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Leylah Fernandez reveals why she is extra-motivated to do well in Madrid



Leylah Fernandez reveals why she is extra-motivated to do well in Madrid

Canadian tennis star Leylah Fernandez reveals her dad grew up a Real Madrid fan and that’s one of the reasons why she is hoping to make a deep run in the Spanish capital. On Friday, Fernandez made a positive start to her Madrid campaign as she defeated Andrea Petkovic 6-1 1-6 6-4 to reach the Madrid second round.

“Growing up, the No.1 thing is my dad’s a Real Madrid fan. I’m very, very honored to be here in Madrid. It’s an extra motivation to do well and hopefully, we’re still here by the end of the tournament so we can watch the game,” Fernandez told WTA Insider.

Leylah Fernandez

Fernandez plays Jil Teichmann next
Fernandez was projected to meet former world No. 2 Petra Kvitova in the second round but Teichmann pulled off an upset to beat the Czech 6-3 7-5. “To be fast, honestly,” Teichmann said, when asked what the key to the match was.

“I had to be really reactive. She plays really fast. I knew that from before, I played her on hard courts, actually. I have a lot of respect for Petra. She’s one of the greatest”. Fernandez and Teichmann are set to meet for the second time.

The lone meeting between the two came at the 2020 Billie Jean King Cup Finals, when Teichmann defeated Fernandez in straight sets. However, a lot has changed since then as Fernandez is now a Grand Slam finalist and a much better player.

Meanwhile, Maria Sakkari joined Fernandez and Teichmann on the winners’ column. On Friday, Sakkari recovered from a set down to beat Madison Keys 6-7 (8) 6-3 6-4. “I think the conditions suit Madison well here. When I saw the draw I thought that’s a tough first round.

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Leylah Fernandez

I just trusted my game,” Sakkari said. “Overall, it was a very positive match to get myself back in the winning feeling”.

Former world No. 1 Simona Halep acknowledged that what has been happening over the last two years has been taking a toll on tennis players. Two years ago, the WTA Tour was suspended for five months due to the pandemic. Last year, the disappearance of Peng Shuai prompted reaction from many players who wanted to know what was happening.

Now, the Russia and Ukraine war is impacting the whole world, not just the tennis world. “It’s tiring in my opinion for everybody and it gives us anxiety,” Halep told Reem Abulleil of Eurosport. “It’s not easy to handle everything and yes I feel that everybody is struggling, not only tennis players, not only the tennis world.

I feel like the world is struggling and many people are suffering for one reason or another and I don’t feel that everybody is stable now”.

Halep: The stress is likely a reason why some players sustain injuries
“The world is not stable, I have that feeling.

So it’s not easy to handle it and anxiety can bring you down most of the time and that’s why probably us players are struggling,” Halep explained. “We cannot be consistent that much anymore and also the injuries, I think they are coming from the stress and that’s why you cannot be healthy physically and you cannot perform”.

Also, Halep admitted there was a point where she thought wasn’t really the top priority anymore. “Yes, I thought at one point that tennis is not that important anymore because of everything that is happening. With the pandemic I was super scared at the start, now the war I was super scared at the start.

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Leylah Fernandez and Ronaldo

But it’s something we cannot control,” Halep admitted. “Tennis means nothing if you think of the problems that the world has now. But yeah, I think we have to live every day and if we’re able to play again tournaments and to do what we love, which we’re very lucky about it, we should profit and just enjoy it”.

On Thursday, Halep defeated Zhang Shuai 6-2 6-3 in her Madrid opener to set up a second round meeting versus Paula Badosa.

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Botic van de Zandschulp reacts to dismantling Casper Ruud in Munich
29 Apr 2022
by Dzevad Mesic

Dutch tennis player Botic van de Zandschulp stunned No. 2 seed Casper Ruud to come just two wins away from winning his maiden ATP title. Van de Zandschulp, who is enjoying a career-high ranking of No. 40 in the world, overcame world No.

7 Ruud in straight sets 7-5 6-1 to progress into the Munich semifinal. Van de Zandschulp claimed the first break of the match in the 11th game, before serving out for the first set in the following game. Ruud served out the first game of the second set but van de Zandschulp absolutely dominated the rest of the match as he broke Ruud three times and won six games in a row to complete a straight-set win.

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Leylah Fernandez

“Maybe the score is easier than it really was,” van de Zandschulp said in his on-court interview, per the ATP Tour website. “The first set [was] really tight, I think. A great battle in the first one. I had some opportunities to break him in the beginning.

Didn’t take him. Gladly [at] 5-all I made the break and held the serve at 6-5. “[The] second set was a little bit easier, but I think I played really well today.”

Van de Zandschulp ready for Miomir Kecmanovic
Van de Zandschulp plays Kecmanovic next, who defeated him in Indian Wells last month.

“It was not clay, it was a pretty close score,” van de Zandschulp said. “Looking forward to the match. I think he’s had a great season so far and he’s a great player. It’s going to be a good match.”

Elsewhere, defending champion Albert Ramos-Vinolas came just two wins away from defending his Estoril crown after beating Fernando Verdasco 6-2 6-2. “I think it’s always difficult to play against a player that you know a lot.

Leylah Fernandez

We’ve played a lot of times and it was a difficult match,” Ramos-Vinolas said in his on-court interview. “I think I played very serious from the beginning until the end and I’m really happy because I beat a really good opponent.” Ramos-Vinolas plays Sebastian Baez in the Estoril semifinal.


Nico Rosberg says Lewis Hamilton’s seven titles among ‘greatest’ sporting feats



Lewis Hamilton
Nico Rosberg says Lewis Hamilton’s seven titles among ‘greatest’ sporting feats

Social media was awash with praise for Lewis Hamilton after he clinched a record-equalling seventh World Drivers’ Championship title by winning the Turkish Grand Prix.

British driver Hamilton delivered arguably his finest display of the season to claim his 10th win from 14 races and match Michael Schumacher’s all-time title haul with three rounds to spare.

Lewis Hamilton

Former world  led the adulation on Twitter, hailing his former rivals’ achievements as “insane” and among the “greatest” in sporting history.

The German, who took the title in 2016, wrote: “7 x World Champion – that’s insane! Massively deserved. Surely one of the greatest achievements in the history of sports.

“Congratulations Lewis and enjoy the celebrations with your family and friends.”

Formula One described Hamilton and his joint record holder Schumacher as “legendary drivers”.

Meanwhile, the Mercedes team were blown away by the impressive exploits of their star driver.

After tweeting they were “speechless” as Hamilton took the chequered flag in style, they added: “WHAT A WAY TO DO IT, MATE. WHAT A WAY TO WIN YOUR SEVENTH WORLD TITLE!”.

Other members of the motorsport community swiftly offered congratulatory words.

Dario Franchitti, a four-time IndyCar Series champion and three-time Indy 500 winner, saluted the winning performance in Istanbul as a “masterclass”, while Dutch racing driver Giedo Van Der Garde posted a picture of himself on the podium alongside a youthful Hamilton and praised the Briton’s self-belief.

“A masterclass today from @LewisHamilton to win his seventh World championship. So so impressive,” tweeted Franchitti.

Van Der Garde wrote: “Who would’ve thought that kid would go on to win 7 World Championships. I guess you did. Congratulations champ, you wrote history again today. @LewisHamilton”.

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French driver Romain Grosjean, who retired from the race on lap 52, had expected Schumacher’s record to stand the test of time.

He wrote: “Congrats @LewisHamilton Didn’t think Michael record was ever going to be equalize. Very impressive Congrats @MercedesAMGF1 for the incredible work also.”

England’s football team were short but sweet in their praise for the Stevenage-born driver, simply writing: “Congratulations, Lewis!” followed by a clapping emoji.

Former England striker Gary Lineker hailed Hamilton’s display as “stunning”, adding a goat emoji at the end of his tweet.

“Congratulations to @LewisHamilton on equalling Michael Schumacher’s 7 world titles,” wrote Lineker.

“What an achievement. Has to be right up there alongside our greatest ever sportspeople. Stunning.”

However, not everyone in the football community was as complimentary.

Former Republic of Ireland striker Stephen Elliott dismissed suggestions Hamilton is Britain’s greatest sportsman as “ludicrous” in a tweet questioning the worthiness of Formula One.

“Maybe an unpopular opinion and I may be in the minority but some people claiming Lewis Hamilton as the greatest British sportsman ever is ludicrous. He drives a car around in circles. Ok, he seems to be the best at it but still!!! #formula1,” wrote the well-travelled former Sunderland and Wolves player.

On a more positive note, there was praise from the political world.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson was quick to hail Hamilton’s success, saying he had done Briton proud.

He tweeted: “An impressive victory – well done @LewisHamilton! You have made us all so proud.”

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace hailed Hamilton’s feat as a “world beating achievement”, while Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden offered a similar sentiment.

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Lewis Hamilton

“Congratulations to Lewis Hamilton a world beating achievement. The UK should be very proud of his achievements and British Motorsport,” wrote Wallace.

Dowden posted: “Huge congratulations to @LewisHamilton 7 times @F1 World Champion and won in style #TurkishGP One of our greatest sports stars.”

Meanwhile, the man himself dedicated his achievements to his fans, family and friends in a series of tweets.

“7X Formula 1 World Champion. Wow. To everyone that has supported me along the way, this is for you,” posted Hamilton.

“To my incredible family, where do I even start? I am eternally grateful for your unconditional love, sacrifices and support to my closest friends that have made this challenging season more bearable by continuously lifting my spirits, thank you, this year would have been so much harder without you.

“To every rival that has pushed me to grow and become better, thank you, I share this with you too…”

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“Steph Curry tells Ayesha Curry he can’t live without S~#!”: The Warriors superstar shares his dotting love for his wife on HBO’s show



Steph Curry and Ayesha Curry have been going strong for 10 years. The secret? Lots of time together. His answer on HBO reiterates that.   

Steph and Ayesha Curry have become one of the league’s most loved couples. The Chef’s wife, who herself is an actual chef has been seen courtside and her influence outside the basketball court is phenomenal.

The two have great chemistry and it is evident from the fact that they have been going strong for 10 years. What’s more both of them have been incredibly vocal about their vibrant love life.


So naturally, when promoting their new show, About Last Night on HBO, they would be asked questions that are intimate. Steph and Ayesha do not shy away from these questions.


S`#, coffee, phone, or weed? What can’t Steph Curry live without for a month?

Ayesha asks Steph, “Babe, what could you not live without for a month, sex, coffee, phone, or weed?”. Steph quickly replied “For sure, s`#”

To which Ayesha replies “okay!”, while laughing and Steph chimed in with “Okay, I was making sure we’re on the same page now!”

Talk about details. The two do not care about expressing their love for each other nor do they care about sharing their intimate details.


Twitter is well aware of this and often points it out. Now we know why the power couple from San Fransisco has stayed so strong. Given their answer, it is unlikely they will fall apart.


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Scarlett Johansson Is Trying to Keep This Part of Her Past a Secret From Her Daughter



It’s easy enough for parents to keep sordid details of their pasts a secret from their children, but for actors like Scarlett Johansson, whose face has been plastered on the pages of Page Six for years, it’s not so simple.

Now the Marvel actor has revealed just what she’s most hoping to keep hidden from her six-year-old daughter, Rose, whom she shares with ex-husband Romain Dauriac. No, it’s not one of her movies.

“I used to smoke when I was younger and I’m so ashamed,” the Black Widow star told Drew Barrymore during a recent talk show appearance. “I just don’t want her to ever think that I ever thought it was cool ’cause she can never, ever, ever smoke.”

She joked, “’Cause that’s what you do. You forbid your kids from doing things and then they don’t do them. So yeah, I just hope she never figures that out.” Spoiler: She’s probably gonna figure it out.

Scarlett Johansson also has a son, Cosmo, whom she welcomed with her husband, Colin Jost, in August 2021. Considering the little boy is less than a year old, Cosmo is unlikely to have too many questions about his mom’s history with nicotine products. He’s more interested in his feet, last we heard.

“He’s great,” Johansson said back in December. “He’s tiny. He’s making all the fun discoveries, like feet. Feet! Who knew? They’re there!” The star said her son is doing “everything” to his feet: “Stare at them, pull on them, chew on them.”

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She added, “It’s just unbelievable. I mean, can you imagine you never realized you had feet and then you looked down, and there they are? You’re like, ‘Whoa.’”

Rose, however, is not interested in Cosmo’s feet, or any part of Cosmo, for that matter. “She has a lot going on in her life,” Johansson told Jimmy Fallon last year. “She’s got a very active social calendar, so she’s not as interested in the baby as, I don’t know, let’s say, like, any other thing really?”

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Maria Sharapova is impressed by her own popularity after viral tweet



Is it possible for superstars to be impressed by their own popularity despite having lived under the spotlight for a long time? Apparently, Maria Sharapova still hasn’t gotten used to her success. On April 3, the Russian shared her cell phone number with her Twitter followers and asked them to text her, explaining that a big part of her wish is due to the fact that “we’re all in this separation, this physical-distancing [thing] together”.

The response from the five-time Grand Slam champion’s fans was immediate and the video received over 60,000 views in barely two hours. But leave it to social media to exponentially increase statistics… Not even two days later, Sharapova posted a new message on her account in which she expressed her surprise at the traction generated by her video.

“2.2 million views in 40 hours,” she wrote. Before inserting a GIF of a woman frantically typing on her cell phone keyboard, she added, “My current phone status…”

To many of the Russian’s fans despair, the number cannot be contacted from outside of the United States. 

Many from all over the world have requested that she get WhatsApp or at least that she share a way in which they could reach her. Others, who have been lucky enough to be able to text her, are still waiting for an answer. Four days after being posted, the video had climbed up to over 3.7 million views.


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John McEnroe has suggested that Rafael Nadal gets special treatment from umpires over his slow service routine



John McEnroe has suggested that tennis superstar Rafael Nadal gets special treatment from umpires.

The tennis legend made the claim while speaking to Insider last month about superstitions he had on the court during his playing career.

“I didn’t have any major superstitions,” said McEnroe. “Sometimes, I’d step on lines on odd games and not step on the same lines in deuce games, or I’d mismatch outfits on purpose because I was winning that way.

“It was those sort of things. I wasn’t nearly as bad as Rafa.”

The American went on to reference Nadal’s famous serving routine, in which before each serve, the Spaniard places his hair behind his ear, pulls his nose and adjusts his shorts while bouncing the ball numerous times.

“Rafa has got his ritual that takes 30 seconds every time he plays a point,” he said. “If you’re that great you can get away with it.

“That’s one of the incentives of being the best — you get away with more, as evidenced by what I did at times on the court and what he does, in a totally classier way, though. Obviously, he’s not out there screaming at people or anything.”

McEnroe isn’t the first person to suggest Nadal is given preferential treatment by umpires over his slow style of play.

At the Australian Open in January, Canadian player Denis Shapovalov said the 35-year-old “100%” gets special treatment, after losing to Nadal in the quarterfinals.

“I think it’s unfair how much Rafa is getting away with,” Shapovalov said after the defeat. He had twice complained to umpire Carlos Bernardes about how much time Nadal was taking between points during the match.

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Players are allowed 25 seconds between points and two minutes between sets, all timed by a shot clock.

“Every other match that I have played, the pace has been so quick because the refs have been on the clock after every single point,” said Shapovalov.

“This one, after the first two sets, it was like an hour and a half just because he’s dragged out so much.”

He added: “I respect everything that Rafa has done, and I think he’s an unbelievable player. But there have got to be some boundaries, some rules set.

“It’s just so frustrating as a player. You feel like you’re not just playing against the player; you’re playing against the umpires, you’re playing against so much more.”

In reply to the Canadian’s claims, Nadal said: “I believe he is wrong in this case.”

A representative for Nadal, when presented with McEnroe’s comments, responded: “The time between points are timed by a clock that both players, umpire and public can see. If any player goes below the rules time allow they automatically get a warning. So I don’t really see anymore the discussion about this matter.”

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