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Global sports round-up

NEW YORK – A U.S. Olympic speedskater has admitted he sabotaged a Canadian rival’s skate at last year’s world team short-track championships but said he was following the orders of his coach.

Simon Cho

Simon Cho made the admission today, a week after allegations about the incident were made public in court documents filed in an arbitration case against his coach, Chun Jae-su.

“I am deeply embarrassed and sad to confirm certain allegations that have been made in the arbitration demand brought by a group of my fellow speed skaters against US Speedskating and the coaches,” Cho said in a statement.

“A year and a half ago, at the World Team Championships in Warsaw, Poland, after the U.S. team was eliminated from competition, I tampered with a skate that belonged to a Canadian team skater after being pressured to do so by my coach Jae Su Chun.”

The skate that Cho damaged belonged to Canada’s Olivier Jean. He was unable to compete in the 5,000 metres relay final because the blade had been bent out of shape and Canada, with only three skaters instead of the permisssable four, finished last.

The United States Olympic Committee said it was appalled by the actions.

The sabotage allegation was just one of a handful of incidents involving Chun that are being investigated by US Speedskating.

Shanghai security raised for Federer visit

SHANGHAI – Shanghai Masters organizers have increased security for the tournament starting on Saturday after an online threat to decapitate world number one Roger Federer, the Shanghai Youth Daily newspaper reported on Friday.

“On October 6 I plan to assassinate Federer in order to exterminate tennis,” read a post by “Blue Cat Polytheistic Leader 07” on a Federer fan website on September 25, the newspaper’s website said.

The paper said the post was accompanied by a “very scary” computer modified image showing a decapitated Federer.

Federer may go directly from the airport’s VIP arrival hall to his hotel as part of the precautions, Yang Yibin, the tournament director, told the paper in an interview earlier in the week.

It said Shanghai police were investigating.Local journalists said Shanghai municipal authorities had told local media not to report the issue.

FA report explains reason for Terry ban

LONDON – John Terry’s defence against claims he racially abused Anton Ferdinand was “improbable, implausible, contrived”, according to the Football Association panel which found him guilty.

The FA’s 63-page report explaining why Terry was banned for four games and fined £220,000 was published today. The panel said the Chelsea captain, 31, “is not a racist” but was “satisfied” his comments were used as an insult.

The incident between Terry and Ferdinand occurred during QPR’s 1-0 victory over Chelsea in a Premier League game at Loftus Road on 23 October, 2011. It was alleged Rangers centre-half Ferdinand swore at Terry and made reference to Terry’s reported affair with the ex-partner of former team-mate Wayne Bridge. Terry is then said to have described Ferdinand as “black” and used extreme sexual swear words.

Terry had been cleared of racially abusing Ferdinand in a high-profile court case in May. In court, the criminal burden of proof was “beyond all reasonable doubt”. However, the independent commission used the lesser civil test, that of “on the balance of probabilities”.

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