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American's basketball ban in Italy reduced on appeal



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ROME (AP) — The Italian Basketball Federation appeals court has reduced American player Dearica Hamby's suspension from three months to four games.

Hamby was banned last week for a "violent gesture" against Ivana Tikvic during a league game between Torino and Ragusa.

Ragusa, Hamby's team, appealed and on Tuesday it was announced she will have to sit out only four games.

The incident occurred with 26 seconds left in the game and Tikvic's team, Torino, leading by 18 points. Tikvic was dribbling toward midcourt when Hamby came up from behind and made contact. Tikvic fell to the ground, bumping her head. Hamby stood over Tikvic for a few seconds after she went down.

The Croatian was attended to for 20 minutes before leaving the court on a stretcher. She was taken to a hospital and released the next day.

A replay of the incident on Ragusa's website showed Hamby didn't seem to make contact with Tikvic on the punch from behind.

It is Hamby's first season with Ragusa.

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The Associated Press

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