French Open: Andrey Kuznetsov senses upset over vulnerable Andy Murray

first_imgWorld number one Andy Murray’s recent form of just four wins in eight claycourt matches is clear evidence that he can be beaten, the Briton’s French Open opponent Andrey Kuznetsov said ahead of their first round clash on Tuesday.Murray has not progressed past the round of 16 in three of his last four tournaments on clay, suffering a third round loss to Croatian Borna Coric in Madrid and losing out to home favourite Fabio Fognini early in the Italian Open this month.The 30-year-old is also recovering from an illness and Kuznetsov, who has previously lost to Murray twice in as many meetings, is hopeful he can make it third time lucky.”If you maybe see the results he showed on clay, maybe it’s not his best as he showed last year,” Russian world number 73 Kuznetsov told British media.”A few guys like (Borna) Coric, for example, beat him in Madrid. It shows that it’s possible to beat him. Also in the first rounds of the big tournaments, maybe they need some time to find rhythm and so on.”Kuznetsov, 26, who lost in the semi-finals at last week’s Geneva Open, said a quick start would be key to defeating the three-times grand slam winner.”Of course it will be important to start good. If it goes to a five-setter, there will be a few more chances for him to win because of the physical conditions,” Kuznetsov said.”But if he starts a little bit nervy and shaky, and I start with confidence, maybe I can win one set and take a lead in the second.advertisement”For me it’s a good experience to play against a world number one. If I win, I will be a hero. If I lose, nobody will be surprised. [There is] nothing to lose for me.”last_img read more

Punjab CM offers DSP post to Harmanpreet

first_imgChandigarh, Jul 24 (PTI) Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh has offered star woman cricketer Harmanpreet Kaur the DSPs position in Punjab Police, saying he wants to “correct a wrong” done to her in the past. Harmanpreet played a crucial role in India reaching the final of the ICC World Cup in England. Her hurricane knock of 171 against Australia in the semifinals was the highlight of her contribution. Having already announced a cash prize of Rs 5 lakh for the batter, the CM offered her a job after speaking to her father Harmandar Singh in Moga. Harmanpreet had reportedly wanted to join the Punjab Police some years ago but had been denied by the force. Amarinder said it was a “wrong perpetrated on the young cricketer by the previous Badal government, which had refused to accommodate the national player in Punjab Police.” The chief minister also promised to review the states sports policy to provide government jobs to young sportspersons like Harmanpreet. PTI SUN PM PMlast_img read more

Serena Williams registers big win on US Open return, Venus beats Kuznetsova

first_imgSerena Williams registered a solid 6-4, 6-0 win over Magda Linette on her US Open return on Monday as she took the first cautious step towards a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title.The tennis ace was given a warm welcome on her return by the crowd.It was not the imposing performance many have come to expect from Williams as the six-time champion continued to scrape the rust off her game following the birth of her first child.The manner of the victory, however, mattered little to a home crowd that was just happy to see her back on court after sitting out last year.”It is such a great feeling to be back out here,” said Williams. “It is one of those feeling I only get here in New York.”First match back on Arthur Ashe Stadium in 2 years…@serenawilliams defeats Linette 6-4, 6-0 to a rousing New York crowd!https://t.co/fl9GKp76Ay#USOpen pic.twitter.com/cNtbK4O0stUS Open Tennis (@usopen) August 28, 2018Telling the crowd that her spirit was broken after not saying goodbye to her daughter Olympia before leaving for her match, Williams displayed little appetite for a fight during an uneven opening set until she finally seized control with a break to go up 4-3.Williams, the winner of 72 career singles titles, has the ability to sense when she has an opponent on the ropes and moved in quickly to deliver the knockout punch, breaking the 68th ranked Pole to open the second.advertisementWhile her game might not have been firing on all cylinders her ruthlessness remained razor sharp as the American showed no hesitation storming through second set finishing off her opponent with a thundering ace.The Williams sisters bridged the afternoon and evening sessions on a steamy Arthur Ashe with Venus providing the opening act of the twin bill, grinding out a 6-3 5-7 6-3 victory over another former champion, Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova, before handing the stage over to her younger sibling.US Open: Rafael Nadal through to Round 2, Stan Wawrinka upsets Grigor DimitrovThe wins put the sisters on a collision course, leaving them just one victory away from a third-round showdown.While Venus remains a potential obstacle standing in the way of a 24th Grand Slam, Serena’s path to the final was cleared of another major hurdle earlier on Monday when world number one Simona Halep was upset by Estonia’s Kaia Kanepi.”There’s still several matches to play before you’re there,” said Williams about a possible meeting with her sister. “Right now I just feel like I’m on the road to getting better.”I’m just going to be on that road till I get there.”It might not have been a stylish win over Linette but it was nonetheless a stylish display by Williams.As always, the fashion conscious Williams created a buzz as she appeared from the players tunnel under a spotlight wearing a leather style jacket over a frilly off the shoulder tennis dress and fishnet compression tights designed to help circulation and avoid blood clots.”It’s easy to play in, kind of aerodynamic with the one arm free,” said Williams. “The tutu is easy to play in because I practiced in it before. That was fun.”(With Reuters inputs)last_img read more