Pistorius investigation to be finished by August
JOHANNESBURG — The police investigation into Oscar Pistorius’ killing of his girlfriend on Valentine’s Day won’t be completed until August, prosecutors said Saturday, ahead of the double-amputee Olympian’s first court appearance in nearly four months.
The National Prosecuting Authority said in a statement that it was “content with the progress thus far” of the investigation, which will have taken nearly six months by the time the state is ready to proceed with Pistorius’ murder trial.
Pistorius will return to Courtroom C at Pretoria Magistrate’s Court on June 4. He is expected to appear for only 10 minutes, but will give the world its first view of him since bail was granted on Feb. 22 in a hearing that lasted nearly a week and during which he cut a broken, sobbing figure as details of the shooting were aired.
The NPA expects the June 4 proceedings to be “a mere postponement” ahead of another date in August. Meanwhile, police investigators continue to collect and scrutinize evidence and identify and interview possible witnesses to Pistorius’ shooting of Reeva Steenkamp at his upscale home in the pre-dawn hours of Feb. 14.
Yankees put Granderson on disabled list — again
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The New York Yankees have put outfielder Curtis Granderson on the 15-day disabled list with a broken knuckle on his left pinky finger and recalled outfielder Brennan Boesch from Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre.
The moves were made before Saturday’s game at Tampa Bay.
Granderson was hit by Cesar Ramos’ pitch in the fifth inning of Friday night’s 9-4 win over the Rays. Although no official timeline for how long Granderson will be sidelined has been announced, manager Joe Girardi indicated it could be a minimum of four weeks.
“I think the feelings that we have right now, there’s sadness for Curtis,” Girardi said.
Granderson missed the first 38 games this season with a broken right forearm, the result of a hit by pitch in his first at-bat at spring training.
Kyle Busch wins Nationwide race at Charlotte
CONCORD, N.C. — Kyle Busch dominated at Charlotte Motor Speedway again Saturday, racing to his sixth Nationwide Series victory of the season and record seventh career win at the track.
Ten years and a day after his Nationwide debut, Busch won for the record 57th time in the series.
Also the Truck Series winner at the track last week, Busch started on the front row and led 186 of the 200 laps. But he needed to manage several late restarts to break a tie with Mark Martin for the most Nationwide victories at the track.
Kasey Kahne was second, followed by Joey Logano, Kyle Larson and Kevin Harvick.
Nationwide Series points leader Regan Smith was 10th.
While Busch has been dominant in the Nationwide and Truck series at CMS, he has never won a Sprint Cup race at the track. He’ll look to change that Sunday in the Coca-Cola 600.
Duke beats Cornell to advance to lacrosse final
PHILADELPHIA — Duke is heading back to the NCAA lacrosse tournament championship game, surviving a late surge by Cornell to play for a second national title.
David Lawson scored the winning goal with 6:35 left in the fourth quarter to lift Duke to a 16-14 victory against Cornell in the semifinals at Lincoln Financial Field on Saturday.
Duke (15-5) will play Syracuse in Monday’s championship.
The Blue Devils are in the finals for the first time since 2010, when they won their only national championship.
Derek Maltz scored with 19.2 seconds left to give Syracuse a 9-8 come-from-behind win over Denver in the other semifinal.
AP Sources: Coyotes sale approved, hurdle remains
PHOENIX — Two people familiar with the situation say the NHL has approved the sale of the Phoenix Coyotes to a group of Canadian-led investors, but the deal is contingent on reaching a lease agreement with the city of Glendale.
The NHL agreed to sell the team to Renaissance Sports & Entertainment, a group headed by George Gosbee and Anthony LeBlanc, according to the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because there had been no official announcement.
They said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, deputy commissioner Bill Daly and the prospective buyers will meet with Glendale officials on Thursday for talks on a lease.
Kanepi beats Peng in Brussels Open final
BRUSSELS — Kaia Kanepi of Estonia beat Peng Shuai of China 6-2, 7-5 to win the Brussels Open on Saturday.
Kanepi won the fourth tournament in her WTA career by racing out to a big lead before surviving some late jitters. She heads to the French Open, which starts today, with a boost.
“This win gives me confidence and I feel good going to Roland Garros,” 27-year-old Kanepi said.
The sun finally broke out over the Heysel courts on Saturday after a week filled with frustration over the unusually cold and wet conditions.
In Saturday morning’s semifinals, eighth-seeded Peng defeated Romina Oprandi of Switzerland in a tough three-setter, 6-4, 2-6, 6-4. Kanepi moved into the final by edging Jamie Hampton of the United States, 7-6 (6), 6-4.
Cornet wins Strasbourg International
STRASBOURG, France — Third-seeded Alize Cornet of France beat Lucie Hradecka of the Czech Republic 7-6 (4), 6-0 Saturday to win the Strasbourg International final.
Hradecka saved two set points in the 10th game to force a tiebreaker. However, she doubled-faulted at 5-4, and Cornet took the set when Hradecka netted a forehand volley.
Cornet, runner-up last year, gave Hradecka little chance in the second set and clinched her third singles title when the Czech made a backhand error.
The Strasbourg International is a warm-up tournament for the French Open.
Montanes beats Monfils to win title at Nice Open
NICE, France — Albert Montanes of Spain clinched his sixth title by defeating French wild-card entry Gael Monfils 6-0, 7-6 (3) in the final of the Nice Open on Saturday.
The match was interrupted by rain at 4-0 in the first set, but that didn’t seem to bother Montanes, who broke for a 3-1 lead in the second and looked set to cruise to victory. But Monfils, a former top-10 player whose 2012 season was hampered by a right knee injury, rallied to tie it at 4-4.
Montanes took a 4-1 lead in the tiebreaker and sealed the win when a backhand from Monfils sailed long.
The Nice Open is a warm-up tournament for the French Open.
Monaco tops Nieminen to claim Duesseldorf title
DUESSELDORF, Germany — Juan Monaco beat Jarkko Nieminen 6-4, 6-3 Saturday to win the inaugural Power Horse Cup for his first title of the year.
The victory for the third-seeded Argentine gave him a boost ahead of the French Open, the second Grand Slam of the year that starts Sunday.
The Duesseldorf ATP event, which replaced the World Team Cup, is a clay-court warmup for the French Open.
From wire sources