Djokovic Claims his Fourth Consecutive Major Championship By Winning His First French Open Title

Novac Djocovic has made history at Roland Garros. By winning his first French Open title and fourth consecutive major title, he has accomplished a feat last seen in 1969, reports Morocco World News. He is now the one of only three men to hold all four major titles at the same time, and the first since Rod Laver nearly half a century ago. This comes after 12 appearances in the tournament, his fourth in the final. His absolute elation was evident as he grabbed a racket and carved a heart in the clay. When he was presented with the trophy, he held it high with eyes tightly shut, and then planted his lips firmly upon it as if it were a long lost love. The La Coupe des Mousquetaires, the trophy that had eluded him for so long was finally in his hands, a trophy he earned by beating second seed Andy Murray 3-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4. “It’s really a very special moment,” Djokovic said. “Perhaps the greatest moment of my career.” Djokovic can now set his sights on a calendar-year grand slam, being the first man since Jim Courier (1992) to get halfway there. Since his defeat in the 2015 Paris final, he has been undefeated in 28 consecutive Grand Slam appearances since Wimbledon last year. “This is something that is so rare in tennis,” said Andy Murray, “It’s going to take a long time for it to happen again.” Serbia’s Novak Djokovic, right, puts his hand on Britain’s Andy Murray’s shoulder after their final match of the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium [Alastair Grant/AP Images]The 29-year-old Serbian has a total of 12 Grand Slam titles under his belt. Six Australian Open, three Wimbledon, two U.S. Open and now a French Open. Only Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Pete Sampras have more with 17, 14 and 14 respectively. He is also one of only eight men with at least one championship at each major. Of his 11 losses at Roland Garros, three came in the finals, being beaten by Nadal in 2012 and 2014, and by Stan Wawrinka in 2015. This year, Wawrinka was put out of the tournament by Murray in the semi-final and Nadal withdrew due to injury before the third round. “He’s there, for sure — one of the best now,” said Marian Vajda, Djokovic’s co-coach with Boris Becker, “hard to say who’s the greatest.” “Winning it, you know, I felt it,” said Djokovic, “I felt the tension and excitement. All the emotions. You name it.” The heart in clay was a repeat of the gesture made famous by Gustav Kuerten, a three time champion at Roland Garros. “He asked me (for) permission,” the former champion joked. Djocovic went down 3-6 in the first set, making seven unforced errors off his forehand before Murray’s first, and argued with umpire Damien Dumusois for refusing to have a point replayed at 15-0 as Murray served for the first set. These errors he later attributed to “nerves.” He came back strongly in the second set after having to defend against a break point in the opening game, taking it six games to one after Murray’s first serve percentage dropped and he lost the first three games. Djokovic continued to control the match, wearing Murray down by chasing him all over the court with perfectly timed shots. It was “flawless tennis” said Djokovic. Keeping up the pressure, he broke Murray’s serve in the first game of the fourth set, and then broke to love for 5-2. He seemed to lose concentration for a second and hashed his first serve for the title, but recomposed himself and ended victorious after a good three hour stint on court. [Photo by Christophe Ena/AP Images]

Security Concerns At US Open Tennis Tournament After Kidnapping Attempt

US Open, the biggest tennis event in New York is always kicked off with a big Kids Day, and US Open 2016 is no different, but an attempted abduction caused security to be increased. The US Open Kids Day, which includes a day of fun with musical performances and interactive games at Arthur Ashe seemed a good place for someone up to no good to try a grab a little girl from a crowd of people, but luckily, she fought back. Not far away in Howard Beach, new security cameras have been installed around a local park after a rape and murder in broad daylight has locals concerned for their safety. Thirty year old Karina Vetrano was found with her teeth broken and her clothes torn after she went for an afternoon run. It has been three weeks since the Vetrano attack, and police still have no persons of interest. DNA evidence was found on Vetrano, but so far, there has been no match per the Inquisitr. #security tight for #USOpen #USOpen2016 #NewYork #FlushingMeadows #Queens https://t.co/V1UdDfjiB0 — DICE Corporation (@DICECorp) August 29, 2016 RELATED REPORTS BY INQUISITR Women’s Tennis: Maria Sharapova Fails Drug Test At Australian Open Novak Djokovic Tells Of Being Offered $200,000 In Match-Fixing… Which 2016 Rio Olympic Athletes Are Landing The Biggest… Security Cameras Installed As A Result Of Karina Vetrano, Queens Jogger Murder At Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, parents are holding on to their children a bit tighter after an attempted abduction on the first day of the US Open 2016. Marklina Quaye, a parent at the event, explained that the scare was just a reminder that you can never be too safe to the New York Daily News. “Now we’re just going to hold them a little tighter.” Police explained that a man approached a little girl, and grabbed her from behind by the waist. The man ordered the girl to come with him, but she pulled away, and kicked the man. Parents were glad to see that in a crisis, children know what to do. “That’s what we teach our kids: to be as loud as possible, fight back, and try to find one of us.” Police are describing the suspect as white, 25 to 30 years old, 200 pounds and between 5-feet-8 and 5-feet-11. He has a tattoo with words on his right wrist and was last seen wearing a red striped shirt, khaki shorts and sunglasses. My stomach dropped when I read this story this morning. While on vacation, my son wanted to go out to the pool… https://t.co/ERWFerWrpx — Heather O'Rourke (@heatherorourke7) August 29, 2016 Layers of Security Added to Protect US Open Fans https://t.co/gFjkxZkPYk via @nbcnewyork — privateofficer (@privateofficer) August 29, 2016 Fans who attend the US Open can expect even more security that usual at this year’s tennis event. Newsday says that the newly renovated Flushing Meadows facility will see more of an NYPD presence than in year’s past. The US Open expects to draw over 700k fans to one of the top tennis events in the world, which attracts the biggest names in tennis. The NYPD Deputy Scott Shanley wants fans to feel confident that there will be a proactive security presence. “With the creation of the Critical Response Command, we have a significantly larger counterterrorism footprint at the U.S. Open this year, and we’re able to provide much more highly trained and equipped tactical assets for the Open to provide security.” There will be more uniformed officers on the property, as well as those visibly armed with semi-automatic weapons, which is just one more change that fans will see in addition to the newly operational retractable roof at Arthur Ashe Stadium, which will allow tennis to go on, despite New York’s late summer rain storms. US Open Tennis Begins Today in NYC. Security Up the Wazoo. #SeeSomethingSaySomething pic.twitter.com/tiL2Y7IE7n — Doug Clearie (@djclearie) August 29, 2016 As the next biggest international sporting event since the end of the 2016 Rio Olympics, The US Open has the security input of the FBI as well as the Department of Homeland Security. New security check requirements are now in place for the whole US Open Tennis Event. SECURITY CHECK U.S. Open officials are encouraging fans to arrive early to pass through security screening. Fans can bring in one bag each, no bigger than 12-inches wide, 12-inches high and 16-inches long. All bags are subject to search. The following items are not permitted inside the gates: Backpacks Hard coolers or like containers Sealed packages of any kind Bottles or cans (glass or metal) Aerosol cans or noisemaking devices Alcohol Video cameras or recording devices Computers or laptops Food (except in limited quantities, or for medical, dietary or infant purposes) Animals (unless a service animal) Flags, banners or signs Laser pointing devices Tennis rackets Drones or other model aircraft “Selfie” sticks or other telescopic devices [Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images]

Serena Williams Tries To Channel Muhammad Ali After Losing French Open 2016

It looks like getting that 22nd title is proving to be much more challenging for Serena Williams. She lost to Gabine Muguruza in the final match of French Open 2016, showing that she is no longer the unbeatable tennis player of the modern era. To overcome yet another upset, Serena tried to channel Muhammad Ali’s energy via Instagram, but it looks like she has some healing to do. “Many players dream of winning grand slam titles but in an era dominated by Serena Williams few women have had a look in,” reports the Guardian. “Garbiñe Muguruza’s stunning 7-5, 6-4 victory against the American in the French Open final on Saturday not only gave the women’s game a new champion but someone who at 22 may just be the heir apparent to Williams’s throne.” Many publications and magazine are calling this a shift in women’s tennis, as Serena shows signs of slowing down as the dominator of the game. But what she is looking for is that all-time greatness and she desires to go down in history as the best tennis player in the open era. That explains why she commemorated the career and life of Muhammad Ali with such enthusiasm, despite the fact that she lost one of the most important matches of her life at French Open 2016. Check out her Instagram post about Muhammad Ali. The true GOAT. What a sad day for everyone to loose someone so great and kind and someone who really stood up for what they believed in. He was my hero. He always will be. #muhammadali #cassiusclay A photo posted by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on Jun 4, 2016 at 9:41am PDT On the other hand, winning this year’s French Open may have opened up possibilities for Garbine Muguruza. The 22-year-old Venezuelan Spanish player has the world’s eyes on her after defeating the world number one. “There are many tournaments [to win],” Garbine said in an interview according to the Guardian. “Of course the grand slams – for instance, I almost won at Wimbledon [where she lost to Williams]. I remember this final. I hope I’ll have another final, to win another grand slam final and not to let it slip away. Everybody’s dreaming about being No1. All the players want to be the No1 player. I’m not thinking this way, I decided to keep my focus and win matches and tournaments, but of course I would be very happy to be No1.” Sounds like the young tennis player has a healthy attitude towards winning, playing her best and making sure that she stays mentally and physically sane. For a while now, Serena has been trying to get that elusive 22nd title, only getting close to it, but never securing it. When she does, she will surpass Steffi Graff’s world record. But right now, it looks like her attempt to become more mainstream and well known in the popular media is taking some tolls on her athletic performance. Most recently, she appeared in Beyonce’s widely lauded concept video of Lemonade, showing the world that she knows how to twerk as well as have a massive serve. Check out the world number one next to Queen Bey. @beyonce ???????????????? A photo posted by Serena Williams (@serenawilliams) on Apr 24, 2016 at 5:28am PDT This is a coupling that can possibly take on the greatness of Muhammad Ali himself! On top of her increased public exposure, the African-American tennis player has been getting serious in the dating game. She has been seeing Alexis Ohanian for a while now and it looks like her relationship may be jeopardizing her ability to concentrate on her game. “They’ve been keeping their romance under wraps, but Serena Williams and Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian are going strong,” reports Page Six. “We’re told the private tennis star took her techie beau along to a Web video shoot in Florida over the weekend.” IS THE TENNIS QUEEN, SERENA WILLIAMS DATING ALEXIS OHANIAN? https://t.co/opwldbmGsc pic.twitter.com/mNI85P7HAg — Viewers Corner News (@viewers_Cnews) October 30, 2015 Together, they are quite the power couple, with Serena definitely being the major breadwinner of the two. “His net worth, according to a reliable source I’ll call “the Internet,” is in the neighborhood of $4.5 million, or approximately 3 percent of Williams’ own,” reports Slate Magazine. “That’s because he and co-founder Steve Huffman sold Reddit to Conde Nast in 2006, just a year after they launched it, and long before it blew up and became “the front page of the Internet.”” Do you think Serena Williams will be able to recover from her loss at French Open 2016 and go on to snatch her 22nd title at this year’s Wimbledon? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below! [Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images]

Security Concerns At US Open Tennis Tournament After Kidnapping Attempt

US Open, the biggest tennis event in New York is always kicked off with a big Kids Day, and US Open 2016 is no different, but an attempted abduction caused security to be increased. The US Open Kids Day, which includes a day of fun with musical performances and interactive games at Arthur Ashe seemed a good place for someone up to no good to try a grab a little girl from a crowd of people, but luckily, she fought back. Not far away in Howard Beach, new security cameras have been installed around a local park after a rape and murder in broad daylight has locals concerned for their safety. Thirty year old Karina Vetrano was found with her teeth broken and her clothes torn after she went for an afternoon run. It has been three weeks since the Vetrano attack, and police still have no persons of interest. DNA evidence was found on Vetrano, but so far, there has been no match per the Inquisitr. #security tight for #USOpen #USOpen2016 #NewYork #FlushingMeadows #Queens https://t.co/V1UdDfjiB0 — DICE Corporation (@DICECorp) August 29, 2016 RELATED REPORTS BY INQUISITR Women’s Tennis: Maria Sharapova Fails Drug Test At Australian Open Novak Djokovic Tells Of Being Offered $200,000 In Match-Fixing… Which 2016 Rio Olympic Athletes Are Landing The Biggest… Security Cameras Installed As A Result Of Karina Vetrano, Queens Jogger Murder At Arthur Ashe Stadium in Queens, parents are holding on to their children a bit tighter after an attempted abduction on the first day of the US Open 2016. Marklina Quaye, a parent at the event, explained that the scare was just a reminder that you can never be too safe to the New York Daily News. “Now we’re just going to hold them a little tighter.” Police explained that a man approached a little girl, and grabbed her from behind by the waist. The man ordered the girl to come with him, but she pulled away, and kicked the man. Parents were glad to see that in a crisis, children know what to do. “That’s what we teach our kids: to be as loud as possible, fight back, and try to find one of us.” Police are describing the suspect as white, 25 to 30 years old, 200 pounds and between 5-feet-8 and 5-feet-11. He has a tattoo with words on his right wrist and was last seen wearing a red striped shirt, khaki shorts and sunglasses. My stomach dropped when I read this story this morning. While on vacation, my son wanted to go out to the pool… https://t.co/ERWFerWrpx — Heather O'Rourke (@heatherorourke7) August 29, 2016 Layers of Security Added to Protect US Open Fans https://t.co/gFjkxZkPYk via @nbcnewyork — privateofficer (@privateofficer) August 29, 2016 Fans who attend the US Open can expect even more security that usual at this year’s tennis event. Newsday says that the newly renovated Flushing Meadows facility will see more of an NYPD presence than in year’s past. The US Open expects to draw over 700k fans to one of the top tennis events in the world, which attracts the biggest names in tennis. The NYPD Deputy Scott Shanley wants fans to feel confident that there will be a proactive security presence. “With the creation of the Critical Response Command, we have a significantly larger counterterrorism footprint at the U.S. Open this year, and we’re able to provide much more highly trained and equipped tactical assets for the Open to provide security.” There will be more uniformed officers on the property, as well as those visibly armed with semi-automatic weapons, which is just one more change that fans will see in addition to the newly operational retractable roof at Arthur Ashe Stadium, which will allow tennis to go on, despite New York’s late summer rain storms. US Open Tennis Begins Today in NYC. Security Up the Wazoo. #SeeSomethingSaySomething pic.twitter.com/tiL2Y7IE7n — Doug Clearie (@djclearie) August 29, 2016 As the next biggest international sporting event since the end of the 2016 Rio Olympics, The US Open has the security input of the FBI as well as the Department of Homeland Security. New security check requirements are now in place for the whole US Open Tennis Event. SECURITY CHECK U.S. Open officials are encouraging fans to arrive early to pass through security screening. Fans can bring in one bag each, no bigger than 12-inches wide, 12-inches high and 16-inches long. All bags are subject to search. The following items are not permitted inside the gates: Backpacks Hard coolers or like containers Sealed packages of any kind Bottles or cans (glass or metal) Aerosol cans or noisemaking devices Alcohol Video cameras or recording devices Computers or laptops Food (except in limited quantities, or for medical, dietary or infant purposes) Animals (unless a service animal) Flags, banners or signs Laser pointing devices Tennis rackets Drones or other model aircraft “Selfie” sticks or other telescopic devices [Photo by Alex Goodlett/Getty Images]

Maria Sharapova Suspended Two Years For Doping [Breaking News]

Maria Sharapova, professional tennis’ highest paid female player was dealt a blow today with a two year suspension from the International Tennis Federation for doping. Sharapova admits to taking Meldonium, a banned substance, sometimes used as a heart medication, but still plans to appeal her suspension as overly severe. Sharapova also intends to challenge the decision as Meldonium was just added to the list in January. According to the Inquisitr, Maria Sharapova failed a drug test at the Australian Open when Meldonium was found in her system. Sharapova, who has won five Grand Slam Championships had been taking Meldonium for years, and says she was not aware it had been added to the list of banned substances. Sharapova was put on temporary suspension awaiting the final decision which came out today. Sharapova is now officially banned for two years for using Meldonium. A two year suspension by the ITF would be devastating at this point in Sharapova’s career. Maria Sharapova banned from tennis for 2 years due to doping https://t.co/hcmaAiM8E8 #tennis #Sharapova — Linda Kessler (@Kess2000) June 8, 2016 The New York Times says that the confusion on Sharapova’s part was that Meldonium had just been added to the list of banned substances. Sharapova admits that she received an email that notified her that Meldonium had been added to the banned substances list, but she had not read the email, and continued taking the drug not knowing. But ignorance of the law is no excuse. Sharapova has been taking Meldonium, also known as Mildronate, for over ten years to manage a variety of health problems (which sounds odd), but the substance is now banned because it is thought to give the user an unfair advantage. Sharapova had a two day hearing to state her case in mid-May with a three member tribunal, and she was facing up to a four year ban. Today, it was decided that even though her ban would be two years, it would be backdated to when she admitted her use of the drug in January. BREAKING: International Tennis Federation suspends Maria Sharapova 2 years for doping. pic.twitter.com/Ba4vBZuFKs — SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) June 8, 2016 The ITF released a statement about Sharapova’s punishment today. “The contravention of the antidoping rules was not intentional as Ms. Sharapova did not appreciate that Mildronate contained a substance prohibited from 1 January 2016. However, she does bear sole responsibility for the contravention, and very significant fault, in failing to take any steps to check whether the continued use of this medicine was permissible.” But though Maria Sharapova realizes she has made a mistake, she still believes that the punishment it excessive and punitive. “I cannot accept an unfairly harsh two-year suspension. The tribunal, whose members were selected by the I.T.F., agreed that I did not do anything intentionally wrong, yet they seek to keep me from playing tennis for two years.” Only Maria #Sharapova's agent knew she was taking meldonium More on the 2-year ban > https://t.co/O3oPuG3csB pic.twitter.com/shNIu669wV — Live Tennis (@livetennis) June 8, 2016 Slate says that Maria Sharapova admits that by taking a newly banned drug unintentionally, she is the “sole author of her misfortune.” Meldonium increases blood flow, which helps injuries heal faster, giving the person taking it an unfair advantage over other players. Sharapova promptly responded to the punishment saying that she will appeal immediately. The way Sharapova was taking Meldonium though should have given her a clue that it had some performance enhancing quality. Sharapova took more of Meldonium when training and on game days, and she did not list it on the form that players turn in that lists everything they are taking, including supplements. The tribunal says that this is why Sharapova got the two year suspension, because she intentionally left the Meldonium off of the list of drugs she was taking, because she knew it was questionable. The omission was not accidental. Maria Sharapova receives two-year tennis ban for doping https://t.co/uksYcMpv5g pic.twitter.com/68fKaCuvKX — People Magazine (@people) June 8, 2016 Though Sharapova admits that she received the email that listed Meldonium as a newly banned substance, but says she did not read it, there is no proof that she didn’t know that the drug was banned. The ITF believes that this will be part of Sharapova’s appeal. Sharapova also believes that the ITF should have done more to alert players to newly banned drugs. Do you think Maria Sharapova will be successful in her appeal? [Photo by Kervork Djansezian/Getty Images]

Watch Serena Williams Vs. Johanna Larsson U.S. Open Live Stream: Serena Goes For Wins Record In 3rd Round Match

Serena Williams appears likely to set yet another astonishing tennis record in a U.S. Open third-round match that will stream live Saturday, when the 34-year-old world Number One ranked women’s player faces Johanna Larsson of Sweden, a sturdy, 28-year-old veteran who takes a world 47th ranking into the showdown with the American legend. Despite nursing an ongoing shoulder injury that prevented her from taking a medal at the Olympic tennis competition in Rio, Brazil, last month, Williams is playing at this U.S. Open for not only her seventh winner’s trophy at the Grand Slam tournament, but for her 23rd Grand Slam title overall. Serena Williams set to pass Martina Navratilova’s grand slam win tally https://t.co/LtpzC5nhPB via @guardian_sport — The Guardian (@guardian) September 2, 2016 A victory in the tournament would set a new record, passing the mark of 22 set by Steffi Graf — a record equalled by Serena Williams when she won the Wimbledon Championships earlier this year. But that’s not the record Williams would top by defeating Larsson on Saturday. A win over the Swede would not only see Serena into the second week of the U.S. Open, it would give her a total of 307 match victories in Grand Slam events — the most of the Open era. Johanna Larsson är klar för tredje omgången i US Open-tennisen – där kan hon ställas mot Serena Williams. pic.twitter.com/HZ1EZPgnPJ — TV4 Sport (@TV4Sport) September 1, 2016 When Williams cruised past 87th-ranked Vania King in straight 6-3 sets in a second-round match Thursday, she equalled the 306 career Grand Slam match victories recorded by Martina Navratilova. Beating Larsson, as Williams is, expectedly, heavily favored to do would put her in a class all by herself. Serena Williams and Johanna Larsson have met only twice before, both times in 2013, with the American winning in straight sets each time. Williams beat Larsson in United States vs. Sweden Fed Cup team competition 6-2, 6-2. And then the two met again in the finals of that year’s clay-court Swedish Open in Bastad. The second time around, Johanna Larsson gave Serena Williams a challenge in the first set, taking four games, only to go quietly 6-1 in the second set and Williams walked away with the trophy. Watch highlights of the 2013 Swedish Open final between Serena Williams and Johanna Larsson in the following video. To find out how watch a live stream of the Serena Williams vs. Johanna Larsson U.S. Open third-round tennis match, see the streaming links in the final paragraph of this article. The match is scheduled to get underway at 1 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time at 23,000-seat Arthur Ashe Tennis Stadium in Flushing, Queens, New York — 10 a.m. Pacific — on Saturday, September 3. For what could and will likely be her record setting match, Serena Williams will be playing on the same court where she won her first Grand Slam title, capturing the U.S. Open at the age of 17, in 1999. 8 thoughts Beyoncé and Jay Z probably had cheering on Serena Williams https://t.co/Jt09Z9Rplb (Photo: Getty Images) pic.twitter.com/RIB16l1UMy — USA TODAY (@USATODAY) September 2, 2016 Arthur Ashe Stadium is named for the late American tennis legend who, when he won the U.S. Open in 1968, became the first black man ever to win any Grand Slam tennis event. “When I walk out at Arthur Ashe Stadium, it’s such a big stadium that first you just take in the moment, but then at the same time you take in the history of playing in a stadium named after someone who’s broken so many barriers and did so much for sport and black people in sport,” Serena Willaims said in a 2015 interview for the BBC. “When I was coming up in the late ’80s there weren’t any African-Americans playing. Reading the stories about how Arthur wasn’t able to play when he was 12 motivated me, because I thought, ‘Wow, because of what he went through, what he did, I have the opportunity to play.’ I have an opportunity to be the best I can be, because of him.” Om Saturday, Serena Williams will get yet another in a long series of opportunities to cement her status as the best player in tennis, and possibly in the history of the sport. PREVIOUS SERENA WILLIAMS STORIES BY THE INQUISITR:
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Serena Williams Posts ‘Pretty’ Boyfriend Alexis Ohanian On Instagram To Distract From Angelique Kerber To watch the Serena Williams Vs. Johanna Larsson U.S. Open third round showdown live online for free from Arthur Ashe Tennis Stadium in Flushing, New York City — without login credential from a cable provider required — go to ESPN3, the online-only channel in the ESPN network. ESPN3 will carry the game live at this link. Select the feed for “Arthur Ashe Stadium.” ESPN3 is free to subscribers of most major internet service providers and many minor ISPs, as well. For a full list, check this link. The WatchESPN and ESPN apps will allow fans to catch the live stream of the potential record-breaking match for Serena Williams against Johanna Larsson at the U.S. Open on mobile devices, as well. For a possible alternative live stream of the match, fans can click on this link. [Featured Photo By Darron Cummings / Associated Press]

Wimbledon 2016: Nadal Withdraws From Grand Slam Tournament Due To Wrist Injury

Rafael Nadal announced on Thursday that he would not be participating in Wimbledon later this month. Nadal sustained a wrist injury during the French Open back in May in a match at Roland Garros stadium. The former world champion took an injection to his wrist to allow him to complete his second-round match against Facundo Bagnis, but was forced to pull out the next day after the pain became worse. The two-time Wimbledon winner confirmed the news for fans on his Facebook page. “As you can imagine it’s a sad decision but the injury on my wrist at Roland Garros needs time to heal.” Continuing to play during the French Open and in Wimbledon later this month would put Nadal at risk of suffering a break, which would take a significantly longer time to heal. At the moment, Nadal is unable to practice, making a bid for a Wimbledon title next to impossible. Rafael Nadal of Spain serves during the Men’s Singles second round match against Facundo Bagnis of Argentina. (Photo by Dennis Grombkowski/Getty Images) The Spaniard is ranked fourth in the world, and many consider him to be one of the greatest players in the history of tennis. He is especially famous for his dominance on the clay courts earning him the title “The King of Clay”. The four big tournaments that make up the Grand Slam tournaments or majors are the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon (which is held in London), and the U.S. Open. There are different courts at each tournament: hard courts for both the Australian and U.S. Open, grass at Wimbledon, and clay at the French Open where Nadal has dominated. He won four straight French Open titles between 2005 and 2008 and another five consecutive championships from 2010 to 2014. Nadal’s wrist problem is the latest in a string of injuries, which have derailed the tennis superstar’s career and prevented him from attending past tournaments. Nadal has suffered from back, knee, and shoulder injuries throughout his years of play. Despite these setbacks, Nadal has managed to secure fourteen grand slam titles, an Olympic gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, and numerous other tennis titles. Back in May, Nadal was advised by doctors to cease playing and allow his wrist to heal. While he did not need surgery, the MRI results were not promising. Nevertheless, Nadal expected to heal in time to participate in Wimbledon, so the recent news has both the tennis star and his fans devastated. But for most observers this was to be expected. The New York Times consulted Dr. Richard Berger of the Mayo Clinic who guessed that Nadal was probably “looking at a recovery period of at least a month or six weeks.” It is more likely that Nadal will be ready for the Summer Olympics in Brazil set to start in August. Rafael Nadal on day four of The Internazionali BNL d’Italia on May 11, 2016 in Rome, Italy. Rafael Nadal is not the only high profile tennis player to put his Grand Slam time on hold due to injury. Roger Federer withdrew from this year’s French Open as well to prevent further issues after experiencing problems with a prior knee injury. Unlike Nadal, however, Federer will be playing at Wimbledon. The high profile status of both players – Federer ranks third in the world – lends itself to many comparisons between the two players. In light of all these injuries and absences, fans are wondering which of the two will be the first to retire. Nadal has managed to come back from a number of injuries, but some are doubtful about how well the star can bounce back, especially considering the injury is to his wrist. The New York Times reported that the injury was preventing Nadal from making his signature shot – a “whipping topspin forehand” – without experiencing severe pain. Wimbledon will take place from June 27 – July 10 in Wimbledon, London in the United Kingdom.

Maria Sharapova 2-Year Doping Ban Reduced To 15 Months — Court Ruling Means Tennis Player Can Return By April 2017

In what must surely be a huge relief to the Russian tennis star Maria Sharapova, a partial victory was handed to her today when the International Court of Arbitration for Sport reduced her two-year doping suspension from the sport down to 15 months. Sharapova had been appealing the two-year doping ban and with Tuesday’s victory has said that she is already looking forward to returning to the world of professional Tennis by April 2017. In their ruling today the world’s top sports court stated that their ruling about the reduction is based on Maria Sharapova’s argued lack of knowledge that she had been taking a drug that had been banned. The drug in question was meldonium, a prescription heart medication which improves the blood flow, and was found in the Tennis player’s system months after it had been banned by anti-doping regulators. Reducen la sanción a Sharapova – https://t.co/eg4MLyoLSt — Diego (@reo5tonm54) October 4, 2016 A Facebook post that Sharapova had made said that her decision to appeal the two-year ban from the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and anti-doping authorities was because it had been “unfairly harsh.” According to Reuters, now that nine months have been taken off what was initially handed down to the world’s former No. 1 player she says that she has learned a valuable lesson. “In so many ways, I feel like something I love was taken away from me and it will feel really good to have it back. Tennis is my passion and I have missed it. I am counting the days until I can return to the court.” The ban that the ITF gave to the 26-year-old had been backdated to begin on Jan. 26, 2016, following her positive test for meldonium in March. The heart medication had been newly banned by anti-doping regulators, and it was at the opening grand slam in Melbourne that her test was positive, but she admitted that she had been taking it at the Australian Open in January, as well. Though it had been the consensus of the panel that Sharapova’s taking of the drug was not an intentional violation she still had to be punished, and today in their ruling, the International Court of Arbitration for Sport maintained that “she bore some degree of fault” as notification had been issued to the players. Nonetheless, the panel saw it fit to reduce the sentence. “The degree of fault that can be imputed to the player for her failure to make sure that the substance contained in a product that she had been taking over a long period remained in compliance with the anti-doping rules.” Sharapova disclosed the information to the public in March, just a few days after the lab notified her of the results and had since also called on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) to implement better methods to alert players of banned substances. An independent tribunal had found that Sharapova had indeed been taking the supplement for over 10 years and Maria had said she had simply failed to read a 2015 email that announced the drug would be banned the next year. The Tennis player said that the email method was flawed and was what led to her unintentional violation. As news of the reduction in her ban spread, many fans and friends took to social media to offer their congratulations and happiness. Those sponsors who stood by the player are also cheering in the wake of the decision, though some persons are stating that the victory for Sharapova is a loss for clean sports. First statement from a Sharapova sponsor pic.twitter.com/b8H8Y3fmKT — Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) October 4, 2016 The player argued that other sports federations had notified their athletes in a much more efficient manner and cited Eastern Europe, a place where millions of persons are said to be on meldonium, or mildronate. NPR wrote that WADA banned the drug as of January 1, 2016, after noticing that entire teams were on meldonium, and this usually suggests that the drug is about enhancing performance and not for medical purposes. The chances that entire teams were suffering from the same condition did not stand up to scrutiny. With this victory, Maria Sharapova anticipates a return to the court in time for the French Open in May and Wimbledon in July, 2017, and hopes to put this ordeal behind her. “Now that this process is over, I hope the ITF and other relevant tennis anti-doping authorities will study what these other Federations did, so that no other tennis player will have to go through what I went through.” [Featured Image by Damian Dovarganes/AP Images]

Wimbledon Begins Today In The Spotlight Of Brexit

Wimbledon’s first day of competition began today in the wake of the historic “Brexit” decision, with Novak Djokovic looking to win his third title in a row. Djokovic, who has won Wimbledon each of the last two years, was out to an early lead over James Ward of the United Kingdom. Djokovic, from Serbia, has won both the Australian Open and Roland Garros events this year, and is looking to add a Wimbledon title for his third Grand Slam victory of the season. Roger Federer, who lost to Djokovic in the finals last year, is looking for his eighth Wimbledon victory as he takes on Argentina’s Guido Pella. Djokovic has already won all four of the sport’s major events in his career, but he could complete the season Grand Slam with a victory at Wimbledon and at the US Open in New York in September. He has won 12 Grand Slam titles, including winning Wimbledon each of the last two years. “The situation this year is quite different because I’m coming in with a Roland Garros title for the first time. That gives me a lot of confidence.” Serena Williams looks to repeat as Wimbledon champion. Women’s defending champion, Serena Williams, who has won Wimbledon six times, faces off later today against Switzerland’s Amra Sadikovic. Assuming they both keep winning, Serena could ultimately face her sister, Venus, who currently holds a 3-2 lead over Donna Vekic of Croatia. Venus, who has won Wimbledon five times, lost to Serena in the finals in 2012 and 2013. 2004 Wimbledon champion, Maria Sharapova, was suspended for two years recently after testing positive for a banned substance. Sharapova is appealing the decision, but she is not at Wimbledon. “I cannot accept an unfairly harsh two-year suspension. The tribunal, whose members were selected by the ITF, agreed that I did not do anything intentionally wrong, yet they seek to keep me from playing tennis for two years.” Maria Sharapova will not be playing at this year’s Wimbledon, thanks to a two-year ban after a positive drug test. Much of the discussion at Wimbledon involves Britain’s recent decision to leave the Eurpean Union (“Brexit”). Wimbledon players are largely staying out of it. Scotland’s Andy Murray,and 2013 Wimbledon champion, wouldn’t be drawn into the discussion. “I’m not discussing that today. I have followed it very closely. Yeah, stayed up pretty late on whatever night it was, last night into the morning. But, yeah, I’m not discussing that today, unfortunately.” Britain’s Johanna Konta, recently pointed out that it wasn’t a discussion that was getting in the way of her Wimbledon training. “The thing is, with the tour, you’re very much in your own little bubble. I haven’t really watched much news.” Federer, who has won Wimbledon seven times, offered reporters little to go on by acknowledging the gravity of the situation. “Of course, I followed it. It’s an historic day. I don’t even want to think about the negotiations that go into it now. For you [British] guys, it’s going to be years of negotiations. It’s definitely interesting times ahead. It’s nice to have democracy here, that you have an opportunity to vote. It’s a beautiful thing. Many people went out and did that. They took a decision. Now you have to make necessary steps.” Wimbledon players hail from all over the world, but the Brexit news has crept into this event regardless of home country. Wimbledon kicks off today and lasts for two weeks. Though Wimbledon is usually a large enough attention-grabber in its own right, Brexit has brought the spotlight of the world along with it, making this year’s event especially unique. All images courtesy of Associated Press

Andy Murray Becomes World Number One For First Time In His Career After Raonic Walkover In Paris

Andy Murray has earned the world No 1 ranking in men’s tennis for the first time following Milos Raonic’s last-minute withdrawal from the Paris Masters semi-final on Saturday. After staying at the No 2 spot for 76 weeks, Murray has toppled Novak Djokovic for the No 1 ranking, ending the Serb’s 122-week reign as the world’s best tennis player, BBC Sports reports. Andy #Murray is World No.1 #HistoryMaker pic.twitter.com/bi8LqjjdrY — British Tennis (@BritishTennis) November 5, 2016 “I have put myself in a position to do something that takes a lot of consistency, a lot of concentration for a long period of time,” said Murray on Friday, following his 7-6, 7-5 quarter-final win over Tomas Berdych. Djokovic, who became world No 1 in July 2014, was beaten in the semi-finals on Saturday by Croatian Marin Cilic on Friday. Andy Murray is scheduled to face American John Isner in Sunday’s final. Milos Raonic withdrew from the tournament due to a torn right quad, which the Canadian believes was acquired during his quarter finals victory over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on Friday. “Yesterday at I believe 4-2 in the first set I started feeling some pain in my leg. I didn’t think too much of it at that point. This morning I had trouble waking up and getting out of bed. So I went to sort of clear any serious diagnosis. Did some tests. Did an MRI. So they found that I have a tear, grade-one tear in the right quad.” Raonic admits that the injury would cause him to postpone his participation in the ATP World Tour Finals. “Yes, it does. I still have the possibility of making it but I was told five to 10 days. So I’m on the borderline for that. I still have a possibility that I might be able to play more this year, on one of the biggest stages, important moments in tournaments, for us as tennis players. Now, I just rather than feeling bad about it, I try to put the attention on trying to make the most of these days. “I have, I believe, at least eight days before I play a first-round match. The muscle that is damaged is very close to the bone. So any kind of external sort of rehab is ineffective.” .@milosraonic déclare forfait / Raonic withdraws from the semifinals #BNPPM pic.twitter.com/QlExkjIif6 — BNP PARIBAS MASTERS (@bnppmasters) November 5, 2016 Raonic, who is having one of the best seasons of his career, has been hampered by injuries all year long. He arrived in Paris not quite 100-percent on account of soreness in his legs and arms which he acquired during a tough campaign in Asia. “I couldn’t remember exactly what happened or what I did because it wasn’t that I felt it during the point,” he said. “The point was finished, and the next point I started feeling it. I thought maybe my muscles were just getting tight. Where I sort of felt it a bit more was standing and getting up and out of the seat on the changeover, sort of when I had cooled down a little bit. During play, staying warm, wasn’t too obvious of an issue. So I didn’t give it too much thought.” Murray, who was guaranteed the No 1 ranking if he reaches the finals in the Paris Masters tournament, became the first Briton to earn the top ranking in tennis. Aged 29 years and 174 days, Andy Murray is now the oldest player to become world No 1 for the first time since John Newcombe in 1974, according to Daily Mail. His rise to the top was bolstered by his phenomenal 59-5 run which started when he played at the Madrid Masters back in May. What a year for Andy Murray! ✔ Wimbledon Champion
✔ Olympic Champion
✔ Becomes a new dad
✔ World Number One! More: https://t.co/5SxawzquKH pic.twitter.com/mjfUu1jogw — BBC Tennis (@bbctennis) November 5, 2016 Murray is looking to win his sixth title of 2016 when he faces Isner in the finals on Sunday. A number of tennis professionals such as Martina Navratilova and Andy Roddick took to Twitter to congratulate Andy Murray for becoming the new number one player in the world. Congrats to @andy_murray on being the new world number 1! Much deserved accomplishment for him, and glad he got there. Long time coming ! — andyroddick (@andyroddick) November 5, 2016 Congratulations @andy_murray for reaching the pinnacle of our sport- #1!!! And that's not a hash tag- that is #1:). ???? — Martina Navratilova (@Martina) November 5, 2016 Andy freakin Murray!!! It's about damn time… ???? World #1 babyyy ????????☝????#oosh — Heather Watson (@HeatherWatson92) November 5, 2016 [Featured Image by Ronald Zak/AP Images]