- - Sunday, February 12, 2012


Ailing back keeps Bulls’ Rose on bench again

BOSTONDerrick Rose was out again for the Bulls’ game against Boston on Sunday with what coach Tom Thibodeau called “stiffness” in his back and will see a specialist when the team gets back to Chicago.

The reigning MVP also missed Friday’s win at Charlotte.

“It’s not as cleared up as we would have liked right now,” Thibodeau said before Sunday’s game. “He’s still got some stiffness. We thought it would be better to have him sit out.”

Rose injured his back earlier in the week and was limited in a win over New Orleans on Wednesday.

C.J. Watson started in his place. Rose is averaging 22 points and 7.8 assists for the Eastern Conference leaders.


U.S. finishes sweep of Switzerland in Davis Cup

FRIBOURG, Switzerland — The United States completed its 5-0 rout of Switzerland in the first round of the Davis Cup on Sunday, with 19-year-old Ryan Harrison and John Isner winning the closing singles matches.

Harrison made his Davis Cup debut, defeating Michael Lammer 7-6 (7-0), 7-6 (7-4) to extend the Americans’ lead to 4-0. Isner, who stunned Roger Federer in four sets Friday, then beat Marco Chuidinelli 6-3, 6-4 to give the U.S. its first sweep since a 2004 first-round series against Austria. The U.S. will play at France or Canada in the April 6-8 quarterfinals.

• Jurgen Melzer eased past Russia’s Alex Bogomolov Jr. 6-2, 6-4, 6-1 in Wiener Neustadt, Austria, to help the host nation a reach the quarterfinals of the Davis Cup for the first time since 1995. Melzer’s victory gave Austria an insurmountable 3-1 lead and set up a quarterfinal against defending champion Spain in April. Russia’s Igor Kunitsyn won the final singles match.


American Korda prevails in Women’s Australian Open

MELBOURNE, Australia — American teenager Jessica Korda won the Women’s Australian Open for her first LPGA Tour title, holing a 25-foot birdie putt on the second hole of a six-player playoff.

Korda, 18, completed a two-sport, father-daughter Australian double with the breakthrough victory. Petr Korda won the 1998 Australian Open tennis tournament, also in Melbourne.

Korda closed with a 1-over 74 to finish at 3-under 289 in the first women’s professional event at Royal Melbourne, the historic sand-belt layout that was the site of the 2011 Presidents Cup.

Birdie lifts Pavin to win in Allianz Championship

BOCA RATON, Fla. — Corey Pavin made a 12-foot birdie putt on the first playoff hole to defeat Peter Senior and win the Allianz Championship for his first Champions Tour title at Broken Sound.

Both players shot a final-round 71 to finish tied at 11-under 205. Senior forced the playoff with a birdie on the last hole of regulation, but his birdie try in the playoff stopped an inch short of the cup.

Mark Calcavecchia appeared to be cruising to the victory when he birdied the par-5 11th hole to take a three-shot lead over Pavin. But Calcavecchia, who was 5 under for the day at that point, bogeyed six of his last seven holes to finish tied for seventh after a 73.

Cabrera-Bello captures one-shot victory in Dubai

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Rafael Cabrera-Bello held off a strong field to capture the Dubai Desert Classic, shooting a 4-under 68 to beat Lee Westwood and Stephen Gallacher by a stroke for his second European Tour victory. Westwood and Gallacher could have forced a playoff in the wind, but both players missed birdie putts on the 18th.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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