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“Definitely Challenging” – Victoria Azarenka Speaks About Quick Transition Of Surfaces at Italian Open 2020

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"Definitely Challenging" - Victoria Azarenka Speaks About Quick Transition Of Surfaces at Italian Open 2020

Rome was the audience of a well-fought battle between two gladiators. The first round of the Italian Open 2020 saw Venus Williams going against Victoria Azarenka. The thrilling match on the clay-court saw Azarenka having the advantage and cruising to the next round as Williams was forced to bite the dust.

Victoria went into the game as the favorite to win the tie. Doing justice to the predictions, she won the game 7-6 6-2. Venus built some real resistance in the first set. However, she was completely dominated in the second set.

Before coming into the clay court, Azarenka showed some real game in the hard courts. She started off where she had left off. Although she faced a bit of difficulty due to the change in the surface of the court.

“Different surface was definitely challenging, but I feel like I adapted very well,” Azarenka said. “I knew it wasn’t going to be easy, I knew I wasn’t going to play a perfect game today, but it was all about trying to find the right intention of what to do today. I think it worked out okay.”

Tennis – WTA Premier 5 – Italian Open – Foro Italico, Rome, Italy Venus Williams of the U.S. in action during her second round match against Belarus’ Victoria Azarenka |REUTERS

The Belarusian continued her stellar performance in Rome. Although she took the effort to appreciate Venus’s game.

“I felt that this was a great match for me to figure it out, the first match on clay,” Azarenka added. “Venus played a really good match, it was good to see her also adapting to clay, changing, and trying different shots. So, I’m pretty happy.”

Victoria Azarenka is in the form of her life

After conquering the United States, Victoria Azarenka is on her way to take Europe. Winning the Western and Southern Open and finishing runners up in the US Open 2020, she is in some dazzling form.

Before venturing into the French Open 2020, Azarenka is determined to polish her skills in the clay court. She took time to get acclimatized with the surface, however, she gathered herself brilliantly to fetch a splendid win.

Victoria Azarenka celebrates after winning a point against Serena Williams in the 2020 US Open
Sep 10 2020; Flushing Meadows, New York,USA; Victoria Azarenka of Belarus reacts after winning a point against Serena Williams of the United States (not pictured) in a women’s singles semi-finals match on day ten of the 2020 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports | Reuters

World Number 14 will be hopeful of clinching the Italian Open 2020 before she leaps for the Roland Garros. Her journey won’t be easy in the Italian Open as she will be facing Sofia Kenin in the next round.

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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‘Awful’ double-bounce controversy causes French Open stir

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‘Awful’ double-bounce controversy causes French Open stir

Martina Navratilova has accused German star Laura Siegemund of failing to call a double bounce in an incident that’s divided tennis.

Siegemund profited from a clear violation of the rules in her match against Kristina Mladenovic to help knock the Frenchwoman out of her home grand slam on Wednesday.

Mladenovic was up 5-1 and with a set point against Siegemund when the German scooped up a winner despite the ball appearing to bounce twice. The incident was missed by chair umpire Eva Asderaki.

World No. 44 Mladenovic pleaded in vain before Siegemund took full advantage, racing into the next round with a 7-5, 6-3 win.

While both players were quick to place responsibility for the call on the umpire, Navratilova said Siegemund could have stepped up and shown sportsmanship.

“That was awful,” Navratilova tweeted. “The umpire, who is usually great, missed that one.

“In the old days we would have called it ourselves but these days it’s different. For sure Siegemund knew she didn’t get it on the first bounce et voilà – it totally turned the match as Mladenovic knew it … shame.”

Mladenovic called for a football-style VAR system to be introduced in tennis after her tournament ended.

Kristina Mladenovic; Laura Siegemund
Kristina Mladenovic; Laura SiegemundGetty Images

“It would be great to have that,” Mladenovic said. “It’d be a pity to replace a human with a camera but to err is human. I don’t see how the umpire could not see it. Unfortunately, she continues at Roland Garros but I do not.”

The other grand slams do use a replay system for line calls.

Despite her disappointment, Mladenovic refused to blame Siegemund for not calling the incident on herself.

“Well, she would have been the best and most fair player on the tour if she would have done that. Unfortunately, she didn’t. I didn’t expect her to do it,” Mladenovic said.

“But if she would have done it, she would have all my respect and (it would) be super-fair play. She’s not the one responsible. I think the chair umpire is the one that should be really focused on that call. The set was mine. It was just unlucky for me that the chair umpire didn’t do her job.”

Siegemund defended not calling the double bounce herself.

“If in that call, I’m coming running full speed, if in that call I say, ‘Oh, it was a double bounce,’ and later I see on the video it was not, I would be angry at myself. So I think in that situation, that was a close call,” said the 66th-ranked player.

“That’s what the umpire is there for. I think she has better chances than me to see what has happened exactly.”

Siegemund backed Mladenovic’s call for video replays which would allow controversial calls to be reviewed courtside and, if necessary, overturned.

“If we have the technical devices to get a quick replay, I think that’s a good thing for all sports,” she said.

However, Siegemund insisted that Mladenovic had plenty of chances to kill off the first set even before the controversy erupted.

“I can understand her frustration. I can maybe understand a little bit that she’s getting at me, but I think she should get at the umpire,” Siegemund said.  “She had plenty of other opportunities. It was just the wrong call, and that happens in sport.”

Mladenovic has seen crucial leads disappear before — at the US Open, she led Russia’s Varvara Gracheva 6-1, 5-1 and had four match points but went on to lose in three sets.

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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Broncos vs. Jets Fantasy Football Start ‘Em Sit ‘Em for Week 4 ‘Thursday Night Football’

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Broncos vs. Jets Fantasy Football Start 'Em Sit 'Em for Week 4 'Thursday Night Football'

This week’s “Thursday Night Football” game (Broncos at Jets (8:20 p.m. ET, NFL Network) features two winless teams with offenses that have a lot of problems. It might sound like a game to mostly avoid when making your Week 4 fantasy football start ’em, sit ’em decisions, but there are some good sources of production if you know where to look.

Sports Grind Entertainment’ Vinnie Iyer is here to help with the early lineup calls to make in your seasonal leagues of varying depths, as well as provide single-game DFS tips:

WEEK 4 FANTASY: Sleepers | Busts | Start ’em, sit ’em

Broncos: Who to start or sit in fantasy football on Thursday night

Start: RB Melvin Gordon

Gordon is coming off a horrible game against the Bucs’ tough defense (14 touches, 38 yards) after finding his way into the end zone with similar solid scrimmage results in Weeks 1 and 2. The Jets just were destroyed all around by the 49ers and Colts with running backs. Gordon should go off with a big week, especially with the Broncos’ major QB limitations. Phillip Lindsay has a good chance to return from his toe injury, but Gordon should still dominate touches.

Start: TE Noah Fant

The Jets also struggled against the 49ers’ Jordan Reed and the Colts’ Mo-Alie Cox. With more inexperience at quarterback and no Courtland Sutton (knee), Fant should remain a big security blanket all over the field. With their linebacker and safety holes, the Jets aren’t capable of matching up with his size and athleticism.

MORE TNF: DK Showdown lineup | FD Single-game lineup

Sit: WRs Jerry Jeudy and KJ Hamler

Jeudy has been slow to produce out of the gate and hasn’t exactly jumped at his rookie chance to replace Sutton as the No. 1. Hamler was hampered by a hamstring early and might see an expanded role soon, but that’s unlikely to be this week.

Sit: QB Brett Rypien

Rypien, the nephew of Washington Super Bowl 26 MVP Mark Rypien, is replacing Jeff Driskel, who replaced an injured Lock (shoulder), because newly signed Blake Bortles isn’t quite ready to start in Pat Shurmur’s offense. Let’s hope you shouldn’t have to resort to a second-year undrafted QB making his first start in any league — even if he is playing the Jets.

Sit: K Brandon McManus

He still has the cool “Usual Suspects” last name, but he should be far off your radar for this game and most others.

Start: Broncos defense/special teams

There are a number of solid plays in 12-team leagues to play ahead of the Broncos, but after the Colts turned in a monster performance against the Jets in Week 2, even an injury depleted Denver defense can get some streaming consideration. Just temper your expecations. Denver is more likely to squeeze out 10 points as opposed to getting something close to 20.

WEEK 4 STANDARD RANKINGS:
Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight End | D/ST | Kicker

Jets: Who to start or sit in fantasy football on Thursday night

Sit: RB Frank Gore

The whole Jets’ running game is boring without Le’Veon Bell (hamstring). Adam Gase continues to trot out the 37-year-old future Hall-of-Famer when he should be looking more at La’Mical Perine. Well, it sounds like Gase might not be making those types of decisions anymore should the Jets lose.

Start: WR Jamison Crowder or WR Braxton Berrios

You can “slot” in whoever starts as the main target on inside routes into your lineup in deeper leagues as a low-end WR3 if you are desperate. Crowder has a chance to return from his hamstring injury, but if not it would be more of a busy Berrios.

Sit: QB Sam Darnold

Nick Mullens and Dwayne Haskins have more fantasy appeal than Darnold at the moment, and that’s saying something. Only his counterpart Rypien is a worse QB3 option.

Sit: WR Chris Hogan

Hogan had a nice Week 2 but he was blanked in Week 3. Poor guy probably misses those good times in the AFC East with Tom Brady and the Patriots. You can’t trust him playing as the top outside receiver for Breshad Perriman (hamstring) again.

Sit: TE Chris Herndon

If one more Jets beat reporter hypes up Herndon to us one more time, he still would disappoint.

Start: Jets defense/special teams

Here’s another deep-league-only dice roll, as the Broncos and Jets combine easily to give up the most fantasy points to defenses. At least New York looks OK in the pass rush.

Sit: K Sam Ficken

His last name sounds like what one uses to curse out how awful the Jets have been under Gase this season.

WEEK 4 PPR RANKINGS:
Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight End | D/ST | Kicker

Broncos-Jets DraftKings Showdown lineup for Thursday night

Captain: RB Melvin Gordon ($16,500)

FLEX: TE Noah Fant ($9,000)

FLEX: WR Jamison Crowder ($8,200) or WR Braxton Berrios ($7,200)

FLEX: D/ST Broncos ($5,600)

FLEX: WR Tim Patrick ($5,000)

FLEX: D/ST Jets ($4,000)

No surprises here. Captain Gordon — we love the sound of that. Noah has a chance for “two by two” touchdowns in this game. Whoever starts in the slot for the Jets is the only worthwhile choice from their offense.

Two defenses are not better than one, usually, but that’s in games that don’t involve two bad offenses. We’ll turn to Patrick, and not Jeudy or Hamler, as a young veteran to produce something again.

Sure, we did leave quite a bit of money on the table, especially if it’s Berrios in for Crowder, but do we really want either quarterback in there? No.

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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How WNBA star Liz Cambage is ‘celebrating’ her sexuality in Playboy

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How WNBA star Liz Cambage is ‘celebrating’ her sexuality in Playboy

Liz Cambage has accomplished plenty in her 29 years, but posing for Playboy calls for a different kind of celebration.

“I’ve never embraced my sexuality in public,” the WNBA star recently told the publication. “Me doing Playboy is me celebrating my sexuality like, ‘Yeah, I am a straight six-foot-eight woman who likes to have sex.’ I’m a human; it’s what we do. As a female athlete, I feel like I’m not allowed to be sexy and I’m not allowed to be that person. All society wants from me is to sit down, shut up, go to training and play my sport.”

The Australian athlete, who was drafted second overall by the Tulsa Shock in 2011, received a medical exemption for the 2020 WNBA season, in which her Las Vegas Aces will face the Seattle Storm in the finals. Cambage added that “being a female and in sports,” she “felt a lot of pressure” in regard to sexual identification.

“I’ve spent a lot of years confused. Am I straight? Am I bi? Is there something wrong with me that I’m not attracted to girls? Everyone’s always expecting me to be gay. I’m like, ‘No, I love men.’ I remember when I shaved half my head at 18 or 19 and my mom sat me down. She thought that was me coming out. I was like, ‘No, I just look good with a shaved head,’” she said.

Cambage thinks fans will be “surprised” when they see the final Playboy prints.

WNBA superstar Liz Cambage
Nicol Biesek for Playboy

“I wanted it to be super girly and feminine, which I think I am but never really get to portray as an athlete. We don’t really get a platform to portray the other sides of ourselves. My whole life, I have been told to focus on my sport. But at the end of the day, I’m a human and I’m fighting for things bigger than just my sport,” she said.

Cambage has long considered her body to be “powerful,” noting the feedback she received after posing in ESPN the Magazine’s annual “Body Issue” was “very interesting.”

“People saw it as a very sexual thing, but to me, my body is powerful. We bring life into this world with our bodies. Yet we cover them up, when we’re such powerful beings. I’m so proud of my skin. I’m so proud of my six-foot-eight body and everything I can do with it. Nudity has never really been a sexual thing to me. It’s always just been who I am and the skin I was in,” she said.

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Christine founded Sports Grind Entertainment with an aim to bring relevant and unaltered Sports news to the general public with a specific view point for each story catered by the team. She is a proficient journalist who holds a reputable portfolio with proficiency in content analysis and research.

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