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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Sports Shorts: France's Pouille threatens to boycott new-look Davis Cup

Sports Shorts: France's Pouille threatens to boycott new-look Davis Cup

Last updated on: April 05, 2018 23:09 IST

A summary of sports events and sports persons, who made news on Thursday

Lucas Pouille of France

Frenchman Lucas Pouille threatened to boycott the Davis Cup should the International Tennis Federation (ITF) rip up the format and replace it with a one-week World Cup in a single city.


Asked if he would boycott the new-look competition, Pouille, who earned France the winning point in the final against Belgium last year, said: "If the reform goes through, yes, because it would just be an exhibition. And I don’t represent France to play an exhibition."

France play Italy in the Davis Cup quarter-finals in Genoa this weekend.

The ITF, in partnership with Barcelona soccer player Gerard Pique’s Kosmos investment company, plan a single city, 18-nation event to be held over seven days, starting in November 2019.

It would replace the current 16-team World Group format in which ties are played on a "home or away" basis over three weekends during the course of the year with the final in November.

"I don’t see the point in going if the tournament is played the last week of November," said Pouille, arguing that it would hamper the players’ preparations for the following season.

The new format has, however, been endorsed by several leading players with former US Open champion Marin Cilic saying "99.9 percent of players will want this new system".

The ITF's board will vote on the new proposal in August.

Bengaluru FC beat Aizawl 3-1 in AFC Cup group match

Indian Super League runners-up side Bengaluru FC bounced back from a goal down to outwit former I-League champions Aizawl FC 3-1 in an AFC Cup Group E clash at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati on Thursday.

Leonce Dodoz Zikahi (5th minute) drew first blood to put Aizawl ahead but Bengaluru pumped in three goals with Daniel Lucas Segovia (45+1), Rahul Bheke (63rd) and Daniel Lalhlimpuia (77th) emerging as the scorers.

It was the second win for Benguluru after a perfect start to the AFC Cup when they had beaten Abahani Dhaka FC 1-0 through a second half strike from Daniel Lalhlimpuia.

Both the sides were playing in the continental competition in the midst of their campaign in the inaugural Super Cup tournament in Bhubaneswar, where they made it to the quarterfinals.

Aizawl, who had lost 1-3 to New Radiant SC in Maldives, made early breakthrough in the fifth minute when the ball ricocheted in off the shin of Ivorian striker Leonce Dodoz after a clearance from Bengaluru goalkeeper Lalthuammawia Ralte.

Bengaluru tried to equalise when both Erik Paartalu and Victor Perez came close to score for Albert Roca's side but their efforts sailed over the crossbar.

At the stroke of half-time, Bengaluru drew level when Daniel Segovia coolly slotted home his first goal for the club from a penalty that was awarded after Dodoz handled the ball in the box.

After the restart, Segovia was given the opportunity to put his side in the lead in the 53rd minute, when Bengaluru were awarded another spot-kick for a foul on Subhashish Bose. This time, however, the Spanish striker's effort crashed off the post and went out.

Fortunately for Bengaluru, they took the lead 10 minutes later through Rahul Bheke, who headed in Alwyn George's teasing cross. The visitors then went 3-1 up in the 77th minute, when substitute Daniel Lalhlimpuia sent a low strike past Aizawl custodian Avilash Paul.

Bengaluru will next host New Radiant of Maldives, while Aizawl plays Bangladesh's Abahani Limited Dhaka.

UEFA charge Liverpool after bottles thrown at Manchester City bus

UEFA opened disciplinary proceedings against Liverpool on Thursday, a day after fans threw bottles at ManchesterCity's team bus ahead of their Champions League quarter-final first leg at Anfield.

Liverpool have been charged by European soccer's governing body with setting off fireworks, throwing objects, acts of damage and crowd disturbances and the case will be dealt with by UEFA's Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body on May 31.

Fans set off red flares and sang their club's songs before the City coach arrived and beer cans and at least one bottle were thrown at the bus. Liverpool apologised to ManchesterCity for the incident.