Reuters Sports News Summary

Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.

Cycling: Hayter can be Britain's chosen one, says Clancy

When Britain's three-time Olympic team pursuit gold medalist Ed Clancy describes young team mate Ethan Hayter as "the chosen one" it would be foolish to dismiss it as hyperbole. Clancy, after all, rode to glory in Beijing in 2008 with future Tour de France winners Geraint Thomas and Bradley Wiggins for company. Thomas was also with Clancy at London 2012 while Wiggins returned to the track four years ago in Rio.

Tokyo baseball team to play in empty stadium amid coronavirus fears

Tokyo's Yomiuri Giants baseball team will play two preseason games in an empty stadium, the latest impact on sports as Japan implements measures to contain the coronavirus just months before it hosts the 2020 Summer Olympics. The move comes a day after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's administration urged companies to recommend telecommuting and called on event organizers to reconsider their plans.

Alpine skiing: Women's World Cup event to go ahead in Italy

The women's World Cup alpine skiing races at La Thuile in Italy's Aosta valley are to go ahead as planned, but with a limited number of spectators, because the area has not been affected by the coronavirus outbreak, organizers said on Wednesday. More than 30 new cases were been reported in Italy's two worst-hit regions overnight taking the total to over 320, officials said. The death toll remained unchanged at 11.

Players to vote on NFL owners' proposed labor deal

The NFL's labor negotiations have moved closer to a resolution as the NFL Players Association said on Wednesday that its board of player representatives voted to send a deal already approved by owners to its membership for a vote. The decision by the 32 team representatives to have the full player membership vote on the proposed terms of a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) was announced in a tweet by the NFLPA.

NBA roundup: LeBron (40) lifts Lakers over Pelicans

LeBron James scored a season-high 40 points, and the Los Angeles Lakers dropped the visiting New Orleans Pelicans 118-109 on Tuesday night. Anthony Davis had 21 points, 14 rebounds and six blocks for the Lakers, who won their sixth in a row. Danny Green contributed 17 points while Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 15 points. James also had eight rebounds and six assists.

Motor racing: Vietnam completes F1 track amid coronavirus concern

The track for Vietnam's first Formula One Grand Prix in Hanoi on April 5 has been completed, organizers said on Wednesday amid continuing concern about the coronavirus epidemic that has caused the cancellation of China's race. The street race in Hanoi is scheduled to be the third round of the season.

Spring training roundup: Mets' Tebow hits first spring homer

The New York Mets lost to the Detroit Tigers 9-6 at Lakeland, Fla., in Grapefruit League action on Tuesday, but Tim Tebow stole the show with his first home run in four spring training stints with the Mets. The 32-year-old former Heisman Trophy winner and NFL quarterback sent a 3-2 pitch off Detroit right-hander Alex Wilson over the left-center wall in the sixth inning for a two-run blast, his first career spring extra-base hit. All nine of his previous spring training hits with the Mets were singles.

Factbox: Sports events hit by the coronavirus epidemic

The following is a list of international sports events hit by the outbreak of the new coronavirus. ATHLETICS

NHL roundup: Rangers notch OT win vs. rival Isles

Mika Zibanejad scored 28 seconds into overtime Tuesday night for the visiting New York Rangers, who remained red hot with a spirited 4-3 win over the New York Islanders in Uniondale, N.Y. Zibanejad intercepted a clearing pass and fired a slap shot past Semyon Varlamov to give the Rangers their 11th win in 14 games and pull them within five points of the Islanders in the Eastern Conference standings.

Five-time major winner Sharapova retires aged 32

Maria Sharapova, the Russian five-time Grand Slam champion who became one of the highest paid sportswomen in the world, announced the end of her career at the age of 32 on Wednesday. Siberia-born Sharapova, whose Wimbledon victory over Serena Williams in 2004, aged 17, propelled her to superstardom and riches, broke the news in an article for magazine Vanity Fair.