Daily Archives: September 14, 2016

Stan Wawrinka could stand amongst big five – Djokovic

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Stan Wawrinka was victorious in the 2016 US Open final after defeating World No.1 Novak Djokovic in the grand final.

Wawrinka won 6-7 (1-7), 6-4, 7-5, 6-3 to add the US title under his belt; it was his third grand slam victory after his triumphs at the 2014 Australia Open and the 2015 French Open.

At 31, Wawrinka was also the oldest male winner of the US Open since 35-year-old Ken Rosewall’s triumph in 1970, and the fifth man in the Open era to win more than one major tournament after turning 30, following Rosewall, Rod Laver, Andre Agassi and Jimmy Connors.

He also managed to hit 46 winners in a brilliant display of confident shot-making while Djokovic started strongly but struggled physically later on in the match that spanned four hours.

But Wawrinka’s confident performance was contradictory towards his pre-match nerves, when he broke down in tears while speaking to his coach Magnus Norman.

“Before the final I was really nervous like never before. I was shaking in the locker-room,” said the Swiss. “When we start talking five minutes before the match, last few things with Magnus, I start to cry. I was completely shaking.”

Physically I was there. My game was there. Just put the fight on the court and you will have a chance to win. And that’s what happened, after a few games when I start to believe in myself, I start to be in the match.”


Djokovic (left) believes that tennis now has a “big five” after Wawrinka’s US Open triumph.

Novak Djokovic says tennis now has a ‘big five’ following Stan Wawrinka’s US Open triumph.

“He plays best in the big matches and definitely deserves to be mentioned in the mix of top players,” he said.

But world number three Wawrinka insisted that he was “really far” from the ‘big four’ of Djokovic, Andy Murray, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal. The four of them have won 42 of the past 47 Grand Slams, although Wawrinka now has the same number of major titles as Murray.

“Just look at the tournaments they have won, how many years they’ve been there,” Wawrinka said. “If you look, yes, I have three Grand Slams. How many Masters 1000 has Murray?”

“They have been there 10 years. They have not only been winning, but being in semi-finals, final every time. That’s why I’m not there.”

Messi scores hat-trick as Barca destroys Celtic confidently

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Lionel Messi scored his sixth Champions League hat-trick as FC Barcelona confidently decimates Celtic by 7-0 in their Champions League opening match.

The Catalonian team dominated possession on Camp Nou (77%) as their rout inflicted upon the Scottish team their worst European defeat.

The clock showed 2:45 when Messi hits Barca’s opening goal. Neymar cut back inside from a corner and, with the defence stepping out, turned the ball into the area for Messi to control and hit high into the top corner from the edge of the six-yard box.

But there had life in the game momentarily when Barca keeper Marc-Andre Ter Stergen went in late against Mousa Dembele to give Celtic a penalty lifeline. However, as the German keeper dived to his right and pushed the penalty away two-handed, Barca then ran rampant as they usually do.

Messi’s second came after he and Neymar combined to mesmerize the Celtic defence, allowing Messi to walk the ball in for number two.

Neymar’s 50th-minute free-kick made it 3-0; Celtic goalkeeper Dorus de Vries managed to make contact with the ball but it was not good enough to keep it out.

Andres Iniesta, who only came on after the break scored the fourth, thumped in Neymar’s cross on the volley past De Vries.

As the entire Celtic team were left shell-shocked the fifth arrived in just another 76 seconds, as Luis Suarez putting it into the box for Messi to complete his hat-trick.

Suarez added the sixth when he taking down Neymar’s dinked pass on his chest before turning and volleying it home, and completed the route with a side-footed finish.

Jose Mourinho suggests flaw in derby game plan – Rashford

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Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho had indicated that the flaw in his Manchester derby game plan was not including Marcus Rashford in the starting lineup.

Rashford, 18, was only introduced into United’s 2-1 defeat against Manchester City at half time. It was also United’s first Premier League defeat of the season.

With him on the pitch in the second half, United looked far more threatening up front. The England U-21 international would also have scored the equaliser but his shot deflected off Ibrahimovic, who was offside, before it beat Bravo.

After the game, Mourinho indicated that he made a mistake to overlook the teenager in favour of Jesse Lingard and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

“I felt they had the fragility on the sides and the kids could give us that in the second half on the sides what we didn’t get with Miki and Jesse in the first half,” the Portuguese said.

“He (Rashford) did that for us and because we were playing with Herrera behind Fellaini and Pogba. I knew that Fellaini and Pogba were going to be in the box all the time so I thought the game was going to be very direct like it was.”

“So I think we read the game really well, the kid gave us what we had needed in the first half and normally we would be here now speaking about a different result.”

Mourinho also added that he is ready to hand Rashford his first competitive start under him as United prepares to play their first Europa League match of the season.

“For me the next big game is against Feyenoord and the next game he is going to play. That is the only thing I can say,” he said. “I trust him completely. I know his future will be absolutely brilliant.”