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Monte Carlo Flashback: Rafael Nadal overcomes slow start to beat David Goffin

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rafael nada

David Goffin finally pulled everything together in Monte Carlo 2017 to score his first win over the players ranked in the top-3. The Belgian erased the deficit in the final set to topple Novak Djokovic and reach the semi-final, meeting another tennis giant Rafael Nadal.
rafael nadal
Interestingly, they had never played before, and it should have been a great contest, something the spectators got in the first six games. David wasted no less than ten game points to move 4-2 up. He squandered them and never acted like the same player in the rest of the clash, taking only one game to propel Rafa into the final!

Nadal scored a 6-3, 6-1 triumph to advance into his 11th Monte Carlo final, with the most crucial moment of the encounter coming after one poor call from the chair umpire Cedric Mourier. It turned the battle in favor of one player while the other faded from the court.
Rafael Nadal awarded

It was another routine victory for Rafa on his favorite ground. He made the difference with his second serve (12 out of 14 points won) and converted five out of 11 break chances to hold the encounter firmly in his hands after that crucial game six of the opening set.

Goffin played great in the first five games, while Nadal needed some time to find the rhythm and impose his strokes. He got into the zone and cracked the Belgian’s game to dominate the rest of the duel. Goffin had 13 service winners, a decent number for him, and Nadal stayed on nine.
Rafael Nadal trophy
The Spaniard was 15-11 in front in the winners from the field, firing 11 forehand winners and three from his backhand. David had five from his forehand and four from a backhand wing. Unforced errors were the segment that buried Goffin’s chance to achieve a more favorable result.

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He sprayed 27 of those, 18 from his forehand alone, while Rafa stayed on nine.

Rafael Nadal beat David Goffin in Monte Carlo 2017.
The Belgian added 14 forced errors in comparison to Nadal’s ten to take only four games despite a promising start.

They were on equal terms in the shortest rallies up to four strokes (25-22 for Nadal), while the Spaniard had the edge in the middle-range exchanges up to eight shots, taking 20 out of 32. Rafa was also much better in the most extended points, winning nine out of 11 rallies that reached 13 or more strokes.
Rafael Nadal and WIfe snap
David created two break chances in the opening game with forehand winners (the best shot in the first half of the first set), and Nadal fended them off with three winners to close the game after an 18-stroke rally. Goffin had a good hold in game two and broke Nadal in the following one to open up a 2-1 gap and move in front.

David’s tactic was transparent, taking the ball as early as possible and taking time out from Nadal’s shot to drive the Spaniard away from the comfort zone. For illustration, Nadal had committed eight unforced and five forced errors in the entire match against Zverev, and he already sprayed nine errors after three games against the Belgian!

Goffin had a clear advantage in the mid-range rallies (7-2 after game five, but it would be 10-10 by the end of the set), and another comfortable hold sent him 3-1 in front. He left Nadal with a lot of work to do if he wanted to get back on the scoreboard.

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David started to make mistakes in game five, but that was all part of the process when someone played on such an aggressive note as he did. Nadal reduced the deficit to 3-2 after taking an essential 20-stroke rally. Then, that pivotal sixth game was on the board, and David failed to convert those enormous ten game opportunities.
Rafael Nadal and Wife snapp
He allowed Rafa to break him and level the score at 3-3 instead of moving 4-2 up. The Belgian was 40-0 up but could not close the game, starting to spray more errors and keeping Nadal in the game. David won the point on his seventh game chance when Nadal sent the forehand some ten centimeters behind the baseline, believing that he finally finished the game.

Instead, Mourier came down from his chair and pointed out what was the wrong mark and repeated the point. Of course, this caused an angry reaction from the usually calm and composed Belgian, who could not believe how colossal was Mourier’s mistake.
Rafael Nadal holds wife
Instead of calling the line judge to show the right mark or bringing the supervisor instantly, David argued for a while. He continued playing and never found the rhythm again, fading from the court entirely. After almost 20 minutes of drama, Nadal broke for 3-3 when Goffin missed a forehand.

The Spaniard took nine out of the last ten games to wrap up a safe win in what looked like a stern test for him in the opening six games.

NBA

“Stephen Curry bought an $8 Million condo to avoid getting stuck in traffic for 20 minutes!”: Warriors’ star got the Four Seasons’ 30th Floor residence to avoid commute to Chase Center

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Warriors’ Stephen Curry bought a condo in Four Seasons Residences to avoid traffic on his way to practice at Chase Center

In today’s day and age, the toughest challenge each and every one of us faces is to get good accommodations near the workplace. More often than not, places close to the office are out of our budget, and the ones we can afford are far away from the workplace.

Getting to the office and going back home is often more stressful and tiring than the work itself. Sadly, most of us cannot do anything about the same. However, if your name is Stephen Curry, you sure can. In the summer of 2019, the Warriors bid adieu to Oakland and Oracle Arena, as they moved to their shiny new arena, Chase Center in San Francisco.

When the Warriors moved across the bridge, so did Stephen Curry. He bought a $31 Million home in Atherton, which was a record purchase in the Bay Area at that time. However, commuting from his mansion to the Chase Center was proving to be a hassle.

Stephen Curry bought an $8 Million condo close to Chase Center to avoid traffic

In the summer of 2017, Steph became the first player in NBA history to sign a $200+ million contract. After his 4-year, $44 million contract, he signed a 5-year, $201.15 million contract with the Warriors. With this, Steph now was being paid for his skills properly.

In 2019, when the Warriors shifted to the Chase Center, Steph was having trouble commuting to the new arena from his Atherton home. He was constantly getting late by 20-25 minutes. When people like us get late, we usually just start our day some 30 minutes earlier than usual. However, since he’s Stephen Curry, he decided to just get a new place near Chase Center to avoid the daily traffic.

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Steph went out and shelled $8 million to buy the 30th Floor condo at the Four Seasons Residence. The condo is just 5 minutes away from Chase Center and allows Steph to rest before and after the games.

An added advantage is that Ayesha Curry‘s restaurant, International Smoke is just a block away.

I guess when you make the kind of money Steph does, you can really eliminate all the things that can distract you from your art.

 

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Exclusive: Scarlett Johansson Being Pursued For Star Wars Role

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Scarlett Johansson might be completely done with the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but she is certainly not done with Disney. Although there had been some bad blood that was caused by the marketing flub of putting Black Widow on Disney+ instead of premiering in theaters, that breach of contract lawsuit was settled between Johansson and the media giant. Now it appears as if Disney is doing right by the actress, as we have learned from a trusted and proven source that Lucasfilm is heavily targeting Scarlett Johansson for a Star Wars film.

Star Wars is currently going through a bit of shuffling, as the slate of movies being developed continues to be altered. The new trilogy that was being created by Rian Johnson has been put on hold, and the reports are that now Taika Waititi is the next director to helm a feature in the Star Wars mythos. Could that movie be what Lucasfilm has in mind for the actress? Scarlett Johansson appearing in a Star Wars movie directed by Taika Waititi would be amazing. We can only speculate that this is the project they have in mind, as our source was unable to confirm. It would be a great move, though.

Exclusive: Scarlett Johansson Being Pursued For Star Wars Role

Taika Waititi is arguably the best director at Marvel, as Thor: Ragnarok is one of the best Marvel films. Thor: Love and Thunder, the sequel to Ragnarok, has the makings of being one of the best films in the franchise as well. Scarlett Johansson has the gravitas that matches up well with the bonkers directing style that Waititi possesses.

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There are also reports that Star Wars is aiming to move away from the Skywalker Saga, as President Kathleen Kennedy stated that legacy characters should no longer be recast, meaning that the storyline should finally be put to rest. With the news that the Skywalker Saga should be done away with permanently, why not bring in Scarlett Johansson for Star Wars, but in an older era? There have been plenty of whispers that Star Wars might return to an older period, and that is the case for the books that are currently detailing “The Old Republic” which is an older period in the Star Wars mythos.

Lucy Shows Us How NOT to Tell a Story – Mythcreants

Fans have been clamoring for a story set in the timeline when Darth Revan existed, which is an older Sith Lord that dominated the time long before The Clone Wars ever took place. This storyline was made popular by the Knights of the Old Republic video game series. A fun factoid is that Revan was officially canonized in Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker, as his name was briefly mentioned. We honestly have not seen any older Jedi than the Jedi Council that ruled during The Clone Wars era. Johansson could be a founding member of the Jedi Order, and one that deals with the older and more terrifying Sith masters.

First trailer for Scarlett Johansson's 'Lucy' unveiled - Movies News

Regardless of which direction Disney and Lucasfilm take with this expansive universe, adding Scarlett Johansson to a Star Wars film is a fantastic idea. Although she was part of The Avengers, she was still always a shining spot in all those ensemble films. So much so, that even after her character had been killed, she was still given a prequel solo movie. That is how popular she is. She would be a hugely welcomed addition to the Star Wars universe, and there haven’t been many female leads. Fans are still on the fence about Daisy Ridley, but Johansson would never be questioned in a starring role.

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Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez – First Round – Preview & Prediction | 2022 French Open

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Leylah Fernandez
Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez – First Round – Preview & Prediction | 2022 French Open

When is Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez on and what time does it start? Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez will take place on Monday 23rd May, 2022 – not before TBC (UK)

Leylah Fernandez

Where is Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez taking place? Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez will take place at Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France

What surface is Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez being played on? Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez will take place on an outdoor clay court

Where can I get tickets for Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez? Visit this link for the latest ticket information for Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez

What channel is Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez on in the UK? Eurosport will be televising major matches so it is worth checking their schedule for Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez

Where can I stream Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez in the UK? discovery+ subscribers can stream Kristina Mladenovic vs Leylah Fernandez live while the match can be streamed on Eurosport Player and Amazon Prime Video if it is televised

THE PREDICTION

Leylah Fernandez

19-year-old Leylah Fernandez set a new career-high WTA world ranking of 17th this week despite so far struggling on clay. The Canadian famously finished runner-up to Emma Raducanu at the US Open last season having taken out an incredible list of Grand Slam champions and top 10 players in: Naomi Osaka, Angelique Kerber, Elina Svitolina and Aryna Sabalenka. Fernandez successfully defended her Monterrey Open title back in February on a her favoured hard surface but the dogged left-hander has huge potential in her game for the clay too.

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Leylah Fernandez

World number 110 Kristina Mladenovic spend much of her time on the ITF circuit these days, especially in the singles, but the 29-year-old took Nuria Parrizas-Diaz to three sets in defeat at the Rabat Open on Wednesday. A first meeting with Leylah Fernandez is likely going one way, especially with the French crowd set to take to the Canadian, who is fluent in French, as one of their own. Back Fernandez to win this in two and watch out for the 19-year-old in Paris.

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How Osaka, Raducanu and Fernandez can learn from Sharapova’s growth on clay

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While they haven’t had early success on clay, Emma Raducanu, Leylah Fernandez and Naomi Osaka can find hope in the example of Maria Sharapova.

The two millimeters of terre battue – iron oxide is what creates that distinctive burnt sienna hue – that cover the courts in Paris can represent a quagmire for the clay novice. It’s exceedingly unstable, creating all kinds of physical issues.

Maria Sharapova’s first exposure to these horrors ended badly in 2003, with a 6-0, 6-4 loss to Spanish clay-courter Magui Swerna. Sharapova was only 16 years old – but already a big hitter with a promising career underway. Still, nothing suggested she would ever solve the Rubik’s Cube that was clay.

After winning a second-round match four years later at Roland Garros, Sharapova uttered an unforgettable quote, saying she felt “like a cow on ice.” It brings an immediate (and indelible) image to mind and was a hot topic in 2012 when she actually reached the finals in Paris.

“I can’t tell you how many times that I have heard that phrase in the last four weeks from journalists,” Sharapova said at the time. “I will give you the standard answer. That I do occasionally still feel like it and, I’m sure, look like it, too.”

It wasn’t only about movement for Sharapova. It was also the grinding, physical toll exacted from matches where her serve and groundstrokes didn’t create as many winners as they did on the faster surfaces. The different muscles that sliding demanded. Early in her career, she never imagined she could put together the seven tough matches required of champions at Roland Garros.

 

And yet, one decade ago, she defeated Italian Sara Errani 6-3, 6-2 to win her first French Open title. Along with her three previous major triumphs – 2004 Wimbledon, 2006 US Open, 2008 Australian Open – she became only the 10th woman to capture the rare career Grand Slam.

In an irony not lost on Sharapova; she won a second French Open title two years later, beating Simona Halep in a match that ran more than three hours. This, on the surface she once thought to be her worst. Note, her career winning percentages: hard court (.777), grass (.794) – and clay (.815).

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So many great players have fallen one particular title short of that personal Slam, among them: Justine Henin, Monica Seles and Martina Hingis. Lindsay Davenport – joined by Pete Sampras and Boris Becker – missed out on the matched set by failing to win at Roland Garros.

The 10th anniversary of Sharapova’s breakthrough is a good time to remind those armchair skeptics that it’s way too early in the curve to start passing definitive judgments on some of today’s young players who already have had success on hard courts

Naomi Osaka won her first major, the 2018 US Open, at the age of 20. Now 24, she’s won four majors, all of them on hard courts. Emma Raducanu and Leylah Fernandez played last year’s US Open final, but clay remains something beyond their immediate grasp.

Mastering the cloying clay in Paris and the slippery slope of Wimbledon’s immaculate grass courts requires a certain diversity of game and the ability to adapt to drastically different conditions. Serena Williams is the only active woman with a personal Grand Slam, and she’s done it three times over. Angelique Kerber has won three different majors, but lacks the French Open on her resume; she made the quarterfinals there twice, in 2012 and 2018. Simona Halep and Garbiñe Muguruza have both captured Roland Garros and Wimbledon but have yet to win a hard-court major.

It’s been a small sample this year for our young triumvirate. Osaka is 1-1 on clay for 2022, following last year’s 2-3 record. Raducanu, this year playing her first clay matches at the level, is an encouraging 5-4. Fernandez went 2-2 in Madrid and Rome. Raducanu and Fernandez are just kids in the sandbox, relatively speaking, trying to figure it out.

“I have definitely learnt that I can kind of adapt to this surface much faster than I probably thought and about how to stay in the point,” Raducanu said Friday during Media Day at Roland Garros. “I think my movement on defense has also improved a bit.

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“When to play with spin and when to actually hit it hard. You don’t have to always just grind it out. Sometimes you can put your hard-court game on a clay court, as well. It’s just finding the balance. I think that clay definitely teaches you that.”

The first thing they must master, according to 18-time major champion Martina Navratilova, is their movement. Sliding in the dirt, it turns out, is an acquired skill.

“Unless you grew up on the stuff, it’s hard to gain that footing,” Navratilova said. “You become vulnerable easier on clay, like if you get pushed wide – unless you really know how to slide – you don’t recover after the shot as well. And it shows up more, not covering the court as well, with the big hitters, because you can’t make up for it as much.”

Like Navratilova, Pam Shriver, a tennis analyst for ESPN and Tennis Channel, grew up playing a lot on clay but discovered it didn’t suit her big game.

“Eventually, I would just settle in and think, `You know what, I can just play my same game, but I just have to do it just a little bit better,’” Shriver said.” If it’s a play that works on a faster surface, I just need to do it with a little more conviction. A slightly better angle, a slightly better serve.

“These days, there’s not as much difference in the surfaces. Players can bring their same game to all three surfaces and just make their little adjustments here and there.”

Ultimately, it all goes back to the example of Sharapova. Toward the end of her career, clay became her most consistent surface. As Shriver noted, look at what Sharapova did – study it – and it could happen to you.

“Clay at the beginning kind of was like written off, ‘Oh, it’s a clay court, just have a go,'” Raducanu said. “But now I really believe that I can be good and faster than I thought it would be.”

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With insight from Navratilova and Shriver, who won 20 Grand Slam doubles titles together from 1981-89, including a calendar-year Grand Slam in 1984, a brief examination of how Raducanu, Fernandez and Osaka could make some headway on clay this year at Roland Garros:

Emma Raducanu

French Open seed: No.12

Career records: Hard court:11-9 (.550), Clay: 5-4 (.556), Grass: 3-2 (.600)

Total: 19-15 (.559)

Navratilova: “Raducanu can generate pace and redirects pretty well. But on clay she has to do a lot more. It’s harder to find the openings, so you have to hit more shots and pick your spot.”

Shriver: “I feel like on the footwork side, I think Raducanu has some potential on clay because it’s a little more precise than the other two.”

Leylah Fernandez

French Open seed: No. 17

Career records: Hard court: 39-23 (.629), Clay: 7-8 (.467), Grass: 1-2 (.333)

Total: 47-33(.588)

Navratilova: “Leylah doesn’t have the big weapons of, say, an Osaka. Those weapons can get you out of trouble on clay. Movement, like with Halep, will have to be her calling card.”

Shriver: “Hitting topspin and creating margin, I think is a Fernandez strength. And also being left-handed – the good lefty forehand over the top, gets up high. I like her using that in a positive way on clay.”

Naomi Osaka

French Open: Unseeded

Career records: Hard court: 134-57 (.702), Clay: 21-17 (.553), Grass: 11-9 (.550)

Total: 166-83 (.667)

Navratilova: “For Osaka, her big shots don’t pay off as well on clay. So she has to hit more balls, and her play is still pretty risky. Eventually, I think Osaka can succeed on clay because of the weapons she has. Sharapova was a bigger hitter, and it worked for her. It can be done. It just takes a while. You just need to put in the miles.”

Shriver: “On clay, Osaka’s footwork is not as comfortable. Osaka’s a little bit older [24] so she’s had a longer time to develop some scar tissue about the surface, an unease. Like Sharapova, she can realize if you’re a little bit slower, clay actually helps you.”

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Elon Musk and Grimes’ Relationship Timeline: The Way They Were

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Elon Musk
Elon Musk and Grimes’ Relationship Timeline: The Way They Were

A roller coaster romance. Elon Musk and Grimes, whose real name is Claire Boucher, were first linked in May 2018 and have since welcomed a son together.

The couple made their red carpet debut in May 2018, shortly after reports surfaced of their relationship. However, it has not always been smooth sailing for the businessman and the singer. They weathered split rumors and a very public feud with Azealia Banks in August 2018 before reuniting.

Elon Musk

Fans speculated about their status for months, as the pair continued to be spotted together everywhere from the Kardashian-Jenner family Christmas party to China.

Musk and Grimes seemingly confirmed they were back on when she announced in January 2020 that she was pregnant. Though she did not caption her Instagram photo that showed off her baby bump, she referred to herself as “knocked up” in the comments section.

Nearly two months later, the Canada native revealed in a Rolling Stone profile that the Tesla CEO was the father of her child. She opened up in the interview about the impact of their relationship on her career. “No one believes me about this, but I just did not understand what I was getting into at all,” she explained. “Not that I’m mad about it. I just didn’t think it would be a thing. The s–t that’s happened with my boyfriend this year has overwritten so much of my life’s work.”

Grimes described her pregnancy as a major decision, made in part because of her trust in Musk. “For a girl, it’s sacrificing your body and your freedom. It’s a pretty crazy sacrifice and only half of the population has to do it. It was really profound to me when I decided I was going to do it, to actually go through the act of like, y’know, unprotected sex,” she admitted. “I’m just like, ‘I have sacrificed my power in this moment. I have, like, capitulated.’ And I have spent my whole life avoiding that situation. I have never capitulated to anything, so it was just a profound commitment.”

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Elon Musk

She added: “I do actually just really love my boyfriend. So I was like, ‘You know, sure.’”

In September 2021, the businessman told Page Six, “[Grimes and I] are semi-separated but still love each other, see each other frequently and are on great terms.”

The “Realiti” artist confirmed in a March 2022 Vanity Fair profile that the pair welcomed daughter Exa Dark Sideræl Musk via surrogate in December 2021. Several hours after the article’s publication, Grimes confirmed that the pair had called it quits.

“Me and E have broken up *again* since the writing of this article haha, but he’s my best friend and the love of my life, and my life and art are forever dedicated to The Mission now,” she tweeted at the time. “I think Devin wrote that part of the story rly well. Sique – peace out.”

Scroll to revisit the milestones from Grimes and Musk’s relationship:

Grimes and Elon Musk at the MET Gala Elon Musk and Grimes Relationship Timeline
Credit: Matt Baron/Shutterstock

Elon Musk

May 2018
Reports claimed the musician and the entrepreneur were dating in May 2018. The two debuted their romance at the Met Gala at the time. She later confirmed that their love connection was born when he messaged her after seeing a tweet she wrote about thought experiment Roko’s Basilisk.

Elon Musk and Grimes at Hyperloop Pod Competition Elon Musk and Grimes Relationship Timeline
Credit: ZUMAPRESS.com/MEGA
July 2018
Musk and Grimes attended the Hyperloop Pod Competition with his five sons in July 2018. He shares twins and triplets with ex-wife Justine Wilson.

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