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Posted: Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:36 pm Reply with quote
Joined: 02 Sep 2017 Posts: 1619
On Friday, the final day of round-robin matches at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, there are still six scenarios by which two of three players in Group John McEnroe can make the semifinals. One of them -- wins by Stan Wawrinka and Kei Nishikori in two and three sets, respectively -- would actually send No. 1-ranked Andy Murray, author of a 21-match win streak, home to the London suburbs.Over in Group Ivan Lendl on Thursday night, it wasnt nearly as complicated. When No. 4 Milos Raonic met No. 9 Dominic Thiem, it was win and in.At this year-end tournament missing Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Tomas Berdych and David Ferrer, here was a glimpse into the future of mens tennis, a battle between the two youngest qualifiers in London, a pair of heavy hitters destined to be top-10 players for quite some time.Raonic, 25, had just one more Finals appearance on his résumé than the first-time Thiem, 23. That experience -- and a nearly unreturnable serve -- manifested itself in a sparkling 7-6 (5), 6-3 victory.In the pivotal first-set tiebreaker, Raonic hit aces on his final three service swings.Hes also had some high-powered consultants watching from his box. In addition to primary coach Riccardo Piatti, Carlos Moya and John McEnroe sat side-by-side. Thats a total of eight Grand Slam singles titles.Thats why you have three guys, Raonic joked afterward. If the first two arent right, maybe the other one will be.McEnroe was brought on for a stint during the grass-court season, and Raonic responded by reaching his first Grand Slam final. McEnroes mantra was to encourage Raonic to come forward more often to take advantage of his huge serve and wingspan. While the quickness of the O2 Arena court didnt allow an excessive amount of that, the conditions suited Raonic. Thiem, who doesnt quite have Raonics reach, is more comfortable on clay.And now the possibility of a Sunday final showdown between Murray and Novak Djokovic, with the No. 1 ranking on the line, looms large.Earlier Thursday, the No. 2 Djokovic dismantled alternate David Goffin, playing for injured Gael Monfils (rib), 6-1, 6-2 in 70 minutes. Djokovic awaits the second-place finisher in the McEnroe Group in Saturdays semifinals.By defeating Wawrinka in the Friday afternoon session, Murray will advance to the semifinals for the first time in four years. That (and four of the other scenarios) would land him a meeting with Raonic, against whom he is 8-3, including 5-0 in 2016.The Canadian is playing the best tennis of his life, relying on one of the best serves on the planet. Against Thiem, he won 86 percent of his first-serve points, collected 13 aces and did not face a break point.Its a great match for me, Raonic said afterward in an on-court interview. It wasnt a round-robin match for us; it was a quarterfinal. I was fortunate to get through today.Thiem, whose forehand is one of the tours heaviest and whose one-handed backhand is lovely to behold, looked a little weary. After playing a terrific first set, he was broken on his first service game in the second. Thiems last shot was a weak backhand into the net on Raonics second match-point opportunity.This was Thiems 82nd match of the year, second only to Murrays 84. He was trying to become the youngest semifinalist in London since Juan Martin del Potro in 2009, but he finished with 57 match wins.After the then-22-year-old Thiem beat 19-year-old Alexander Zverev in the fourth round of the French Open this spring, he concluded, Such a great player, Sascha, and, yeah, I think the difference today was maybe probably the three years age difference.That also was the case with Raonic, who had lost his only two previous matches in London, to Federer and Murray in 2014, before pulling out with a thigh injury. Here hes won two of three matches (also beating Monfils) and pushed Djokovic into two tiebreakers. Raonic led in both frames but failed to hold his serve -- and his nerve.Those [key] moments he stepped up and played well, Raonic explained afterward. I just maybe hesitated a little bit too much.In Saturdays semifinal, most likely against Murray, Raonic will have to fly into those momentous occasions at full speed. http://www.atleticomadridpro.com/Kids-Lucas-Hernandez-Jersey/ . LOUIS -- St. http://www.atleticomadridpro.com/Kids-Nikola-Kalinic-Jersey/ . -- Edmontons Val Sweeting is two wins away from a trip to Winnipeg to play in Canadas Road of the Rings in December. http://www.atleticomadridpro.com/Kids-Jose-Gimenez-Jersey/ . Carey Price didnt, but he still came out on top against one of his rivals for the No. 1 job at the Sochi Games. The Anahim Lake, B.C., native was stellar in making 39 saves in his home province and Lars Eller got credit for a bizarre short-handed winner as the Canadiens defeated the Canucks 4-1. http://www.atleticomadridpro.com/Kids-Blank-Jersey/ . -- Matt Kuchar and Harris English ran away with the Franklin Templeton Shootout, shooting a 14-under 58 on Sunday in the final-round scramble to break the tournament course record. Atletico Madrid Jerseys . Rousey will put her perfect 8-0 record and hardware on the line against another undefeated fighter, 7-0 Sara McMann in the main event of UFC 170, which will be held at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas Nevada on February 22nd. ST. LOUIS -- To hear Kendrys Morales tell it, luck is finally on his side.But the Kansas City Royals designated hitter/outfielder has been more than just lucky the past week.Morales homered and recorded his sixth straight multi-hit game on Thursday to lead the Royals to a 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.Kansas City won for the fourth time in five games and took the two-city, four-game series three games to one.Things are falling for me, Morales said.Indeed.Brandon Moss and Jhonny Peralta homered for the Cardinals who have lost their last seven home games -- their longest losing streak since Aug. 2-15, 1983.Wade Davis recorded his 19th save in 21 opportunities.Morales, a designated hitter playing right field for the second straight night, doubled in the sixth inning off Mike Leake (5-6) to push the lead to 3-1. Morales, who went 3 for 4, has 16 hits in 24 at-bats over the six-game run. He went 12 for 16 in the series and started in the outfield for the first time since 2008.Since going 1 for 15 in a four-game set with Cleveland on June 2-5, Morales has been on fire. He was hitting .191 on June 5, but has gone 32 of 69 since to push his average to .262.I felt like before, I was making good contact, Morales said. It was just a combination of bad luck that played into it as well.His six-game multi-hit streak ties him for the longest this season along with J.D. Martinez (Detroit), Jackie Bradley Jr. (Boston) and Xander Bogaerts (Boston).Hes picking us up, hes on fire offensively, Royals manager Ned Yost said, Hes doing a very solid job in the outfield for us.St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said his club has never had any success against Morales.He was a game-changer, this year and last year, Matheny said. Hes been getting great at-bats.Morales is 25 of 53 (.472) lifetime against the Cardinals with five homers and 13 RBI. His 456-foot drive in the eighth inning off Tyler Lyons ties him for the longest home run by a visiting player at Busch Stadium III, which opened in 2006.Kansas City reliever Dillon Gee (3-2) picked up the win allowing one run in two innings.Moss ripped his 17th homer of the season off Royals starter Chris Young, who gave up one run and one hit over four innings, but walked six.The drive, which went 477 feet according too the Cardinals, is the longest in the history of Busch Stadium.dddddddddddd It is the second-longest this season behind Giancarlo Stantons 490-foot blast for Miami on May 6, in a 6-4 win over Philadelphia.I hit it hard, Moss said. I know Im strong and I know how far I can hit it when I get a hold of one.Leake gave up three runs, two earned, in seven innings. He struck out four and walked one.There were a couple of pitches Id like to take back, Leake said.Kansas City pushed across an unearned run in the first before Jarrod Dyson doubled in Alcides Escobar in the second.Gees victory gives the Royals bullpen a 16-5 (.762) mark, the highest percentage in the majors. His lone mistake came to Peralta in the sixth inning.Im just glad I was able to do the job, Gee said. I felt good.Matheny was ejected in the sixth inning by home plate umpire Mike Everitt. It was Mathenys first ejection of the season and 12th in four-plus season as a manager.GOLD GLOVE MORALESMorales last appearance in the field before Wednesday came on Sept. 27, 2008, while with the Angels.He handled all four chances on Wednesday and one on Thursday.TRAINERS ROOMRoyals: RHP Kris Medlen gave up five earned runs in 5 2/3 innings of a rehab start for Triple-A Omaha on Thursday against Memphis. Medlen, who was placed on the DL with right rotator cuff inflammation on May 11, gave up six hits. He struck out five and walked two in a 5-2 loss.Cardinals: OF Stephen Piscotty was given the night off after he tweaked his left ankle in the 12th inning of Wednesdays 3-2 loss. He is listed as day-to-day. ... INF Aledmys Diaz was held out of the lineup for the third straight game. He fouled a pitch off the area around his right eye on Monday.UP NEXTRoyals: RHP Ian Kennedy (6-6, 3.96) will face RHP Jeremy Hellickson (5-6, 4.23) in the first of a three-game series in Philadelphia on Friday. Kennedy stuck out 11 in seven innings in a 6-1 win over Houston on Sunday.Cardinals: LHP Jaime Garcia (5-6, 4.09) takes on Milwaukee RHP Matt Garza (1-0, 2.81) in the opener a three-game series in St. Louis on Friday. Garcia is 10-5 with 2.71 ERA in 19 appearances against the Brewers. 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