AP

Serena Williams rallies into Wimbledon semifinals

2 Comments

Serena Williams is two wins from her 24th Grand Slam singles title, eighth at Wimbledon and first since becoming a mom.

Williams rallied past Italian Camila Giorgi 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in the Wimbledon quarterfinals on Tuesday.

“I feel like I’m back,” Williams said. “This is only my fourth tournament back, so I don’t feel pressure. I don’t feel like I have to win this. I still have a long way to go to be where I want.”

“Everything right now is a little bit of a surprise. To be here. To be in the semifinals. I mean, I always say I plan on it, I would like to be there, have these goals,” Williams said. “But when it actually happens, it still is, like, ‘Wow, this is really happening.’”

“It’s weird. Sometimes I feel, ‘Man, I’m in trouble.’ Sometimes I feel, ‘I can fight.’ For whatever reason, today I was so calm. Even when I was down the first set, I thought, ‘Well, she’s playing great. I’m doing a lot of the right things.’”

Giorgi, ranked No. 52 in the world, stood up to Williams’ power game in the first set as DrakeJustin TimberlakeJessica Biel and U.S. Olympic 400m hurdles runner Sydney McLaughlin looked on at Centre Court. She snapped Williams’ streak of 20 straight sets won at Wimbledon since she lost an opener to countrywoman Christina McHale in the second round in 2016.

Williams, ranked No. 181 due to a maternity-leave absence and seeded 25th at Wimbledon, broke Giorgi early in the second and third sets to reach Thursday’s semifinals. She will play No. 13 Julia Görges of Germany, a 3-6, 7-5, 6-1 winner over No. 20 Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands in the quarters.

It’s a golden opportunity for Williams, with no top-10 women’s seeds making the quarterfinals of a Grand Slam for the first time in the 50-year Open Era.

The other semifinal pits 2016 Australian Open and U.S. Open winner Angelique Kerber of Germany against 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia.

The No. 11 seed Kerber beat No. 14 Daria Kasatkina of Russia 6-3, 7-5 to make her third Wimbledon semifinal. The No. 12 seed Ostapenko ousted unseeded Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova 7-5, 6-5 to reach her first Wimbledon semi.

Wimbledon continues Wednesday with the men’s quarterfinals:

No. 1 Roger Federer vs. No. 8 Kevin Anderson
No. 9 John Isner vs. No. 13 Milos Raonic
No. 12 Novak Djokovic vs. No. 24 Kei Nishikori
No. 2 Rafael Nadal vs. No. 5 Juan Martin del Potro

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

MORE: Serena says it’s unfair she’s drug tested more

IOC pledges €500,000 to help restore Notre Dame ahead of 2024 Olympics

AP
Leave a comment

The International Olympic Committee plans to donate €500,000 ($562,000) to the restoration of Notre Dame Cathedral in the 2024 Olympic host city.

French President Emmanuel Macron said Tuesday that he wants to see Notre Dame restored within five years.

“The aim of completing the reconstruction in time for Paris 2024 will be an extra motivation for all of us,” IOC president Thomas Bach wrote in a Wednesday letter to Paris 2024 chief Tony Estanguet, according to a translation by Agence France-Presse, which reported Notre Dame is on the planned marathon and road cycling routes. “All the Olympic Movement and in particular the IOC have been extremely touched by the instantaneous connection the French have made between Notre Dame cathedral and the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.”

More than $500 million has been pledged overall from around the globe after a fire ravaged the 850-year-old cathedral on Monday.

NBC News has more on the Notre Dame fire here.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Patrick Kane joined by NHL All-Stars on world championship roster

Getty Images
Leave a comment

NHL All-Stars Jack EichelRyan Suter and Cory Schneider join previously named captain Patrick Kane to lead the U.S. at next month’s world hockey championship in Slovakia, seeking the nation’s first title at a standalone worlds since 1933.

Sixteen players were added to the roster in Thursday’s announcement with more to come before worlds open May 10 and more teams get eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, making more players available. The IIHF allows up to 25 players per nation.

Detroit Red Wings coach Jeff Blashill will be the U.S. head coach for a third straight worlds. The Americans lost in the quarterfinals in 2017 and earned bronze in 2018, sandwiching an Olympic quarterfinal exit in PyeongChang without NHL players.

Sweden is trying to become the first nation to three-peat at worlds since the Czech Republic in 2001.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Preliminary IIHF World Championship Roster
Forwards

Alex DeBrincat (Chicago Blackhawks)
Jack Eichel (Buffalo Sabres)
Luke Glendening (Detroit Red Wings)
Patrick Kane (Chicago Blackhawks)
Clayton Keller (Arizona Coyotes)
Chris Kreider (New York Rangers)
Dylan Larkin (Detroit Red Wings)
James van Riemsdyk (Philadelphia Flyers)
Frank Vatrano (Florida Panthers)
Colin White (Ottawa Senators)

Defensemen
Quinn Hughes (Vancouver Canucks)
Alec Martinez (Los Angeles Kings)
Brady Skjei (New York Rangers)
Ryan Suter (Minnesota Wild)

Goalies
Thatcher Demko (Vancouver Canucks)
Cayden Primeau (Laval (AHL))
Cory Schneider (New Jersey Devils)