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Murray retires with hip injury

TENNIS: Back pain forced Andy Murray to retire midway through his second-round match at the Italian Open yesterday.

HE may have to sit out the French Open, too.

Elsewhere at the Foro Italico, Rafael Nadal began his bid for a seventh Rome title by cruising past local hope Fabio Fognini of Italy 6-1, 6-3 in just 61 minutes.

Similarly, two-time defending champion Maria Sharapova eased past Spanish qualifier Garbine Muguruza 6-2, 6-2.

Meanwhile, rising Polish player Jerzy Janowicz upset eighth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4, 7-6 (5) before celebrating by ripping his shirt apart, showing off his muscular physique.



GOLF: Louis Oosthuizen will start this week's Byron Nelson Championship in Texas as the top-ranked player but admits he would swap that to be entering the tournament in better form.

The 2010 Open champion will head up the field at the Four Seasons Resort in Irving but has not finished higher than 10th during the 2013 PGA Tour.

Oosthuizen said he will take confidence from being the top-ranked player but it counts for little if he does not perform.

"I think that's what you make of it," he said.

"I think you probably take more confidence out of it, going into the event. I would rather come in a bit more in form than coming in top-ranked player.

"I felt like the last two tournaments I played I was getting better and I'm getting better results so hopefully the next three weeks something can happen for me."



GOLF: Graeme McDowell hailed the unique nature of The European Tour on the Northern Irishman's first visit to Bulgaria for the Volvo World Match Play Championship.

The former US Open Champion has been drawn alongside Stephen Gallacher and Chris Wood in the Seve Ballesteros group, with the top two progressing to the weekend knock-out rounds at the stunning Thracian Cliffs Golf & Beach Resort.

"It's what The European Tour is all about really," McDowell said ahead of Bulgaria becoming the 40th different country to stage a European Tour event.

"We have certainly been taking tournaments to new events, to new places around the world. It's cool to be able to come to a place like Bulgaria, somewhere where I've never been before, experience a new culture - introducing them to golf really."