Lu crashes out of Memphis
Taylor Fritz on Tuesday night saved three match points in a third-set tiebreaker to beat Taiwan’s eighth-seeded Lu Yen-hsun 4-6, 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (9/7) in the first round of the Memphis Open. Fritz, the runner-up in the event last year, won without ever breaking Lu’s serve. Earlier on Tuesday, qualifier Darian King defeated No. 5 seed Bernard Tomic 6-4, 6-4. King, ranked 140th in the world, dropped just 12 points in 10 service games against the 32nd-ranked Tomic. Other winners on Tuesday included No. 7 seed Steve Darcis, Ryan Harrison, Matthew Ebden and Tim Smyczek. Harrison won 6-3, 7-5 over Konstantin Kravchuk to advance to a second-round matchup with No. 3 seed Sam Querrey, while Darcis won 7-5, 3-6, 6-4 over Radu Albot and Smyczek beat Frances Tiafoe 6-3, 5-7, 6-3. Ebden rallied from a break down in each of the last two sets to beat Peter Polansky 6-7 (4/7), 6-3, 6-1.
Rain stops play in Qatar
Rain on Tuesday wreaked havoc at the Qatar Ladies Open, with torrential downpours in the desert state pretty much wiping out all of the second day’s play. Of the 11 scheduled singles matches, only one was completed when Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova defeated former world No. 1 Jelena Jankovic in straight sets, 6-1, 6-4. However, even that match took more than seven hours to complete because of the constant rain breaks. Pavlyuchenkova’s victory under leaden skies meant she was only the second player to win through to the second round of the tournament. Play was started in three other first-round matches, but none were finished, although American qualifier Lauren Davies finished a set up against Italy’s Roberta Vinci before the rain called a halt for the day. The persistent wet weather had also wiped out large parts of day one. Organizers announced that play would yesterday start three hours earlier due to a growing backlog of matches. Some players, including fifth seed Garbine Muguruza of Spain, yesterday faced playing two singles matches.
Pescara dismiss coach Oddo
Serie A strugglers Delfino Pescara 1936 on Tuesday fired coach Massimo Oddo, but told fans they “never again” wanted to see the “performances offered” so far by the team’s players. Promoted Pescara have spent much of this season in the bottom three, but when embattled Oddo offered his resignation last month, club bosses waved it away in a rare show of support. However, a 5-3 defeat to Torino on Sunday, when the northern side threatened a 5-0 rout at the Stadio Olimpico, prompted Pescara president Daniele Sebastiani to cave in. “It is with a heavy heart that, after meetings between club president Daniele Sebastiani and Massimo Oddo, along with sporting director Luca Leone, that Pescara announces the removal of the head coach from his position,” a club statement said. “It is hoped this latest sacrifice will make the players aware that we never again want to see the performances that have been offered up until now. The club would like to thank Massimo Oddo for his contribution, and the great satisfaction he has given to all the fans, and we wish him all the best for the future.” Pescara have shipped a league-leading tally of 55 goals in 24 games and are 13 points from the safety zone.
FIRING BLANKS: West Brom and Burnley had conceded a combined 21 goals in their seven games, but the 47th match of the season was the first to end goalless Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday climbed to sixth place in the English Premier League as Raul Jimenez sealed a 1-0 win at Leeds United on a night West Bromwich Albion and Burnley played out the first goalless draw in the division this season. Nuno Espirito Santo’s Wolves clinched their third league win of the campaign when Jimenez’s second-half strike deflected in off Leeds midfielder Kalvin Phillips. The Mexico striker’s third goal of the season made it back-to-back wins for Wolves after they beat Fulham before the international break. “It was a good performance with some aspects to improve. We were better in the second
China wants to unite its 1.4 billion people through soccer, while also using the sport as “a bridge to work with the rest of the world,” Chinese Football Association secretary-general Liu Yi told reporters in an interview published yesterday. Liu spoke about what lies behind the country’s push to become a major soccer power by 2050. Under Chinese President Xi Jinping — who is described by state media as an “avid soccer fan” — the world’s most populous country has grand plans to host and even one day win a World Cup. Liu spoke about “using football to motivate the whole nation.” “Football is
Maybe Kyler Murray will lose a game on the home field of the Dallas Cowboys one of these days. It was not going to be on Monday, when the Arizona quarterback watched the star running back of his hometown team have another night of “fumble-itis.” Murray accounted for three touchdowns in his first game back home as a professional and Ezekiel Elliott set up the visiting team’s first two touchdowns with fumbles as the Cardinals beat the Dallas Cowboys 38-10. The speedy quarterback, who won three high-school championships and a Big 12 title at the home of the Cowboys, improved to 7-0 as
Patrick Mahomes on Monday did not mind taking a back seat to rookie Clyde Edwards-Helaire and the Kansas City Chiefs’ running attack. With the Buffalo Bills working hard to limit deep throws by Mahomes, he gladly kept handing off the ball as Kansas City beat Buffalo 26-17 in a game originally scheduled for Thursday last week. “You know my nature, I want to throw it deep every time. We want to go down and throw these long touchdowns, but if teams are going to play us like this, we’ve got to show we can run the football,” Mahomes said. Mission accomplished. Led by Edwards-Helaire’s