Sports Shorts

Hapoel Tel Aviv blanks Bnei Yehuda in Toto Cup action

Hapoel Tel Aviv took advantage of Bnei Yehuda defender Aviv Hadad's third foul leading to a penalty shot in a week to win its Toto Cup soccer match 2-0. Hadad's antics led to two Maccabi Tel Aviv goals at the beginning of last week, and yesterday did not go much better for him. He fouled Hapoel Tel Aviv striker Tal Ben Haim, who scored his team's second goal of the game on the 81st minute penalty to seal the victory. Eden Shrem opened the scoring just three minutes earlier in a game that had been lackluster until the second half. In other Toto Cup games, visiting Hapoel Be'er Sheva blanked F.C. Ashdod 2-0, Kiryat Shmona won 1-0 at Hapoel Acre, and host Maccabi Haifa disposed of Bnei Sakhnin 6-0. (Moshe Boker )

Ibaka's new deal with NBA's Thunder reportedly for $48m

NBA blocks leader Serge Ibaka has agreed to a contract extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder, bringing back another key contributor to a team that made the finals last season. General manager Sam Presti announced yesterday that Ibaka had agreed to a multi-year extension but did not provide details, citing team policy. Yahoo! Sports first reported he deal is for four years and $48 million. Ibaka's signing could be pivotal in the future of the franchise, which already has All-Stars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook locked into expensive, long-term contracts. This summer is the first time Ibaka and Sixth Man of the Year James Harden are eligible for extensions to their rookie contracts, and the small-market team could be in a crunch to bring both back beyond next season. (AP )

India's Laxman retires from international cricket

India's VVS Laxman announced his retirement from international cricket yesterday, despite his selection for the two-test series against New Zealand starting on Thursday. The 37-year-old announced his decision to retire with "immediate effect" at a news conference at his home city of Hyderabad, where India will play the first test against New Zealand. Laxman scored 8,781 runs in 134 tests, including 17 hundreds. He also scored six hundreds in 86 one-day internationals. (Reuters )