Thomas be­gins de­fense of CIMB Classic

Justin Thomas col­lected the Jack Nick­laus Award as the U.S. PGA Tour player of the year a cou­ple of days be­fore head­ing to Malaysia in a bid to win his third suc­ces­sive CIMB Classic.

Lit­tle won­der then the two-time defending cham­pion was slightly off his game in the first round Thurs­day morn­ing, man­ag­ing only a 2-un­der-par 70 to sit six strokes be­hind leader Cameron Smith of Aus­tralia.

Smith opened with a blem­ish-free 8-un­der 64 and leads a U.S. PGA Tour event af­ter the first round for the first time in 64 starts.

Kee­gan Bradley, Xan­der Schauf­fele and Poom Sak­sansin of Thai­land were tied for sec­ond at 7 un­der.

Bren­dan Steele, com­ing off a vic­tory last week at the Safe­way Open, had an open­ing 67 to be three shots off the lead.

Hideki Mat­suyama, the 2016 runner-up, fal­tered with two bo­geys to sit with Thomas in a tie for 23rd place. The CIMB Classic con­tin­ues through­out the week­end at un­usu­ally late times in the United States due to the time dif­fer­ence in Malaysia.

IndyCar re­turns to Ore­gon in change to 2018 sched­ule

Port­land In­ter­na­tional Race­way is back on the IndyCar Se­ries sched­ule in 2018.

The Sept. 2 race on the 1.967-mile per­ma­nent road course will be IndyCar's first trip to the Ore­gon track since races were held from 1984-2007 un­der CART and Champ Car sanc­tion.

The race will be op­er­ated by Green Sa­voree Rac­ing Pro­mo­tions, which also pro­motes the IndyCar events at St. Peters­burg, Toronto and Mid-Ohio.

Port­land re­places Watkins Glen, New York, on the sched­ule.

Auburn re­ceives fed­eral sub­poena in bribery scan­dal

Auburn says it has re­ceived a fed­eral grand jury sub­poena in the bribery case against bas­ket­ball as­so­ci­ate head coach Chuck Per­son.

The univer­sity con­firmed that in a state­ment Thurs­day in re­sponse to an open records re­quest from The As­so­ci­ated Press. Auburn's state­ment said it won't yet re­lease the doc­u­ments be­cause they are typ­i­cally "sent with the un­der­stand­ing that they will be treated con­fi­den­tially," in­clud­ing on whether they were re­ceived in the first place.

Ok­la­homa State pro­vided AP and other me­dia out­lets with a copy of the sub­poena it re­ceived in the wide­spread cor­rup­tion case, prompt­ing Auburn to ac­knowl­edge that it has also got­ten one.

Per­son was sus­pended with­out pay af­ter pros­e­cu­tors said the for­mer NBA player ac­cepted about $91,500 in bribes to steer clients to a Pitts­burgh­based fi­nan­cial ad­viser when they reached the NBA.

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