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Lucic-Baroni Stuns Halep as Sharapova Lines Up Stossur at Roland Garros



Mirjana Lucic-Baroni has yet provided the shock result of Day 4, seeing off last year’s French Open finalists, Simona Halep, in straight sets to reach the round of 32.

The rampant Croatian known for her ground-breaking feats at Roland Garros smashed 29 winners- including four aces- broke five times and recorded 54% success on her opponents’ serves to take a 7-5 6-1 win.

Lucic-Baroni also saw off the Canadian 3rd seed en route to the fourth round of the 2014 U.S. Open (when Halep was enjoying her highest ever ranking of No. 2) and repeating it for a second time was her second best career win.

“When I saw the draw and who I was playing second round, I knew it was going to be really tough,” said Lucic-Baroni, 33. “I was going to have to play a great match again and back up what I did at the US Open, because sometimes people say, Oh, it’s just one day. I don’t look at it like that. I know I played really well.

“I have been working really hard, and I knew today I had to play some great tennis. I was ready for it. Even though my results haven’t been that great lately, I have been feeling great. I knew just it’s a matter of a moment coming, you know, and results are gonna come. I’m glad I was able to do that again.”

The No. 70-ranked thus advance to the third round of the clay Grand Slam for just a second time (lost to Jenifer Capriati in 2001) and will face No.29 seed, Alizé Cornet, who proved the better of her match-up with Romanian Alexandra Dulgheru, 6-2 7-5. French No. 1 Cornet won their only previous meeting in 2012.

“The US Open was the first time in a really long time that I’ve had a really good result like that. I was extremely emotional. Now I’m trying to hold it together a little bit better,” Lucic-Baroni said.

“As long as my body allows me to, I’m going to keep fighting and keep playing. It’s moments like this that are just so amazing – full court, against one of the best players in the world, and winning. It doesn’t get better than this.”

Defending champion Maria Sharapova continued her march for a third triumph in Roland Garros with quick victory over Vitalia Diatchenko.

Maria Sharapova Will Face Sam Stossur in the third Round of the 2015 French Open. Image: RG via Getty.

Maria Sharapova Will Face Sam Stossur in the third Round of the 2015 French Open. Image: RG via Getty.

The No. 2 seed produced 24 winners to 8 unforced errors to her compatriot’s 18-26 winner-unforced error differentials to seal a 6-3 6-1 win in 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Sharapova broke her opponent and consolidated for a 2-0 lead few minutes into the game, but the found it difficult dealing with Diatchenko’s double-handed smashes in the third game. Sharapova fought back from 0-30 and 30-40 down in the fourth game, before double faulting to hand her 25-year-old opponent her first break of the game.

She however re-asserted dominance on proceedings, eventually taking the set 6-3 in 46 minutes.

Sharapova broke Diatchenko’s twice in the second set on her way to closing out victory. She sets up a replay of her three-setter comeback against Australia’s Sam Stossur in the fourth round of the 2014 tournament.

Stossur, seeded 26 in Paris this year saw off French wild card Amandine Hesse, 6-0 6-1 in a rather routine second round match at the Court Suzanne-Lenglen.

Sharapova is 14-2 in her career head-to-head record against Stossur, including 4-0 on dirt surface.

“She has a very heavy ball, and I think on clay specifically it just really penetrates through the court,” Sharapova said of Stosur. “The spin she’s able to create from her forehand and her serve, she has one of the best kick serves in the game. She’s really able to put that power into it and kick. She also slices a lot. There are a lot of untraditional things she does, but I guess I enjoy the challenge of playing her.

“I have a pretty good record against her. I enjoy our matches. I hope I can continue that.”

“Playing Maria is always a big challenge for me,” Stosur said. “No matter what surface it’s on, I don’t have a very good record at all. Obviously we played last year – that’s the last time we played against each other. So I’ve got to be ready to have to play as well, if not better, than what I’ve been doing.

“Last year was very close, and all of a sudden it was very far away,” the Australian added. “That’s certainly a position I’d like to try to get in again, and hopefully this time if I do get in a position, it won’t fall away so quickly. But I feel like I’m playing well. I’ve had a good lead-up, and now I’ve played another really good match here, and hopefully it’s all going to help me going into this next one.”

Selected women’s singles results

Sabine Lisicki, 20, (Ger) beat Daria Gavrilova 6-1 (the Australian retired in second set)

Donna Vekic (Cro) beat Bojana Jovanovski (SRB) 6-4 6-3

Angelique Kerber, 11, (Ger) beat Ajla Tomljanovic (Cro) 6-3 6-2

Elian Svitolina (Ukr) beat Yulia Puntitseva (Kaz) 1-6 7-5 9-7

Garbine Muguruza, 21, (ESP) beat Camila Giorgi (Ita) 6-1 6-4


Diego Maradona: Biography And Facts (Video)



Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona

The news of the death of Diego Maradona has sent shock waves to football lovers around the world.

The 60-year-old football legend died on Wednesday, November 25, after suffering from cardiac arrest in his home country.

The country of Argentina is currently grief-stricken over the demise of the 1986 World Cup winner. His body arrived at the presidential palace in the country to lie in state. 

Maradona, who was born on 30 October 1960, holds a record that is nearly unmatched. He is regarded as one of the greatest players of all time. He was one of the two joint winners of the FIFA Player of the 20th Century award.

The footballer came from humble beginnings and he received his first soccer ball as a gift at age 3 and he developed a soft spot for the game.

At age eight, Maradona was discovered by a talent scout while he was playing in his neighbourhood club, Estrella Roja. 

The footballer, at age 12, thrilled spectators with his mastery of the art of football during the halftime intermissions of first division games.

He started his career with Argentinos Juniors before joining Boca Juniors and went on to play for Barcelona, Napoli, Sevilla and Newell’s Old Boys before returning to Boca in 1995.

Sadly, his life wasn’t always all sunshine and rainbows as he was addicted to cocaine from the mid-1980s until 2004.

Maradona married long-time fiancée, Claudia Villafañe, on 7 November 1984, and they had two daughters. The couple later went their separate ways in 2004.

He listed Brazilian playmaker, Rivelino and Manchester United winger George Best among his inspirations growing up.

Maradona made 91 appearances for Argentina between 1977 and 1994 and he scored 34 goals at international level before ending his career.

He had the best years of his club career in Italy, as he played a massive role in Napoli winning the Serie A title in the 1986-87 and 1989-90 seasons. 

He was the all-time leading goalscorer for Napoli, with 115 goals, until his record was broken by Marek Hamšík in 2017.

Maradona also lifted the UEFA Cup with Napoli in 1989 and he won three trophies during his time at Barca – including the Copa del Rey in 1983.

As a coach, Maradona also had stints in charge of Textil Mandiyu, Racing Club, Al-Wasl, Fujairah and Dorados de Sinaloa in Mexico before being appointed by Gimnasia de La Plata.


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Football Legend, Diego Maradona Dies At 60 Following Heart Attack



BREAKING: Football Legend, Diego Maradona Dies At 60 Following Heart Attack

Diego Maradona

Argentina and Napoli legend, Diego Maradona has passed away at the age of 60 following a heart attack.

The Gimnasia coach had been hospitalised at the start of November, days after celebrating the landmark birthday, after complaining of low spirits and fatigue.

Recall that some weeks ago, it was reported that the football legend had a blood clot on the brain, which doctors later revealed was operated on successfully.

Also Read: Manchester City Could Offer Barcelona Star, Lionel Messi A Pre-contract In January

Two weeks after being discharged from the hospital and recovering at home, he reportedly suffered a cardiac arrest on Wednesday morning.

The Argentine national team’s official Twitter account confirmed the news on Wednesday.



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The Contribution of Sports Betting to the Economy of Nigeria



Most of us have grown up with gambling lore that left us petrified to our core. Gambling ruins lives, gives rise to financial and legal problems.

This is all that we have grown up learning. However, this is only partly true and must not be taken too seriously. Sure, gambling has its disadvantages and evils.

However, the activity, in its entirety, is not addictive. It is what humans make out of it. Human beings give up self-control and spiral into a bottomless pit of despair due to that.

Gambling, when indulged in appropriately, does no harm. In fact, it is one of the biggest industries and contributes significantly to the global economy.

The moot point of this article is to have a look at the betting industry of Nigeria. While we do that, we shall also examine how much the industry contributes to the economy of the nation.

Therefore, let us now have a look at the industry and venture a few important points throughout
the article.

How Does the Betting Industry of Nigeria Look Like?

The gambling industry of Nigeria resides in the areas of gray. One cannot look at it in either black or white.

Gambling activities are considered illegal in Nigeria, with the exception of a few. And betting on sports happens to be one of those exceptions.

Online gambling in Nigeria is allowed only on offshore-owned and operated casinos. Locally operated casinos are not allowed to function in the land.

Now speaking of betting, one must note that the betting industry happens to be a key player in Nigeria’s economy. There are over fifty functional and legal betting sites in Nigeria.

As we mentioned before, betting is entirely legal, unlike online gambling. All those who want to gamble on sites like can do so with the use of VPNs.

Nigerians are incredibly passionate as a people about their sports. That is why the idea of making money by betting on their favorite sports has a lot of appeal.

With about 200 million people in the country, the betting industry has found a solid footing in the market. It has been estimated that over the last few decades, Nigeria has grown to become the second-largest betting market in South Africa.

Over 60 million people find entertainment through online betting sites in South Africa. Therefore, one can understand, going by the statistics that Nigeria has evolved over the last few years when it comes to betting.

Reasons for this Massive Growth in the Popularity of Online Betting:

One of the primary reasons for this massive popularity in online betting is the increase in technological innovations.

Nigeria, over the past few years, has seen technological expansion and super-fast connectivity. Almost everyone has access to smartphones now.

This is what makes it so easy for people of every age group to bet online. The constraints that the nation had in technology and connectivity are no longer an issue.

It is estimated that in the next few years, the country shall see more such innovations and expansion. This will, therefore, act further as a catalyst to the growth of the online betting industry.

The Government is Now Tightening the Noose around Online Betting to Raise Revenue:

As we already mentioned a few times before that Nigeria had strict laws related to online gambling.

The government also did not pay much attention to the betting industry. However, things have changed now and shall change further down the line.

The Nigerian government is now formulating some strict laws so that it could pull the revenue from betting into the coffers.

This is also one of the most significant reasons for the growth in Nigeria’s economy. Online betting is a lucrative industry, and we can already deduce that from we discussed.

With the government paying more attention to the industry, crime rates can be reduced, and better revenue can be raised.

If anything, the involvement of the Nigerian government shall only serve as a fresh change. Plus, with a better structure in the betting industry, more people can find jobs and livelihood.

Wrapping It Up:

We can see how the online betting industry of Nigeria has become one of the chief contributors
to its economy.

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