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September 2020
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News Headlines
Burkina Faso striker Traore leaves Lyon for Aston Villa        AIFF to conduct three-day International Virtual Conference for coaches        Looking to play good brand of cricket to make this season a memorable one: KL Rahul        US stocks fall as market decline extends for third week        No decision to discontinue printing of Rs 2000 note: FinMin        Iran vows 'hit' on all involved in US killing of top general        Russia's Navalny says he's now more than 'technically alive'        Pak uses drone to weapons in J-K's Rajouri; 3 LeT terrorists arrested        Centre rejects study which claims India is world's largest emitter of anthropogenic sulphur dioxide        Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan not implemented in Bengal as state did not provide any info: FM        Parliament's monsoon session likely to be curtailed, may end by mid-next week        Kerala reports 4,000 plus fresh COVID-19 cases for second day in row; Toll crosses 500        China flies 18 warplanes near Taiwan during US envoy''s visit        US bans WeChat, TikTok citing national security        IPL 2020: Dhoni''s CSK lock horns with Rohit led MI in opener        US Open champion Osaka out of French Open due to injury        NIA questions Ker Minister Jaleel for over 8 hours; No need for him to resign, says CM        Delhi riots: Police files charge sheet under UAPA against 15 for larger conspiracy        Serum Institute gets DGCA''s nod to resume testing of Covid vaccine again        Russia''s RDIF collaborates with Dr Reddy''s Laboratories for Sputnik V vaccine trials, distribution: CEO        
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Sports News
Naomi Osaka comes back, beats Azarenka for 2nd US Open title
 
New York: After one errant forehand in the first set of the US Open final, Naomi Osaka looked at her coach in the mostly empty Arthur Ashe Stadium stands with palms up, as if to say, "What the heck is happening?" In response to another wayward forehand against Victoria Azarenka seconds later, Osaka chucked her racket. It spun a bit and rattled against the court. Surprisingly off-kilter in the early going Saturday, Osaka kept missing shots and digging herself a deficit. Until, suddenly, she lifted her game, and Azarenka couldn''t sustain her start. By the end, Osaka pulled away to a 1-6 6-3 6-3 victory for her second US Open championship and third Grand Slam title overall.

"For me, I just thought," said Osaka, who trailed by a set and a break, "it would be very embarrassing to lose this in an under an hour." This, then, is what she told herself with a white towel draped over her head at a changeover when things looked bleakest: "I just have to try as hard as I can and stop having a really bad attitude." It worked. A quarter-century had passed since a woman who lost the first set of a US Open final wound up winning: In 1994, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario did it against Steffi Graf. "I wasn''t really thinking about winning. I was just thinking about competing," Osaka said.

"Somehow, I ended up with the trophy." Osaka is a 22-year-old who was born in Japan to a Japanese mother and Haitian father; the family moved to the US when she was 3. Osaka, now based in California, arrived for the US Open intent on claiming the championship, to be sure, but with another goal in mind, as well: continuing to be a voice for change by calling attention to racial injustice. She showed up for Saturday''s match wearing a mask with the name of Tamir Rice, a Black 12-year-old boy killed by police in Ohio in 2014. That was the seventh mask she''d used during the tournament, after honoring other Black victims of violence: Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain, Trayvon Martin, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd and Philando Castile. "The point," Osaka explained, "is to make people start talking."

Last month, Osaka refused to compete after the police shooting of a Black man, Jacob Blake, in Wisconsin — she said she would withdraw from her semifinal at the Western & Southern Open, although decided to play after the tournament took a full day off in solidarity. Osaka and her coach, Wim Fissette — who used to work with Azarenka — have said they think the off-court activism has helped her energy and mindset in matches. "I wanted," Osaka said, "more people to (see) more names." So perhaps it was no coincidence that this win over Azarenka, a 31-year-old from Belarus also seeking a third Grand Slam title but first in 7½ years, made Osaka 11-0 since tennis resumed after its hiatus because of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Osaka added to her triumphs at the 2018 US Open — earned with a brilliant performance in a memorably chaotic and controversial final against Serena Williams — and 2019 Australian Open. Azarenka carried an 11-match winning streak of her own into Saturday, including a stirring three-set victory over Williams in the semifinals, stopping the American''s bid for a 24th Grand Slam title. Azarenka won the 2012 and 2013 Australian Opens and lost to Williams in the US Open finals each of those years. "I thought the third time was the charm," Azarenka said, "but I guess I''ll have to try again." Even after Osaka surged ahead 4-1 in the third set, the outcome was unclear.

Azarenka drew to 4-3, then stood and stretched during the ensuing changeover. "Had a little bit of a energy dip," Azarenka said. Osaka regained control, then laid down on the court when the final was over. The 23,000-plus seats in the main arena at Flushing Meadows were not entirely unclaimed, just mostly so — while fans were not allowed to attend because of the coronavirus pandemic, dozens of people who worked at the tournament attended — and the cavernous place was not entirely silent, just mostly so. One of the lucky few in the house: Osaka''s boyfriend, rapper YBN Cordae. "I''m very grateful for the opportunity to play in front of millions of people watching on TV," Azarenka said.

"Unfortunately, they''re not here." Certainly no thunderous applause or the cacophony of yells that normally would reverberate over and over and over again through the course of a Grand Slam final, accompanying the players'' introductions or preceding the first point or after the greatest of shots. Instead, a polite smattering of claps from several hands marked such moments. Azarenka led early thanks to terrific returning and let-no-ball-by defense, stretching points until Osaka missed. And she repeatedly missed; the first set was over in a blink. Azarenka broke early in the second set, too, to lead 2-0. The question shifted from "Who will win?" to "Might this be the most lopsided US Open final?" Except Osaka made subtle changes that altered the match.

She stepped closer to the baseline, redirecting shots more immediately and forcefully. Azarenka began hitting the ball less stridently, making mistakes she avoided earlier.


Burkina Faso striker Traore leaves Lyon for Aston Villa
AIFF to conduct three-day International Virtual Conference for coaches
Looking to play good brand of cricket to make this season a memorable one: KL Rahul
IPL 2020: Dhoni''s CSK lock horns with Rohit led MI in opener
US Open champion Osaka out of French Open due to injury
Former India player SR Patil dead
US Open: Dominic Thiem beats Alexander Zverev to win 1st Grand Slam title
In game with 5 red cards, Marseille end 9-year winless run against PSG
Sreesanth''s spot-fixing ban ends; I am free, says the bowler
Pollard and other CPL bound players check in for respective franchises
Azarenka ousts Serena, books Osaka US Open final clash
South African Olympic body suspends CSA board, takes control of cricket
Jonty Rhodes appointed as Sweden head coach
Lahiri excited about new season; set to tee off at Safeway Championship
Ronaldo reaches century of international goals for Portugal
Mbappe tests positive for COVID-19, to miss France-Croatia match
Djokovic out of US Open after hitting line judge with ball
Williams takes 10 of last 12 games, tops Stephens at US Open
Trinbago Knight Riders keep unbeaten run intact, register 9th consecutive win in CPL
IPL schedule will be released on Sunday: chairman Brijesh Patel
KERALA NEWS
Take steps to attach properties of pvt financial institution; HC to govt
 Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Wednesday directed the state government to take steps to attach the  
Kerala logs single-day highest spike of 3,830 COVID-19 cases
Jaleel has committed no wrong, says Kerala CM
"My hands are clean, not accepted any gift or money" Minister
INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Iran vows 'hit' on all involved in US killing of top general
 Tehran, Sep 19 (AP) The chief of Iran's paramilitary Revolutionary Guard threatened on Saturday to g
Russia's Navalny says he's now more than 'technically alive'
China flies 18 warplanes near Taiwan during US envoy''s visit
US bans WeChat, TikTok citing national security
NATIONAL NEWS
Pak uses drone to weapons in J-K's Rajouri; 3 LeT terrorists arrested
 Jammu, Sep 19 (PTI) Pakistan dropped weapons and some cash in Indian currency using a drone in Jammu
Centre rejects study which claims India is world's largest emitter of anthropogenic sulphur dioxide
Garib Kalyan Rojgar Abhiyaan not implemented in Bengal as state did not provide any info: FM
Delhi riots: Police files charge sheet under UAPA against 15 for larger conspiracy
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