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Roger pulls out of final with Novak

Tennis: A mouthwatering finale to the season ended before it even began yesterday when Roger Federer was forced to pull out prior to the ATP World Tour Final showdown with Novak Djokovic.

The 33-year-old Swiss announced his decision on court as the O2 Arena filled up for the expected final.

Federer, who was bidding for a seventh title at the year-ender, apologised but said he was not "match-fit" after developing a back problem. "I hope you understand I wanted to come out personally and excuse myself for not playing ... I can't compete without a back at this level," he told the crowd who still warmly applauded, despite their obvious disappointment.

Klitschko puts Pulev in place

Boxing: Wladimir Klitschko knocked out the previously unbeaten Kubrat Pulev in the fifth round to retain his four heavyweight belts.

Klitschko sent the Bulgarian flying back with a huge left punch to his jaw, leaving him sprawled on the canvas and giving referee Tony Weeks no option but to end the bout.

Klitschko dedicated his latest victory to the Ukrainian people, "who are going through tough times".

Pulev, who dropped to 20-1, said Klitschko was "lucky".

"Wladimir is a really good opponent, but he was lucky. I want a rematch. I'll win the next time," Pulev said.

Caterham race on despite staff axe

Motor Sport: The Caterham Formula One team have made 230 staff redundant while still planning to race in next weekend's Abu Dhabi season-ender, an administrator said.

Caterham administrator Finbarr O'Connell said that the team, who went into administration last month, would take 40 people to the Yas Marina circuit with their expenses paid with money raised through a crowd-funding initiative.

"We are going to Abu Dhabi, racing and talking to potential buyers with meetings already arranged out there," he said. "A best outcome could be for staff to get redundancy, arrears of pay and then if someone comes along (and buys the team) they would get paid again."


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