Colin Montgomerie wants Bernhard Langer to be Europe's next Ryder Cup captain. Montgomerie, who made the winning putt in Europe's victory...

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Montgomerie withdraws as candidate: Colin Montgomerie wants Bernhard Langer to be Europe’s next Ryder Cup captain.

Montgomerie, who made the winning putt in Europe’s victory over the United States in September, said yesterday he is withdrawing his candidacy to captain the 2006 team at the K Club in Ireland.

The 41-year-old Scot said he has been told he is too young for the job and should keep playing. His Ryder Cup record is 19-8-5.

“After hearing it, I possibly have to agree,” Montgomerie said. “I think I can play in Ireland and possibly the next couple.”

Germany’s Langer was captain of the team that beat the Americans 18-1/2-9-1/2.

“It’s our job to select the captain who will win the thing,” Montgomerie said. “It’s (Langer’s) to say ‘no’ to, really. If he says he wants to do it again, then there’s your captain.”

Tom Lehman will captain the U.S. team, replacing Hal Sutton.


Capriati has shoulder injury: Jennifer Capriati dropped out of an exhibition charity today in Tampa, Fla., against Wimbledon champion Maria Sharapova because of an injured right shoulder.

Auto racing

Coulthard signs with Red Bull: Scottish driver David Coulthard has signed a one-year contract with Red Bull Racing for the 2005 Formula One season.

Stoddard to work with Said: Veteran crew chief Frank Stoddard was hired by MB/Sutton Motorsports to run a NASCAR Nextel Cup team for driver Boris Said.


Mayweather fails to appear in court: An arrest warrant was issued for two-time world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. after he failed to attend his trial in Grand Rapids, Mich.

The 27-year-old boxer was scheduled to be in court for a misdemeanor assault and battery charge. He is accused of kicking a bouncer at a bar in December 2003.

Mayweather is scheduled to fight Jan. 22 in Miami against Henry Bruseles of Puerto Rico in a 140-pound elimination bout.


Chelsea to play Barcelona: Chelsea was paired with FC Barcelona in the UEFA Champions League draw, a matchup of the runaway leaders of the English and Spanish leagues — and perhaps the two strongest teams in Europe.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho led FC Porto to last season’s European title before moving to the English Premier League in June. He also had a spell as an assistant coach at FC Barcelona.

“I go back to Barcelona as European champion and Chelsea manager,” Mourinho said. “It’s a fantastic feeling for me. I love Barcelona, and I know people love me.”

In other pairings, Manchester United will play six-time champion AC Milan; nine-time winner Real Madrid will take on Italian champion Juventus; and Premier League champ Arsenal will meet Bayern Munich.

Other matchups are FC Porto vs. Inter, Werder Bremen vs. Lyon, Liverpool vs. Bayer Leverkusen and PSV Eindhoven vs. AS Monaco.

The first-leg games are Feb. 22-23 and the return games March 8-9. The final is in Istanbul, Turkey, on May 25.

Fans fined: Two fans were fined $7,900 by Spanish authorities and banned from stadiums for five months for racial taunts that were directed at Barcelona player Samuel Eto’o, who is black.

Politician wants milk sold at World Cup: In the land of beer, a politician wants milk sold at the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

Christian Wulff, the governor of Lower-Saxony state, wrote open letters to FIFA chief Sepp Blatter and organizing committee chief Franz Beckenbauer, urging organizers to allow milk bars to be set up at World Cup stadiums in Germany.

One of the stadiums is in Hanover, where Wulff’s government is based. Two milk bars have been set up at home games there and successful sales show that “soccer fans like milk as well.”


Alinghi has challengers: Six syndicates have been accepted to challenge America’s Cup holder Alinghi for yachting’s most prestigious prize in 2007.

Switzerland’s Alinghi, bankrolled by billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli, will defend the Auld Mug in the Spanish city of Valencia after defeating Team New Zealand in 2003 to become the first European winner.

Yesterday’s deadline for official challengers passed with Team New Zealand, San Francisco-based BMW Oracle Racing, +39 Challenge and Luna Rossa Challenge from Italy, France’s K-Challenge and South Africa’s Team Shosholoza — the first African Challenge — set to compete for the Louis Vuitton Cup.

The victor from that series earns the right to take on Alinghi in June 2007.


Stanford, Minnesota play for title: One of the most successful women’s programs faces a team playing in its first NCAA championship game when Stanford meets Minnesota today in Long Beach, Calif.

Stanford (29-6), which beat Washington in Thursday’s semifinal round, seeks its sixth NCAA Division I title. Minnesota (33-4) has a 12-match winning streak.

College athletics

Syracuse hires AD: USC administrator Daryl Gross was hired as Syracuse’s athletic director. The 43-year-old leaves USC after 14 years to replace Jake Crouthamel, who is retiring in June after 27 years on the job.

“I’m just thrilled, overwhelmed,” Gross said.

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