Floyd Mayweather announces blockbuster rematch with Manny Pacquiao

first_imgFloyd Mayweather on Saturday announced that he will come out of retirement to fight Manny Pacquiao this year.The announcement was made by Mayweather through his Instagram account. On his account, Mayweather posted a video of him talking to Pacquiao at an event.While barely anything is audible in the video due to the background music, the caption of the video read: “I’m coming back to fight Manny Pacquiao this year another 9 figure pay day on the way.”The video did not include details of when the match will take place.The match would be a repeat of the 2015 blockbuster bout that took place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas with Mayweather winning by an unanimous decision.The 41-year-old Mayweather’s last fight was 13 months ago against UFC star Conor McGregor. The victory against McGregor helped Mayweather reach 50 wins without a single defeat. After the match Mayweather had announced that it was his last fight.However, he’s now ready to come out of retirement to fight his long-time rival Pacquiao.The 39-year-old Pacquiao last fought in July, when he defeated Lucas Matthysse to be crowned WBA welterweight champion.Pacquiao had dared Mayweather for a rematch in July after his win.”Mayweather? If he decides to go back to boxing then that is the time we are going to call the shots. I have the belt, so it’s up to him. If he wants to come back in boxing let’s do a second one,” Pacquiao said in July.advertisementMayweather however denied in August that he has any plans to fight Pacquiao but now it seems he has changed his mind.The 2015 fight between Mayweather and Pacquiao has been the most lucrative boxing match of all time as it generated over four million buys on pay-per-view.last_img read more

Junior shooters can’t be marginalised

first_imgIndian shooting had plenty of highs in 2018, with medals won at World Cups, Asian Games, Commonwealth Games and the World Championship.As the race begins for more quota places to be won for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, there will be more clamour to compete in events abroad. Going by email exchanges among people in the National Rifle Association of India (NRAI), an impression has been created that juniors be treated as juniors and seniors get preferred for 2019.The NRAI has a fairly clear water-tight selection policy where a combination of best scores from trials to competitions is used to arrive at who makes the cut. This year has seen plenty of highs, which began at the CWG in Gold Coast and continued till the Asian Games.A few like Manu Bhaker and Anish Bhanwala did find it difficult to cope with pressure in the Asian Games, but that does not mean they should be considered just as “juniors” in 2019. The argument advocated is the basis of picking shooters and identifying them as probables for the next year should be capability and scores and not their age.This year, in many events, be it pistol, rifle, or even shotgun, “juniors” gave seniors a run for their money. Who gets looked at in the new year may seem far but the way the NRAI functions, they keep working, looking at the future.After coaches flagged the issue on how juniors should not be bracketed just on age alone, NRAI president Raninder Singh has intervened. In his email, he has written to all concerned, “our policy is clear, there is no junior and senior, its best foot forward. The interest of the country and omnipotence of merit is our undoubted goal and we shall continue to ensure just that.”advertisementMeanwhile, NRAI’s plan to hold one more trial for pistol and rifle in October after a busy year is being seen as counter-productive. For those who missed the bus in 2018, it may be a chance but for those who have kept peaking, one more trial can be killing.last_img read more

Denmark Open: Saina Nehwal battles past Nozomi Okuhara to reach semifinals

first_imgSaina Nehwal on Friday became the second Indian player to go through to the semi-finals of the Denmark Open after Kidambi Srikanth after she defeated Nozokmi Okuhara in a hard-fought last-8 match.Nehwal came from behind to beat the reigning world champion 17-21, 21-16, 21-12 to reach the last-4 of the competition.Nehwal displayed great skills, spirit and agility on court and covered her ground so well throughout the match. She made Okuhara commit errors with her resilience and then played exquisite badminton herself to advance to the women’s singles semis.The final point of the match was a long rally which ended with the Japanese finding the net. It was a morale boosting for the Indian star, having lost her previous three meetings to Okuhara including the most recent one in Korea last month.Another good win against fighter @nozomi_o11 of Japan … world number 8 …. 21-17 ,16-21 ,12-21 #quaterfinals #denmarkopen750 #odense pic.twitter.com/dJEr4MZBMtSaina Nehwal (@NSaina) October 19, 2018Saina had also lost to the 2017 World Champion during the team event at the Asian Games in August.Overall, their head-to-head record stands at 7-4 in the Indian’s favour. Saina next faces world number 19 Gregoria Mariska Tunjung of Indonesia.One tough rally from today’s match … pic.twitter.com/tEfCiTQKgeSaina Nehwal (@NSaina) October 19, 2018Earlier on Friday it was Srikanth who sailed into the men’s singles semis after he stopped compatriot Sameer Verma’s charge in the quarterfinals.Defending champion Srikanth ended Verma’s impressive run with a 22-20 19-21 23-21 win in the quarter-final match in Odense.advertisementSrikanth, who had a torrid year after a very successful 2017, was always going to be a tough opponent for world No.23 Sameer, who had pulled off a remarkable upset over Asian Games gold medallist Jonatan Christie of Indonesia to reach the quarters.The world No.6 continued in the vein of his round of 16 victory, where he defeated Lin Dan 18-21, 21-17, 21-16.In the women’s doubles, Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy’s spirited campaign came to an end with a loss to top seeds, Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota, in the quarterfinals.(With PTI inputs)last_img read more

Honda riders grab three podium finishes at National motorcycle racing

first_imgChennai, Dec 15 (PTI) Gearing up for the final showdown, IDEMITSU Honda Ten10 Racing Team won three podium finishes in Super-Sport 165cc and Pro-Stock 165cc categories on the opening day of Indian National Motorcycle Racing Championship here Saturday. The Madras Motor Racing Track also witnessed Race 1 of the last round of Honda Talent Cup which saw stellar performances by riders in both the CBR 250R Expert class and the CBR 150R Novice class. Dominating the season, Anish Shetty sealed his championship after securing podium finish today in Pro-Stock 165 category. Honda riders Mithun Kumar and Senthil Kumar finished at the 5th and 13th place respectively. In Super Sport 165cc, Honda rider, Mathana Kumar secured the second position clocking a total race time of 12:39:132. Following his footsteps was Honda rider Rajiv Sethu who claimed third position today. He finished with a total race time of 13:07:859. Rajiv now has a total of 4 podiums including 3 wins in his kitty. Unfortunately Sarath Kumar crashed in the penultimate corner C11 at the track after leading till the last lap. “Today we bagged 3 podium finishes. I stand extremely confident of our rider’s performances for tomorrow and expect a great closing with some wins for this season,” said Prabhu Nagaraj, Vice President, Brand & Communications, Honda Motorcycles. In IDEMITSU Honda India Talent Cup CBR 250R, Bengaluru boy Abhishek Vasudev secured the first position with a total race time of 12:22:261. Following Abhishek back home was Anish Shetty who claimed the second position and recorded the best lap at 2:01:532. Finishing third was Aravind B who was challenged by Senthil Kumar and Amit Topano in a fight to claim the position.advertisement In IDEMITSU Honda India Talent Cup CBR 150R, 14-year old Mohammad Mukhail claimed yet another win by outperforming others. Giving him a tough challenge was Kartik Vasant, the Karnataka boy who clocked in the second best timing at 13:14:110. Amidst a lot of fluctuation between riders, Aandhu K.K secured his podium with 13:15:080 race timing. PTI ATKATKlast_img read more

KL Rahul should return to India and play Ranji Trophy for Karnataka: Sunil Gavaskar

first_imgSunil Gavaskar slammed the Indian team management for not learning from its past mistakes and repeatedly making “selection blunders” since the tour of South Africa earlier this year.India suffered a massive 146-run defeat against Australia in Perth, their seventh Test loss on the foreign soil this year.”We have been seeing this – the selection blunders that have been committed since the tour of South Africa. It has cost the team because they have lost matches which could’ve been won if the proper selection had been made. So even now, with the benefit of hindsight, I would say that not picking Ravichandran Ashwin is almost like saying that you won’t pick your batsman because the pitch is too good and you won’t need your best batsman as the rest of the batsmen can get the runs,” Gavaskar told Aaj Tak on Tuesday.”I am really baffled by this. I hope they take proper cricketing decisions and don’t go by possibilities. They have to look at the combination of their team, look at the hole that needs to be plugged and pick the men to plug those holes. If they do that, then they can certainly win the next two matches but if they don’t, and that too against this Australian team which does not have Steve Smith or David Warner, then the selectors need to think whether we are getting any benefit from this lot – the captain, coach and support staff. If they win then obviously things will be different,” Gavaskar told Aaj Tak in an exclusive chat on Tuesday.advertisementIndia started off the series with a historic triumph in Adelaide but has added two more players to its squad even before losing the second Test – a decision which has left the former India skipper quite angry.”I want to find out that who has authorised 19 players to go because the next question is why not three more? The BCCI is a very rich body, it can afford to send even 40 people down there. However, I feel that an India cap, an Indian blazer has to be made a lot more valuable. I stand by my assertion made in England that the only way a player really feels hurt is when he is out of the Indian squad. Not just out of the eleven but out of the squad. He will then make efforts to get better. But by carrying players and taking 19 players, I do believe that the selection committee has not handled their responsibility well,” he said.”Nothing will change unless someone is held accountable. Whoever has given them the permission to have those three or four extra players, that person also needs to explain to the rest of the world why 19 players? In the past, we have always had a team of 15 or 16. Occasionally, when the teams have gone to the West Indies, due to the distance, it has been 17. But that was occasionally. Australia, when they come to India, bring 14 players. I don’t see the need why is India sending so many players? A lot of those players can come back and play domestic cricket which will not only embellish our domestic cricket, lift the standard our domestic cricket but also give these guys, unlikely to be picked in the Test matches, an opportunity to regain form and make a case for getting back in the team,” he added.The first one on the flight back home from Perth should be India opener KL Rahul according to Gavaskar.”He (Rahul) has no chance of playing in the remaining two Tests unless of course there is an injury to any player. I think he should come back and play Ranji Trophy for Karnataka. It is not just that he is out of form, he is just not there and you can see that. He can prove me wrong and I will be very happy to be proven wrong as long as the Indian team benefits. That has always been my way to look at it. I don’t claim to know that I know everything but I believe that it is best for Indian cricket if he is sent back and gets lots of runs in Ranji Trophy. That will give him confidence for the battles to come. If he is just going to be part of the team that is travelling from Perth to Melbourne and from Melbourne to Sydney, doesn’t make any sense at all. In fact, questions need to be asked that why has he been kept in the 19? I fail to understand what kind of thinking this really is. And, it has been happening for last year and a half. We return home and start winning again then nobody is really concerned about our overseas results.”advertisementGavaskar is particularly unhappy with the way India surrendered in Perth even though he accepted that the pitch was “difficult” for batsmen.”At least one should make an effort, be it the bowler or a batsman. This is what everyone wants to see. This is a sport and one team has to eventually lose. What the Indian fans want to see is some kind of a fight shown by our players which isn’t happening. A 146-run defeat is quite a big one. Just have a look at how well the Australian tail-enders batted in Adelaide and brought the margin of defeat to 31 runs. Why can’t our team do the same? This remains the biggest question.Gavaskar felt the opening partnership between Marcus Harris and Aaron Finch was the “big difference” between both the teams in this Test match.”The opening partnership between Marcus Harris and Aaron Finch on the first day was the turning point because the wicket was green and had an extra bounce. The duo negotiated that really well and applied their minds. Not just the fours that they hit, the best thing about their left-right partnership was the way they were stealing singles and rotating strike. They didn’t let any Indian bowler to bowl six consecutive deliveries. I think that was the biggest difference between both the teams.”Also Read | KL Rahul brutally trolled after twin failures in PerthAlso Read | Virat Kohli surpasses Brian Lara with sixth hundred in a losing cause as captainAlso Read | Paine on banter with Kohli: He brings out the competitive spirit in a lot of peoplelast_img read more

Australian Open: Rampaging Maria Sharapova sets up mouth-watering Caroline Wozniacki clash

first_imgFormer Australian Open winner Maria Sharapova continued her marauding form in handing out a 6-2 6-1 thrashing to Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson on Wednesday and set up a blockbuster third-round showdown with defending champion Caroline Wozniacki.The Russian 30th seed, who was suspended for 15 months for taking banned drug meldonium in 2016, broke her 23-year-old opponent twice in the opening set and peppered the court with powerful groundstrokes in a superb display of hitting.Sharapova, who beat Harriet Dart 6-0 6-0 in her opening round, won seven consecutive games to take a 4-0 lead in the second set before world number 64 Peterson could get on the board. The Russian did not face a single breakpoint in the match and sealed it in 71 minutes with a third break in the set.One to watch at #AusOpen 2019Having dropped only three games en route to the 3R, @MariaSharapova def. Rebecca Peterson 6-2 6-1.Up next: Defending champion @CaroWozniacki pic.twitter.com/AnR9POianP#AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 16, 2019In a clash of former world number one players, the five-time Grand Slam winner will next meet Dane Wozniacki, who eased past Johanna Larsson 6-1 6-3 earlier in the day. Third seeded Wozniacki took just over an hour to secure her second consecutive straight-sets win.12 points in a row for @MariaSharapova gives the 30th seed a first-set lead, taking it 6-2 against Rebecca Peterson. #AusOpen pic.twitter.com/qif0t5A62T#AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 16, 2019Wozniacki made just 12 unforced errors in her second round match against a player who constantly switched up her tactics in an ultimately unsuccessful bid to break down the brick wall defence of her higher-ranked opponent.advertisementWozniacki wobbled early in the second set, after being unable to convert a series of break points in the opening game, before settling back into her rhythm and running away with the match.”I thought it was a fine match,” Wozniacki, who is battling rheumatoid arthritis, told reporters. “I think she stepped it up a little bit in the second set. I think I served well.”Wozniacki has been in the top echelon of women’s tennis for a decade but won her first Grand Slam singles title at the start of 2018.last_img read more

Will miss you: SRH after David Warner leaves for Australia’s World Cup camp

first_imgSunrisers Hyderabad players and support staff say the team will miss prolific David Warner – who has left Indian shores to join Australia’s World Cup camp – in the business end of the tournament.Warner, who recently returned to competitive cricket after serving out his one-year ban for ball tampering, has been named in the 15-member Australian squad for the mega event.”I can not express my gratitude enough to the @SunRisers family for your support, not just this season but also for the last year. It’s been a long time waiting but it was great to be back,” the swashbuckling opener posted on his official Twitter handle.I can not express my gratitude enough to the @SunRisers family for your support, not just this season but also for the last year. It’s been a long time waiting but it was great to be back https://t.co/zhfY5HA7jSDavid Warner (@davidwarner31) April 30, 2019Warner, who has been the leading run scorer in this IPL, thus won’t play any further matches for SRH. He amassed a staggering 692 runs in the ongoing edition of the cash-rich T20 league.Afghanistan and SRH spinner Rashid Khan tweeted that he would miss Warner in the team.”Safe flight my bro @davidwarner31.We are already missing you it was an absolutely pleasure to play together again and 1 thing I will miss a lot while you were telling me in ground MASHALLAH and INSHALLAH . See u soon in World Cup. @SunRisers @IPL,” tweeted Rashid along with a photo.advertisementSafe flight my bro @davidwarner31.We are already missing you it was an absolutely pleasure to play together again and 1 thing I will miss a lot while you were telling me in ground MASHALLAH and INSHALLAH . See u soon in World Cup . @SunRisers @IPL pic.twitter.com/ENMv3vYDBSRashid Khan (@rashidkhan_19) April 30, 2019Sunrisers head coach Tom Moody also lavished praise on his compatriot for the great character and resilience shown by him.”Another phenomenal @IPL for @davidwarner31, takes more than skill to emerge from the recent past it shows great character, resilience and determination to rise as he has. #welcomeback #ClassAct #IPL2019,” Moody, who also represented Australia, wrote on his Twitter handle.Another phenomenal @IPL for @davidwarner31, takes more than skill to emerge from the recent past it shows great character, resilience and determination to rise as he has. #welcomeback #ClassAct #IPL2019Tom Moody (@TomMoodyCricket) April 30, 2019Sunrisers Hyderabad face Mumbai Indians in a crucial clash at the Wankhede Stadium here on May 2.Also Read | David Warner and Rashid Khan star as SRH crush Kings XI PunjabAlso Read | Tried to be the best batsman I can be: David Warner after signing off for SRH on a highAlso Read | The girls and I are proud of you: Wife Candice’s emotional message for David Warnerlast_img read more

French Open: Roger Federer becomes oldest man to reach 4th round at Roland Garros

first_imgRoger Federer eased past Norway’s Casper Ruud 6-3 6-1 7-6(10-8) on Friday to become the oldest male player to reach the fourth round at the French Open.Playing in his 400th Grand Slam match, the 37-year-old showed little mercy to his 20-year-old Norwegian opponent, whose father Christian reached the third round when Federer first played on the ‘terre battue’ of Roland Garros as a wild card entrant in 1999.Federer needed little more than an hour to pick up the first two sets, but a rare lapse in the Federer concentration allowed Ruud, ranked 63 in the world, to pick up an early break in the third set.The Swiss reeled the youngster back in, forcing the game to a tie-break where he squandered three match points before winning 10-8.As he signed autographs at the end, a female fan said: “Roger, I’ve never seen you sweat before, this is crazy.” Federer quipped back: “I know, I don’t know what’s going on, I must be getting old!”Federer was making his first appearance at Roland Garros since he reached the quarter-finals in 2015. He withdrew from the event in 2016 and missed the entire clay court season in 2017 and 2018 to focus on grass.Sounding relaxed in a post-match interview, Federer, one of tennis’ most elegant playmakers, praised his opponent’s tenacity – and his grunt-free ball-hitting.”He doesn’t make any noise. I love that,” he said.Federer is vying for his second French Open title 10 years after his first in 2009 and to set a record for the longest gap between winning a second title at a Grand Slam in the Open era. He will meet either French wild card Nicolas Mahut or Argentina’s Leonardo Mayer in the fourth round.advertisementAlso Read | French Open: Petra Martic knocks out 2nd seed Karolina PliskovaAlso Watch:last_img read more

World Cup 2019: Pakistan lost but Pakistani Twitter had us in splits

first_imgIndian team on Sunday produced an all-round performance to thrash Pakistan by 89 runs at Old Trafford, Manchester in a much-hyped clash and extended their head to head record against the Asian rivals to a dominant 7-0 in the World Cups.In the marquee clash, India outperformed Pakistan in all the three departments to make the contest a one-sided affair.Put in to bat first, India opener Rohit Sharma scored his second hundred at the tournament, followed by captain Virat Kohli and KL Rahul smashed half-centuries each to help India post a mammoth 336 runs total as Pakistan never threatened to make a chase of it in the rain-interrupted game.An India vs Pakistan game is arguably the biggest cricket-rivalry because of the diplomatic tensions between the two countries and thus there was a lot of furor prior to the high-octane clash.Ahead of the highly anticipated World Cup clash, a video pupurportedly put out by Pakistani channel called Jazz TV, took the internet by storm as the ad featured a character impersonating wing commander Abhinandan, the Indian pilot captured Pakistan.On the other hand, in India, the famous ‘Mauka Mauka’ that went Viral during the 2015 World Cup made a comeback with a Father’s Day twist for June 16.However, after the high-intensity match between the two rivals, the fans rather came up with light-hearted jokes and took the Pakistan team’s defeat in a sporting manner.This guy speaks for the whole of Pakistan today pic.twitter.com/JReTKDdlhGAmmara Ahmad (@ammarawrites) June 16, 2019Indian Captain vs. Pakistani Captain #INDvPAK #PAKvIND pic.twitter.com/XWU08m1iHFadvertisementSam (@iamsam_PTI) June 15, 2019Agar hum apna saara budget world cup mein India per laga k double karlein toh Kya humari economy stable ho sakti hai?Garmi Mein Kharab (@fay_alif) June 16, 2019india tou humain aisi phainti laga raha hay jaise kohinoor hum nay churaya hoA h m e d (@Ahlvled_) June 16, 2019Bhai sahab khud aik Railu Katta hain!!#___ pic.twitter.com/SmwQB5ycmuAli Khan Pasha (@iamalipasha) June 16, 2019India wholeheartedly thanks Sania Mirza for taking the paki boys & her hubby out for party till 2AM b4 #INDvPAK match pic.twitter.com/g1gBK15hSDNewEnglandRa (@NewenglandRa) June 16, 2019#CWC19 #INDvPAK #TeamIndia pic.twitter.com/8EVML7Q5qRAYUSH RANJAN (@ark_ayushranjan) June 16, 2019Pak fans on Saturday: “rain go away, we want Pak to play”Sunday morning: “rain come back…”Rain: pic.twitter.com/drWs7CFYYS(@HaayeShabbir) June 16, 2019Also Seelast_img read more

Priyanka Chopra chills with Wonder Woman Gal Gadot at Dior’s show in Paris and we are in love

first_imgPriyanka Chopra along with her husband Nick Jonas made a stunning appearance at Maria Grazia Chiuri’s fall 2019 Haute Couture collection for Christian Dior at the Paris Fashion Week.At the glamorous evening, apart from showing off her breathtaking elegance in a green Dior number, the fashionista also chilled with Gal Gadot aka Wonder Woman. And we are totally crushing over this pair.The actress was spotted making her way into the event and bonding over fashion with the Wonder Woman star while sitting at the front row.The Desi girl, who was all curled up beside her hubby Nick Jonas, sat with Gal Gadot, on her other side, and their pictures from the event are breaking the internet.The two were even spotted talking during show and discussing the Autumn-Winter 2019-2020 line which was being displayed at the fashion show.For the event, Priyanka rocked a pleated scalloped sleeve dark green silk dress with a black and gold belt and stunning keyhole neckline. The Dior dress was specially designer for the Sky Is Pink star.She glammed up her look by choosing to tie her hair in a low bun while sporting minimal makeup.advertisementAs for the Wonder Woman star, she was seen flaunting her svelte figure in a pattered outfit with a plunging neckline. For glam, Gal went for a sleek braided bun and minimal make-up.ALSO SEE | Priyanka Chopra exudes elegance in keyhole neckline dress with Nick Jonas at Paris Fashion WeekALSO WATCH | Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas serve drama galore at Met Galalast_img read more

Don’t think India lost to England because of us: Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed

first_imgRefusing to believe in the perception that India deliberately lost to England, hurting Pakistan’s semifinal chances, skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed said it’s incorrect to cast aspersion on the Virat Kohli-led side.A lot of former Pakistan cricketers doubted that India did not give their best against England, putting obstacles in their side’s road to semifinals.”No, no, it is not right to say this. I don’t think India lost because of us. England played well to win,” Sarfaraz told reporters.Sarfaraz also gave a dressing down to a journalist at the press conference after she used the word ‘Bengalis’ while asking about the match against Bangladesh.”Please don’t use this word. It could become an issue for you on the social media. I think you should address them as Bangladesh. You are using objectionable word,” the Pakistan skipper told the television reporter after she asked why the team management did not give Shoaib Malik a farewell in the match against the “Bengalis”.”Shoaib is our senior-most player and though he did not have a good World Cup, he has served the country a lot. His presence in the team was very good for all of us,” Sarfaraz said.Malik announced his retirement from ODIs after the World Cup and will now only focus on playing T20 cricket.last_img read more

Wimbledon 2019 semi-finals: It is joy to play against Rafael Nadal, says Roger Federer

first_imgAfter going more than 1½ years without playing each other anywhere, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will be meeting at a second consecutive Grand Slam tournament when they face off in Wimbledon’s semifinals.Last month, Nadal got his shot at Federer on red clay, winning their wind-whipped French Open semifinal in straight sets on the way to a 12th title there.”We had some brutal conditions to play (in) there. But it was a joy to play against Rafa there, on his court,” Federer said. “And, of course, I’d love to play against him here at Wimbledon.”On Friday, Federer gets his shot at Nadal on grass and hopes to prolong his pursuit of a ninth championship at the All England Club.”Means a lot for me,” Nadal said, “and probably for him, too.”This is their 40th showdown on tour; Nadal leads 25-14. It’s their 14th match at a major; Nadal leads 10-3. And it’s the fourth time they’ll play at Centre Court; Federer leads 2-1.But Nadal did win the last one, edging Federer 9-7 in the fifth set of the 2008 final considered by many the greatest match in tennis’ lengthy history as daylight dwindled to nothing.That would never again be an issue, because a retractable roof and artificial lights have been in place at the tournament’s main stadium since the following year. Another movable cover was added to No. 1 Court this year.What hasn’t changed? Federer and Nadal are still at the top of the game. If it’s hard to believe more than a decade has passed since these two rivals last shared a court at Wimbledon, it’s also tough to fathom how it is that they have dominated their sport as long as they have. Federer ranks first among men with 20 career Grand Slam titles. Nadal is next with 18. Add in the third-place count of 15 trophies belonging to Novak Djokovic, who is seeded No. 1 and plays No. 23 Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain in Friday’s other semifinal, and this terrific trio has won 53 of the last 64 major championships.advertisementThat includes 14 of the last 16 at Wimbledon. Also: 10 in a row everywhere over the past 2½ seasons.Although Federer turns 38 on Aug. 8, Nadal is 33 and Djokovic 32, they aren’t showing signs of letting up.”We still (feel) that we have chances to compete for the most important things,” Nadal said. “That’s what really make us keep playing with this intensity.”Not to mention keep working on aspects of their game.Federer, for example, switched to a larger racket and began using a flatter backhand more frequently instead of a slice. Nadal has worked on his serving and that’s helped him once again be a contender on grass.He reached the final during five consecutive Wimbledon appearances from 2006-11, winning twice, but hasn’t been that far since, including a series of exits against opponents ranked 100th or worse. Last year, he was beaten in five sets by Djokovic in the semifinals.”Haven’t played each other in a long, long time on this surface. He’s serving way different. I remember back in the day, how he used to serve. And now, how much bigger he’s serving, how much faster he finishes points,” Federer said. “It’s going to be tough. Rafa really can hurt anybody on any surface. I mean, he’s that good. He’s not just a clay-court specialist, we know.”Also Read | Wimbledon 2019: Rafael Nadal vs Roger Federer in rematch of 2008 semi-finalAlso Read | Wimbledon 2019: Roberto Bautista Agut sets semi-final date with Novak DjokovicAlso Seelast_img read more

Japan Open 2019: PV Sindhu’s campaign ends with quarter-final loss to Akane Yamaguchi

first_imgIndia medal hope PV Sindhu crashed out of the Japan Open Super 750 tournament after losing to Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi in straight games of the women’s singles quarter-finals in Tokyo on Friday.In a repeat of last week’s Indonesia Open final, 5th seed PV Sindhu failed to avenge her title contest defeat as the Japanese downed the Indian 18-21, 15-21 in 50 minutes to cruise into the semi-finals of the prestigious Super 750 tournament.In a thrilling first game, both the players gave each other a hard fight for every point. The set was levelled at 3-3 before Sindhu displayed an attacking game to take a 11-7 lead into the first interval. The Indian, however, failed to maintain the lead after the lemon break as the 4th seeded Japanese found her way back to make the score 16-14 in her favour.Sindhu made Yamaguchi move all around the court but the young Japanese emerged better in the battle of endurance to gain 3 game points. Sindhu managed to save first 2 game points with back-to-back smashes but Yamaguchi, with her impressive defensive skills, took the opening game 21-18 in 25 minutes.In the second game, Sindhu made number of unforced errors since the start of the game to give Yamaguchi an early 2-4 lead. However, Sindhu kept showing glimpses of her trademark smash shots to level the game 6-6. But Yamaguchi, who looked at her very best, went into the mid-break with a four-point lead.Yamaguchi continued with her momentum after the interval and earned 5 match points. The Indian saved one but another unforced error marked the end of Sindhu in the tournament as Yamaguchi finished the game by taking the second set 21-15.advertisementEarlier, in men’s singles, Sai Praneeth entered the semi-finals of the tournament after beating Indonesia’s Tommy Sugiarto 21-12, 21-15 in the quarter-final.Sai Praneeth was on the top of his game as he easily wrapped up the game in two games inside 36 minutes. The World No 23, a former Singapore Open champion, was in complete control of the proceedings against his higher-ranked opponent.Notably, Sai Praneeth has become the first-ever Indian men’s singles shuttler to reach the last-four stages at the prestigious Super 750 tournament in Tokyo.In men’s doubles, the Indian duo of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also crashed out of the tournament after straight games defeat to Japanese pair of Keigo Sonoda and Takeshi Kamura.Satwik and Chirag gave a tough fight to the number two seeds but the the local pair finished stronger with 21-19, 21-18 win over the Indian pair in 41 minutes.Also Read | Sai Praneeth reaches maiden Japan Open semi-finals after dominant win over Tommy SugiartoAlso Read | Japan Open 2019: Kidambi Srikanth ousted after 1st-round defeat to HS PrannoyAlso Seelast_img read more

COOK PARK AREA RESIDENTS NOT THRILLED WITH SPLASHPAD PLAN

first_imgTHE FUTURE OF A PROPOSED SPLASH PAD FOR COOK PARK IS IN QUESTION FOLLOWING A PUBLIC MEETING ON THE PLAN TUESDAY NIGHT AT CITY HALL.AROUND TEN PEOPLE ATTENDED THE MEETING WITH PARK BOARD MEMBERS AND CITY OFFICIALS.MOST OF THE CITIZENS ATTENDING WERE OPPOSED TO THE $200-THOUSAND DOLLAR SPLASH PAD FOR VARIOUS REASONS AND WANTED TO SEE THE PUBLIC SWIMMING POOL REMAIN OPEN.CITY PARKS DIRECTOR MATT SALVATORE SAYS THAT WON’T LIKELY HAPPEN BECAUSE THERE’S NO MONEY BUDGETED TO OPERATE COOK POOL FOR ANOTHER YEAR:Audio Playerhttp://kscj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/SPLASHPAD2.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC………NEXT YEAR. ;12THE SPLASH PAD AS CURRENTLY PROPOSED WOULD HAVE NO STAFFING, AND SOME RESIDENTS FEAR TRANSIENTS WOULD USE IT TO BATHE AND THERE WOULD BE DANGERS TO CHILDREN PLAYING THERE.THOSE ATTENDING SAID THEY’D RATHER SEE BASKETBALL COURTS, SOCCER FIELDS OR BETTER LIGHTING IN THE PARK THAN A SPLASH PAD.SALVATORE SAYS RESIDENTS OF THE WESTSIDE NEIGHBORHOOD WILL BE POLLED TO SEE WHAT THEY DO WANT IN THE PARK:Audio Playerhttp://kscj.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/SPLASHPAD.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.OC……..AT THIS PARK. ;08THAT SURVEY WILL TAKE PLACE EARLY NEXT YEAR.SALVATORE SAYS IT WILL LIKELY BE THE SUMMER OF 2018 BEFORE A SPLASH PAD OR OTHER AMENITIES WOULD BE CONSTRUCTED.last_img read more

In the way of #1 – LSU

first_imgPhoto Attribution: Icon SMIWelcome to a new series on what must take place for Oklahoma State to reach #1 in the polls this year. Who must win in order for the Cowboys to sit atop the college football world? Here’s your full fan’s guide to who OSU fans should be rooting for this season. We’ve looked at Texas A&M, Boise St.,Stanford, and Florida St. so far and now we’re going to Death Valley to see what the Mad Hatter has for us. And speaking of the Hatter, he’s about to pull a Eddie Sutton memorial “we are gathering all the information and will hander this matter internally” move with Jordan Jefferson for the Oregon game on September 3rd before miraculously having all the necessary facts by Monday the 5th and harshly benching Jefferson and three other accomplices for the Northwestern State game destruction at Tiger Stadium. I mean does anyone believe this isn’t going to happen?Even if it doesn’t, I think they handle Oregon. As Andy Staples put it on Twitter yesterday…it’s not exactly like QB was a position of strength for them going into the year.This also marks the second “OSU is definitely moving ahead of one of these teams in the polls” games we’ve looked at. Let’s say LSU beats Oregon and OU takes care of Florida State. As long as OSU handles UL-LA, Arizona, and Tulsa they will be sitting at #6 in the coaches poll and #7 in the AP headed to College Station.Anyway, after the NW State massacre LSU heads to Morgantown for the battle of former Oklahoma State coaches. If I set a BAC over/under for people at that game at say .1 how many people would you take for the under? 1,000? 1,500? Would we go as high as 4,000?Next the Tigers come home for a brutal stretch of Kentucky and Florida in Baton Rouge, at Tennessee, Auburn at home, and at Alabama.Lastly they get Western Kentucky at home, Ole Miss on the road, and Arkansas at home with the SEC Championship to follow.As OSU fans we kind of have to be LSU fans as well. Here’s the thing, they aren’t going undefeated, I mean look at this slate. But we need them to beat the right teams. We need them to beat Oregon and Bama (who both have easy schedules) then lose a dumb game like Arkansas at home or West Virginia on the road. I know you guys hate Les but at least he keeps things interesting and this year he could provide a clear shot at the #1 ranking for his former employer.How worried I am:        (out of 10)If you haven’t checked out our other series on the 20 most important people to a 2011 national title you can do so here. If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

Film Study: How Oklahoma State’s Linebackers Help Its Lineman Get Sacks

first_imgWhat WVU was doingWVU is in a shotgun formation with 4 WRs out wide and the RB on the QB’s left. The tackles are in a pass protect stance. The two guards and center are in a three-point run block stance.From the moment the ball is snapped we can already see something unique about this play. All five linemen drop back a couple steps and then fall to the ground. This is what’s known as a ‘cut’ block. The cut block is completely legal (although it has a reputation of being dirty), so long as the offensive lineman doesn’t perform the cut block on a defensive player that’s already engaged with another offensive player and as long as it’s done within the tackle box (pocket).Essentially, the cut block is a way to take a defensive player out of the play. If things go accordingly, the defender is cut and falls to the ground, giving the QB or RB more time/room to make the play. On this play, WVU was hoping to cut the defensive line and create a wide open window for the QB to get the ball to one of the WRs on the left side.The WRs to that side are running hi-lo slants, where both receivers are doing slants, but one (the inside WR) runs his more shallow and the outside WR runs his a bit deeper.What OSU was doingThe Pokes are in the Base 4-3 defense. The DEs are lined up on the outside shoulders of the offensive tackles, making them 5-techniques. I can’t tell for certain, but Motekiai Maile appears to be lined up across from the LG, while Vincent Taylor is lined up directly across from the center (0-technique).Seth Jacobs is bumped out a bit covering the inside WR on the right side. Notice how Chad Whitener and Jordan Burton shift to their left when the WVU RB goes in motion. With the motion happening, the RB now becomes Burton’s responsibility. Whitener is playing zone coverage in the hook zone, which is basically the five to ten-yard area in the middle of the field.The CBs are playing about three yards off the WRs, an indicator that they will be playing tight man-to-man coverage. You might recall the same aggressive style being played by the CBs on first down in last week’s defensive film study.Lastly, you can see both safeties are playing about 11 yards off the ball. With it being first-and-10 and WVU showing the tendency to run and throw the quick pass, the safeties are making sure to keep the first down line in front of them so they can defend against the run or the short pass.Why this worked for OSUAs I said, the cut block is meant to take certain defenders out of the play. Obviously, this is contingent upon the offensive linemen actually causing the defender to go to the ground because if he is unsuccessful, the d-lineman has a free pass to the backfield.Here, the LT had absolutely no success in attempting the cut block on this play. Jimmy Bean is easily able to side step the attempt and carry on about his business trying to bring the QB down.But even though Bean was basically unblocked, the play still had a tiny chance to be successful had it not been for one other player: Seth Jacobs.Again, WVU is all about utilizing the quick pass—getting the ball into the WR’s hands as quickly as possible and allowing them to make a play. When the ball is snapped, the QB immediately looks left, which tells us he was hoping to hit one of the hi-lo slant routes.However, Jacobs gives his receiver a solid “bump” when he comes off the ball and knocks him off his routes just enough to be able to still play tight coverage on him. This causes the QB to hesitate because he sees his speedy WR is completely covered. By this time, Bean has already gotten to the QB and drags him down for the easy sack.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

Notebook: Oklahoma State-Iowa State

first_imgIf you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers! I posted my 10 Thoughts earlier tonight but, as always, needed to empty the notebook. Tonight’s game was the only one that even remotely approached the 100-note mark. That’s what happens when you’re undefeated in November and Iowa State leads for most of the game. Here we go.• I was thinking about this at the beginning of the game: Between the CFP rankings, the AP Poll and the Coaches Poll, how do networks pick which rankings to put on the screen during their games?• Was it the lock of the decade or the century that ESPN would open with 2011 highlights? Also, Iowa State, let’s talk. You can’t do better than a piece of cardboard with “remember 2011?” scrawled on it? That was worse than you final two drives.• Mike Warren being the best freshman running back in the country and being from Lawton, OK are two facts I wish I didn’t have to type subsequently. That stings.• Mason Rudolph needs a right-handed glove that he only wears on the road. Maybe just build it in to his white jersey in 2016.• I think Oklahoma State ran more from under center in this game than it has in the rest of the post-Dana era combined. Rudolph looked like he was laboring pretty hard to get those stretch handoffs to Chris Carson and Co. It was strange to watch and resulted in just 10 real drives for OSU. The committee wants B1G football? The committee gets B1G football.• I sent a message to an Iowa State blogger friend of mine at the end of the first half asking why Joel Lanning wasn’t the starter all year. He answered that in the second half with about seven passes right into the turf. After each one I said to myself, “oh, that’s why.” Dude can run it a little bit, though. That’s why the 3rd and 1 call on the second-to-last drive was so inexplicable. You have two downs to get one yard with a running QB OSU clearly is struggling to deal with (he had 14 carries for 130 yards) and you throw to the long side of the field on Kevin Peterson? What are you doing, Iowa State?• Over the last few weeks, I’ve found myself trusting our offense more. Even when ISU punched OSU in the mouth early, I felt confident OSU could at least hang around. That’s a far cry from September.• I though James Washington played pretty poorly. He dropped some passes, ran some bad routes and just generally seemed hungover from his epic performances against TCU and Texas Tech.• If OSU had gone down to backup QBs as an undefeated team and > two TD favorites in Ames in November twice in a five-year span, I’m not sure what I would have done but I’m certain it would have involved some personal counseling.• Sometimes I forget players can’t see the yellow first down line like I can.• Carson runs like a realllllly slow AD. He obviously doesn’t perform similarly, I’m just saying their running styles are incredibly similar (straight up, no head movement, etc.)• Brandon Sheperd running the ball out of the diamond formation. Mike Yurcich is on page 178 of the playbook. Speaking of random plays, how about the implementation of a variation on the QB toss back out of shotgun (aka: the Lester)? OSU ran it to Ray Tay on a semi-sweep and it was awesome. I want more.• Iowa State was averaging 1.82 points per drive so it totally makes sense that it would score on its first four possessions against one of the two or three best defenses in the Big 12.• How good was this catch?.@david6glidden if there was an NCAA Football 16, your awareness would be a 99 pic.twitter.com/xmA3IQniwg— Southwell (@JustinSouthwell) November 15, 2015• ESPN had a really interesting stat on Rudolph. On average, he gets rid of the ball in the pocked in 2.4 seconds which is in the top 20 fastest nationally for QBs. I’m not sure which poor intern had to calculate all that but I found it pretty intriguing. Part of it is scheme and part of it is Rudolph playing the part of a junior or senior even though he’s a true sophomore.• How many coverage sacks did Iowa State have. Other than the “throw it up to Ateman and hope he’s not doubled” play, OSU seemed lost in Iowa State’s secondary.• One problem I’ve noticed with J.W. in the red zone is that he has a tendency to whiff on wide open receivers that Rudolph probably would have hit. The tradeoff of him running is good enough that you almost always make the call, but it’s something to keep an eye on as OSU will need to score on every red zone appearance it has over the final 120 minutes of the season.• Still should.https://twitter.com/jasonkirksbn/status/665658354484801538• I said this in my 10 Thoughts, but OSU’s defense and special teams looked like they had nothing in the tank after last week’s slog. That’s understandable. It also makes me grateful that Iowa State only ran a B1G-like 60 plays on Saturday.• The OSU offense has done its best OSU defense impression in the last two road games. Keeping OSU in it until the defense can get it together and shut the thing down. Again, Iowa State gained 104 yards and scored seven points in the second half (on a short field on a turnover).• I laughed.The Ronald Reagan of offensive possessions right there.— Tyler Ames (@TyAmes93) November 14, 2015 • One of the announcers noted that Rudolph is much better with dudes running at him than he is just sitting back trying to pick apart secondaries. I couldn’t agree more. Also, he did a pretty good job running Saturday and might need to do it a few more times a night.• One of my notes just says, “GET MCCLESKEY THE BALL IN SPACE” in all caps.• Kevin Peterson is a gamer. I feel like he’s been hurt all year and he just gets the thing revved up on Saturdays every week. It’s impressive. I’m going to miss him next season.• This is odd to me. This game was OSU’s eighth-best yards per play performance of the season. It had 497 yards on 86 plays. It felt … much better than that.• I would have bet a sum of money Mrs. Pistols wouldn’t have been OK with that Rudolph would fake clap, draw an offsides and get a free play at some point during the game. He almost did like six times, but it never happened.• Truth bomb.Luckily I no longer feel emotion after the 2011 loss.— Dave Hudson (@okc_dave) November 14, 2015• One to Iowa State getting the ball after the Weeden INT in 2011, how scared were you on the punt that “touched” an OSU guy before it got overturned? I was like a nine.• David Glidden’s mustache needs to go in the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.• This was fitting.J. W. just out here trying to take on the entire state of Iowa. pic.twitter.com/BedDxOhfmp— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) November 14, 2015• I felt bad for Blake Jarwin on that fumble. All I wanted is retribution for the forward progress call on Kendall Hunter call at UH in like 2007 and I couldn’t get it. Of all the receivers I would expect to fumble, Jarwin would not be near the top of the list.• Why was OSU blitzing so much? Don’t you have, like, the best defensive line in school history? No need to bring a safety and a couple of LBs too. They shut it down in the fourth quarter, but my goodness, that seemed foolish.• This destroyed me.• How much money would ISU have potentially cost itself (and the Big 12) by winning this game?• If you played the Texas, WVU, Tech and ISU road games 1,000 times the same way OSU played them this year, how many times would you go 4-0? Not many.• Mrs. Pistols in the third: “I hate games like this because teams like that have nothing to lose.” Yep.• Why don’t more teams try to punt balls a little shorter and hit opposing teams in the back to try and get a fumble? That seems like a halfway decent strategy, no?• Ateman out here making Rashaun Woods proud.• Let’s talk comebacks. OSU trailed by 17 in this game which is the second-most it has ever come back from (also did it against Tech this year and A&M in 2011). It also trailed by 10 (!) in the fourth quarter which is the first time all season it has trailed by more than three in the fourth.• I’ve said it like seven times now, but Walsh going full Patrick Reed and “shhhhhh”ing the Jack Trice crowd was my favorite moment of the night.• One thought I had as Walsh scored the TD to get us within a field goal — this team is fully formed. No more debates over the rush game thing. No more “what’s the QB deal?” The 2015 OSU team is what is is, for better or worse. And it’s been a heck of a ride.• This was great.Lol. pic.twitter.com/D54MXZ5XiG— Pistols Firing (@pistolsguys) November 14, 2015• A three-man rush with Emmanuel Ogbah is like a seven-man rush with normal humans.• OSU had games very similar to this at Texas, at WVU and against Kansas State. They didn’t feel like this one, though. College football in November is a whole other thing.• Yes, it was.Gundy on Salako’s false start: “That’s the best break we got all day.”— Kyle Fredrickson (@kylefredrickson) November 15, 2015• I openly wondered how badly I would muff a fair catch punt in a fourth quarter in Ames if I was randomly placed on the field. It would bounce 25 yards the other direction off my helmet probably.• This dime from Rudolph to Washinton on the game-winning drive was unreal. Five dudes around him.• Oklahoma State knew what it was doing late. Did Iowa State? It didn’t seem like it. It all goes back to this.• One of my favorite random moments of the game was Zach Sinor pulling a Phil Mickelson on his last punt and Rudolph running out to smoke him upside the helmet. As always, Sinor for Heisman.• Just win.Iowa State up 17-7 on Oklahoma State. Iowa State has 222 after 1 quarter. Anyone else want to tell me how good Ok State defense is?— robert smith (@Robert26Smith) November 14, 2015• From one to the Internet ending forever, how badly did you want Mike Gundy to go with a “I AM SO PROUD..” in the locker room?• Ever.Pac 12, SEC, C-USA, whatever it takes to never return to Ames.— Dave Hudson (@okc_dave) November 14, 2015• I am glad games aren’t 59 or 61 minutes. Oklahoma State might be 6-4.• Gundy said afterwards that he wanted his offense to score with one minute left. That’s straight “12 straight and I cannot be touched” Gundy.• Until 2017, Ames.last_img read more

Justin Gilbert’s Time in Cleveland is Not Going Well … At All

first_imgThere might not be anybody in the NFL who cares less about football than (Justin) Gilbert.And you thought Johnny Foot’s time in Cleveland was going poorly. A recently article on Cleveland Scene went absolute scorched earth on both Jonathan and Gilbert, doing everything but calling them cancerous tumors within the Browns locker room.A sampling!Unlike Manziel, who loves football and abused the stardom that comes with it, Gilbert seems like he wants nothing to do with the sport. And while Manziel’s path of destruction has been aired out in public eye, Gilbert’s has played out behind the scenes. The clues were there from the beginning though.Weeee!Gilbert just doesn’t get joy out of breaking down the Xs and Os. Flashy plays get him going, not the nitty-gritty details that define professional football.I believe that.Browns community and marketing staffers rarely bother asking him to participate in activities with fans — usually a must for recent draft picks. “He just doesn’t get what the NFL is about. At all,” said one veteran (Browns player). “How could they miss this badly?” said another about the front office.So that’s not great. On the other hand, there’s potential for Gilbert, Weeden, Randle and Blackmon to throw together the greatest flag football team in history next season in any city of their choice. Weeden and Gilbert will probably still be playing, but at least it’s an option.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

The ESPN Football Power Index Really Likes Oklahoma State

first_imgESPN’s football power index which measures team strength and “is meant to be the best predictor of a team’s performance going forward for the rest of the season” is really high on Oklahoma State. The ESPN projection tool says OSU will finish second in the Big 12 behind Oklahoma (who ESPN has at No. 3), and projects the Cowboys to finish with *around* a 9.2-2.8 win-loss record, and an 18% chance to win the conference. Nationally, the FPI ranks OSU No. 8, notably ahead of Ohio State, Michigan, and USC. The index has the next ranked Big 12 team, TCU, ranked No. 29.Screen Shot 2016-09-01 at 6.43.37 AMThe results of the FPI, according to ESPN’s website, is based on 10,000 different simulations that take into account results to date, remaining schedule, and how many point above or below average a team is.If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers!last_img read more

Report: Arsenal 1 Doncaster 0

first_imgArsenal 1 Doncaster Rovers 0: Walcott hits winner for Wenger’s men Stephen Creek Last updated 2 years ago 04:48 21/9/2017 theowalcott-cropped Getty Images Jack Wilshere and Reiss Nelson both started for Arsenal as Theo Walcott scored the winner in a 1-0 League Cup victory over Doncaster Rovers. Theo Walcott scored his first goal of the season to earn Arsenal a 1-0 win over Doncaster Rovers and a place in the fourth round of the EFL Cup.Walcott, who had not netted a competitive goal for the Gunners since April, pounced in the 25th minute to make it 1-0 at the Emirates and at that stage it looked as though Arsenal would steamroller their League One opponents.Despite a glut of first-half chances the hosts failed to extend their lead and Doncaster, having frustrated Olivier Giroud as he sought his 100th goal for Arsenal, probed for an equaliser and gave the Premier League side a number of scares. Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Darren Ferguson’s men lacked quality in the final third and the few clear-cut chances they created went begging, leaving Arsene Wenger to reflect on a positive result and another good performance from Jack Wilshere.The midfielder, who spent last season on loan at Bournemouth, made his first start for the club since May 2016 and was involved in much of Arsenal’s best play, while full-back Reiss Nelson also emerged with credit on his full debut.A lively opening four minutes saw Doncaster winger Rodney Kongolo draw a diving save from David Ospina with a low drive, before Giroud had a strong claim for a penalty turned down when the referee refused to acknowledge that he was hauled down in the penalty area.The Frenchman almost scored a contender for goal of the competition two minutes later when he met Wilshere’s delicately chipped ball into the box with an acrobatic scissor-kick that beat Ian Lawlor but rattled the crossbar.Giroud headed a pinpoint Mohamed Elneny cross narrowly over the crossbar after 20 minutes as Arsenal camped themselves in Doncaster’s half, with Wilshere and Nelson moving the ball around crisply.The breakthrough arrived after 25 minutes when Alexis Sanchez looped the ball into the box and behind the Doncaster defence where Walcott arrived and took a touch to control before side-footing it past Lawlor and into the net.@theowalcott’s up and running for the season#AFCvDRFC pic.twitter.com/i2YQcyRDJj— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) September 20, 2017Wilshere would have added a second with a rasping 30-yard drive had Lawlor not made an impressive save at full stretch, before lone Doncaster striker Alfie May lashed a shot against the side netting on the cusp of half-time.Within three minutes of the re-start, Giroud created a golden opportunity to double Arsenal’s advantage, but Walcott fired over the crossbar with only Lawlor to beat.May, who only turned professional in January, looked set to equalise when he broke into Arsenal’s half on his own after 58 minutes but he was easily caught by Ainsley Maitland-Niles, who dispossessed him as Arsenal survived a nervous moment.Nelson drew a good save from Lawlor with an angled drive after 64 minutes, leaving Arsenal vulnerable to the threat of an equaliser and extra-time as Doncaster launched a series of counter-attacks in the closing stages, but Andy Butler and John Marquis both fired over the bar when chances fell their way.Maitland-Niles scuffed a backwards pass on the half-way line and allowed Benjamin Whiteman a chance to run at goal, but once again the young Arsenal defender showed his pace and successfully back-tracked to cut out the danger.Liam Mandeville and Matty Blair both had late chances to grab a dramatic late equaliser in the final six minutes, but both lacked accuracy in front of goal and Arsenal’s slender lead survived.Job done#AFCvDRFC pic.twitter.com/WAVkNo2DSN— Arsenal FC (@Arsenal) September 20, 2017 read morelast_img read more