WWE superstars meet Saudi’s Al-Nassr players before Riyadh Super ShowDown

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WWE stars mixed with players from Al-Nassr. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)
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WWE superstar Ricochet. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)
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Superstar Mansoor with Tag Team champions The New Day at Riyadh. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)
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Naomi gets ready to rumble in the Super ShowDown ring. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)
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Bayley - you wouldn't want to mess - will be defending her title. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)
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Updated 27 February 2020

WWE superstars meet Saudi’s Al-Nassr players before Riyadh Super ShowDown

  • The Super ShowDown at Riyadh will take place on Thursday
  • Superstar wrestlers spent the day rubbing shoulders with Al-Nassr football stars

The WWE superstars spent the last 24 hours before tonight’s Super ShowDown engaging with members of the press, meeting members Saudi National League football champions Al-Nassr and visiting The Boulevard in Riyadh.

 The highly anticipated showdown takes place tonight at Mohammed Abdu Arena on the Boulevard, the third WWE event hosted in the Kingdom in just over a year, following the Super ShowDown in Jeddah last February and crown Jewels in Riyadh in October.

Having delighted members of the local and international press by joking and taking selfies with them at media event earlier in the day, the likes of Goldberg, Ricochet, The Miz and John Morrison, Naomi and Bayley, and local hero Mansoor spent the afternoon exploring the city, and meeting fans, in the afternoon and early evening.

The Miz and John Morrison in their non-ring attire. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)

Robert Roode, Andrade and Angel Garza, along with Faisal Kurdi and Hussain Aldaqal, two rising Saudi stars from the WWE Performance Centre, headed to Al-Nassr’s training ground to meet the players, management and senior figures, before taking part in keepy-uppy sessions and a penalty shoot-out.

Before the WWE superstars departed, they presented Al-Nassr, who claimed the Saudi title last season, with a WWE championship belt.

Meanwhile, some of the WWE superstars headed to The Boulevard in Riyadh where they posed for iconic images as they prepare to perform at Super ShowDown in KSA on Thursday night.

Tag-team The New Day were joined by Saudi star Mansoor. (Mark Conlon/Seven Media)

Tag-team The New Day were joined by Saudi star Mansoor at one of Riyadh's most famous locations, and the venue for tonight's event, which takes place at the Mohammed Abdu Arena.

The New Day will be taking on The Miz and John Morrison in one of many exciting encounters taking place tonight.

Also on the card is Ricochet taking on WWE legend and champion Brock Lesnar for the championship belt; Bayley defending g her title against Naomi in the SmackDown Championship; and Goldberg taking on “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt in the Universal Championship Match.

Tiger Woods cautious about return ahead of Memorial

Updated 15 July 2020

Tiger Woods cautious about return ahead of Memorial

  • PGA Tour officials confirmed that the remainder of the 2019-2020 season would take place without fans

WASHINGTON: Tiger Woods admitted Tuesday that concern over the coronavirus delayed his return to the PGA Tour as he prepares to play his first event since February at this week's Memorial Tournament in Ohio.

The former world No. 1 has not played since appearing in the Genesis Invitational in Los Angeles in February but will tee off at Muirfield on Thursday chasing a sixth victory in the Jack Nicklaus-hosted event.

The 44-year-old 15-time major winner said Tuesday he had contemplated returning to the tour earlier but had wanted to see how the first few events of the post-coronavirus shutdown fared before coming back.

"I just felt it was better to stay at home and be safe," Woods said Tuesday.

"I'm used to playing with lots of people around me or having lots of people have a direct line to me, and that puts not only myself in danger but my friends and family, and just been at home practicing and social distancing and being away from a lot of people.

"Coming back and playing the tour, in my case over the 20-some-odd years I've been out here, that's really hard to say, that I'm used to having so many people around me or even touch me, going from green to tee.

"That's something that I looked at and said, well, I'm really not quite comfortable with that, that whole idea."

Memorial organizers had initially planned to allow fans on the course at this week's tournament, but abandoned that idea as COVID-19 cases across the US began to skyrocket.

On Monday, PGA Tour officials confirmed that the remainder of the 2019-2020 season would take place without fans.

It means Woods will tee off on Thursday alongside world No. 1 Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka without the customary horde of spectators that usually follows him around a course.

"It's going to be different, there's no doubt about it," Woods said.

"For most of my career, pretty much almost every competitive playing round that I've been involved in, I've had people around me, spectators yelling, a lot of movement inside the gallery with camera crews and media."

Woods, who is making only his fourth tournament appearance of the season this week, said he has improved his health during the long layoff.

A stiff back hampered his performance at the Genesis in February, but Woods said he had not been troubled since.

"I feel so much better than I did then," Woods said.

"I've been able to train and concentrate on getting back up to speed and back up to tournament speed.

During Woods' layoff, the US was convulsed by nationwide protests against racism following the death of unarmed African-American man George Floyd during his arrest by police in Minneapolis on May 25.

Woods said he applauded efforts of Black Lives Matter activists to bring about change.

"I think change is fantastic as long as we make changes without hurting the innocent, and unfortunately that has happened. 

Hopefully it doesn't happen in the future, but a movement and change is fantastic," Woods said.

"That's how society develops. That's how we grow. That's how we move forward. That's how we have fairness."