Kerber's belated Qatar Open start ends in defeat

Angelique Kerber
Updated 16 February 2017
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Kerber's belated Qatar Open start ends in defeat

DOHA: World No. 2 Angelique Kerber finally got to play her first match at the rain-affected Qatar Open on Thursday and promptly crashed out of the tournament.
She lost 6-4, 0-6, 6-4 to Russian teenager Daria Kasatkina in a second round match, after Kerber received a first round bye.
It is the second time this year that the 19-year-old has won against the former Australian Open champion after beating her at the Sydney International last month, 7-6, 6-2.
"Of course it's always tough to play the first matches after a longer break," said the former number one afterwards.
"But I was not feeling the best today. I'm trying to find my rhythm. But she plays good.
"I think it was, for sure, not my day. I was not feeling the best today."
The tournament had started on Monday, but Kerber had faced a frustrating wait to get out on court.
The defeat caps a miserable start to 2017 for Kerber who lost in the fourth round in Melbourne as she sought to defend her Australian Open title.
To make things worse, the eventual winner Serena Williams then reclaimed Kerber's No. 1 world ranking.
Kasatkina next plays Olympic champion Monica Puig in a last eight clash later on Thursday as organizers desperately try to catch up in a tournament blighted by rain, which has led to the postponement of many matches, as Qatar has suffered some of its wettest weather in years.
Another seed who lost on Thursday was Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska, beaten by close friend Caroline Wozniacki 7-5, 6-3.
"We always have great matches," said the Dane afterwards. "It was a tough match but I was pleased."
Wozniacki was also set to go back out on court later on Thursday, weather permitting, to play American qualifier Lauren Davis.
No.2 seed Karolina Pliskova from the Czech Republic has made it through to the last eight, however, beating France's Caroline Garcia 7-5, 6-4.
She was to play China's Shuai Zhang later on Thursday.


LeBron James' last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win over Pacers in Game 5

James pushes the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs. (Getty Images/AFP)
Updated 26 April 2018
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LeBron James' last-second shot gives Cavs 98-95 win over Pacers in Game 5

  • James' 3-pointer buzzer beater puts Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs
  • James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists.

CLEVELAND: LeBron James hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer, a crowning moment for another brilliant performance, to give Cleveland a 98-95 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday night in Game 5, putting the Cavaliers within one victory of advancing in the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Moments after blocking Victor Oladipo’s possible go-ahead driving layup, James caught the inbounds pass, took two dribbles and dropped the winner over Thaddeus Young.
As Cleveland’s sellout crowd exploded, James hugged rookie teammate Cedi Osman before jumping on the scorer’s table to celebrate another of those moments that will define his career.
James finished with 44 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists and went 15 of 15 from the line.
Kyle Korver added 19 points and Cleveland’s much-maligned defense tightened just in time as the Cavaliers seized their first lead in the first-round series after being down 1-0 and 2-1.
Cleveland can close out Indiana with a win Friday night in Indianapolis.
Domantas Sabonis scored 22 points, and Young had 16 for the Pacers, who battled back to tie it 95-all on Sabonis’ 15-foot jumper with 33 seconds left. Indiana, which held Cleveland without a field goal for more than seven minutes during their fourth-quarter rally forced James into a turnover and had a chance to re-take the lead.
Oladipo, who shot just 2 of 15, drove the left side and was at the rim when James swooped in for a block on a play reminiscent of his Game 7 block on Andre Iguodala in the 2016 NBA Finals.
Oladipo’s shooting woes continued. He’s only 12 of 50 from the field in the last three games. He scored 32 in the Pacers’ Game 1 win, but the Cavs have been double-teaming him ever since.
The third quarter has been a major problem for Cleveland all season. The Cavs had tried everything to try and shake things up after halftime, even doing layup lines at the break in Game 4 like a high school squad.
Turns out, all it took was some defensive intensity.
Down by seven at half, the Cavs swarmed the Pacers in the third quarter, forcing five turnovers in the first six minutes and holding Indiana to one field goal over the first 6:52 while opening with a 19-3 run.
Cleveland outscored Indiana 32-17 in the third, when the Pacers shot just 5 for 16 (31 percent) and committed seven turnovers.
The Cavs were again without starting point guard George Hill, who missed his second straight game with back spasms.
DWYANE’S WORLD
James had enough to worry about with the Pacers that he didn’t want to discuss close friend Dwyane Wade’s future.
Miami’s star is mulling retirement after the Heat were eliminated Tuesday in Philadelphia. James spent four years playing in Miami with Wade, who began this season with the Cavs before being traded.
James said that following his last game against Wade he told him, “’If it’s like our last time going against each other, then it’s been everything and more.” James wants to wait for Wade to make his decision and will then “give a more in-depth analysis of his career if he decides to hang ‘em up.”
TIP-INS:
Pacers: Following Lance Stephenson’s aggressive, wrestling-like takedown of Jeff Green in the waning moments of Game 4, coach Nate McMillan said he reminded the fiery forward to be careful. “The officials are going to be watching that, Lance knows that and there are some times where I think they (the Cavs) are taking advantage.” ... Dropped to 2-12 in their last 14 games in Cleveland. ... James’ triple-double in Game 4 was the sixth against Indiana in the playoffs. James has done it to the Pacers three times.
Cavaliers: With his 21st 40-point game in the playoff, James tied the logo — Jerry West — for the second-most all-time. Michael Jordan scored at least 40 in 38 postseason games. .... Hill’s back has improved in the past few days, but he didn’t look close to playing while sitting stiffly in his locker-room chair before the game. ... Browns Hall of Fame running back Jim Brown sat courtside.
UP NEXT
Game 6 is Friday night at Indianapolis.