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Exclusive: Dominant Djokovic sends scary message to rivals – TalkOfNews.com

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Novak Djokovic is the undeniable favourite to take out this year’s Australian Open title.

The nine-time champion has never lost the decider at Melbourne Park after making the semi-finals – which he did Wednesday night by disposing of Andrey Rublev in straight sets on Rod Laver Arena.

Charging through in just over two hours, Djokovic held every one of his service games to convincingly win the quarter-final encounter, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4.

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Remarkably, the Serbian has never lost a final or semi-final at the Australian Open and has not been beaten at the tournament since Hyeong Chung took down the then-No.1 in straight sets during the round of 18 in 2018.

With the stirring victory, Djokovic also broke the record for the most consecutive matches won on Rod Laver Arena, surpassing Andre Agassi’s previous mark of 25.

Speaking post-match, a disappointed Rublev confessed it was different playing the 21-time grand slam winner on Australian soil.

The pair had previously met on three occasions, including Rublev defeating Djokovic in his hometown of Belgrade in the final of the Serbian Open last April.

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“Out of three times that we have played before, today he played much better compared to our previous meetings, even in Torino (Italy),” Rublev said.

“Today, in my opinion, he was playing much better. That’s it. I don’t know what else to say.

“He was serving really good, returning … He played really well today.”

After easily clearing his last two opponents, including Australia’s Alex de Minaur in the fourth round, Djokovic said he was feeling positive about his next battle.

Djokovic lob shocks Rublev

“I can’t really say that this is as confident as I’ve ever felt because I’ve had some incredible seasons [and] years here at the Australian Open – some matches that are really unforgettable for me,” he said.

“[It’s] tough to compare because I’ve been fortunate to really live through a lot of success at the Australian Open.

“In my last two matches, playing against two guys that are really good players, in-form players – to beat them dominantly in three sets is something that is definitely something that I want in this moment, something that sends a message to all my opponents remaining in the draw.

“With this kind of match, of course, the confidence level rises considering the circumstances.

“I feel good on the court, better and better as the tournament progresses.

“I’ve been in this situation so many times in my life, in my career. I’ve never lost a semi final at the Australian Open.

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“Hopefully that will stay the same.”

Djokovic will next face unseeded American Tommy Paul in his first major semi-final showing.

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Exclusive: European giant could make offer for Newcastle ace in the coming hours – TalkOfNews.com

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European giant could make offer for Newcastle ace in the coming hours

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Newcastle United could reportedly be braced for a bid for one of their big-name players.

According to reports in France, Magpies ace Allan Saint-Maximin has emerged as a transfer target for AC Milan, with the Serie A giants holding initial talks with the player’s entourage.

And now a bid could be imminent, according to breaking reports emerging this afternoon, with Milan clearly keen to firm up their interest in Saint-Maximin amid his difficult situation under Eddie Howe at St James’ Park.

The Frenchman has fallen out of favour in recent times, despite showing glimpses of some real talent during his time in the Premier League.

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It could now be wise for Newcastle to let the player go as they enter into advanced talks over a potential replacement.

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Exclusive: New pro cycling team aims to actively represent PH in overseas races – TalkOfNews.com

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THE Victoria Sports Pro Cycling Team is presented before the media and the public during its launch Saturday at the Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City. (From left) Jay Oconer, Jerry Aquino, Marcio Barbosa, Pedro Paulinho, Andrei Cardoso, Jose Mendes, Daniel Carino, Pako Ochoa, Ean Cajucom, Luis Krog, Kelvin Mendoza,  Micael Isidoro (Sports Director), Jobert Catina (Rider Care and Mechanic), and  Rayzon Galdonez (Asst. Sports Director). –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

#pro #cycling #team #aims #actively #represent #overseas #races

THE Victoria Sports Pro Cycling Team is presented before the media and the public during its launch Saturday at the Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City. (From left) Jay Oconer, Jerry Aquino, Marcio Barbosa, Pedro Paulinho, Andrei Cardoso, Jose Mendes, Daniel Carino, Pako Ochoa, Ean Cajucom, Luis Krog, Kelvin Mendoza,  Micael Isidoro (Sports Director), Jobert Catina (Rider Care and Mechanic), and  Rayzon Galdonez (Asst. Sports Director). –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

THE Victoria Sports Pro Cycling Team is presented before the media and the public during its launch Saturday at Victoria Sports Tower in Quezon City. . –CONTRIBUTED PHOTO

MANILA, Philippines–Looking to make its mark on both local and international stages,  Victoria Sports Cycling Team plans on being an active competitor in major cycling tournaments here and abroad.

Team representative Pako Ochoa said the country’s newest pro cycling team “aims to be the first Philippine team to regularly and actively represent the country in major international cycling tournaments in Asia and countries around the world.”

VSCT–which is bolstered by veteran Portuguese professional cyclists–was officially launched over the weekend with a press conference at Victoria Sports Tower followed by a community ride in Quezon Memorial Circle the day after.

“It is an exciting time for Philippine sports. Our country won its first gold medal in the Olympics two years ago, and this year the country will be represented in both the Fifa Women’s World Cup and the Fiba Basketball World Cup,” said Ochoa.

“We are slowly showing the world that Filipino athletes can be competitive in international sporting competitions, and we will set out to prove that Filipinos have what it takes to excel in cycling as well.”

VSCT is composed of riders Jhay Oconer, Kelvin Mendoza, Márcio Barbosa, Luis Krog, Pedro Paulinho, Ochoa, Ean Cajucom, José Mendes, Daniel Cariño, Jerry Aquino, and André Cardoso.

Mendez is a former World Tour Rider for Bora-Hansgrohe and a two-time national road champion of Portugal while Cardoso is a former World Tour rider for Trek Segafredo.

But competing in  Union Cycliste Internationale races is not the team’s only goal as it also aims to help with “the meteoric rise of the popularity of biking in the Philippines.”

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“We are extremely grateful to all the companies that share our vision,” said Ochoa, “[We] also believe that we can go beyond making cycling more popular–that we can raise the level of cycling and make it a part of our culture, as it is in other parts of the world where the needs and rights of bikers are embraced and respected.” -Celest Flores-Colina

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Exclusive: Bal David resigns as UST head coach after just one season – TalkOfNews.com

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FILE–UST head coach Bal David.

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FILE–UST head coach Bal David.

FILE–UST head coach Bal David. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net

MANILA, Philippines — Bal David has stepped down as head coach of University of Santo Tomas men’s basketball team, according to multiple reports.

The Varsitarian, the school’s official student publication, reported on Wednesday that David has tendered his resignation after just one season with the Growling Tigers.

UST’s organ also wrote that assistant coach Rodney Santos will stay as part of the coaching staff.

In David’s first year, UST won its opening game against Adamson but lost 13 straight games, reeling to the bottom of the standings of the UAAP Season 85 men’s basketball tournament. 

The former PBA star, dubbed “The Flash”, took the coaching reins last July, two months before Season 85.

David, who was part of UST’s back-to-back title runs in 1993 and 94 UAAP seasons under the late Tigers coach Aric del Rosario, only lasted with the Tigers for six months.

After their final game last year, the former Ginebra cager took the blame for their last-place finish and told his players that no one will quit.

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“We had a lot of struggles but I kept telling the kids not to quit. Struggles after struggles, so we have to be in the same direction. No one will quit, no one will give up,” David said in Filipino during the post-game.

He even added that UST won’t have a major revamp and he still prefers the “old school” way of recruiting.

The Tigers will have a different coach for the third straight season, following David’s sudden resignation.

UST had two different coaches in one year with Jinino Manansala taking charge in Season 84 after the infamous “Sorsogon bubble” fiasco that resulted in the exodus of key players and Aldin Ayo’s indefinite ban from coaching in the league.

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