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Sports in Brief: Djokovic wins, rips surface at Madrid

Novak Djokovic needed three sets to win his first match on the blue clay at the Madrid Open on Tuesday, and then stepped up his criticism of the new surface.

Novak Djokovic

needed three sets to win his first match on the blue clay at the Madrid Open on Tuesday, and then stepped up his criticism of the new surface.

Djokovic labored to a 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 victory over Daniel Gimeno-Traver of Spain in his debut on the Magic Box's unorthodox surface.

The Serb, who had already voiced his opposition to the blue clay, was fuming over the condition of center court, which he said was completely different to the practice courts he trained on before the event.

"To me that's not tennis. Either I come out with football shoes or I invite Chuck Norris to advise me how to play on this court," said Djokovic.

HORSE RACING: Kentucky Derby winner I'll Have Another settled into his new home in Barn D at Pimlico Race Course to prepare for the Preakness on May 19. The colt was limited to very light exercise Tuesday morning.

Creative Cause, who finished fifth in the Derby, is a likely Preakness starter, trainer Mike Harrington said.

SOCCER: American businessman Bill Miller withdrew his bid to buy the financially stricken Glasgow Rangers. Miller, the chairman of a Tennessee-based towing and recovery equipment company, said in a statement he was dismayed by hostility from fans unhappy with the prospect of foreign ownership and his discovery that the 140-year-old Scottish club's financial situation is worse than he had thought.

Jordan Henderson, Daniel Agger and Jonjo Shelvey scored after an own goal by Michael Essien as Liverpool took advantage of the visitors' erratic defending to earn an emphatic 4-1 win over Chelsea and eliminate the Blues from the race for fourth place in the English Premier League and a berth in the Champions League. Ramires scored for Chelsea.

A win in this year's final against Bayern Munich in the Germans' home stadium is now the only route for Chelsea back into the Champions League next season.

Barcelona defender Carles Puyol is set to undergo knee surgery, ruling him out of Spain's title defense of next month's European championship.

NOTEWORTHY: In cycling, Giro d'Italia overall leader Taylor Phinney and world champion Mark Cavendish were nursing injuries after crashing a day earlier. The BMC team said an examination of Phinney's injured right ankle revealed no broken bones. A wound required three stitches. Tuesday was a rest day before the race resumes Wednesday with a 21-mile team time trial in Verona,Italy.

Olympic organizers said they will put nearly 1 million tickets on sale on Friday, with priority given to those who were unsuccessful in previous rounds.

Lamont Peterson's scheduled May 19 rematch with Amir Khan in Las Vegas has been called into doubt after a Nevada boxing official said Peterson failed a doping test. Peterson, 28, the WBA and IBF junior welterweight champion, tested unacceptably high for synthetic testosterone in a urine test administered in March by the Las Vegas-based Voluntary Anti-Doping Association, Nevada Athletic Commission executive Keith Kizer said.

In college basketball, Virginia Tech said Dorian Finney-Smith, an all-Atlantic Coast Conference freshman last season, has asked for his release from the school, where James Johnson replaced Seth Greenberg as head coach last month.

Former Notre Dame star and Lamar assistant Joseph Price was named head basketball coach at Grambling.

- Staff and wire reports