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Svitolina emerges as French Open favorite with sweep of Halep in Rome

first_imgLATEST STORIES But Halep’s hopes of overturning last year’s defeat to her 23-year-old opponent quickly evaporated in a completely one-sided encounter that saw the Romanian fail to produce a real challenge.Svitolina, the world number four, has now successfully defended three career titles, in Baku, Dubai and also Rome; she also won in Brisbane and Dubai this season to take her 2018 title total to three.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownThe win also marked Svitolina’s 12th career title on what was her eighth final in succession.“It’s amazing that I could do this here a second time and defend,” said Svitolina. “This is something very, very special.  Jury of 7 men, 5 women selected for Weinstein rape trial Winfrey details her decision to withdraw from Simmons film Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina celebrates after winning the women’s final against Romania’s Simona Halep at Rome’s WTA Tennis Open tournament at the Foro Italico, on May 20, 2018 in Rome. AFP PHOTO / Filippo MONTEFORTEElina Svitolina underlined her status as a top favorite for the French Open by sweeping Simona Halep aside 6-0, 6-4 to successfully defend her Italian Open crown on Sunday.In a repeat of last year’s final at the Foro Italico, Ukrainian Svitolina, seeded fourth, was up against Halep a day after the Romanian top seed had ousted Russian Maria Sharapova.ADVERTISEMENT Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Phoenix blows lead, outlasts Ginebra in double OT “Congrats to Elina, she played amazing,” Halep said. “It’s like this court is now her home. But I didn’t do so badly, reaching the final again. I hope to be back next year.“Maybe third time is lucky for me.”Thanks to reaching the final in Rome, Halep will take the top seeding for Roland Garros.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours Dave Chappelle donates P1 million to Taal relief operations In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ China population now over 1.4 billion as birthrate falls “Congratulations to Simona, she had a great week of tennis.”The French Open at Roland Garros starts in just over a week, and Svitolina added: “Roland Garros is still a week away, but this gives me confidence.“I can’t make any predictions as it’s very tricky in Paris, but I’m sure I will enjoy the next tournament.”Halep, who was broken four times and lost the opening set in 19 minutes, did not win a game until the start of the second, 24 minutes in.The world number one saved match point before bowing out after 67 minutes.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina MOST READlast_img read more

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Champions League return ‘first step’ warns Inter Milan’s Chinese owner

first_img0Shares0000Inter Milan captain Mauro Icardi after the Serie A side qualified for the Champions League next season © AFP / MARCO BERTORELLOMILAN, Italy, May 22 – Inter Milan’s Chinese owner Zhang Jindong warned Tuesday that the club’s return to Champions League football was just the “first step” in their plan to return the Italian team to past glory.Zhang’s Suning group paid nearly 270 million euros ($318 million) to buy Inter in June 2016. The club finished seventh in the 2016-2017 season. But this season they took fourth place after snatching the final Champions League berth with a dramatic come-from-behind 3-2 win over direct European rivals Lazio on the final day of the season in Rome on Sunday.“First of all, I want to congratulate you all for this great achievement!” wrote Zhang in a letter published on the club’s website.“After six seasons, Inter has finally returned to the Champions League, the most prestigious competition in European football!“We have waited a long time for this day to come and this result is the fruit of your constant work. Congratulations!”“Looking back over this season, we had a good start and then we experienced a difficult and less calm period that we were able to overcome thanks to your dedication and effort.“With the desire to compete and win, we have reached our objective. This return to the Champions League is the first step, the start of a long road to tread together with the passion and confidence that the whole Nerazzurri family has shown.”“Even though the Serie A competition has just finished, our work off the pitch continues, we are all already preparing for the next season,” he added.“Many of our players will also be playing in the World Cup to honour their countries and I hope that they play with the same spirit that has always distinguished us: ‘Brothers of the World’. Forza Inter!”Three-time European champions Inter have suffered a decline since their record-breaking haul in 2010 when they won five trophies — Serie A, the Champions League, Italian Cup, Italian Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup.Since then their only trophy has been the Italian Cup in 2011.Meanwhile, the club are reported to be offering captain Mauro Icardi a one-year contract extension until 2022, worth six million euros per season plus bonuses.Argentine Icardi — the joint-top Serie A scorer this season with 29 goals — has a current deal worth 4.5 million euros a year which runs until 2021.The 25-year-old’s present contract also has a 110-million-euro release clause for foreign clubs which can be activated until mid-July.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

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