred Saturday before the Avenger 500 auto race at the Darlington (S.C.) Raceway.

Earnhardt's No. 8 DEI Chevrolet was found to have illegal brackets used to mount the rear wing on the Nextel Cup Series' new Car of Tomorrow.

Crew chief Tony Eury was fined $100,000, suspended for six races and put on probation until Dec. 31.

It matches NASCAR's biggest penalty.

"It was a bad deal," Eury said. "I was definitely not trying to get away with nothing, so you can take it for what it is. It was a part that got put on there that shouldn't have."

The penalty dropped Earnhardt from 12th place to 14th in the latest Nextel Cup points standings.

He announced last week he is leaving DEI at season's end.


Bradley to coach U.S. Soccer team

NEW YORK, May 16 (UPI) -- Bob Bradley Wednesday was officially made the head coach of the U.S. men's soccer team, five months after taking over as interim coach.

He replaces long-time Coach Bruce Arena, who was told by U.S. soccer officials after the World Cup he would not be retained.

"I am very proud and honored to be named head coach of the U.S. National Team," Bradley said at a news conference. "... Our goal is clear: to build a team capable of being successful in the 2010 World Cup. We are off to a very good start, and I am looking forward to the challenging road ahead."

The U.S. men are 3


1 under Bradley, who also coaches the Under-23 national team.

That squad is looking to qualify for the 2008 Olympics.

Bradley began his coaching career at Princeton and was an assistant with D.C. United of the MLS before becoming head coach of the league's Chicago Fire.

He coached 12 years in the MLS, amassing a league-record 124 victories.

© 2007 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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