Reuters Sports News Summary

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Following is a summary of current sports news briefs.

Muguruza downs Pavlyuchenkova to reach Australian Open semis

Garbine Muguruza stormed back into the Grand Slam big time with a 7-5 6-3 win over Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova to reach her first Australian Open semi-final on Wednesday. The twice Grand Slam champion will meet former finalist Simona Halep on Thursday for a place in Saturday's final after producing her most complete performance at Melbourne Park this year on a sunbathed Rod Laver Arena.

Woman's tribute to Bryant upsets competitor at slalom

A swimsuit-clad woman crossed the finish line holding a banner in memory of late NBA great Kobe Bryant at the Schladming World Cup slalom on Tuesday and sent racer Alex Vinatzer into despair. The Italian celebrated taking the lead in the second run only to discover that the woman, whose banner read '24 RIP KOBE', had triggered the clock before he had crossed the line.

Petition to make Bryant the new NBA logo nears 2 million signatures

Nearly 2 million people have signed an online petition to use Kobe Bryant's image as the new logo for the National Basketball Association following the death of the Los Angeles Lakers great on Sunday. Bryant, one of the NBA's all-time greatest players, and his 13-year-old daughter were among nine people who died on Sunday when the helicopter they were in crashed into a hillside outside the town of Calabasas, California.

Let's get the party started, Super Bowl set for epic bash

Take one of the world's great party destinations, add a Super Bowl and throw in a milestone celebration like the National Football League's 100th anniversary and you have all the ingredients for an epic bash. With plenty of sun, surf and sand there is never a need for an excuse to party in Miami but the Super Bowl, back in its favorite city for a record 11th time, has generated an unprecedented buzz dialing up the heat on South Beach.

Teenager Gauff to join Serena on U.S. Fed Cup team

Serena Williams will be joined by teenage sensation Coco Gauff as part of the U.S. team that will face Latvia in a Fed Cup qualifier next month, the United States Tennis Association said on Tuesday. The USTA announced two weeks ago that Williams would return Fed Cup action for the Feb. 7-8 tie in Everett, Washington and now rounded out the team with Gauff, Sofia Kenin, Alison Riske and Bethanie Mattek-Sands.

Halep going shopping after romp to last four in Melbourne

Simona Halep needed just 53 minutes to thrash Estonian Anett Kontaveit 6-1 6-1 to reach the semi-finals of the Australian Open on Wednesday, a whirlwind victory that gives the fourth seed more time to go "shopping". The two-times Grand Slam champion had not lost a set in her previous two meetings with Kontaveit and the quarter-final was no different, the 28th seed managing just one breakpoint on former world number one Halep's serve.

Johnson unwilling to commit to Olympics due to crowded schedule

Recent world number one Dustin Johnson is not ready to commit to this year's Olympics in Tokyo due to a crowded schedule, he said on Tuesday. The July 30-Aug. 2 Olympic golf tournament at Kasumigaseki Country Club will be held two weeks after the British Open, and two weeks before the start of the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup playoff series.

Dinwiddie, Ross change numbers due to Kobe's death

Brooklyn Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie and Orlando Magic swingman Terrence Ross changed numbers on Tuesday to honor the late Kobe Bryant. Both players are changing their number from No. 8, one of the numbers Bryant wore with the Los Angeles Lakers. Dinwiddie switched to No. 26, while Ross chose No. 31.

Koepka says proposed new world tour might actually happen

World number one Brooks Koepka said on Tuesday he thinks the Premier Golf League (PGL), a proposed series that could potentially overshadow the main tours, might actually happen after plans were announced last week. While Koepka acknowledged he still had much to learn about the specifics of the proposed circuit, he said he would likely be one of the first to decide whether to participate.

Super Bowl notebook: Spotlight on 49ers' Garoppolo

The San Francisco 49ers have ridden the running game to Super Bowl LIV, with Jimmy Garoppolo throwing just 27 passes in two games, but head coach Kyle Shanahan scoffs at the idea he's trying to hide his quarterback. "I think it's really funny that people say that," Shanahan told reporters Tuesday. "Did anyone notice how good we were running the ball? We weren't just running it to punt and try to win 3-0. ...

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