Novak Djokovic sets Wimbledon final against Nick Kyrgios

Novak Djokovic
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Novak Djokovic is into the Wimbledon final, seeking a fourth consecutive title at the event and a 21st career Grand Slam singles title to move within one of Rafael Nadal‘s male record.

Djokovic dispatched Brit Cameron Norrie 2-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 in Friday’s semifinals, his 27th consecutive Wimbledon match win, to set a Sunday final with Australian Nick Kyrgios. Kyrgios advanced via walkover after Nadal withdrew due to an abdominal muscle tear.

“One thing is for sure — there is going to be a lot of fireworks, emotionally, from both of us,” Djokovic said. “He doesn’t have much to lose, and he’s always playing like that. He’s playing so freely.”

Though Djokovic won’t face a top-10 player at this tournament, he was challenged en route to the final. He dropped at least one set in four of his six matches, including the first two against Italian Jannik Sinner in the quarterfinals.

He had a tight start against the ninth-seeded Norrie, who before this event had never made it to the second week of a major.

But he was at his best much of the rest of the way and goes into the final as a heavy favorite. Djokovic has one loss in a completed match at Wimbledon in the last nine years and is riding a 38-match win streak on Centre Court, according to the Tennis Podcast.

At least one of Djokovic, Nadal and Roger Federer have reached 18 of the last 19 Wimbledon finals. Djokovic broke his tie with Federer for the most Grand Slam men’s finals, now 32.

“I appreciate that,” Djokovic said when told of his major finals tally, “but job is not finished.”


Kyrgios, who never made a major semifinal before this tournament, is the first unseeded Wimbledon men’s finalist since countryman Mark Philippoussis in 2003.

Kyrgios owns a 2-0 head-to-head with Djokovic. Both wins came on hard courts in 2017 in best-of-three matches, when Djokovic was in a career lull.

“I’ve never been here before, so that’s where Djokovic has the advantage from the get-go,” Kyrgios said Friday, noting he got one hour of sleep the previous night because of nerves and anxiety already knowing he had a pass into the final. “He can draw from experience. He’s done it so many more times. He knows the emotions he’s going to be feeling. I don’t know that.”

More recently, Kyrgios said that he and Djokovic developed a bromance — though Djokovic said he might not slap that label on it quite yet. They direct message each other on Instagram.

Kyrgios supported Djokovic in January, when the Serb was detained in Australia and ultimately deported before the Australian Open for not qualifying for an exemption to enter the country without a COVID-19 vaccination.

“When it was really tough for me in Australia, he was one of the very few players that came out publicly and supported me and stood by me,” said Djokovic, who may be excluded from the next two majors — the U.S. Open and Australian Open — for not getting vaccinated. “That’s something I truly appreciate. So I respect him for that a lot.”

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Aleksander Aamodt Kilde wins Beaver Creek downhill

Aleksander Aamodt Kilde

BEAVER CREEK, Colo. — Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde won his second straight World Cup downhill race to start the season, despite feeling under the weather.

Although dealing with an illness all week in training, Kilde powered through the challenging Birds of Prey course Saturday in a time of 1 minute, 42.09 seconds. It was enough to hold off Marco Odermatt of Switzerland by 0.06 seconds. James Crawford of Canada was third to earn his second career World Cup podium finish.

Kilde also won the opening downhill last weekend in Lake Louise, Alberta.

“It’s been a tough week,” Kilde said after the race. “I caught the flu in Lake Louise after a very, very nice weekend. It really hit me hard. Then I got a couple of days to rest and take it easy. … I felt OK. Still feeling it a little bit in my system.”

The Beaver Creek crew members had the course in solid shape a day after a downhill race was canceled due to high wind and snowfall.

ALPINE SKIING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

Kilde reached speeds around 75 mph in picking up his eighth World Cup downhill victory. That tied him with Kjetil Jansrud for the third-most downhill wins in the World Cup discipline among Norwegian men. The total trails only Aksel Lund Svindal (14) and Lasse Kjus (10).

“I found a really, really good set-up with my equipment and also with my skiing,” Kilde explained. “I believe in myself. I trust in myself. I have a good game plan. When I stand on the start, I don’t dwell on anything. I know that this plan is what I do and when I do that it’s going to be fast.”

Odermatt has been on the podium in all four World Cup races this season as he tries to defend his overall World Cup title. The 25-year-old finished third in the opening downhill of the season last weekend. He’s also won a giant slalom race and a super-G.

Ryan Cochran-Siegle wound up in seventh place for the top American finish. He was ninth in the downhill in Lake Louise.

“It’s been solid,” Cochran-Siegle said of his strides in the discipline. “A couple of little things here and there that pushed me off that top three. You have to ski with a lot of intensity and ski without abandon, in a sense. Today was a good step.”

Switzerland’s Beat Feuz, who won the Olympic downhill gold medal at the Beijing Games last February, tied for ninth.

The Beaver Creek stop on the circuit comes to a close Sunday with a super-G race. Odermatt will be the favorite after holding off Kilde in the opening super-G last weekend.

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Summer McIntosh, Canadian teen swimmer, caps record year with another historic time


Summer McIntosh swam the fourth-fastest 400m individual medley in history on Friday, capping a year that already included world titles, Commonwealth Games titles and a victory over Katie Ledecky.

McIntosh, a 16-year-old Canadian whose mom swam at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, won the 400m IM in 4 minutes, 28.61 seconds at the U.S. Open in Greensboro, N.C. She prevailed by a Ledecky-like 13.24 seconds, breaking her own national record that was previously the fourth-fastest time in history.

“It’s still pretty early in the season, so I didn’t really know what to expect going into it,” she said on Peacock.

The only two women who ever went faster in the event known as the decathlon of swimming are Olympic gold medalists: Hungary’s Katinka Hosszu (world record 4:26.36 and 4:28.58) and China’s Ye Shiwen (4:28.43).

McIntosh has come a long way in a short time. Three years ago, she put all her eggs in the 1500m freestyle basket, thinking it was her best shot to merely qualify for the Tokyo Games in 2020. The one-year Olympic postponement was a blessing.

The rapidly improving McIntosh swam three individual events in Tokyo with a top finish of fourth in the 400m free, just missing becoming the youngest swimming medalist since 1996. She then told her coach she wanted to become an IMer.

At this past June’s world championships, McIntosh won two of the most grueling events — 400m IM and 200m butterfly — to become the youngest individual world champion since 2011. She also took silver to Ledecky in the 400m free, an event in which she later beat Ledecky in a short-course meet (25-meter pool rather than the 50-meter pool used for the Olympics).

A month after worlds, McIntosh swept the IMs at the Commonwealth Games, where she broke more world junior records and again took second in the 400m free (this time to Olympic champ and world record holder Ariarne Titmus of Australia).

McIntosh, who turned professional last year, now trains full-time in Sarasota, Florida, where she rents a house with her mom, Jill Horstead, who was ninth in the 200m fly at the 1984 Olympics (McIntosh, whose passions include the Kardashians and plants from Target, has seen video of her mom winning the B final at those Games). They’re a three-hour drive down Interstate 75 from Ledecky’s base in Gainesville.

Also Friday, Erin Gemmell celebrated her 18th birthday by nearly becoming the first American to beat Ledecky in a 200m freestyle in nearly nine years. Ledecky won by 42 hundredths of a second in 1:56.74 and said she had an off-day while also praising Gemmell, the daughter of her former coach.

NBC airs U.S. Open highlights on Dec. 10 at 4:30 p.m. ET.

U.S. OPEN SWIMMING: Full Results

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