Monday, August 10, 2009
Roddick and Del Potro book Washington final showdown
Agence France Presse
WASHINGTON - Andy Roddick and Juan Martin Del Potro struggled into the finals of the ATP Washington Classic on Saturday, Del Potro sagging in sweltering heat and Roddick tested by big-serving John Isner. US top seed Roddick outlasted Isner 6-7 (3/7), 6-2, 7-5 and secondseeded defending champion Del Potro of Argentina beat Chilean fourth seed Fernando Gonzalez 7-6 (7/2), 6-3 at the 1.4 million-dollar hardcourt event. Fifth-ranked Roddick, playing in his first event since a five-set Wimbledon final loss to Roger Federer, fired only nine aces to 20 for Isner but hit 69 percent of his first serves and made only two thirdset unforced errors. “I like being on the giving end of the big serve,” Roddick said. “John made me play my best tennis. Anything less than that wasn’t going to get it done.” It took five break-point chances in the third set before Roddick finally broke compatriot Isner in the penultimate game, then held serve to win after two hours and 31 minutes. “I wasn’t converting but it’s not because I wassn’t putting the ball on the court. He was coming up with the goods,” Roddick said. “All you can do is put yourself in position and hope you get that point.” Roddick credits his improved shotmaking to faster speed from
better fitness. “It’s a lot easier to hit a passing shot when you can get to it,” Roddick said. Sixth-ranked Del Potro fired 10 aces in hot and humid conditions on his way to beating Gonzalez for the first time in four meetings between South America’s top players, who each reached this year’s French Open semi-finals. “It was tough for both of us. The court was so hot,” Del Potro said. “After the first set Fernando was so tired. Me too. It was very difficult for both of us. We were very tired and the sun was very strong.” Gonzalez was so exhausted that when he fell early in the second set he stayed on his back until Del Potro climbed over the net to help him up. “He told me, ‘Come with me and give up,’” Del Potro said. “I was thinking lay down with him. If I did we would never stand up. I didn’t. We kept playing like professionals.” Del Potro won his only prior match with Roddick in last year’s Los Angeles final and will try to become the first back-to-back Washington champion since Andre
Agassi in 1999. “I will have to play much better than today,” Del Potro said. “He has improved a lot since we played.” Roddick expects no trouble in Sunday’s afternoon final after training in Texas heat for weeks but does anticipate seeing Del Potro at his best. “I’m going to have to hit the ball really well from the baseline,” Roddick said. “He drives the ball through the court as well as anybody. It’s a matter of surviving early on, getting it down hopefully to where it’s just a few big points.” Roddick, 26, seeks his 28th career crown and fourth in Washington after taking the title in 2001, 2005 and 2007, when he beat Isner, 24, in the final. It would be his second ATP title of the year after a February win at Memphis. Del Potro, 20, seeks his sixth career title and second of the season after winning at Auckland in January. Isner, who will climb to 44th from 80th in the rankings, saved two break points in the opening game of the third set and one each in the ninth and 11th games before Roddick closed him out. “Every service game I held was a challenge and he eventually just broke me down,” Isner said. Roddick took a tumble diving for a return in the ninth game but was unhurt. “I’m fine,” Roddick said. “I’m worried about the court.”
Clijsters raring to get this comeback started Agence France Presse
CINCINNATI - Belgian star Kim Clijsters makes a long-awaited return when she serves it up at the WTA Tour’s Cincinnati event on
Monday. The unseeded wild card Clijsters won’t have it easy as her first match is against 12th seeded Frenchwoman Marion Bartoli. Bartoli is fresh off an impressive
win over Venus Williams in the final of the Stanford Bank of the West Classic. “I see it as a second career,” Clijsters told The New York Times on Saturday. “Honestly, the first word that comes up is, oh, it’s a comeback. But so many things have changed and so many things have happened.” Indeed the former world number one racked up 34 singles titles when she retired in May 2007 at age 23, citing injuries and the upcoming marriage. Two months later she married basketball player Brian Lynch and then there was the birth of daughter Jada Ellie. During that time of her life her father, Leo, succumbed to lung cancer. “In tennis, it’s very important that you’re very stable there, the hips and the core,” she said. “With the pregnancy, that’s something that was totally gone.” Clijsters is in the same half of the draw as top seeded Dinara Safina and sixth seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova and could face either or both if she should go on a run.
Monday, August 10, 2009
Nagasaki calls on leaders to visit atomic bomb site Agence France-Presse
TOKYO - Nagasaki’s mayor, marking the 64th anniversary of his city’s atomic bombing by the United States, called Sunday on the leaders of nuclear-armed powers to visit the site and build a nuclear-free world. Tomihisa Tanoue urged world leaders from both declared nuclear powers and others such as Iran, Israel and North Korea to visit the city in southwestern Japan. “I am sure anyone who visits here would feel the sorrow of the victims and be shaken by it,” the mayor said in an address at an annual ceremony commemorating the 1945 bombing.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
Andy Roddick, of the Unites States, jumps while returning the ball against Ivo Karlovic, of Croatia, at the quarterfinals of the Legg Mason Tennis Classic, in Washington, on Friday, Aug. 7, 2009. Roddick won the match 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5).
Espanyol skipper Dani Jarque dies of heart attack MADRID - The skipper of Spanish top flight side Espanyol, Dani Jarque, has died from a heart attack while on a pre-season training camp in Italy. The 26-year-old Jarque died at the hotel where the team were staying in the town of Coviciana. He was discovered in his room after teammates realised he had not appeared for a meal. The club said that team doctors as well as Italian paramedics tried to revive the midfielder but without success. The tragedy comes just two years after the death, also from heart failure, of Sevilla defender Antonio Puerta, who died aged 22 after having collapsed during the opening game of the Spanish La Liga season. Espanyol confirmed the diagnosis of heart failure and said the club doctor’s attempts to revive the player had failed. “It was a heart attack,” said club official German de la Cruz. “He was talking to his girlfriend when he suddenly began to feel unwell. He told her and then stopped talking. His partner got in touch with the hotel and explained what had happened but it was too late to do anything,” de la Cruz told La Sexta television.
Jarque had played for Espanyol since the 2002-2003 season. In the last campaign, he featured in 36 legaue matches and scored two goals. He was also a member of the team which won the Spanish Cup in 2006 and who were UEFA Cup runners-up in 2007. European champions Barcelona, who are Espanyol’s city rivals, sent their condolences to the Jarque’s family from their American tour base in San Francisco. Barca president Joan Laporta told www.fcbarcelona.com: “We are filled with extreme sadness at this tragic event and tonight we are in mourning. “On behalf of Barcelona, we want to send our deepest sympathies to Espanyol for the painful loss of their captain Dani Jarque, and to his family.” A minute’s silence was observed at the start of the second half of a pre-season friendly at the Mestella Stadium where Valencia were taking on English side Arsenal. Players from both sides also wore black armbands. Real Madrid as well as the Spanish football federation sent their condolences to Jarque’s family.
AP Photo/Kyodo News
A minute of silence was observed at 11:02 am (0202 GMT), when the US bomb exploded above the city, killing roughly 74,000 people. The bombing followed one a week before in Hiroshima and hastened Japan’s surrender in World War II. Tanoue said an April speech by US President Barack Obama in Prague, where Obama pledged to build a world with no nuclear weapons, “im-
A memorial ceremony is held in front of the Statue of Peace at Nagasaki Peace Park in Nagasaki, southern Japan, on Sunday Aug. 9, 2009. Nagasaki marks the 64th anniversary of the world’s second atomic bomb attack on Sunday.
pressed” the residents of Nagasaki. “The Japanese government must support the Prague speech. As a nation that has come under nuclear attack, Japan must lead the international community” in abolishing the weapons, he said. Similar appeals were made Thursday when Hiroshima marked the anniversary of its bombing, which killed 140,000 people. At the Nagasaki ceremony, Prime Minister Taro Aso reiterated the Japanese government’s antinuclear stance, three weeks ahead of national elections that he is tipped to lose. Aso raised eyebrows at the Hiroshima ceremony, when he pledged to work toward abolishing nuclear weapons but later told reporters that he thought it was “unimaginable” to attain a nuclear-free world.
Obama in first summit with Greenpeace pressures North America leaders on climate Mexico, Canada leaders Agence France-Presse
GUADALAJARA - US President Barack Obama attends his first North American leaders summit in Mexico on Sunday with the economic crisis and swine flu on an agenda overshadowed by Mexican drug violence. Hundreds of Mexican soldiers and police deployed in the western city of Guadalajara for the summit in which Obama, Mexican President Felipe Calderon and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper were due to touch on a wide range of topics affecting the region of almost 450 million inhabitants. Measures to help recovery in the three major economies that have been tied by the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) for 15 years were a top priority. Like the United States, Mexico has sunk deep into recession, with much of its industry tied to the worst-affected areas of the US economy — cars and construction — and migrant workers north of the border sending less money home. In the two-day meeting, Canada and Mexico — the first and third-largest US trading partners — were expected to pressure Obama over a “Buy American” clause in the US economic stimulus plan. Mexico also sought to resolve an immigration dispute with Canada over the recent imposition of visas for Mexicans, and a trade dispute involving Mexican trucks operating in the United States, officials said here. Mexico responded to the US cancellation of a program allowing some Mexican
trucks on its territory — in violation of NAFTA — by slapping some 2.4 billion dollars in tariffs on 89 US products in March. With Mexico’s news reports splashed with daily violence, and killings in suspected drug attacks approaching 10,000 since the start of 2008, Calderon may seek more support for his controversial military crackdown on the country’s warring drug gangs. The summit comes amid criticism of alleged abuses by some of around 40,000 troops deployed across the country, and reports of growing Mexican drug gang activity across the United States, Canada and beyond. The United States — the world’s number one cocaine consumer and a market for illegal weapons and money laundering for Mexican drug gangs — for the first time this year admitted shared responsibility in the Mexican drug cartel problem. It has already agreed to some 1.4 billion dollars in security and justice aid to Mexico under the three-year Merida Initiative, which still has to be fully approved by Congress. Other key issues on the Guadalajara agenda include curbing greenhouse-gas emissions ahead of a key climate summit in December, the threat of swine flu on the continent worst hit by A(H1N1), the Honduras crisis and immigration reform. Some 1,200 federal police officers were deployed around the city for the meeting, as well as around 1,000 Mexican presidential guards and other troops, Mexican officials said. Local rights and environmental groups planned demonstrations in the city on Sunday.
GUADALAJARA - Greenpeace activists climbed a main monument in the Mexican City of Guadalajara Saturday in a bid to push climate change up the agenda of talks between North American leaders here this weekend. President Felipe Calderon will host Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and US President Barack Obama for his first “three amigos” meeting in this western city on Sunday and Monday, in which Mexico’s wave of drug violence is a key issue. A Greenpeace activist dressed as a polar bear held a sign reading “Real leaders back clean energy,” standing on a statue in La Minerva fountain in Guadalajara, as the pressure for concrete promises on reducing emissions increased ahead of a worldwide climate conference in Copenhagen in December. “We’re the region which contributes most to climate change,” said Maria Jose Cardenas, from Greenpeace Mexico, stating that the region emits 26 percent of worldwide greenhouse gases. Activists called on the three giant energy producers and users to aim to generate almost 40 percent of their electricity from renewable energy sources by 2020. Joint security amid Calderon’s crackdown on drug cartels, swine flu and efforts to tackle the financial crisis are also key issues on the summit agenda.
AP Photo/Carlos Jasso
Greenpeace protesters, one of them dressed up as a polar bear, put up a banner for the heads of state that will participate in the North American Leaders Summit which says “Real leaders Back Clean Energy” at the landmark “Minerva” monument in Guadalajara, Mexico, Saturday Aug. 8, 2009.
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