DJOKOVIC INTO CINCIN­NATI FI­NAL, FED­ERER IN HIS WAY

The Fresno Bee (Sunday) - - Sports -

No­vak Djokovic is once again so close to the one ti­tle that eludes him. And the same neme­sis is stand­ing in his way, all over again.

It’s a mo­ment in time: Djokovic vs. Fed­erer for a ti­tle.

Djokovic closed in on a Western & South­ern Open ti­tle with his 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 vic­tory over Marin Cilic on Satur­day. Then he watched Roger Fed­erer ad­vance to the fi­nals as well when David Gof­fin re­tired in the sec­ond set with a shoul­der in­jury.

The two tennis greats haven’t faced each other in two years be­cause of in­juries. They’re back for the 18th shared ti­tle match of their ca­reers. Djokovic leads in head-to­head ti­tle matches 11-6. Djokovid leads the over­all series 23-22.

The sec­ond-ranked Fed­erer has won it an un­prece­dented seven times, go­ing 7-for-7 in fi­nals. Three of those wins came over Djokovic, who is 0-5 in the fi­nals. The only player with bet­ter fi­nals re­sults at one tour­na­ment is Rafael Nadal, who is 11-0 in both French Open and Barcelona fi­nals.

On the women’s side, No. 1 Si­mona Halep will play for the ti­tle a sec­ond year in a row, fac­ing Kiki Bertens.

Djokovic is a tan­ta­liz­ing one vic­tory away from the only ATP Masters 1000 ti­tle he’s never claimed. Djokovic is try­ing to be­come the first to win all nine events since the series started in 1990.

In the women’s bracket, Halep reached the fi­nal for a sec­ond straight year, beat­ing Aryna Sa­balenka 6-3, 6-4. Like Djokovic, she’s never won the ti­tle, los­ing both of her chances, in­clud­ing the ti­tle match last year to Gar­bine Mugu­ruza.

Soc­cer

Ron­aldo re­lies on team­mates for win­ning league start at Ju­ven­tus: Cristiano Ron­aldo had to rely on his team­mates to make a win­ning start to his Ju­ven­tus ca­reer. For the thou­sands of fans who de­scended on the medieval city of Verona, this was one of the rare oc­ca­sions when the five-time world player of the year couldn’t score though he came close. Fed­erico Bernarde­schi scored a stop­page­time winner as the Bian­coneri fought back from a goal down to beat Chievo Verona 3-2.

World Cup star Kylian Mbappe’s lethal fin­ish­ing and con­fus­ing VAR de­ci­sions helped Paris Saint-Ger­main to a sec­ond straight win at the start of its French ti­tle de­fense. Mbappe came off the bench to score twice in the 3-1 vic­tory at Guingamp on but the vic­tory was over­shad­owed by a con­tentious VAR de­ci­sion in PSG’s fa­vor, and a seem­ingly clear penalty not given to Guingamp with the scores level.

Cycling

Mas­sachusetts man wins Mount Wash­ing­ton bike race: A 30-year-old Mas­sachusetts man won a bi­cy­cle race up Mount Wash­ing­ton in Pinkham Notch, N.H., the high­est peak in the north­east­ern United States.

Barry Miller, of Beverly, Mass., was the top fin­isher in the Mount Wash­ing­ton Auto Road Bi­cy­cle Hill­climb up the 7.6-mile as­cent to the sum­mit of the 6,288-foot peak in 53 min­utes and 34 sec­onds.

In the women’s race, 40-year-old Aimee Vassee, of Long­mont, Colo., fin­ished the course in 1 hour, 4 min­utes and 5 sec­onds.

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