Nowitzki out for six weeks
Dirk Nowitzki will miss the start of the NBA regular season after having knee surgery that is expected to keep him out of the lineup for six weeks, the team said on Friday. If everything goes according to schedule, Nowitzki will miss about a dozen games starting with his team’s Oct. 30 season-opener versus the Lakers. The German, the only European to win the NBA’s Most Valuable Player award, started having problems with his right knee before last season. He had it drained twice in the past month to reduce swelling and soreness, but the problem reappeared both times.
Bonucci sees off gunman
Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci faced down an armed robber who pointed a pistol at his head before chasing the assailant as he tried to get away, Italian media reports said yesterday. The Italy international was with his wife and baby son at a car dealership in Turin on Thursday, looking to buy a Ferrari, when a man with his face covered pointed a gun at his head and demanded that he give him his watch. Bonucci refused and instead punched the thief, knocking him to the ground before chasing him as he tried to get away on a scooter with his accomplice. The Gazzetta Dello Sport reported the man shouted “What are you doing? Are you mad? I’ll shoot you” as Bonucci pursued them in vain. He later reported the incident to the police.
Poor form my fault: Schumi
Former world champion Michael Schumacher has insisted his poor season is his own fault and has nothing to do with his car. Earlier this month, Mercedes boss Dieter Zetsche blamed Schmacher’s disappointing return to Formula One on the German team’s underperforming car. Schumacher, 43, returned to Formula One in 2010 with Mercedes after a four-year hiatus, but the seven-time world champion has again failed to make an impact on the world drivers’ championship, where he is currently 14th. “As racing drivers, we are independent of the cars,” Schumacher said in an interview in today’s edition of German daily Die Welt. “The fact things didn’t go as well for me as planned is my fault, not that of the team. What is important though is to be able to look in the mirror and be able to say that I gave all I had. And I can do that. I can leave Formula One with my head held high.” Schumacher said he is looking forward to his freedom. “Above all, I am looking forward to spending time with my family,” said Schumacher, with his last race set to be the Brazilian Grand Prix on Nov. 25 in Sao Paulo.
Ashley to buy Rangers stake
Newcastle owner Mike Ashley is ready to buy a stake in fallen Scottish giants Rangers, according to Ibrox chief executive Charles Green. Rangers already have a retail agreement with Ashley’s Sports Direct firm and the tycoon has now been given the green light to take a shareholding in the Scottish club. Green, who fronted a consortium that bought Rangers after their liquidation earlier this year, last week launched a share issue scheme for fans and is also looking to attract institutional investors. “As you know we’ve been trying to get the position clear where Mike can buy shares in Rangers,” Green told Sky Sports News on Friday. “We finally got clearance from the football league after they had a board meeting recently and the meetings this afternoon were to make sure the path’s clear for Mr Ashley to invest. He’s obviously keen to do that and I’m sure that will get completed in the next few days.
‘GREAT EVENING‘: In the women’s singles in Rome, Simona Halep and Karolina Pliskova advanced, while Rafael Nadal swept into the quarters in the men’s singles Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Friday had to dig deep to advance to the semi-finals of the women’s doubles at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. The top seeds, who did not drop a game in their opening match on the clay courts at the Foro Italico, battled to a 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 victory over sixth seeds Veronika Kudermetova and Katerina Siniakova in 1 hour, 39 minutes. The reigning Wimbledon champions saved nine of 11 break points and converted three of eight, winning 56 percent of points on their second serve and sending down two aces
KEY GOAL: Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei is now free to focus on taking her fourth doubles title of the year with Barbora Strycova; they are due to face Nao Hibino and Makoto Ninomiya Taiwanese No. 1 Hsieh Su-wei on Monday returned to the court for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down the WTA Tour, falling to a 6-3, 6-1 defeat to US Open quarter-finalist Elise Mertens, who made a solid transition from the hard courts in New York to the clay at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome. “I’m not sure how well I adapted, to be honest,” Mertens told the WTA Web site. “I just feel like I might still be struggling a little. It was also [Hsieh’s] first match of the week, so that was a bit of an
’SO CONSISTENT’: The victory gave the world No. 1 and world No. 2 a 21-1 win-loss record and their fourth title of the season after successes in Brisbane, Dubai and Doha Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei and Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic on Sunday cruised to their fourth women’s doubles title of the season at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome in their first tournament back since the suspension of the WTA Tour due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The top seeds took just 63 minutes to complete a comprehensive 6-2, 6-2 victory over unseeded German-Romanian duo Anna-Lena Friedsam and Raluca Olaru at the Foro Italico. It was the Taiwanese-Czech pairing’s first outing since they won the Qatar Open in February. “After five months, you don’t know what to expect,” Strycova told the WTA Web site.
‘FUN TIME’: Denver’s Nikola Jokic said that his team would not accept that anyone else is better than them and the opposition need to play much better than they do Just about everyone had LA versus LA written in for the NBA’s Western Conference finals, but the resilient Denver Nuggets have crashed the party. Behind Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic, the Nuggets advanced to the conference finals for the first time since 2009 to face LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers. Game 1 is scheduled to be played tomorrow. This was no ordinary road. The Nuggets fell behind 3-1 in their first-round series against the Utah Jazz before bouncing back with three straight victories. Then they went down 3-1 to the Los Angeles Clippers in the second round before winning in Game 7