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Golf

Former Cavalier takes over lead

In Conover, N.C., Bruce Woodall moved into position for his second eGolf Tour victory of the season Thursday.

Woodall, of Yanceyville, N.C., shot 7-under-par 65 to take a the lead after 36 holes of the HGM Hotels Classic at Rock Barn.

The former Virginia Cav­alier golfer won the Spring Creek Classic in Gordonsville, Va., on June 14.

He’s at 12-under 132, two shots ahead of Ryan Nelson (67-67) and David Sanchez (66-68).

Former Augusta State golfers Taylor Floyd (72-69–141) and Major Manning (71-70–141) made the cut, which fell at 2-under 142.

Missing the cut were former USC Aiken All-American Matt Atkins (75-68–143), Brandon Cobb (73-73–146), of Louisville, Ga., and former Augusta State golfer Mitch Krywulycz (73-74–147).

• In The Woodlands, Texas, Georgia Regents University golfer Maverick Antcliff shot 1-under-par 71 to make the cut by a shot in Thursday’s second round of the Southern Open.

Antcliff, an Australian who will be a sophomore in the fall, opened with 75.

Soccer

Brazil answers FIFA’s president

Brazil’s government defended the country as host of the 2014 World Cup on Thursday, a day after FIFA President Sepp Blatter warned that recent protests meant it might have been the wrong choice.

More than one million people took to the streets during June’s Con­federations Cup – the warm-up for the World Cup – angry at Brazil’s poor public services, contrasted with almost $14 billion spent on the World Cup.

About the same amount will be spent on the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

“The success of the Confederations Cup proves the correct choice of Brazil to host the World Cup,” the sports ministry said in a statement to The Associated Press.

Speaking in Austria, Blatter said Wednesday if the protesters returned next year during the World Cup, FIFA would have to consider whether it made a mistake by giving the tournament to Brazil. Protests took place at all six Confederations Cup cities.

Tennis

Federer handles Czech qualifier

In Hamburg, top-seeded Roger Federer cruised past qualifier Jan Hajek 6-4, 6-3 to reach the German Tennis Championships quarterfinals.

The four-time Hamburg champion is playing his first tournament since losing in the second round of Wimble­don.

The 17-time Grand Slam champion needed five set points to end the first set, finally earning it when Hajek netted a forehand.

Federer has dropped to No. 5, his lowest ranking in a decade. He will face Florian Mayer, who beat 11th-seeded Feliciano Lopez 7-6 (1), 6-2.

Second-seeded Tommy Haas also advanced after beating Carlos Berlocq 6-2, 6-4.

• Top-ranked Serena Williams and her sister Venus are among five past champions getting direct entry into the U.S. Open women’s main draw.

Other past champions in the field are Maria Sharapova, Samantha Stosur and Svetlana Kuznetsova.

The hard-court tournament begins Aug. 26, with the women’s final scheduled for Sunday, Sept. 8.


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