The sports wrap, Monday 7 September, 2020

Novak Djokovic checks on a line judge he has accidentlally hit with a tennis ball

Djokovic is sensationally disqualified from US Open  

World No.1 Novak Djovokic was sensationally disqualified from the US Open in New york on Sunday after hitting a ball in frustration in his fourth round first set against Spain’s Pablo Correno Busta which accidentally hit a female line judge in the throat. Djokovic had appeared to hurt his shoulder during his service game which was then broken to make it 5-6 which prompted his anger. After a lengthy discussion with tournament officials, he accepted his fate and shook his opponent’s hand. The Grand Slam rules clearly state that the referee may declare a player in default if he at any time physically abuses any official, opponent, spectator or other person. Djokovic. who also loses any prize money he would have won before disqualification, later posted an apology on his Instagram page. The line judge was said to be fine. The 33-year-old Serb was the heavy favourite to win his 18th Grand Slam title and had been unbeaten in 2020. While Djokovic’s US Open was over, German fifth seed Alexander Zverev moved into the quarter-finals with an easy 6-2 6-2 6-1 victory over Spain’s Davidovich Fokina. Earlier No.2 seed Dominic Thiem moved into the last 16 with a four-set victory over Croatian Marin Cilic 5-2 6-2 3-6 6-3 and will now face Canadian prodigy Felix Auger-Aliassime who easily beat Andy Murray.  Greek fourth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas is out after blowing six match points against Borna Coric. In the women’s singles, six-time champion Serena Williams fought back from a slow start to beat fellow American

Serena Williams is into the last 16 and bidding for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title

Sloane Stephens 2-6 6-2 6-2 and move into the last 16.  Third seed Williams, 38, was sluggish in the opening set before raising her intensity against 26th seed Stephens. Williams, aiming for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam singles title, faces Greek 15th seed Maria Sakkari next.  No.2 seed and Australian Open winner, Sofia Kenin, also made it through to the last 16 with a 7-6,6-3 win over Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur joining No.4 seed and 2018 US Open champion Naomi Osaka who beat Marta Kostyuk 6-3 6-7 5-2. Top seed Karolina Pliskova was knocked out in the second round by France’s’ Caroline Garcia.

European powerhouses win opening Nations League matches

World Cup champions France, European champions Portugal and world No.1 ranked Belgium all won their opening UEFA Nations League matches at the weekend while England had a far from impressive 1-0 win over their nemesis Iceland.

Portugal provided the most authoritative display – without Cristiano Ronaldo – beating 2018 World Cup finalists Croatia 4-1, hitting the woodwork three times on their way to victory in the tournament’s Group A3. The Nations League holders were fired ahead by Joao Cancelo four minutes before half-time with Diogo jota and Joao Felix both scoring their first international goals in the second half before Bruno Petkovic pulled one back and Andre Silva then added a fourth. Star player Ronaldo was ruled out with a toe infection.

Kylian Mbappe scores a brilliant goal for France in their UEFA Nations League win over Sweden

Kylian Mbappe scored a fine winning goal to give the World Cup champions France a 1-0 victory in Sweden. Paris Saint Germain forward Mbappe, 21, cut in from the left flank and wove his way past three defenders before slotting home a cool finish at the near post. France now host Croatia on Tuesday in Group A3.

Belgium got off to a good start in the Nations League campaign with a comfortable 2-0 win away to Denmark thanks to a goal in each half from Jason Denayer and Dries Martin in a Group A2 clash on Saturday. The home side missed a number of chances in the first half before the Belgians took over after the interval.

Raheem Sterling’s late penalty gave England a 1-0 victory over Iceland in a Group A2 clash- despite the hosts squandering the chance to rescue a point by missing an injury-time spot-kick. In a chaotic end to a dull encounter, Sterling looked to have secured three points when he rolled in an 89th-minute spot-kick after his shot was handled by Sverrir Ingason, who was then sent off. Iceland however were awarded a penalty for Joe Gomez’s foul but Birkir Bjarnason was wildly off target.

In other matches involving the UK home nations in the 55-nation tournament, Northern Ireland drew 1-1 in Romania, Scotland drew 1-1 at home to Israel, while Ryan Giggs’ Wales beat Finland 1-0 away on Thursday then beat Bulgaria 1-0 at home on Sunday.

Frenchman Gasly wins Italian F1 Grand Prix

Pierre Gasly scored a stunning upset victory in the Italian Grand Prix for Red Bull’s Italy-based Alpha Tauri team in an astonishing race which saw a French driver win for the first time since  Olivier Panis in 1996. Mclaren’s Spaniard Carlos Sainz finished a close second at Monza after a nail-biting chase to the flag with Racing Point’s Lance Stroll third on a podium of youngsters. World champion Lewis Hamilton, who once again had pole position, was dominating in his Mercedes until he was penalised for being called into the pit lane for a stop when it was closed. Two safety cars in quick succession mixed up the order and Gasly took the lead after Hamilton served his penalty. Hamilton fought back from last place, 18 seconds off the back of the pack, to seventh, just two places behind team-mate

Frenchman wept over the team’s race radio after his astonishing victory in the Italian F1 GP

Valtteri Bottas. Despite the setback, the six-times world champion retained his 47-point lead at the top, now over Bottas, after Red Bull’s Max Verstappen retired. Hamilton has 164 points after eight races to Botta’s 117 and Verstappen’s 110. Gasly’s win sealed an amazing turnaround in fortunes for the likeable 24-year-old, who just over a year ago was demoted from the senior Red Bull team to what was Toro Rosso and was renamed over the winter. Gasly has been outstanding ever since, including taking a second place in Brazil last year, and few will begrudge him this win. It is the junior team’s second Grand Prix victory – their first also coming at Monza, with Sebastian Vettel in 2008. Neither of the Ferrarie cars finished the race on their home track.

Slovenia’s Pogacar wins Tour de France Stage 9

Slovenia took the first two places in Stage 9 of the Tour de France on Sunday with Tadej Pogacar winning and his compatriot Primoz Roglic coming in second and taking the race yellow jersey from Britain’s Adam Yates.  Yates was dropped on the final climb of the 153km route from Pau to Laruns on another punishing day in the Pyrenees. Switzerland’s Marc Hirschi led for over 80km before being caught 1.5km from the finish, where UAE-Team Emirates rider Pogacar edged fellow Slovenian Roglic in a sprint. Mitchelton-Scott’s Yates dropped to eighth in the overall standings.

Slovenian Tadej Pogacar won his first stage in the Tour de France on Sunday

The 28-year-old crossed the line in 15th having looked resigned to the situation on the descent from the Col de Marie Blanque towards the finish. As well as losing 54 seconds to the leading group, which also contained defending champion Egan Bernal, Yates also lost time to the likes of Romain Bardet, Guillame Martin and Nairo Quintana. Colombian Bernal is now 21 seconds behind Jumbo-Visma’s Roglic, who again justified his pre-race favourite tag with a series of accelerations on the final climb. “Everybody dreams of wearing the yellow jersey one day in his life so first off I’m just happy how things are,” said current Vuelta a Espana champion Roglic.

Buttler guides England to T20 series win over Australia

Brilliant opener Jos Buttler guided England to a six-wicket victory over Australia in the second Twenty20 international at the Ageas Oval on Sunday to clinch the three-match series. Buttler batted throughout for his 77 from 54 balls as the hosts reached their target of 158 with seven balls left. After the loss of Jonny Bairstow, hit wicket in the third over, Buttler batted patiently in a stand of 87 with Dawid Malan. Malan fell for 42, and Tom Banton and Eoin Morgan followed in a collapse of three for 29 but the assured Buttler held firm. With 18 needed from the final two overs,

Jos Buttler acknowledges his 50 on the way to helping England beat Australia

Moeen Ali hit 10 from two balls before Buttler sealed the victory with a huge six from leg-spinner Adam Zampa whom captain Aaron gambled on instead of pace. Buttler emphatically launched him down the ground and into the stands to end the game. A brilliant start with the ball by England had earlier seen Australia fall to 3 for two and 30 for three before the tourists scrapped to their total with Finch top scoring on 40, followed by Marcus Stoinis on 35. After snatching a dramatic victory in Friday’s opener, England now lead 2-0 with only the final match on Tuesday to come.

Johnston builds lead after third day of Tour Championship

World No.1 Dustin Johnson built a healthy five-shot lead heading into the final round of the PGA Tour’s season-ending Tour Championship on Monday. The American fired a six-under 64 during the third round, including seven birdies. Xander Schauffele, after a round of 67, is tied for second place with Justin Thomas, who claimed a four-under 66. Spain’s Jon Rahm also shot a 66 at the East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta. Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy went round in level par to stay on eight under, 11 shots off the lead, where he was joined by England’s Tyrell Hatton after a one-over 71. Like the leader, Daniel Berger shot a 64 to climb into the top 10, two shots behind US PGA winner Collin Morikawa who is in fifth place after his 67.

Exeter further cement Premiership title hopes

Exeter Chiefs beat Northampton Saints 22-19 away from home on Saturday for a sixth straight win to give them a commanding 13-point lead at the top of the Premiership table and put a huge dent in their opponents’ play-off chances. Converted tries from Sean Lonsdale and Jannes Kirsten put Exeter 14-0 up, but David Ribbans and Henry Taylor crossed for Northampton before the break. Welsh international Dan Biggar added the extras from Ribbans’ second score to give

Ton O’Flaherty’s late effort helped seal Exeter’s victory over Northampton Saints

Saints the lead soon after the restart. But after Gareth Steenson kicked a penalty, Tom O’Flaherty’s late effort gave the Chiefs the victory. Exeter now seem certain to secure a top-four spot while Northampton have now lost four of their five games since the restart and have now suffered six consecutive league defeats at Franklin’s Gardens – their worst run in the Premiership. Sale moved up to second place behind Exeter after beating Leicester Tigers 40-31 away from home.

Wigan thrash Huddersfield to stay top of Super League

Champions St Helens thrashed an injury-ravaged Huddersfield Giants side with a devastating 54-6 nine-try display. Tries from Lachlan Coote, Aaron Smith and Regan Grace put Saints 20-0 up at the break against a side that struggled for a full complement of fit players. Owen Trout responded with a try on his debut just after the interval. Further tries from Grace, Coote, Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, Matty Costello, Dominique Peyroux and Alex Walmsley completed victory for the champions.The win was enough to put Kristian Woolf’s side top of Super League on points  difference after Wigan Warriors were shocked by 34-18 by bottom side Hull KR. Wigan and Warrington Wolves are on 14 points, like St Helens, while Catalans Dragons are fourth on 10 points

Wigan’s Regan Grace has scored all five of his tries this season at home

but have now played three matches fewer than the top three clubs after their last two matches were postponed because three of their players tested positive for Covid-19. The Dragons will become the first team to host fans since the return of Super League when they welcome Wigan Warriors this coming Saturday, 12 September. The Dragons have been playing all their matches in the UK but this game will go ahead at Stade Gilbert Brutus in Perpignan after the French government confirmed Wigan players and staff will not need to quarantine after arriving. The 13,000-capacity stadium will be able to welcome 5,000 fans to the game. “After many consecutive trips, it was important to play at home,” Dragons president Bernard Guasch said.

Mo Farah breaks one-hour world record in Brussels

Four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah broke the one-hour world record on his return to the track at Friday’s Diamond League meeting in Brussels. Farah ran 21,330m, bettering the record of 21,285m set by Haile Gebrselassie in 2007. It is the 37-year-old Briton’s first

Mo Farah broke the one-hour world record in Brussels

world record outdoors. “It isn’t supposed to be easy to break a world record, but I can tell you that it was really hard. The record stood for a very long time,” said Farah. “So that says a lot. I was very excited to be back on the track. My first meet back on the track was what was driving me.” In the rarely run one-hour race athletes try to cover as much distance as possible in 60 minutes.

Enable wins final race in UK, aims for third Arc de Triomphe

Record-breaking mare Enable won her final race in Britain – the September Stakes at Kempton under Frankie Dettori on Saturday. The six-year-old, trained by John Gosden, is being aimed at an historic third Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe win next month. Sent off as the 1-14 favourite on Saturday, she went to the front early on and never looked in danger. Enable won by seven lengths from 33-1 shot Kirstenbosch in second.

Champion racehorse Enable won her last race in the UK by seven lengths

“She felt good and the dream is alive,” said Dettori, 49. Victory for Enable was her 15th in 18 runs and follows her record third King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes triumph at Ascot in July. The mare was second to Waldgeist in the 2019 Arc at ParisLongchamp after winning Europe’s richest race the previous two years. Meanwhile, in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby, Authentic denied heavy favourite Tiz the Law a shot at the Triple Crown by outlasting a furious homestretch battle. He took over the lead about a quarter mile into the race and stayed there even as Tiz the Law came rocketing towards him. It was the 200th Grade I stakes victory for Authentic’s jockey John Valezquez and his third Kentucky Derby win.  Tiz the Law finished second, and 46-1 longshot Mr Big News was third. Authentic started at 8-1.

For full coverage of sporting events go to:,

Calendar Keynotes: 7-13 September  

Monday, 7 September

Football : UEFA Nations League – Group A1, Bosnia-Herzegovina v Poland, Netherlands v Italy, Group C4, Kazakhstan v Belarus, Albania v Lithuania, Group B1, Austria v Romania, Northern Ireland v Norway, Group B2, Czech Republic v Scotland, Israel v Slovakia.

Cycling: Tour de France, rest day.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Tuesday, 8 September

Football: UEFA Nations League – Group C2, Armenia v Estonia, Georgia v North Macedonia, Group D2, San Marino v Liechtenstein, Group A2, Belgium v Iceland, Denmark v England, Group A3, France v Croatia, Sweden v Portugal, Group C1, Cyprus v Azerbaijan, Luxembourg v Montenegro.

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 10, flat, Ile d’Oleron to Ile de Re, 168.5km.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Rugby Union: Gallagher English Premiership – Bristol v Northampton Saints.

Cricket: England v Australia, International Twenty20, The Ageas Bowl, Southampton.

Wednesday, 9 September

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 11, flat, Chatelaillon-Plage to Poitiers, 167.5km

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Thursday, 10 September

Football: French Ligue 1 – Lens v Paris Saint Germain.

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 12, hilly, Chauvigny to Sarran Correze, 167.5km.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Rugby Union: Gallagher English Premiership – Wasps v Leicester Tigers, Sale v Saracens, Bath v Worcester Warriors, London Irish v Harlequins.

Rugby League: Super League – Hull FC v Wakefield Trinity, Castleford Tigers v Warrington Wolves.

Golf: USPGA Tour, Safeway Open, Silverado CC North Course, Zephyrhills, Florida (till 13 September), European Tour, Portugal Masters, Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, Quarteira, Portugal (till 13 September).

Friday, 11 September

Football: French Ligue 1 – Bordeaux v Lyon, Spanish La Liga – Granada v Athletic Bilbao, German DFB Cup – Eintracht Braunschweig v Hertha Berling, TSV Havelse v Mainz 05.

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 13, mountain, Chatel-Guyon to Puy Mary Cantal. 191.5km.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Formula One: Toscana Grand Prix, Mugello Circuit, Florence, Italy (till 13 September).

Cricket: ODI series, England v Australia, Old Trafford, Manchester.

Rugby Union: French Top 14 – Pau v Agen, Racing 92 v Montpellier.

Rugby League: Super League – St Helens v Hull KR, Leeds Rhinos v Huddersfield Giants.

Golf: USPGA Tour, Safeway Open, Silverado CC North Course, Zephyrhills, Florida (till 13 September), European Tour, Portugal Masters, Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, Quarteira, Portugal (till 13 September)..

Saturday, 12 September  

Football: English Premier League – Fulham v Arsenal, Crystal Palace v Southampton, West Ham United v Newcastle United, Liverpool v Leeds United, Scottish Premiership – Aberdeen v Kilmarnock, Livingston v Hamilton Academical, Motherwell v St Johnstone, Rangers v Dundee United, Ross County v Celtic, St Mirren v Hibernian, French Ligue 1 – Montpellier v Nice, Saint-Etienne v Strasbourg, Spanish La Liga – Eibar v Celta Vigo, Cadiz v Osasuna, German DFB Cup (major clubs) – FC Nuremberg v RB Leipzig, FC Oberneuland v Borussia Monchengladbach, FSV Union Furstenwalde v WfL Wolfsburg, TSV 1860 Munchen v Eintracht Frankfurt, VSG Atlglienicke v 1. FC Koln, Karlsruher FC v 1. FC Union Berlin, FC Carl Zeiss Jena v Werder Bremen.

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 14, flat, Clermont-Ferrand to Lyon, 174.5km.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (till 13 September).

Formula One: Toscana Grand Prix, Mugello Circuit, Florence, Italy (till 13 September).

Rugby Union: French Top 14 – Toulouse v La Rochelle, Bayonne v Clermont Auvergne, Bordeaux Begles v Brive.

Rugby League: Super League – Catalans Dragons v Wigan Warriors.

Golf: USPGA Tour, Safeway Open, Silverado CC North Course, Zephyrhills, Florida (till 13 September), European Tour, Portugal Masters, Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, Quarteira, Portugal (till 13 September).

Sunday, 13 September

Football: English Premier League – West Bromwich Albion v Leicester City, Tottenham Hotspur v Everton, French Ligue 1 – Lille v Metz, Angers v Reims, Dijon v Brst, Lorient v Lens, Nimes v Rennes, Monaco v Nantes, Paris Saint Germain v Marseille, Spanish La Liga – Real Valladolid v Real Sociedad, Villareal v Huesca, Valencia v Levante, German DFB Cup (major clubs) – Chemnitzer FC v 1899 Hoffenheim, FC Eintracht Norderstedt v Bayer 04 Leverkusen, FC Hansa Rostok v VfB Stuttgart, SV Wehen Mannheim v SC Freiburg.

Cycling: Tour de France, Stage 15, mountain, Lyon to Grand Colombier, 174.5km.

Tennis: US Open, USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Centre, Flushing Meadow, New York (final day).

Formula One: Toscana Grand Prix, Mugello Circuit, Florence, Italy (final day).

Cricket: ODI series, England v Australia, Old Trafford, Manchester.

Rugby Union: Wasps v Bristol, Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints, London Irish v Worcester Warriors, Sale v Bath, Saracens v Exeter Chiefs, French Top 14 – Castres v Stade Francais, Toulon v Lyon.

Rugby League: Challenge Cup – Castleford Tigers v Hull FC.

Golf: USPGA Tour, Safeway Open, Silverado CC North Course, Zephyrhills, Florida (final day), European Tour, Portugal Masters, Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, Quarteira, Portugal (final day).

Motorcycling: MotoGP, Grand Prix of San Marino, Misano World Circuit Simoncelli, Misano Adriatico, Rimini, Italy.