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Radiation fear

Posted: 23 Mar 2011 10:38 PM PDT

I'm not going to Japan, says Clijsters

Thursday, March 24th, 2011 13:24:00

Tennis

WE FEEL PRETTY: Tennis stars Caroline Wozniacki (left) and Victoria Azarenka (right) seen with celebrity make-up artist Jonas Wramell at the players' welcome party yesterday

MIAMI: Kim Clijsters is planning to avoid Japan over radiation fears since an earthquake and tsunami crippled a nuclear plant there.

Clijsters told Belgian media yesterday that she wouldn't go to the WTA tournament in Tokyo in September nor to one in Beijing the following month.

The WTA released a statement from Clijsters this morning.

"Most importantly, my thoughts and sympathies are with the people in Japan," she said in the statement.

"It's heart-wrenching to see what they're going through right now. Of course the health and safety of anyone traveling to a potentially impacted area is my top priority as well as the WTA's, and I know that the WTA will continue to monitor the situation."

Radiation has seeped into vegetables, raw milk, the water supply and seawater since a magnitude-9 quake and tsunami hit the Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant nearly two weeks ago.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) said last week that the radiation was unlikely to spread internationally.

During an interview yesterday, Clijsters expressed sympathy for what Japan is going through.

However, she never mentioned in that interview feeling uncomfortable about traveling to the region.

"It's obviously very tough to sit here, especially when it just happened and we were in Indian Wells following everything on the news, and I'm sitting here playing tennis and those people are struggling to stay alive," Clijsters said.

"You're very worried and you feel very sad for the people and you cannot imagine what they're feeling and going through.

"I spoke to (my former doubles partner) Ai Sugiyama and was asking her if she was OK," Clijsters added.

Japanese player Kimiko Date- Krumm, 40, who won her first round match this morning at the US$9 million (RM27.3m) WTA and ATP Masters Miami, admits she's still shocked by what took place in Japan.

Date-Krumm's family is safe and she's started a relief fund to assist victims of the disaster.

Date-Krumm understands Clijsters' anxiety about going to Japan. She's hoping her country will be able to host the event.

"We still have time and, hopefully, we can fix everything and everybody can come to Japan," Date-Krumm said.

"First safety. If it's still not safe I can't push. But if it's 100 per cent safe I hope everybody will come and help Japan."

RESULTS

This morning
Men's first round
Ivan Dodig (CRO) bt Andrei Golubev (KAZ) 6-7 (7/9), 6-4, 6-0; Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) bt Jarkko Nieminen (FIN) 3-6, 6-3, 6-2; Kevin Anderson (RSA) bt Nikolay Davydenko (RUS) 6-4, 6-3; Pablo Andujar (ESP) bt Bernard Tomic (AUS) 6-4, 3-6, 7-5; Julien Benneteau (FRA) bt Daniel Gimeno-Traver (ESP) 6-4, 6-3; Marcel
Granollers (ESP) bt Benjamin Becker (GER) 6-4, 6-7 (4/7), 6-4; Paolo Lorenzi (ITA) bt Ivan Ljubicic (CRO) 7-6 (9/7), 6-1; Somdev Devvarman (IND) bt Potito Starace (ITA) 6-2, 6-4; Xavier Malisse (BEL) bt Ryan Sweeting (USA) 7-6 (7/3), 6-4; Juan Martin Del Potro (ARG) bt Ricardo Mello (BRA) 6-4, 6-4; Alex Bogomolov (USA) bt Victor Hanescu (ROM) 6-3, 4-6, 7-5; Igor Andreev (RUS) bt Santiago Giraldo (COL) 6-1, 2-6, 6-1; Marsel Ilhan
(TUR) bt Tobias Kamke (GER) 6-2, 6-1; Denis Istomin (UZB) bt Donald Young (USA) 6-4, 6-3; Igor Kunitsyn (RUS) bt Robert Kendrick (USA) 5-4, retired; James Blake (USA) bt Michael Russell (USA) 3-6, 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (7-3)

Women's first round
Peng Shuai (CHN) bt Greta Arn (HUN) 6-1, 6-2; Bethanie Mattek-Sands (US) bt Sofia Arvidsson (SWE) 6-1, 6-4; Chanelle Scheepers (RSA) bt Polona Hercog (SLO) 5-7, 7-5, 6-2; Yaroslava Shvedova (KAZ) bt Sara Errani (ITA) 6-3, 5-7, 7-6 (7/5); Varvara Lepchenko (USA) bt Coco Vandeweghe (USA) 6-2, 6-3; Jamie Hampton (USA)
bt Ajla Tomljanovic (CRO) 3-6, 7-5, 6-0; Elena Vesnina (RUS) bt Gisela Dulko (ARG) 6-1, 6-3; Kimiko Date-Krummm (JPN) bt Zuzana Ondraskova (CZE) 6-4, 6-3; Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP) bt Ksenia Pervak (RUS) 6-1, 6-2; Angelique Kerber (GER) bt Edina Gallovits (ROM) 6-4, 6-4; Sania Mirza (IND) bt Arantxa Parra (ESP) 6-2, 6-4; Timea Bacsinszky (SWI) bt Vesna Manasieva (RUS) 6-3, 6-2; Agnes Szavay (HUN) bt Shuai Zhang (CHN) 2-6, 6-3, 6-2; Virginie Razzano (FRA) bt Alize Cornet (FRA) 6-3, 6-1; Anna Tatishvili (GEO) bt Olga Govortsova (BLR) 6-3, 5-7, 6-3; Anastasiya Yakimova (BLR) bt Alla Kudryavtseva (RUS) 6-3, 6-1; Lourdes Dominguez (ESP) bt Arantxa Rus (NED) 6-4, 6-7 (7/9), 6-4; Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (CZE) bt Sloane Stephens (USA) 6-4, 6-2; Dinara Safina (RUS) bt Jelena Dokic (AUS) 6-4, 6-4; Lucie Hradecka (CZE) bt Chan Yung-jan (TPE) 7-5, 7-5

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Poulter hopes to tame allergies

Posted: 23 Mar 2011 10:30 PM PDT

Thursday, March 24th, 2011 13:24:00

ORLANDO (Florida): British world No 15 Ian Poulter will have an antihistamine injection before heading to next month's US Masters in a bid to help control a series of allergies.

Poulter, who underwent tests this month that revealed he was allergic to almost all types of grass and trees, said he has suffered from hay fever for as long as he can remember.

"I just wanted really to find out and do the tests to see if there is anything I can take or anything I can do to not be as affected as much as I am," Poulter said this morning ahead of this week's Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill.

"I'm probably going to have a kind of anti-histamine injection before I get to Augusta for the Masters next month just to hopefully kick that in, because it's especially bad there."

Poulter also said he will take a serum orally over a number of months to help build up his immune system.

Hay fever has been something Poulter, 35, has had to deal with throughout his career, particularly at the heavily-wooded Augusta National course.

"Augusta National has very strong pollen. The pine is very, very strong. You see it on the car when you come out. If you play in the morning and you come out in the morning, the whole windscreen is covered in pollen," said Poulter.

"Wearing sunglasses for me is a huge plus when it is very, very strong like that, because if it's all over the windscreen and you're not wearing glasses, it's going to be in your eyes. So they have definitely helped. But I still get affected, so I take eyedrops and tablets."

Poulter used to wear contact lenses, which added to his eye problems, but he underwent laser surgery three years ago.

Meanwhile, Tiger Woods says he is missing his late father's input into his game but has returned to his methods in a bid to sharpen up his putting.

Woods, without a win since the Australian Masters in November 2009, used to count putting as one of the strongest points of a game which has brought him 14 Major titles but his reliability on the green has faded of late.

So the former world No 1 says he has been revisiting the lessons learned from his father Earl, who died in 2006.

"I went back to all of my old stuff that my dad and I used to work on and that's when I felt that my stroke started becoming more sound, more solid, my speed became better," Woods said.

"My dad really knew my stroke. And I miss him for a lot more reasons than just the putting, but as far as bouncing ideas off of him and what I was feeling and what he would say, I do miss that, certainly."

Woods said it is helpful that his father's suggestions for his putting release have the same fundamentals as what he is working on now in other parts of his game with Canadian swing coach Sean Foley.

"It's exactly the same. What Foley is trying to get me to do with my full swing and how he wants me to release it (is) how I used to release my putter. That's one of the reasons why I've gone back to my old stuff that my dad and I used to work on, and it feels natural, because I've done it for so long. I just got away from it and now I'm going back to it."

Woods, who plays the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill this week before going into full preparation for next month's US Masters, said his lack of consistency in putting dates back further than his recent troubles.

The Masters runs from April 7-10.

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