Reuters Sports News Summary

Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.

Nadal advances after Mayer withdrawal

INDIAN WELLS, California (Reuters) - Twice champion Rafa Nadal was gifted a place in the last 16 of the BNP Paribas Open on Monday when Argentina's Leonardo Mayer withdrew before their third-round match with a back injury. Spaniard Nadal, who said he had been "very scared" after experiencing his first earthquake a few hours earlier, will next face Latvian Ernests Gulbis, who fought back to beat Italy's Andreas Seppi 5-7 6-3 6-4.

Indian Wells event to remain 'cutting edge'

INDIAN WELLS, California (Reuters) - The BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells is widely regarded as the biggest tournament in tennis outside the grand slams and its chief executive officer, Raymond Moore, intends to keep it that way. Applauded by players and fans for its superb facilities, its ideal weather in the California desert and its many innovations, the elite event has earned a reputation for being one of the sport's leading standard bearers.

Jalabert seriously injured in accident: police

TOULOUSE, France (Reuters) - Former cyclist Laurent Jalabert was seriously injured in a road accident on Monday morning, French police told Reuters. Jalabert, who won the Tour of Spain in 1995 and was world time trial champion in 1997, was on his bike when he was hit by a car travelling in the opposite direction near Montauban, a town in the south of France.

Fernandez enjoys last laugh over bullies 2013-03-11T234426Z_1_BRE92A15E_RTROPTC_0_US-FIGURE-SKATING-WORL D-FERNANDEZ.XML () -

Ex-NBA player banned in Philippines for "choking" team mate 2013-03-11T132156Z_1_BRE92A0HO_RTROPTC_0_US-BASKETBALL-PHILIPPI NES-BALKMAN.XML () -

Djokovic and Murray battle through

INDIAN WELLS, California (Reuters) - Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic and third seed Andy Murray both had to work much harder than expected to book their places in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open on Sunday. Top seed Djokovic lost his bearings in the second set before beating Italy's Fabio Fognini 6-0 5-7 6-2 while Murray had to dig himself out of an early hole on the way to a 5-7 6-2 6-2 win against Russian Evgeny Donskoy.

Figure skaters chase world gold with eye on Sochi 2013-03-11T224215Z_1_BRE92A145_RTROPTC_0_US-FIGURE-SKATING-WORL DS.XML () -

NFL, GE to study brain injuries as concussion worries mount

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The National Football League and General Electric Co <GE.N> are teaming up to improve the diagnosis and treatment of brain injuries amid growing concerns about sports-related concussions in youth and professional sports. On Monday they announced a $60 million effort with leading neurologists to speed up research into brain injuries and the development of new technologies to help protect the brain from traumatic injury to benefit athletes, the military and the broader public.

Netherlands eliminate Cuba, advance to WBC semis 2013-03-11T213259Z_1_BRE92A127_RTROPTC_0_US-BASEBALL-WORLD.XML () -

Back from injury, 'Sid the Kid' is all grown up

TORONTO (Reuters) - "Room open," shouted the attendant guarding the visitors' dressing room at the Air Canada Centre, launching the media mob into a mad sprint as if he had fired the starter's pistol for an Olympic 100 meters final. "Run, get him," roared a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins as the stampede raced to their target, dodging sweaty hockey equipment being tossed into a hamper from all corners of the suddenly crowded room.