Federer defeats Djokovic in final

Wire Reports

With a dominant first set on Sunday, Roger Federer showed that he’s in top-of-the-world form after his time off to become a father. A 6-1, 7-5 victory over Novak Djokovic brought him the Cincinnati Masters title, his first championship since his twin girls were born last month.

“That’s the special part, especially winning for the first time as a dad,” Federer said. “It gets me going emotionally a little bit, because I know it’s been a wonderful summer.”

His stellar season can get even better beginning next week at the U.S. Open. The Swiss star has won the last five titles there, and his performance on Sunday at Mason, Ohio, suggested he’s fully capable of another. Djokovic hadn’t lost a set all week, but was never in the title match.

Federer took control right away, breaking Djokovic’s serve in a second game that lasted 13 minutes and 22 points overall. The 22-year-old Serb kept up better in the second set but knew he was headed for his fourth runner-up finish in a Masters tournament this year.


Fourth-seeded Elena Dementieva overcame an ugly first set to beat Maria Sharapova, 6-4, 6-3, in the final of the Rogers Cup at Toronto. Dementieva’s steady play was too much for an error-prone Sharapova to handle in the first all-Russian final in tournament history.

Playing in her first final since a serious shoulder injury, Sharapova committed 10 double faults and had trouble with even the most routine shots.

Anna Chakvetadze ended Nadia Petrova’s final hard-court tuneup for the U.S. Open with a 0-6, 7-6 (4), 6-4 win in the Pilot Pen at New Haven, Conn. In another first-round match, Alona Bondarenko defeated wild-card entry Meghann Shaughnessy, 4-6, 6-3, 7-5.

Taylor Dent won his first-round match in the men’s tournament, beating Ivan Ljubicic, 6-3, 6-4.


Pat Cash of Australia defeated Jim Courier to successfully defend his singles title in the Hall of Fame Champions Cup at Newport, R.I. Cash defeated the American, 6-3, 6-4, in the championship match at the International Tennis Hall of Fame.



Crowell is out for the season


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers say linebacker Angelo Crowell will sit out the season because of a torn biceps.

The seventh-year pro was hurt during Saturday night’s exhibition victory at Jacksonville. The former Buffalo Bills defensive captain signed with the Buccaneers as a free agent after sitting out all of 2008 because of a knee injury.

Crowell was slowed much of training camp by a sore hamstring. Third-year pro Quincy Black becomes the likely starter at strongside linebacker.

Michael Vick showed no signs of rust during the Philadelphia Eagles’ practice Sunday, throwing tight spirals with plenty of velocity, and offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg said Coach Andy Reid would probably make a decision Tuesday on whether Vick would make his preseason debut Thursday at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars.


Jon Beason, the Carolina Panthers’ middle linebacker, leading tackler and defensive leader, left Saturday’s exhibition loss to Miami because of a left knee injury, but a team spokesman declined to reveal the results of Sunday’s scheduled MRI exam. Beason’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, said the injury was a strained medial collateral ligament, and he was optimistic his client could return for the start of the regular season.

Michigan Coach Rich Rodriguez says he plans to use three quarterbacks in the season opener Sept. 5 against Western Michigan.

Rodriguez spent about the first 10 minutes of his news conference Sunday answering questions about freshmen Tate Forcier and Denard Robinson, who are competing for snaps along with junior Nick Sheridan, who started four games last year.

Rodriguez has seen his quarterbacks compete for a couple of weeks, but he isn’t ready to say who is even the front-runner. He said the player who takes the first snaps will not necessarily be the No. 1 QB for the rest of the season.




Tyler Baze has a broken finger

Jockey Tyler Baze is expected to be sidelined for a week after breaking his finger when he was unseated by his mount at Del Mar, where he is the second-leading rider.


Baze is wearing a cast on his broken left pinkie. His mount unseated him Saturday, then ran off and was scratched.

Denver Nuggets reserve forward Renaldo Balkman has been arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

Balkman, 25, was arrested by Temple Terrace, Fla., officers at 4 a.m. Saturday after he refused a blood-alcohol test, according to a police report on the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office website.

Balkman was released after posting $500 bond.