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Headlines from around the world in sports

  • FILE - In this Thursday, March 15, 2012 file photo, Marussia test driver Maria de Villota of Spain poses for a photo ahead of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne, Australia. Spanish police have confirmed Friday Oct. 11, 2013 that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith, file)

    FILE - In this Thursday, March 15, 2012 file photo, Marussia test driver Maria de Villota of Spain poses for a photo ahead of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne, Australia. Spanish police have confirmed Friday Oct. 11, 2013 that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith, file)

  • FILE - In this May 11, 2013 file photo, Spanish former F1 driver Maria De Villota smiles in the paddock at the Catalunya racetrack in Montmelo, near Barcelona, Spain. Spanish police have confirmed that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. In July 2012, De Villota crashed while test driving a car for F-1 team Marussia. She lost her right eye in the accident. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno, File)

    FILE - In this May 11, 2013 file photo, Spanish former F1 driver Maria De Villota smiles in the paddock at the Catalunya racetrack in Montmelo, near Barcelona, Spain. Spanish police have confirmed that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. In July 2012, De Villota crashed while test driving a car for F-1 team Marussia. She lost her right eye in the accident. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno, File)

  • FILE - In this Thursday, March 15, 2012 file photo, Marussia test driver Maria de Villota of Spain poses for a photo ahead of the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne, Australia. Spanish police have confirmed Friday Oct. 11, 2013 that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. (AP Photo/Rob Griffith, file)
  • FILE - In this May 11, 2013 file photo, Spanish former F1 driver Maria De Villota smiles in the paddock at the Catalunya racetrack in Montmelo, near Barcelona, Spain. Spanish police have confirmed that racing driver Maria de Villota has been found dead in a hotel room in Seville, and say it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33. In July 2012, De Villota crashed while test driving a car for F-1 team Marussia. She lost her right eye in the accident. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno, File)

NFL

Jets’ Winslow suspended 4 games for PEDs

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. – New York Jets tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. was suspended without pay for four games by the NFL for violating the league’s policy on performance enhancing substances.

Winslow, the team’s leading receiver with 17 catches, will immediately begin his suspension, which was announced by the league yesterday. He will be eligible to return to the Jets’ active roster on Nov. 4, following New York’s game against New Orleans on Nov. 3.

NFL

Bears linebacker Williams to miss rest of season

LAKE FOREST, Ill. – The Chicago Bears said middle linebacker D.J. Williams will miss the remainder of the season because of a chest injury.

Williams tore his left pectoral muscle during Thursday’s win over the New York Giants.

Coach Marc Trestman was not sure how the injury occurred. Williams, signed in the offseason to help replace Brian Urlacher, left in the third quarter, the latest injury for a defense that’s had its share. The Bears visit Washington next week, and with Williams out, rookie Jonathan Bostic figures to start in his place.

NFL

As expected, Vikings pick Cassel as QB this week

EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. – Matt Cassel will start at quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings against Carolina tomorrow.

Coach Leslie Frazier confirmed yesterday what was widely expected, keeping Cassel in the lineup after he helped the Vikings get their first victory of the season with a solid performance in London against Pittsburgh. Christian Ponder sat out that game because of a broken rib.

Ponder was cleared to play against Carolina. Despite Frazier’s earlier insistence that Ponder was the starter when healthy, the Vikings decided to make the former first-round draft pick the backup the same week they signed ex-Tampa Bay quarterback Josh Freeman for still another option.

MOTORSPORTS

Ex-F1 driver de Villota dies at 33

BARCELONA, Spain – Former Formula One driver Maria de Villota was found dead in a hotel room in Seville yesterday, and the police said it appears she died of natural causes. She was 33.

The Spanish police told the Associated Press that De Villota was discovered in the Hotel Sevilla Congresos in the morning, dead “apparently from natural causes.” An autopsy will be carried out.

De Villota was seriously injured last year in a crash during testing for the Marussia F1 team, losing her right eye and sustaining serious head injuries.

She also had driven in the world touring car championship in 2006 and 2007, as well as the Superleague open-wheel series.

SPRINT CUP

Darlington will be run a month before Mother’s Day

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The Southern 500 at Darlington Raceway will be run in April next year after nearly a decade of racing on Mother’s Day weekend.

Track President Chip Wile said yesterday the Sprint Cup event would be held Saturday, April 12. The Nationwide race will be run Friday, April 11. Both those races are run under Darlington’s lights.

It’s the second time Darlington has shifted from a holiday weekend. The track “Too Tough To Tame” ran the Southern 500 on Labor Day weekend for over half a century until shifting to larger California Speedway. Atlanta Motor Speedway currently holds a Labor Day weekend race.

Wile said Kansas Speedway would move to Mother’s Day weekend in 2014.

TENNIS

Nadal, Djokovic advance to semifinal in Shanghai

SHANGHAI – Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic overcame tough challenges in their quarterfinals at the Shanghai Masters yesterday and moved a step closer to a possible showdown in the final.

Top-ranked Nadal saved three set points and finally closed out a 20-minute tiebreak in the first set against Switzerland’s Stanislas Wawrinka before winning 7-6 (10), 6-1.

Djokovic, the defending champion, needed nearly 2 ½ hours to rally past France’s Gael Monfils, 6-7 (4), 6-2, 6-4.

TENNIS

Kerber, Ivanovic reach Linz semifinals

LINZ, Austria – Top-seeded Angelique Kerber defeated Patricia Mayr-Achleitner of Austria, 6-3, 6-1, in the quarterfinals of the Generali Ladies yesterday to secure the final spot in the season-ending WTA Championships.

The 10th-ranked German will play fourth-seeded Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain. Two-time former champion Ana Ivanovic will take on Stefanie Voegele of Switzerland in the other semifinal. The 58th-ranked Voegere advanced after upsetting second-seeded Sloane Stephens of the United States, 6-7 (3), 6-4, 7-5.

Ivanovic defeated seventh-seeded Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia, 6-2, 6-4. The third-seeded Serb, who won the event in 2008 and ’10, was 3-0 down in the second set before reeling off four straight games. Ivanovic is yet to reach a final this season.

Suarez Navarro beat fifth-seeded Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium, 6-1, 6-3, to reach her fourth semifinal of the season and first on hardcourt.

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