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Tennis champ, trailblazer Althea Gibson honored at US Open

By Melissa Murphy, Associated Press NEW YORK (AP) — Althea Gibson basked in a ticker-tape parade in New York a decade before Arthur Ashe won the 1968 U.S. Open. Gibson won 11 majors in three years from 1956-58, including the French Open, Wimbledon and U.S. Open singles titles. She integrated two sports — tennis and golf — during an era of racial segregation in the United States. "She's our Jackie Robinson of tennis," said Billie Jean King, who at 13 watched Gibson play. "I saw what it meant to be the best." One Love Tennis is an athletic and educational program for youth in Wilmington, North Carolina. During a rainy day in 2017, the girls watched the documentary "Althea and Arthur." They learned Ashe has a stadium named for him at the U.S. Open on the grounds of the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York. The mood in the room grew somber afterward, according to program director Lenny Simpson. The girls realized there wasn't even a "dag-gone hot dog stand" named for Gibson. Why wasn't there a monument to the first African American to win a major title (1956 French Open) before winning both the U.S. Nationals (precursor to the U.S. Open) and Wimbledon in 1957-58? Simpson suggested the girls be part of the solution by writing letters to his friend and then-U.S. Tennis Association President Katrina Adams. King and Adams had been working on the Gibson project for years. King's advocacy before the USTA board resulted in a unanimous vote. Adams later read letters to the board from the girls, including Xerra Robinson, to reinforce the importance of a tribute. "I know she would be proud to see the progress that's been made with so many women of color leading the pack in professional tennis," Adams said of Gibson, who died in 2003 at 76. "Her bravery, perseverance and determination paved the way." On Monday, the USTA will unveil a statue in her honor at the U.S. Open. The girls and boys of One Love Tennis will attend the ceremony, along with Gibson's 85-year-old doubles partner, Angela Buxton of Britain. "It's about bloody time," said Buxton, who won the 1956 French and Wimbledon titles with her friend. More things to know about Gibson, who made the covers of Time and Sports Illustrated and was voted AP Female Athlete of the Year in 1957-58: EARLY YEARS Gibson traveled the hard road from Harlem to Wimbledon, but she had a community of support. The oldest of five children, Gibson was born in Silver, South Carolina, before her sharecropper parents relocated to Harlem. At 18, Gibson moved to Wilmington, North Carolina, to live with Dr. Hubert and Celeste Eaton. She honed her tennis and social skills on Dr. Eaton's court at his home, called "the black country club" because African Americans couldn't play at public courts or white country clubs. "Culturally, it was a tough adjustment," said Simpson, who met his coach and mentor on that court at age 5 when Gibson gave him a racket and called him "champ." ''(In Harlem), she didn't see the signs of white and colored water fountains and white and colored bathrooms. The prejudice and discrimination certainly was there, but nothing like the Jim Crow days of the South." She spent summers in Lynchburg, Virginia, training on the court of Dr. Robert Walter Johnson, who later nurtured Ashe, a winner of five Grand Slam titles. Both were forced to play in segregated tournaments early in their careers. Barred by the precursor of the USTA, Gibson won 10 straight American Tennis Association women's titles starting in 1947. After lobbying by the ATA and a withering editorial from four-time champion Alice Marble, Gibson became the first African American to compete in the 1950 U.S. Nationals at Forest Hills on her 23rd birthday. A graduate of Florida A&M, Gibson taught physical education and considered quitting tennis because she couldn't make a living in the low-paying amateur days. But in 1955, she was tapped by the State Department for a goodwill tennis tour of Asia. That's how she met Buxton in India. ALTHEA YEARS Both were looking for a doubles partner in 1956. Buxton was denied membership at the club in London where she practiced after she listed Jewish for religion on the application. She grew up in England and South Africa and understood Gibson's struggle. "No one spoke to her, let alone played with her," Buxton said by phone from London. "(Her playing style) was like a young man. She wore little shorts, a vest and hit the ball hard, even her second serve. She came charging up to the net. She bamboozled people with her attitude." They won at Roland Garros and Wimbledon, but the "powers that be" were not thrilled and "you needed a spy glass to see the headline 'Minorities Win,'" Buxton said. Both were denied membership at the All England Club despite being Wimbledon champions. (Buxton is still waiting). Nonetheless, Gibson got the royal treatment with a ticker-tape parade in July in New York after receiving the 1957 Wimbledon trophy from Queen Elizabeth II. Two months later, she won the U.S. Nationals at Forest Hills. "That was an incredible joy for her," Simpson said. She duplicated those feats and retired from tennis at No. 1 in 1958 — a winner of more than 50 singles and doubles titles — because there was no significant prize money until the professional era began in 1968. The men's and women's 2019 U.S. Open winner will each receive a check for $3.8 million. No other African American woman won the U.S. Open until Serena Williams in 1999 or Wimbledon until Venus Williams in 2000. AFTER TENNIS Gibson played exhibition tennis before Harlem Globetrotters games, signing a $100,000 contract, and joined the LPGA full-time in 1964. In 1975, she became state commissioner of athletics in New Jersey. She served on the state athletics control board, and the governor's council on physical fitness until 1992. The twice-divorced Gibson's health failed in her late 60s after a stroke and she struggled to make ends meet. Buxton said Gibson reached out to a handful of tennis friends without much success. Gibson was on the verge of suicide in 1995 when the tennis great called her, she said. Buxton provided financial support and visited her friend in East Orange, New Jersey. "Angela Buxton saved her life, literally," Simpson said. Buxton also wrote a letter to Tennis Week magazine, and donations flooded in from all over the world. The WTA currently has a hardship fund to help former players. Frances Gray, a longtime friend and co-founder of the Althea Gibson Foundation, has kept her legacy alive. A self-described "born athlete," Gibson said she wanted to be remembered as "strong and tough and quick." "If not for Althea Gibson, there would be no Arthur Ashe, no Serena and Venus, Madison Keys, Sloane Stephens and the list goes on," Simpson said. "She opened it up for all of us.".....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsAug 25th, 2019Related News

Smartphone giant OPPO renews three-year partnership with world-famous Football team FC Barcelona

World-leading smartphone brand OPPO recently announced its renewed three-year partnership with football team FC Barcelona. This furthers an already successful four-year alliance with the world-famous team, which is now the longest running partnership between a Chinese brand and a European football club. This new chapter was also commemorated by the release of a Limited Edition FC Barcelona Reno 10x Zoom Series handset.   Kicking off an exciting new chapter The renewed partnership will include in-stadium signage, training camps, workshops for fans, plus creative online and off-line fans engagement activities; kicking off an exciting new chapter in the OPPO- FC Barcelona story. “These elements aim to inspire Barca fans, strengthen the community by bringing them closer to the club and OPPO products, and drive our two sides’ shared values of passion, creativity, innovation, and perfection,” explained Derek Sun, OPPO Global Marketing Director.  Both organizations’ mutual philosophies have become even more apparent with this re-upped partnership. Just as FC Barcelona’s world-renowned passion for the “beautiful game” has effectively transformed football into an art; likewise, OPPO aims to create beauty in people’s lives, through cutting-edge devices that unleash users’ creativity. Both partners’ shared values extend to innovation and perfection, with OPPO setting up institutes across the world to advance the company’s tech innovation and research capabilities in 5G and AI, as well as the Barça Innovation Hub, that is exploring the use of new technologies on the football field.  Camp Nou is also set to become the first stadium in Europe with dedicated 5G coverage.  OPPO has been able to reach out to Barça’s more than 200 million fans across the world, making this a critical element of the company’s overseas branding strategy.   An already successful partnership When OPPO and FC Barcelona kickstarted their partnership in 2015, it marked the very first in-depth cooperation between a Chinese brand and a European football club.  OPPO places tremendous value in sports globally, becoming the first Asian sponsor of the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in the UK, the first Chinese sponsor of the French Tennis Open, Roland-Garros, while also backing the Indian national Cricket Team. These events serve as a communication bridge for OPPO, effectively bringing its young and innovative technology to sports fans worldwide.   Stunning new handset that combines technology with art Since the start of OPPO and FC Barcelona, it has gifted fans several limited edition smartphones. Under the slogan “The Smartphone of Champions”, OPPO released the FC Barcelona Edition of the R7 Plus in 2015. Following this initial success came a series of well-received limited edition handsets including the R9 (2016), F3 (2017) and R11 Plus (2017).     This 2019, stunning new Limited Edition FC Barcelona’s handset from OPPO celebrates the three-year partnership, highlighting to fans the fruitful relationship between the two. This commemorative edition of OPPO’s Reno 10x Zoom phone blends the team’s famous garnet and blue colors, creating a genuine work of art that is sure to resonate with Barça supporters globally.   Sporting the powerful features of the Reno 10x Zoom such as the camera with 60x zoom and Ultra Night Mode 2.0, panoramic screen, and VOOC 3.0, this limited edition smartphone offers something more special to fans.  Inspired by the club flags waving in Camp Nou, the phone’s exterior sports the club’s famous garnet and blue colors. This used an innovative, industry-first heat-press technique to create its unique gradient effect. Overlaying this are two Barça logos: a larger blurred logo, paying homage to the club’s glorious history, as well as a smaller gold team logo at the bottom, which represents the club’s present, as well as its bright future.  It also comes equipped with custom software, including exclusive wallpapers and icons such as footballs, garnet and blue kits, and more. Fans can also feel like Barca is with them wherever they go, thanks to its custom ringtones that sample the FC Barcelona anthem and stadium sounds.  The Limited Edition FC Barcelona OPPO Reno 10x Zoom with 8GB RAM and 256GB ROM will be available in select markets in Europe and Asia.  .....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 28th, 2019Related News

11 years after epic, Federer tops Nadal in Wimbledon semis

By Howard Fendrich, Associated Press WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — After waiting 11 years to get another shot against Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon, Roger Federer was so, so close to the finish line. One match point slipped away when Federer missed a forehand return. A second came and went on a backhand return. Later, serving for a spot in a record 12th final at the All England Club, Federer shanked a leaping overhead off the top edge of his racket frame, giving Nadal a break point. After Nadal wasted that chance, Federer earned two more match points — and failed to convert those, either, as his wife, Mirka, peeked through the fingers covering her face. Federer knew it wouldn't be easy against his great rival. Never is, really, no matter where they play. Eventually, Nadal pushed a backhand long on match point No. 5, bringing an anticlimactic close to the otherwise classic contest and allowing Federer to win their semifinal 7-6 (3), 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Friday. "I'm exhausted. It was tough at the end," Federer said. "I'm just very relieved it's all over." Federer closed in on a ninth championship at the All England Club and 21st Grand Slam trophy in all. To get to those numbers in Sunday's final, Federer must get past Novak Djokovic, who is the defending champion and seeded No. 1. "We all know how good he is anywhere," Djokovic said about Federer, "but especially here." Djokovic isn't too shabby himself. He reached his sixth final at the grass-court major by beating 23rd-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 earlier Friday. Djokovic is eyeing a fifth championship at Wimbledon and 16th major title. As entertaining as that first semifinal was — including a 45-stroke point won by Djokovic — it was merely a tasty appetizer ahead of the day's delectable main course. Not only was this the 40th installment of Federer vs. Nadal, but it also was their first meeting at Wimbledon since the 2008 final. In a match many consider the best in the sport's lengthy annals, Nadal edged Federer 9-7 in a fifth set that ended after 9 p.m., as any trace of daylight disappeared. How excited, then, were the spectators for the rematch? When Federer and Nadal strode out into the sunshine at 4:30 p.m. Friday, they were welcomed by a standing ovation before ever swinging a racket. Quickly, that greeting was justified. These are, of course, two of the greats of all-time — maybe the two greatest — and they lived up to that status for stretches. One key, for Federer, was that his rebuilt backhand, hit strong and flat more frequently than it used to be, held steady against Nadal's bullwhip of a lefty forehand. Another was that Federer was able to withstand Nadal's serve, which has improved a ton over the years. Federer amassed 10 break points, and though he succeeded on just two, that was enough, with the last, vital conversion making it 2-1 in the fourth set. And then there was this: Federer won 25 of the 33 points when he went to the net. "I didn't play well enough," said Nadal, who lost a five-set semifinal to Djokovic a year ago at Wimbledon. There was something of an "Anything you can do, I can do, too" vibe to Friday's proceedings. Federer would kick up chalk with an ace to a corner, and Nadal would do the same in the next game. When Nadal jumped out to a 3-2 lead in the first-set tiebreaker, Federer used sublime returning to reel off five points in a row to claim it. Who else but Federer could strike a serve so well that Nadal's wild reply would be caught by someone in the Royal Box behind him, as happened early in the second set? Who else but Nadal could attack Federer's generally unassailable forehand in such a manner as to draw one so off the mark that it landed in the third row? "I thought probably the biggest points in the match went my way. There were some tight ones and long rallies," Federer said. "He plays with such velocity and spins and everything, you're not always sure you're going to connect the right way." No one ever has managed to reduce Federer to mid-match mediocrity quite the way Nadal can, part of why the Spaniard entered Friday with a 24-15 overall lead head-to-head, including 10-3 at Grand Slam tournaments. This was the second major in a row where they've faced off: Nadal won their windy French Open semifinal last month en route to his 12th championship on the red clay and 18th Slam overall. But Wimbledon is Federer's dominion: He's won 101 matches at the place — more than any other man at any other Slam, even Nadal at Roland Garros — and all of those trophies. Djokovic, meanwhile, leads his series with Federer 25-22, including 9-6 in Grand Slam matches. "I hope I can push him to the brink and hopefully beat him. But it's going to be very difficult, as we know," Federer said. "He's not No. 1 just by chance." On Friday, Djokovic was as animated as ever. When Bautista Agut's shot hit the net tape, popped in the air and slid over for a winner that tied their semifinal at a set apiece, Djokovic motioned to the roaring fans, sarcastically encouraging folks to get louder. When Djokovic ended that 45-stroke point — the longest on record at Wimbledon, where such stats date to 2005 — with a backhand winner, he cupped his ear while glaring into the stands. "I had," Djokovic said, "to dig deep." Even Bautista Agut didn't really expect his visit to the All England Club to last this long: The Spaniard was supposed to meet a half-dozen of his buddies on the island of Ibiza this weekend for his bachelor party. Instead, those pals were sitting in a guest box at Centre Court on Friday. Eventually, Djokovic took control with his enviable ability to return serves, track down balls and go from defense to offense. Now he's Federer's problem......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJul 12th, 2019Related News

Man shot dead in Argao

CEBU CITY, Philippines — A 35-year-old man, who was described by his mother as allegedly a mentally challenged person, was found dead near the room he was staying in Argao town in southern Cebu. Pablo Caminse, 35, was found face down with a gunshot wound in the head and back, said Police Major Roland Aliser, […] The post Man shot dead in Argao appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsJun 29th, 2019Related News

Coach Remolino rates S. Korea performance of Talisay triathlon team at 85%

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Talisay Luigi Triathlon Group – Go for Gold (TLTG-GFG) head coach Roland “Andoy” Remolino is happy with the performance of his athletes in the recently held 2019 Gyeongju ASTC Triathlon Asian Championship in South Korea. However, in his assessement, he isn’t satisfied with the whole performance as it was lacking about […] The post Coach Remolino rates S. Korea performance of Talisay triathlon team at 85% appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsJun 25th, 2019Related News

Love Actually: Soon-To-Wed Couple Ethan David And Roland Rittenau Redefine Boundless Love

'Though coming from different backgrounds, we immediately felt the potential to be each other’s destiny...'.....»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: LifestyleJun 25th, 2019Related News

Djokovic tops ATP rankings ahead of Nadal, Federer

PARIS, France – Novak Djokovic leads the ATP tennis rankings released Monday, June 17, ahead of French Open champion Rafael Nadal and former world No. 1 Roger Federer. The top of the rankings remains unchanged a week after Nadal claimed the Roland Garros title with victory over Dominic Thiem in the final. Federer lost ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 17th, 2019Related News

Nasipit road accident kills 1, injures 2

CEBU CITY, Philippines — A 35-year-old driver is placed on hospital arrest after the Multicab pickup he was driving figured in a fatal road accident with a couple riding a motorcycle at dawn on Monday, June 17, in Sitio Nasipit, Barangay Talamban, Cebu City. The driver of the motorcycle, Roland Heyrana, 49, did not reach […] The post Nasipit road accident kills 1, injures 2 appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsJun 17th, 2019Related News

Federer fresh for 10th Halle title tilt

HALLE WESTFALEN, Germany – Roger Federer says staying wide awake will be the key to his grass court season with his focus on claiming a record 10th Halle title this week. The 37-year-old Swiss was given the run around by Rafael Nadal last time out on the Roland Garros clay, ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 16th, 2019Related News

Half-Pinay conquers Roland Garros

A half-Filipina, half-Ecuadorian teenager from Canada didn’t just win the French Open junior girls championship but also captivated the audience with her amazing competitive spirit on the Roland Garros clay courts in Paris last weekend......»»

Source: Philstar PhilstarCategory: SportsJun 11th, 2019Related News

French Open winner Nadal still lagging Djokovic in rankings

PARIS, France – Rafael Nadal might have won a record-extending 12th French Open title on the weekend, but he remains well behind Novak Djokovic in the ATP rankings released Monday, June 10.  Austrian Dominic Thiem, whom Nadal beat in the Roland Garros final, keeps his 4th place behind Swiss Roger Federer, who ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 10th, 2019Related News

French Open triumph propels Barty to world No. 2

PARIS, France – Ashleigh Barty leaped 6 places to world No. 2 in the WTA rankings released Monday, June 10, after the Australian pulled off a surprising win in the French Open . Naomi Osaka narrowly retained the top spot despite her shock elimination in the third round at Roland Garros which ended her hopes ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 10th, 2019Related News

Barty ‘tough to beat’ at Wimby

Barty’s 6-1, 6-3 thrashing of Czech teenager Marketa Vondrousova in the Roland Garros final propelled her to number two in the world and Laver said she had all the attributes to win on grass, a surface she favours over clay......»»

Source: Tempo TempoCategory: NewsJun 10th, 2019Related News

KAPA office sa Cebu, sinunog at ninakawan

  Nilooban ng sampung kawatan ang tanggapan ng KAPA Community Ministry Foundation sa bayan ng Compostela sa Cebu Sabado ng madaling araw. Ayon kay Police Corporal Roland Alu, Compostela Police Station Desk Officer, ninakawan ang […].....»»

Source: Remate RemateCategory: NewsJun 10th, 2019Related News

Nadal tells Thiem: You ll win it one day

PARIS, France – Rafael Nadal told Dominic Thiem that he will win Roland Garros one day after the Spaniard topped the Austrian in 4 sets to win a 12th French Open and 18th major on Sunday, June 9. The 33-year-old Nadal claimed a 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 victory over the 25-year-old Thiem to become the first player ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 9th, 2019Related News

Thiem ends Djokovic history bid, faces Nadal for French Open title

    PARIS, France – Novak Djokovic's dream of becoming just the second man in history to hold all Grand Slam titles at the same time twice was crushed by Dominic Thiem at Roland Garros on Saturday, June 8. Thiem downed the world No. 1, 6-2, 3-6, 7-5, 5-7, 7-5, to set up ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 9th, 2019Related News

KAPA robbery in Compostela: 10 armed men also take 21 workers’ belongings

CEBU CITY, Philippines — There were 10 armed men involved in the robbery and the burning down of the KAPA Community Ministry Foundation office in Compostela town in northern Cebu at dawn on June 8. Police Corporal Roland Alu, Compostela Police Station Desk officer, told CDN Digital that aside from the 10 armed men, there […] The post KAPA robbery in Compostela: 10 armed men also take 21 workers’ belongings appeared first on Cebu Daily News......»»

Source: Inquirer InquirerCategory: NewsJun 8th, 2019Related News

Nadal braces for trouble in Federer showdown

  PARIS, France – Rafael Nadal rekindles tennis' greatest rivalry when he faces Roger Federer in the Roland Garros semifinals on Friday, June 7,  admitting his status ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 7th, 2019Related News

Nadal hands Federer worst Slam loss in 11 years to reach French Open final

    PARIS, France – Defending champion Rafael Nadal powered past Roger Federer in the French Open semifinal on Friday, June 7, to move within one victory of a record-extending 12th Roland Garros title after handing his oldest rival his worst Grand Slam defeat in 11 years. The 33-year-old produced a masterful performance ........»»

Source: Rappler RapplerCategory: NewsJun 7th, 2019Related News

Nadal tops Federer in 3 sets; into French final

PARIS (AP) — Rafael Nadal beat rival Roger Federer 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 to reach his 12th French Open final. Nadal improved to 6-0 against Federer at Roland Garros, where they last met in 2011, and 24-15 overall. Federer had won their past five matches, but all of those were on hard courts. This one was on clay, where Nadal is nearly unbeatable. He is now 92-2 for his career in Paris as he pursues a record 12th title there and 18th Grand Slam trophy overall. In Sunday's final, Nadal will face top-ranked Novak Djokovic or No. 4 Dominic Thiem......»»

Source: Abscbn AbscbnCategory: SportsJun 7th, 2019Related News