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US Open: Vintage Federer in Semis against Wawrinka, Halep Sets Pennetta

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Stan Wawrinka never envisaged making a meal of his quarter-final match against an almost underactive Kevin Anderson on Day 10 of the US Open.

The South African, who needed four sets to shock third seed Andy Murray on Tuesday, looked to have expended all in his tank to reach his first Grand Slam quarter-final and locking horns with an 11-time quarter-finalist, against whom he; despite trying to impose his big serving expertise – coming up with 12 aces – could only get 57% of his first serves in while Wawrinka feasted on his returns with a whooping 68% to 37% of Anderson’s.

“I was trying to be really aggressive on the return and make him play a mix or some slice, some aggressive play from the baseline,” Wawrinka said.

Fifth seed Petra Kvitova was up a set and a break but gave away too many points on her own serves in the second set to allow Italian Flavia Pennetta race away with 11 of the remainder 14 games, as well as a second berth (since 2013) in the last 4 in New York.

Simona Halep Celebrates After Reaching Her First US Open Semis. Image: Getty.

Simona Halep Celebrates After Reaching Her First US Open Semis. Image: Getty.


The other women last-8 tie saw Simona Halep overcome Victoria Azarenka, but there has yet to be that man who will take a set off Roger Federer at this year’s championship.

Stanimal

None other pear had spent up to 4 hours and 19 minutes in the singles match in Flushing Meadows prior to Anderson-Murray, and the former appeared still in a recovery mode while combating two-time majors winner Wawrinka in Louis Armstrong Stadium in Wednesday rescheduled match – due to weather condition.

The 15th seed’s double-fault count of nine did not enhance his chances against an opponent who rather kept his down to two and converted 5 of 8 openings.

The Swiss broke the 29-year-old in the seventh game of the first set and held for set point, but dropped an ensuing deuce game when he sent a backhand long, before closing it out under 40 minutes.

The second set went with serves until the ninth game when Anderson could not return a Wawrinka backhand winner on his serve, with the fifth seed claiming the remainder eight games to advance 6-4 6-4 6-0 in less than two hours.

Indeed, Anderson won just five points during the 25-minute third set and raked in 25 unforced errors, to Wawrinka’s 15 throughout.

“Obviously wasn’t meant to be today. Stan didn’t make it easy. He was taking time, I felt, away from me. He was swinging out, and, you know, I was just a step slow,” Anderson, who despite his defeat, took away the fifth annual US Open Sportsmanship Award, said.

“It’s a very tough lesson for me today and, you know, it’s difficult not to think about it, but obviously I have got to take what I can. This week has been a great week for me, the last two weeks. There is a lot of positives.”

The win set up another all-Swiss semi-final, where Wawrinka will be seeking for his first hard-court win over his countryman, against whom he has shared two of their head-to-head matches this year (both on clay). Federer leads their all-time head-to-head 16-3.

The 30-year-old Laussane native also secured his place in this year’s ATP World Tour Finals for the third consecutive year with his victory ove Anderson.

He becomes the fourth player after Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and Andy Murray, who are rest assured of a place in the elite eight-man field in London’s O2 Arena, beginning on 15 through to 22 November.

Fed marching on to 18

Roger Federer is Vying for His Sixth US Open Title. Image: Getty via USTA.

Roger Federer is Vying for His Sixth US Open Title. Image: Getty via USTA.


Five-time winner Federer was in some brilliant form in Arthur Ashe Stadium on Tuesday as he dominated Frenchman Richard Gasquet 6-3 6-3 6-1 to advance into the last 4 of the US Open for a tenth time.

The 34-year-old never faced a break point, and aside being taking to deuce twice by the 12th-seeded Gasquet, posted an impressive 87% of points on his first serve, accompanied with 16 aces – the first; with which he opened proceedings.

“My serve worked very well,“ quipped Federer. “I felt the ball great [and] was able to get in a high percentage of first serves. I was able to stay aggressive and enjoy myself out there.”

The second seed has now won his last seven matches against Gasquet, and in doing so splattered 50 winners and claimed 23 of his 28 approaches to the net.

Pennetta vying for maiden Grand Slam final

If Flavia Pennetta Reaches The Final, Success of an All-Italian Final Means Serena Would Not Achieve Calendar Slam Because the American is Meeting Another Italian Roberta Vinci. Image: USTA.

If Flavia Pennetta Reaches The Final, Success of an All-Italian Final Means Serena Would Not Achieve Calender Slam Because the American is Meeting Another Italian Roberta Vinci. Image: USTA.


Pennetta is through to her second US Open semi-finals in three years after upsetting Czech woman and two-time Wimbledon champion Kvitova 4-6 6-4 6-2 on Arthur Ashe.

The 26th seed immediately asserted control on the game, breaking Kvitova in the opening game, but the fifth seed immediately followed suit as both players traded initiatives with a total five break of serves and, one double faults in the first set.

Kvitova was the one who eventually had the last laugh when Pennetta double faulted while trailing 4-5.

The Italian broke for a 3-2 and 5-4 lead in the second set and swiftly moved to tie the match a set apiece. That was the first set Kvitova had surrendered this tournament.

Serving at 2-all in the decider, 25-year-old Kvitova was broken in the third game, and then handed out the remaining three games to concede her fourth defeat to Pennetta (head-to-head stands at 3-4 to Pennetta).

“I’m really happy right now,” said the 33-year-old Pennetta. “I was just trying to fight for every ball. I didn’t think I’d get through this match. In the second set, I was really in trouble. We played more than two hours, running everywhere.”

The Italian No. 2 moves on to face second seed Simona Halep who, despite a lengthy bathroom break and rain delay, outlasted Victoria Azarenka, 6-3 4-6 6-4.

Halep will be playing in her first US Open semis and her second in a Grand Slam, after reaching the last four at Wimbledon last year.

And with Pennetta’s countrywoman, Roberta Vinci, still up an alive in Flushing Meadwos, chances of an all-Italian showdown cannot be completely pushed aside at the moment.

Football

Diego Maradona: Biography And Facts (Video)

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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

Football Legend, Diego Maradona Dies At 60 Following Heart Attack

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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.

https://twitter.com/Argentina/status/1331637593457520642

 

 

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Betting

The Contribution of Sports Betting to the Economy of Nigeria

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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 Usafriendlypokersites.com 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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