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Day 2: Novak, Serena and Co set for 1st-round matches

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Serena Williams and Novak Djokovic are set to begin quests for their seventh Australian Open titles on Tuesday at Melbourne Park under sunny skies and temperatures not quite as high as forecast. Williams, who plays Belinda Bencic in the second match on Rod Laver Arena, is also looking to add to her 22nd Grand Slam singles titles, which would break the record for the Open era. Djokovic, who has a tough match against veteran Fernando Verdasco to open night play at Rod Laver, has won the Australian Open title five out of the last six years. Also in action Tuesday are third-seeded Milos Raonic, 14-time major winner iRafael Nadal and Agnieszka Radwanska. The original steamy weather forecast has been scaled back to a high of 35 Celsius (95 Fahrenheit). .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 16th, 2017

Chelsea drops Diego Costa amid rift, unsettling Chinese link

div>ROB HARRIS, AP Global Soccer Writer /div> div>  /div> div>LONDON (AP) — Diego Costa's Chelsea career could be coming to a fiery abrupt end, in a setback to the English Premier League leaders' pursuit of the title. /div> div>  /div> div>The league top-scorer has not traveled with Chelsea to Leicester following a dispute with the coaching staff, and won't be playing against the champions on Saturday, a person familiar with the situation told The Association Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity on Friday because they were not authorized to discuss Costa being dropped from the team. /div> div>  /div> div>The discord between Antonio Conte's side and Costa follows the striker becoming aware of interest from China, the person said, referencing the country's wealthy and ambitious Super League. /div> div>  /div> div>Costa's only response on Friday was an Instagram post which featured the message 'Come on Chelsea!!!' followed by a heart symbol. /div> div>  /div> div>The Daily Mail newspaper's website first reported on Friday that the dispute was over whether Costa was injured. /div> div>  /div> div>The Daily Telegraph newspaper reported online that Costa is aware of a Chinese club willing to pay him more than $30 million a year, but Chelsea is determined to hold onto its most influential player. The Spain international, who joined Chelsea from Atletico Madrid in 2014, has 14 goals in the league this season and is under contract until 2019. /div> div>  /div> div>Costa has been a vital component in Chelsea's revival after the team went from champions to an 11th-place finish last season. /div> div>  /div> div>Chelsea has a five-point lead over Liverpool after its 13-match winning streak was ended by Tottenham in the team's last league game. /div> div>  /div> div>Chelsea has already sold two players — John Obi Mikel and Oscar — to Chinese Super League clubs in the last month. Chelsea made 60 million pounds ($73 million) just from Shanghai SIPG for Oscar. Despite the windfall, Conte said he hoped the club would not lose any more players to Chinese clubs, which spent more than $600 million on foreign players in 2016. /div> div>  /div> div>'The Chinese market is a danger for all,' Conte said last month, 'not only for Chelsea, but all the teams in the world.' /div>.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 13th, 2017

Wozniacki's Sydney run ends again before quarterfinals

SYDNEY (AP) — Former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki's streak of not advancing past the quarterfinals in her past seven Sydney Internationals was extended in stifling heat on Wednesday. In temperatures reaching 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) for much of the match, Wozniacki lost 7-5, 6-7 (6), 6-4 to Barbora Strycova in a duel that stretched to 3 hours, 19 minutes. Both players were treated for foot injuries during a grueling second set on Ken Rosewall Arena. Wozniacki came back from 5-2 down in that set, and then 5-0 in the tiebreaker, to win it and force a third set. 'It was brutal out there ... but you just try and think like you're on a beach drinking pina coladas,' Wozniacki said. 'That's basically your train of thought. You know that it's the same for both players, so I was just trying to mentally just try and keep cool.' Strycova will meet the winner of the night match between second-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska and qualifier Duan Yingying in Friday's semifinals. Former Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard continued her strong start to the year with a 6-2, 6-3 quarterfinal win over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova. Bouchard had a breakout season in 2014, reaching the semifinals at the Australian Open and French Open before making the final at Wimbledon. But she has only gone past the fourth round at a major once since then and slipped to No. 46 at the end of last year. 'I feel more and more confident every day,' Bouchard said Wednesday. 'I feel like I'm getting back into the rhythm of things a little bit, but it's a long road ...' The Canadian's semifinal opponent will be Sydney-born Johanna Konta of Britain, who beat Daria Kasatkina 6-3, 7-5. Konta broke Kasatkina's service in the 11th game, helped by a double-fault to set up break point in that game. Last year at the Australian Open, Konta became the first British women to make a Grand Slam semifinal since 1983 before losing to eventual champion Angelique Kerber. In men's play at Sydney, two-time defending champion Viktor Troicki beat Paolo Lorenzi 6-3, 6-4. Second-seeded Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay defeated Nicolas Mahut of France 6-4, 2-6, 6-2. At Auckland, New Zealand, American John Isner narrowly avoided the fate of two former champions when he beat Tunisia's Malek Jaziri in a third-set tiebreaker to advance 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (6) to make the quarterfinals of the ASB Classic. Isner won his last three points with volleys at the net. 'The way I need to finish points is that if I can I have to try and finish them at the net,' Isner said. 'I did that three times in a row and I'm very proud of that.' Four former champions were scheduled to play second-round matches Wednesday but by the time the second-seeded Isner took the court, two had bowed out. Defending champion and No. 1-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut was forced to withdraw before play began because of a stomach virus, handing New Zealander Ruben Statham a place in the second round as a lucky loser from the qualifying rounds. The 2015 champion Jiri Vesely was due to play Bautista Agut and thought he had caught a break when the Spaniard withdrew and the 434th-ranked Statham took his place. But Vesely had a tussle on his hands before winning 6-7 (6), 7-5, 6-3. Four-time champion David Ferrer was first up on center court and lost 6-2, 4-6, 7-6 (4) to Robin Haase of the Netherlands. At the WTA's Hobart International, former French Open finalist Lucie Safarova was beaten 2-6, 6-3, 7-5 by Japanese qualifier Risa Ozaki. Ozaki will next meet Romanian Monica Niculescu. Top-seeded Kiki Bertens advanced to the quarterfinals with a 6-1, 6-4 win over Galina Voskoboeva of Kazakhstan. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 11th, 2017

Roger Federer loses close match to Zverev at Hopman Cup

PERTH, Australia (AP) — Roger Federer found himself overmatched — just — by a younger and stronger-serving opponent on Wednesday, losing 7-6 (1), 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4) to 19-year-old Alexander Zverev of Germany at the Hopman Cup. The 35-year-old Federer was playing just his second match since returning from a six-month layoff because of a left knee injury. He led 5-2 in the first set, but ran into an opponent whose first-serve percentage exceeded 80 percent midway through the final set of the 2 ½-hour match in the mixed teams tournament. 'I thought we both played really well,' Zverev said of his second career win over Federer. 'But I always play unbelievable against him.' Serving to stay in the match at 5-6, someone in the 13,700-capacity crowd at Perth Arena crowd yelled out: 'Let's have another tiebreaker.' Non-plussed, Zverev smiled and replied: 'What do you think I am trying to do?' Andrea Petkovic will try to clinch the match for Germany when she plays Federer's Swiss teammate Belinda Bencic in women's singles, with a mixed doubles match to follow. Switzerland won its opening match against Britain. A comeback victory over Germany would leave France and Switzerland playing for a spot in Saturday's final when they conclude round-robin play on Friday. Otherwise, Switzerland, Germany and France would all be 1-1 going into the last set of round-robin matches. Earlier Wednesday, France's Kristina Mladenovic and Richard Gasquet won their singles matches to give France victory over Britain. Mladenovic beat Heather Watson 6-4, 5-7, 6-3 before Gasquet defeated Dan Evans 6-4, 6-2. Gasquet and Mladenovic later defeated Evans and Watson 4-3, 4-3 in mixed doubles, played in the Fast4 format, to complete a sweep. Temperatures during the opening match rose to as high as 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit), forcing both players to conserve their energy. 'It was definitely difficult,' said Mladenovic, who estimated she drank seven bottles of fluid during the match. 'Sometimes you would like to try to put more intensity, but you have to be smart sometimes and maybe not run down every single ball.' The United States, represented by Coco Vandeweghe and Jack Sock, have already qualified for the final from Group B after beating Czech Republic and Spain in its opening matches. On Thursday, Czech Republic plays Spain and defending champion Australia takes on the U.S. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 4th, 2017

Rogers beats Bouchard in Brisbane International's 1st round

BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — American Shelby Rogers defeated 2012 Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard of Canada 6-2, 2-6, 6-1 on a steamy opening day of play at the Brisbane International on Sunday. Temperatures reached in excess of 30 Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) for most of the afternoon. After a heat-enforced 10-minute break leading into the deciding set, Rogers dominated Bouchard to give American women a second victory Sunday in the first round. Christina McHale also advanced with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Italy's Sara Errani. Defending champion and No. 1-ranked Angelique Kerber, who won the Australian Open and U.S. Open last year, and French Open winner Garbine Muguruza, highlight the women's draw in Brisbane. Defending champion Milos Raonic and Rafael Nadal are featured in the men's draw. .....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsJan 1st, 2017

Knicks drub Hawks for fourth straight home victory

NEW YORK — Joakim Noah's illness made it an unsettling morning for the Knicks' backup centers. Carmelo Anthony made sure it was a smooth afternoon......»»

Category: sportsSource:  philstarRelated NewsNov 21st, 2016

Anthony has 31, Knicks beat Hawks for 4th straight home win

em>By Brian Mahoney, Associated Press /em> NEW YORK (AP) -- Joakim Noah's illness made it an unsettling morning for the Knicks' backup centers. Carmelo Anthony made sure it was a smooth afternoon. Anthony matched his season-high wit.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsNov 20th, 2016

Economy: FDI due for post-election rebound amid China shift

FOREIGN direct investment (FDI) to the Philippines is expected to keep growing despite unsettling rhetoric from President Rodrigo R. Duterte, but will likely see a shift in the sources of capital to reflect the trade pivot to Asian economies, a public fin.....»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsNov 1st, 2016

UEFA's Ceferin tackles dangers in Europe, integrity attacks

  div>ROB HARRIS, AP Global Soccer Writer /div> div>  /div> div>  /div> div>NYON, Switzerland (AP) — Entering rooms at UEFA headquarters, Aleksander Ceferin still finds it startling and unsettling when staff leap from th.....»»

Category: sportsSource:  abscbnRelated NewsOct 21st, 2016

Arts & Leisure: Red Star over Hollywood

THE BILLBOARD towers over Sunset Boulevard, a marionettist's hand, à la The Godfather posters of decades ago, pulling the strings in Hollywood. It poses an unsettling question: "China's Red Puppet?".....»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsOct 17th, 2016

Global warming set to pass 2C threshold in 2050: report

Earth is on track to sail past the two degree Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) threshold for dangerous global warming by 2050, seven of the world's top climate scientists warned Thursday......»»

Category: newsSource:  mb.com.phRelated NewsSep 30th, 2016

Nation: Obama spat signals risks to betting on Duterte

PHILIPPINE President Rodrigo R. Duterte proved this week that he can apologize almost as fast as he can offend. But his unpredictability risks unsettling global leaders and investors alike......»»

Category: financeSource:  bworldonlineRelated NewsSep 7th, 2016