• BC-AP--AP Sports Digest, AP

    Updated:

    WORLD SPORTS at 1330 GMT

    TOP STORY:

    SOC--EUROPEAN QUALIFYING

    UNDATED _ England, Ukraine, Portugal, Turkey and France can all seal qualification for the 2020 European Championship. England needs to beat Bulgaria in Sofia and hope for a favor from Montenegro against Kosovo, Ukraine hosts Portugal when both will be looking at third-place Serbia’s game in Lithuania, while Turkey hosts France with one eye on Iceland’s result against Andorra. By Ciarán Fahey. UPCOMING: 600 words by 2200 GMT, photos.

    NEW/DEVELOPING:

    GYM--BILES-FACE OF OLYMPICS

    STUTTGART, Germany _After breaking the world championship record for most medals, Simone Biles is now looking to next year's Olympics in Tokyo. With Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps both out of the picture since the last Olympics in 2016, the US gymnast will be the face of the games for much of the world. By James Ellingworth. SENT: 620 words, photos.

    TEN--FEDERER-TOKYO OLYMPICS

    TOKYO _ Roger Federer says he plans to play at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The Swiss great, a four-time Olympian, says "at the end of the day my heart decided I would love to play at the Olympic Games again." SENT: 150 words, photos.

    SOCCER:

    SOC--SPAIN-SUPPORTING RAMOS

    MADRID _Sergio Ramos and Gerard Piqué were the pillar of Spain's defense for years and were crucial to the team's success over the last decade. But since Piqué retired from the national team after last year's World Cup, Spain has struggled to find a reliable partner for Ramos in defense. By Tales Azzoni. SENT: 550 words, photos.

    SOC--WCUP-KOREAN DERBY

    SEOUL, South Korea _ Son Heung-min may be the biggest soccer name in South Korea and across Asia but the Tottenham forward's fame struggles to penetrate North Korea. As the two neighbors meet in a 2022 World Cup qualifier on Tuesday, the only attention the English Premier League star can expect in Pyongyang is from the home team's defenders. By John Duerden. SENT: 560 words, photos.

    SOC--UKRAINE-PORTUGAL

    KIEV, Ukraine _ Ukraine needs a draw against Portugal to qualify for the 2020 European Championship. Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal can qualify with a victory. UPCOMING: 200 words by 2100 GMT, photos.

    SOC--BARCELONA-CATALONIA

    BARCELONA, Spain _ Barcelona has criticized the Spanish Supreme Court's conviction of 12 Catalan politicians and activists for their role in a 2017 secession attempt, saying "prison is not the solution.” SENT: 120 words, photos.

    RUGBY:

    RWC-FRANCE-NTAMACK’S RISE

    UNDATED _ It's not easy to follow in your father's footsteps when he is one of the best wingers to have played for France. Nor is it any easier to shoulder a burden of expectation at the age of 20. But that's what flyhalf Romain Ntamack is coping with at the Rugby World Cup. By Jerome Pugmire. SENT: 970 words, photos.

    RWC--NEW ZEALAND-IRELAND RIVALRY

    UNDATED _ The quarterfinal meeting between Ireland and New Zealand at the Rugby World Cup comes with a strong feeling of reckoning. Ireland hadn't beaten New Zealand in 28 matches over 111 years until its 40-29 victory at Soldier Field in Chicago in 2016. By Steve McMorran. SENT: 900 words, photos.

    RWC--NEW ZEALAND-RUGBY RIGHTS

    WELLINGTON, New Zealand _ New Zealand Rugby has sold broadcast rights to All Blacks matches for the next five years in what has been described as a "revolutionary" deal, at the same time taking a 5% stake in successful bidder Sky New Zealand. SENT: 380 words.

    OLYMPICS:

    OLY--AUSTRALIA-HOY QUALIFIES

    SYDNEY _ Australian equestrian Andrew Hoy, a three-time gold medalist, has qualified to compete in Tokyo at his eighth Olympics. SENT: 170 words, photos.

    CYCLING:

    CYC--MERCKX-ACCIDENT

    BRUSSELS _ A Belgian newspaper says cycling great Eddy Merckx sustained head injuries in a crash while riding with friends. The Het Nieuwsblad newspaper says the 74-year-old Merckx crashed Sunday and was admitted to a hospital in Dendermonde. SENT: 130 words, photos.

    LUGE:

    LUG--WORLD CUP-GEISENBERGER

    UNDATED _ For the first time in eight years, there will be a new World Cup women's luge champion. Germany's Natalie Geisenberger _ the seven-time defending champion and two-time defending Olympic singles gold medalist _ announced Monday that she isn't sliding this season because she and her husband are expecting their first child in April. By Tim Reynolds. SENT: 390 words.

    YOUR QUERIES: Questions and story requests are welcome. Contact your local AP bureau or the AP International Sports Desk in London by telephone at +44 207 427 4224 or email lonsports@ap.org.

    Next Up: