Sports in Brief: Slumping Federer loses to Brands at Swiss Open

Roger Federer reflects after being ousted in the second round of the Swiss Open.
Roger Federer reflects after being ousted in the second round of the Swiss Open. (PETER SCHNEIDER / Associated Press)
Posted: July 27, 2013

Roger Federer lost Thursday in front of his home fans at the Swiss Open in Gstaad, beaten, 6-3, 6-4, by Daniel Brands for his third straight tournament exit against a low-ranked opponent.

The 55th-ranked Brands troubled Federer with his serve and big forehands in the second-round match. The 31-year-old Swiss star's other losses in the last month were to players ranked No. 116 ( Sergiy Stakhovsky, at Wimbledon) and No. 114 ( Federico Delbonis, at Hamburg, Germany). He is now ranked No. 5, the lowest since he won the singles title in Wimbledon in 2003.

Federer saved a first match point by serving an ace when trailing by 5-3, and a second in the next game with a forehand winner. Brands then ended the 65-minute match with a service winner.

Italy's Andreas Seppi advanced to the quarterfinals of the Croatia Open in Umag when Andreas Haider-Mauer retired with an injury while trailing by 6-1, 4-0. Horacio Zeballos from Argentina also advanced after rallying to beat No. 8 seed Carlos Berlocq, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. Tommy Robredo won in straight sets to reach the quarterfinals, defeating Viktor Troicki, 6-0, 6-4.

HORSE RACING: Wood Memorial winner Verrazano is the 9-5 favorite in a field of seven for Sunday's $1 million Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park. Preakness winner Oxbow is the 2-1 second choice. He will be ridden by Gary Stevens, who has twice won the Haskell, in 1995 with Serena's Song and in 2001 with Point Given.

BASKETBALL: Seattle Storm forward Tina Thompson, the WNBA's all-time career scoring leader, was named as a replacement player for Phoenix Mercury rookie center Brittney Griner for the West squad in the WNBA All-Star Game. Griner, the No. 1 draft pick, has a knee injury.

HOCKEY: Former Olympians Doug Weight and Bill Guerin; Carolina Hurricanes owner Peter Karmanos; former Michigan State star Ron Mason; and Cindy Curley, who had a record 23 points in the International Ice Hockey Federation's first world championship for women in 1990, are headed to the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Nashville Predators signed forward Nick Spaling to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.

The Toronto Maple Leafs signed general manager Dave Nonis to a five-year extension.

COLLEGES: Temple named Rich Burg assistant athletic director for football communications. Burg has more than 30 years of experience in sports communications, including two stints with the Eagles.

Temple's new indoor practice venue, the Pavilion Athletic Facility, also will be used by the Owls football team.

- Staff and wire reports