Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.
Azarenka keeps her eye on the prize to retain title
MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Victoria Azarenka kept her eye firmly on the prize despite a host of distractions to rally from a set down and retain her title with victory over Li Na in a dramatic Australian Open final on Saturday. The Belarussian had to block out an often blatantly hostile crowd, sit through two lengthy timeouts for Li's injuries and bide her time as a firework display lit up Melbourne's skyline before she finally extinguished her Chinese rival's hopes with a 4-6 6-4 6-3 victory.
Djokovic bids for third straight title at Melbourne Park
MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Novak Djokovic will bid to extend his Australian Open reign to a third straight year on Sunday in the final against Andy Murray, who will aim to end Britain's 79-year wait for a men's champion at Melbourne Park. World number one Djokovic holds a 10-7 career record over fellow 25-year-old Murray, including beating him in the 2011 final at Melbourne Park.
Bryan twins break record for grand slam doubles titles
MELBOURNE (Reuters) - American twins Bob and Mike Bryan became the most successful men's pair in grand-slam history on Saturday when they won their 13th doubles title together at the Australian Open. The 34-year-olds beat the Dutch pairing of Robin Haase and Igor Sijsling 6-3 6-4 to break the record of 12 grand slams they had shared with Australians John Newcombe and Tony Roche.
Bruins rebound from Rangers loss to beat Islanders
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Alpine skiing: Italy's Paris wins Hahnenkamm downhill
KITZBUEHEL, Austria (Reuters) - Dominik Paris became only the second Italian to win the most prestigious downhill on the World Cup circuit, on Kitzbuehel's Hahnenkamm mountain, on Saturday. Joint winner of the Bormio classic earlier this season, the 23-year-old Paris outshone the favorites in one minute 57.56 seconds to emulate compatriot Kristian Ghedina, crowned in 1998.
Memphis end Brooklyn's bright start to 2013
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Memphis Grizzlies handed Brooklyn one of their heaviest defeats of the season on Friday, romping to a 101-77 victory over the Nets. Spanish center Marc Gasol led the way with 20 points, all in the first half, and six of his team mates finished in double figures.
Djokovic and Murray prepare to bring the pain
MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray's burgeoning grand slam rivalry turns another page on Sunday, with the two iron-men of tennis bracing for a world of pain when they clash in the final of the Australian Open. Although good friends off the court dating back to their junior days, the two 25-year-olds hold no quarter once they cross the white lines, and have made a habit of punishing each other in grueling five-set duels at the grand slams.
Cycling: Contador rules out Giro and will focus on Tour de France
MADRID (Reuters) - Alberto Contador is not planning to ride the Giro d'Italia in May and will focus fully on the Tour de France starting at the end of June, the Spaniard was quoted as saying on Saturday. "There will be no Giro for me," Contador, who won the race in 2008, was quoted as saying in Spanish media on the sidelines of the Tour de San Luis in Argentina.
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Almagro replaced by Garcia-Lopez in Spain Davis Cup team
MADRID (Reuters) - Nicolas Almagro has withdrawn from Spain's Davis Cup team to play Canada in next week's first round tie in Vancouver and will be replaced by Guillermo Garcia-Lopez, the Spanish tennis federation (RFET) said on Saturday. Almagro, the world number 11, was suffering the effects of his run to the last eight at the Australian Open and had been ruled out after undergoing tests on Friday, the RFET said in a statement on their website (www.rfet.es).