Dakar Rally motorcyclist Pierre Cherpin dies after crash | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 13.01.2021
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Dakar Rally motorcyclist Pierre Cherpin dies after crash

French motorcyclist Pierre Cherpin has died as a result of injuries sustained in the Dakar Rally. Meanwhile, Women's World Cup-winner Megan Rapinoe has said the US Capitol siege was about "holding up white supremacy."

Pierre Cherpin

Pierre Cherpin died after a crash in the Dakar Rally

  • French motorcyclist Pierre Cherpin dies after Dakar Rally crash
  • Rapinoe: Capitol siege reveled America's 'true colors'
  • Luka Jovic to return to Frankfurt on loan
  • 2021 F1 season to be delayed

January 14

French motorcyclist dies in Dakar Rally

Organizers of the Dakar Rally have confirmed that Pierre Cherpin has died during his transfer by medical plane from Jeddah to France after a crash.

The Frenchman, who was participating in the rally for the fourth time, crashed during the seventh stage from Ha'il to Sakaka, Saudi Arabia on January 10.

He was reached by helicopter and found unconscious by doctors then transported to the Sakaka's hospital, where the medical report revealed a severe head trauma. However, he sadly died on the transport  flight back to hospital in Lille.

"The entire Dakar caravan would like to extend its sincere condolences to his family, relatives and friends," organizers said in a statement.
 

January 13

Leverkusen make new defensive addition

Leverkusen have struck a deal to sign 23-year-old right back Timothy Fosu-Mensah from Manchester United. The Bundesliga club are in need in the position after the news that Lars Bender is retiring, Santiago Arias' loan expires and Mitchell Weiser's injury.

Fosu-Mensah has hardly played this season, but has gained Premier League experience on loan at Crystal Palace and Fulham. German sports magazine kicker report the defender cost somewhere around €1.7 million.

January 12

Rapinoe: Capitol siege revealed America's 'true colors' 

Women's World Cup-winner Megan Rapinoe has said that the "murderous mob" of US President Donald Trump's supporters who stormed the Capitol last week showed the country's true colors. 

"This was about white supremacy and holding up white supremacy," Rapinoe told reporters in a video press conference from the US women's national team training camp in Orlando on Tuesday. 

"Hopefully (it's) the final straw for so many people to really understand the reason we're here is because we never have actually had a reckoning with what our country really is," she said. "I think we showed very much our true colors. This is not the first time we've seen a murderous mob like that."

 

At least five people died in the attack after hundreds of the president's followers breached the US Capitol while Congress worked to certify Joe Biden's victory in November's presidential election. 

 The FBI has opened 160 case files in its investigation of the storming of the Capitol, the head of the agency's Washington field office said. 

Luca Jovic to return to Frankfurt 

Real Madrid are set to loan striker Luca Jovic back to Eintracht Frankfurt having paid a reported 60 million to the Bundesliga club to secure the Serbian's services in 2019. 

"Luka Jovic is being loaned to us until the summer. We still have to sort out a couple of details like his medical, for example," Frankfurt's CEO Sport Fredi Bobic told Sky TV prior to Tuesday night's cup match in Leverkusen. "If everything is in order he will be back with us very soon."

 

Jovic was high on Real's shopping list after he had lit up the Bundesliga season with 17 goals in 2018-2019, but the 23-year-old has struggled since moving to the Spanish capital He has started only three games for Real and come off the bench in two others this season – without scoring a single goal. 

 

January 11

New Formula 1 season faces delay

Australia and China's strict rules on arrivals amid the coronavirus have forced a delay to the start of the 2021 Formula One season. 

The races were first and third on the 2021 calendar but the season is now scheduled to begin with what was initially the second race, in Bahrain, on March 26-28.

While the Australian Grand Prix has been moved from March 19-21 to November 19-21, a new date has not yet been found for the race in China. 

"It is great news that we have already been able to agree a rescheduled date for the Australian Grand Prix in November and are continuing to work with our Chinese colleagues to find a solution to race there in 2021 if something changes," F1 president Stefano Domenicali said.

"Obviously, the virus situation remains fluid, but we have the experience from last season with all our partners and promoters to adapt accordingly and safely in 2021."

Lukashenko defends right to host ice hockey worlds

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko (pictured above, left) used a meeting with International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) President Rene Fasel (above, right) on Monday to defend his country's suitability to cohost the 2021 Ice Hockey World Championship. The meeting in Minsk came as the IIHF is facing growing pressure to strip Belarus of its cohosting rights over a violent police crackdown on mass demonstrations sparked by last August's presidential election that Lukashenko won in a landslide, but which the opposition claim was rigged.  

Lukashenko told Fasel that the protests would not make it unsafe for Belarus to host the tournament, and even offered to host the entire tournament without cohosts Latvia, who last year called for this year's event to be removed from Minsk over the crackdown.  

Watch video 06:23

Pressure grows to stop Belarus co-hosting ice hockey world championship

In a statement posted on the IIHF's website following Monday's talks, Fasel said the meeting with Lukashenko and other Belarusian officials was part of what he termed a "balanced approach" to trying to resolve the situation. 

"The circumstances in Belarus have been different since last summer. We are here to address the situation and to find constructive solutions," Fasel said. 

 

The 2021 Ice Hockey World Championship is scheduled to be held from May 21 to June 6 in Minsk and Riga. 

January 8

Tokyo goes into lockdown ahead of Olympics

Canadian Dick Pound, the longest-serving member of the International Olympic Committee, has downplayed the likelihood of the Tokyo Olympics going ahead.

“I can't be certain because the ongoing elephant in the room would be the surges in the virus,” Pound told the BBC.

On Thursday, Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga declared a state of emergency for greater Tokyo following a surge in cases.

The Olympics Games are set be held between July 4 and August 8.

Pound recently called for athletes competing in the Olympics and Paralympics to be given preferential vaccinations in order to ensure the Games could go ahead.

January 7

Public display of Olympic torch canceled

Japan has canceled a public display of the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic torches as new virus cases jump in the country and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga orders a state of emergency for Tokyo and the surrounding areas until next month.

Tokyo reported 2,447 new cases on Thursday. The rapid spread of the virus in Japan is imperiling plans for the postponed Tokyo Olympics, which are to open on July 23. The Paralympics begin on Aug. 24.

The Olympics were postponed nine months ago because of the pandemic. A poll last month by Japanese broadcaster NHK showed 63% of 1,200 Japanese surveyed think the Games should be postponed again - or canceled.

American sports stars speak out against storming of Capitol

Several American sports stars have expressed their dismay after the U.S. Capitol was stormed on Wednesday. Prominent figures in the NBA were quick to point out the differences to the Black Lives Matter protests.

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"Can you imagine what would have happened if that was all black people storming the Capitol today?" said Philadephia 76ers head coach Doc Rivers before the game against the Washington Wizards. “The symbolism of storming the Capitol without force done to them, if you're a Black American, it definitely touches you in a different way. This is not a Black thing. This is an American thing.'' 

UFC's Stipe Miocic warns YouTube stars

UFC heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic has issued a very firm warning to Youtube stars Jake and Logan Paul. In recent years, the two brothers have turned to the sport of boxing and both have gone pro.

"I mean, they say social media is a motherf--ker," Miocic told The Pat McAfee Show. "They’re doing it right, it’s helping boxing, but also it’s helping everything because they’re calling UFC fighters out, too. Or the Bellator guys. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. I wish them all the best. I understand why they’re doing it, it’s all about the money. But at the same time, don’t bite off more than you can chew."

January 6

LeBron James reacts to Jacob Blake verdict

LeBron James called a prosecutor's decision not to file charges against a white police officer who shot a Black man in Wisconsin this summer a "blow to the heart and to the gut." Jacob Blake was left paralyzed after being shot in the back on Aug. 23 by Kenosha police officer Rusten Sheskey.
   
"I'm smart enough to know that even though we are playing a game of basketball that there's so much more going on in the world,'' James said Tuesday after his Los Angeles Lakers beat the Memphis Grizzlies. "So much more that's even more important than us playing a game." 

"To hear what happened in Kenosha today was a blow to the heart and to the gut, not only to that community, but to us and to every Black person that has been a part of this process, seeing these outcomes for so long.''

Rugby match called off due to COVID

Northampton Saints' Premiership Rugby meeting with Leicester Tigers on Saturday has been called off after the Saints returned positive COVID-19 tests, the league said on Wednesday.

"The health and safety of players, management, staff and match officials is our priority," said a Premiership Rugby spokesman. "We wish those who have tested positive at Saints a speedy and safe recovery."

Roma director in serious car crash

AS Roma director Morgan De Sanctis is in intensive care following a car accident in the Italian capital on Tuesday night. The 43-year-old former Italy goalkeeper was rushed to hospital after a serious incident on Rome's busy Via Cristoforo Colombo, Italian media reports said.

De Sanctis underwent an operation on an abdominal haemorrhage, where his spleen was removed. He is understood to now be conscious and in a stable condition following surgery.

January 5

Record high positive COVID tests in Premier League

The Premier League insist that the show must go on, despite 40 positive coronavirus tests of players and staff in the last two rounds of testing, conducted over the last week.

That figure is more than double the previous record of 18 positive cases recorded last week and comes as England enters another nationwide lockdown to halt rapidly rising infection rates. 

Protests against Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia

Supporters of women’s rights activist Loujain al-Hathloul, who campaigned for the right for women to drive in Saudi Arabia, have demanded a boycott of the Dakar Rally while she remains in prison.

The motorsport event is currently underway in Saudi Arabia, though the country has been criticised by many for "sportswashing" its reputation while maintaining a restrictive brand of conservatism.

"Women’s rights activists have endured years in prison, psychological and physical torture, and sexual abuse for campaigning for the right to drive. Many remain in prison to this day,” said Lucy Rae, spokeswoman for Grant Liberty, a human rights advocacy body. "It is utterly grotesque that at the same time Saudi authorities will host a motor sport event – including women drivers – while the heroes that won their right to drive languish in jail."

Saudi Arabia, who claim Hathloul is jailed for undermining the royal family rather than her campaign to allow women to drive, became the host of the event last year as part of a project designed to open itself to the world through sport.

Australian Grand Prix under threat

Australian Grand Prix organisers and officials are discussing the schedule for the race with Formula One bosses, a government spokesman said on Tuesday, amid speculation the season-opener will be postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  

The country's strict travel restrictions are among the logistical problems for the seaosn opener, slated for March 21.   

Sumo champion out of big tournament

Record-breaking sumo champion Hakuho has tested positive for COVID-19 just days before the New Year tournament, the Japan Sumo Association said.

The JSA said Hakuho was tested after noticing a loss of smell, and that other members of the Miyagino stable who are thought to have come into contact with him would be tested immediately.

A JSA spokesperson said his participation in the tournament, was as yet undecided, but the competition was set to go ahead as scheduled.

January 4

Svensson returns to Mainz

Former Mainz player Bo Svensson has taken over the role of head coach at his old club, who have now completed a backroom facelift that has also seen Christian Heidel and Martin Schmidt return in new roles. The Dane joins from Austrian side FC Liefering, with Mainz in the Bundesliga’s bottom two.

"Bo brings all the qualities we’d wish for in our head coach role," said Christian Heidel, Head of Strategy, Sport and Communication. "He learned the role in our youth academy and was familiar with the work of Jürgen Klopp and Thomas Tuchelas an active professional. He knows how our football should feel."

Australian Open facing legal challenge 

 The Australian Open is facing another disruption, with the owners of 36 penthouse apartments in the hotel set to house hundreds of tennis players threatening to launch a legal challenge.  

Residents at the Westin Melbourne claim they were not properly consulted on international players quarantining at the Westin, accusing the hotel's management of "ambushing" them with the plan. As a result, they're reportedly considering a last-minute injunction to the Supreme Court over the health risk it poses. 

International players will be required to spend 14 days in quarantine and will undergo COVID-19 tests at least five times during their stay, but have been granted leave for one daily block of five hours to practice. The tournament, which begins on February 8, is the first of four Grand Slams in the tennis season.  

 'You’ll Never Walk Alone' singer Gerry Marsden dies  

Gerry And The Pacemakers star Gerry Marsden has passed away aged 78. Born in the Toxteth area of Liverpool, Marsden is best known for covering the Rogers and Hammerstein song You'll Never Walk Alone - a song adopted by Liverpool FC as their official motto and anthem. 

Marsden was made an MBE in 2003 for services to charity after supporting victims of the Hillsborough disasterSir Kenny Dalglish, who managed Liverpool at the time, tweeted that he was "saddened" by the news, highlighting that You'll Never Walk Alone is an "integral part of Liverpool Football Club, and never more so than now." 

Masters Snooker 2021 moved due to COVID-19 regulations 

This year's Masters event will no longer be held at Alexandra Palace, as originally planned as the London venue is not suitable under the UK's coronavirus rules. As a result, The Masters which begin on Sunday January 10 and run until January 17have moved. 

 "WST had planned to host the event at Alexandra Palace in London, its home since 2011. But given the current Covid-19 restrictions, the decision has been taken to stage the Masters in a 'bubble' environment, behind closed doors, at Arena MK in Milton Keynes, " said a statement released by the World Snooker Tour.