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Wimbledon 2015: Williams, Djokovic Through to 2nd RND



Serena Williams is through to the second round of Wimbledon championship after a 6-4 6-1 win over Margarita Gasparyan in Court 1.

The women top seed, who is much favoured to complete the ‘Serena Slam’- a non-calendar slam which could see her hold all Major wtitles at the same time for the second time in her career- is now tied for fifth with sister Venus Williams on the list of ladies with most career singles wins at Wimbledon with her 73rd win.

Men’s singles top seed Novak Djokovic opened his title defense with a 6-4 6-4 6-4 win over Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber on Centre Court.

The Serb will face either veteran Leyton Hewitt or Finland’s Jarkko Nieminen in the round of 64.

Flavia Panneta suffered the first upset of this year’s championship, as the No. 24th seed was sent packing by Zarina Dyas 6-3 2-6 6-4. Spanish ninth seed Carla Suarez Navarro followed suit, losing in straight sets to 2014 Wimbledon junior champion Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia, 6-2 6-0.

Serena Williams Celebrates Her Passage to the Second Round of Wimbledon. Image: AELTC.

Serena Williams Celebrates Her Passage to the Second Round of Wimbledon. Image: AELTC.

Nick Kyrgios defeated Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman 6-0 6-2 7-6 (6) to book his place in the second round.

2009 quarter-finalist Victoria Azarenka secured a routine victory over Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit.

Reigning U.S., Australian and French Open champion, Serena, was not at her best against debutant Gasparyan, but found the winning mentality when it mattered most.

The 20-time major winner lost her opening service game, but held to love to move to 1-2 and then recovered in the sixth game to level 3-all. She then put her experience to use to close out the set 6-4.

Williams raced to a 3-0 lead in the second set before saving three break points in the fifth game to move 4-1 clear at whose point there was no denying the 33-year-old victory against a player ranked 113 places below her.

“She came out so fast, I was like ‘if I don’t start I’ll be down a set’ and I’m so tired of being down a set,” the world No. 1 said. “It feels good to be back here at Wimbledon. I’ve done so well here in the past.”

Men’s singles

John Isner (USA)[17] def. Go Soeda 7-6, 6-4, 6-4
Marcel Granollers (Esp) def. Janko Tipsarevic 6-3, 6-4, 6-2
[1] Novak Djokovic (SRB) d. Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER) 64 64 64
[4] Stan Wawrinka (SUI) vs Joao Sousa (POR)
Simone Bolelli (ITA) vs [5] Kei Nishikori (JPN)
[7] Milos Raonic (CAN) d. Daniel Gimeno-Traver (ESP) 62 63 36 76(4)
[9] Marin Cilic (CRO) d. Hiroki Moriya (JPN) 63 62 76(4)
[11] Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) vs Federico Delbonis (ARG)
Lucas Pouille (FRA) vs [14] Kevin Anderson (RSA)
[16] David Goffin (BEL) d. Horacio Zeballos (ARG) 76(4) 61 61
[17] John Isner (USA) d. Go Soeda (JPN) 76(5) 64 64
[19] Tommy Robredo (ESP) vs John Millman (AUS)
Luke Saville (AUS) vs [21] Richard Gasquet (FRA)
[24] Leonardo Mayer (ARG) d. Thanasi Kokkinakis (AUS) 76(7) 76(3) 64
[26] Nick Kyrgios (AUS) d. Diego Schwartzman (ARG) 60 62 76(6)
[27] Bernard Tomic (AUS) d. Jan-Lennard Struff (GER) 63 36 26 62 63
[28] Pablo Cuevas (URU) vs Denis Kudla (USA)
[32] Dominic Thiem (AUT) d. Dudi Sela (ISR) 26 63 64 64
Jarkko Nieminen (FIN) d. Lleyton Hewitt (AUS) 36 63 46 60 11-9
Liam Broady (GBR) d. Marinko Matosevic (AUS) 57 46 63 62 63
Juan Monaco (ARG) d. Florian Mayer (GER) 61 62 64
Ricardas Berankis (LTU) d. Andreas Haider-Maurer (AUT) 62 52 ret.
Victor Estrella Burgos (DOM) vs Benjamin Becker (GER)
Tommy Haas (GER) d. Dusan Lajovic (SRB) 62 63 46 62
Kenny De Schepper (FRA) vs John-Patrick Smith (AUS)
Pierre-Hugues Herbert (FRA) vs Hyeon Chung (KOR)
Matthew Ebden (AUS) d. Blaz Rola (SLO) 62 61 64
Fernando Verdasco (ESP) d. Martin Klizan (SVK) 46 62 63 67(5) 13-11
Teymuraz Gabashvili (RUS) vs Alexander Zverev (GER)
Lukas Lacko (SVK) vs Steve Johnson (USA)
Marsel Ilhan (TUR) vs Jerzy Janowicz (POL)
Joao Souza (BRA) vs Santiago Giraldo (COL)
Donald Young (USA) vs Marcos Baghdatis (CYP)

Women’s singles

Ana Ivanovic (Srb)[7] def. Yi-Fan Xu 6-1 6-1
Kristina Mladenovic (Fra) def. Alexandra Dulgheru 6-2, 6-1
Maria Sharapova def Joana Konta 6-2 6-2
Lucie Safarova def Alison Riske 3-6 7-5 6-3


Talented Nigerian Players of the NFL



The NFL is quickly becoming one of the most popular leagues for Nigerian athletes. Over the last few years, we have seen some immensely talented players from Nigeria, or with Nigerian ancestry, come into the league and take over. While all positions in the sport of American football have benefited, notably there has been a focus on defensive positions from these athletes, with linebackers and defensive ends rising to prominence. Here are some of the most talented Nigerian athletes in the NFL that you need to know.

Jeremiah Attaochu

Jeremiah Attaochu is a 6’3”( 1.91m) outside linebacker who is currently playing for the Denver Broncos. He was a member of the 2014 draft, selected in the 2nd round as pick #50 overall. Attaochu played briefly for several teams like the 49ers and the Jets as he gradually tried to find the perfect fit. Recently, Attaochu has been re-signed by the Broncos on a one-year $1.5 million contract. Clearly, the Broncos liked what he brought to their defensive line.

Since Peyton Manning left the Broncos, the squad has been testing new offensive schemes, but their defense remains very strong. All-star player Von Miller has recently been placed on the injury list, so Attaochu will be called on to perform his best. With his aggressive tackling and limitless gas tank, Attaochu certainly helps bring the Broncos favorable American football odds. The team’s main division rivals are the Kansas City Chiefs who have one of the strongest offenses in the league. Heading into the 2020 season, defense is a priority for the Broncos.

Jeff Okudah

Okudah was born in Texas, USA in 1999 to Nigerian parents, making him one of the youngest players on this list. In the most recent NFL draft, Okudah was one of the most in-demand athletes and was selected #3 overall by the Detroit Lions. In the buildup to his NFL debut he quickly became known as the best cornerback in the entire country, and has proven to be yet another exceptional Nigerian athlete to gr3aduate from Texas universities.

This is excellent news for the Lions, who certainly need all the help they can get on defense. Okudah made his NFL debut this past Sunday, playing against the Green Bay Packers and MVP quarterback Aaron Rodgers. All things considered, Okudah played well and showed that he can perform at the professional level.

Emmanuel Ogbah

Born in Lagos, Nigeria, Ogbah has come a long way on his journey to becoming the standout outside linebacker that he is. He was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in 2016 as the #32 overall pick. After two years with the squad, he was traded to the Kansas City Chiefs, where he really came into his own as a linebacker.

Ogbah played a big role in the Chief’s 12-4 record while he was active during the 2019 season. His standout performance was during week 3 versus the Baltimore Ravens, when Ogbah sacked quarterback Lamar Jackson 1.5 times. Unfortunately, a pectoral injury ended his exceptional season at game 10, but his efforts ultimately helped the Chiefs get to the playoffs and win the Super Bowl. Afterwards, Ogbah signed a two-year $15 million dollar contract with the Miami Dolphins, where he currently helps round out their defense.

Noah Igbinoghene

This young athlete is an exceptionally talented cornerback. He was recently drafted in the first round as #30 overall by the Miami Dolphins. Though he was born in the US, he is of Nigerian descent and lived in the country for part of his life in his earlier years.

Notably, both of his parents were talented athletes in their own right. Igbinoghene’s father not only competed in the Men’s Triple Jump in the 1996 Olympics, but also won a bronze medal at the 1990 Commonwealth games. His mother was a track and field star, and was part of the relay team that won a bronze medal for Nigeria at the 1992 Olympics.

NFL analysts gave the Dolphin’s an A+ for the Igbinoghene pick, saying that he was the right player for their team and helped the Dolphins patch up a weakness on defense. He played well against the Buffalo Bills this past weekend, ultimately blocking many passes that came his way.

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Barcelona Sell Luis Suarez To Atletico Madrid



Barcelona have sold striker Luis Suarez to La Liga rivals Atletico Madrid.

The transfer was confirmed on Wednesday evening, with Suarez reportedly crying as he left Barcelona’s training grounds for the last time the same day.

“FC Barcelona would like to publicly express their gratitude to Luis Suarez for his commitment and dedication and wishes him all the best for the future,” the statement said.

The club said a “farewell event” would take place for Suarez on Thursday before a press conference.

Suarez leaves Barcelona after six successful years. He scored 198 goals – making him Barcelona’s third top scorer, and won 13 titles.

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Messi and Ronaldo miss out on UEFA Men’s Player of the Year nominations



No Messi or Ronaldo in UEFA Men’s Player of the Year nominations for first time in 10 years as De Bruyne & Lewandowski battle it out.

Bayern Munich goalkeeper Manuel Neuer is also in the running for the award, with a new winner set to be announced at the start of October.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo have been left off the final shortlist for the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award for first time in 10 years, with Kevin De Bruyne and Robert Lewandowski set to battle it out for the individual prize.

Ronaldo, who currently plies his trade in Italy with Juventus, has picked up the accolade on three occasions and also has a total of nine nominations to his name, while Barcelona superstar Messi has won it two times and made the final shortlist in six of the last 10 seasons.

Both men have stood out as the best players of their generation for well over a decade, but as they continue to advance into their thirties, an inevitable changing of the guard is beginning to take shape.

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