Singh falters, Woods wins Players by one

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. (AP) Forget the slump and bring on the Masters.

Tiger Woods couldn”t help raising his own season start after holding off Vijay Singh”s late charge to win The Players Championship for his second straight victory.

Woods said people had been writing and talking about his slump when he went through his first seven starts this year without a victory.

“Obviously, they don”t understand the game that well,”” he said. “Now I”ve won two in a row and they”ll go write about something else.”

Like maybe how Woods is the favorite for his fourth straight major at Augusta National in two weeks.

“I feel as if I”m headed in the right direction,” he said. “It”s nice to see the changes I made in my game pay off.”

Woe Canada, Memphis top choice for Grizzlies

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) The city that once featured the Memphis Tams in the ABA is the choice to become the new home of the Vancouver Grizzlies.

Bidders from Louisville, Ky. one of four candidates hoping to lure the financially struggling team owned by Michael Heisley confirmed yesterday that Memphis was the choice.

Griffey injures leg in exhibition game

HAINES CITY, Fla. (AP) Ken Griffey Jr. had to be helped off the field yesterday after he appeared to pull his hamstring while rounding third base.

The Cincinnati Reds center fielder was bothered earlier this spring by a sore left hamstring. There was no immediate word on the severity of the injury.

Griffey was on second base in the seventh inning and tried to score on Alex Ochoa”s single to left. Griffey stumbled as he rounded third and hobbled halfway to home before falling to the ground.

Trainers, teammates and manager Bob Boone came out the dugout and surrounded him while he rolled on his back in pain. After a few minutes, he got up and put his arms around teammates Deion Sanders and Jason LaRue, limping off the field with his left foot off the ground.

Griffey had a pair of doubles in three at-bats Monday and gave no hint of a problem with the leg until he awkwardly rounded third base.

Griffey partially tore the hamstring in his left leg on Sept. 11 last season and didn”t start another game. He has made a diving catch and several running catches in the outfield in the past few days, running at full speed without a problem.

Olajuwon recovers, expects to play tonight

HOUSTON Two weeks ago, Hakeem Olajuwon”s season and career were in jeopardy because of a blood condition in his left leg.

Tonight, he expects to be in the lineup for the Houston Rockets when they play the Utah Jazz.

“He”s an amazing player. He was very sharp in practice and I didn”t see any rust,” coach Rudy Tomjanovich said after the team”s practice session yesterday. “We expect him to play (tonight) night but we don”t know how much.”

Olajuwon returned to full workouts with the team yesterday for the first time since doctors announced on March 13 that the Rockets center would be sidelined three to six months while taking medication for a blood clot in a vein in his lower left leg.

Williams sisters” dad hears racist taunts

ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) The father of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams told USA Today his family was subjected to racial slurs at the Indian Wells tennis tournament, after Venus withdrew from a semifinal match with her sister.

In an interview conducted at the Ericsson Open, Richard Williams said his family was booed and taunted by a racist crowd.

“When Venus and I were walking down the stairs to our seats, people kept calling me nigger,” Williams is quoted in yesterday”s editions.

“One guy said, “I wish it was “75 we”d skin you alive.” That”s when I stopped and walked toward that way. Then I realized that (my) best bet was to handle the situation nonviolently. I had trouble holding back tears. I think Indian Wells disgraced America.”

Charles Pasarell, director of the Indian Wells tournament, told the paper he was “cringing when all that stuff was going on. It was unfair for the crowd to do that.”

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