Kerber and Serena move up as Halep remains on top

Simona Halep retained the No 1 spot in the latest women’s rankings despite losing in the third round at Wimbledon, but below her the upsets at the grass-court major caused turmoil.

Winner Angelique Kerber jumped six places to fourth, while the two women who contested in 2017 final both fell sharply after failing to match that performance.

Venus Williams, the beaten finalist last time, lost in the third round and dropped five places to 14. Reigning champion Garbine Muguruza fell in the second round and lost four places to No 7. NaijaBet

The biggest gainer was Serena Williams who reached the final in just the fourth tournament of her comeback following daughter Olympia’s birth in September and leaped 153 places to 28.

WTA STANDINGS:

1. Simona Halep (ROU) 7571 pts
2. Caroline Wozniacki (DEN) 6740 Continue reading “Kerber and Serena move up as Halep remains on top”

CAF Champions League: Esperance come-from-behind to claim victory

Esperance de Tunis came from two goals down to defeat KCCA 3-2 in a CAF Champions League Group A match at the Olympic Stadium in Rades on Tuesday night.

The victory sees the Tunisians strengthen their grip on top spot, taking them to seven points from three matches and opening up a three-point lead over second-placed Al Ahly, who beat Township Rollers in a concurrent match in Alexandria. Place bet on today’s international clubs Friendlies Matches on NaijaBet

Kampala defied their underdog status by claiming a 2-0 lead within the opening quarter: Jackson Nunda put the East Africans in the 19th minute and shortly thereafter an own goal from Khalil Chemmam saw the East Africans into a strong position.

Esperance pulled a goal back just past the half-hour mark through Belel Magri, and on 33 minutes they were level at 2-2 thanks to Saad Bguir. The Tunisians were strong in attack and regularly tested goalkeeper Charles Lukwago, while KCCA faded as a threat as the half wore on. Continue reading “CAF Champions League: Esperance come-from-behind to claim victory”

Staying at Arsenal for 22 years was a mistake – Wenger

The Frenchman enjoyed plenty of highs during his time in north London but admits that he probably should have looked to take on another challenge

Arsene Wenger concedes that spending 22 years in charge of Arsenal was a mistake, with the Frenchman feeling as though he became “a prisoner of my own challenges”.

Having worked so hard to rebuild the Gunners in his image, the long-serving coach found it difficult to sever ties with the club. Naija and Bet

There were plenty of opportunities for him to walk away, with Real Madrid and England having made several attempts to secure the services of a proven performer.

Wenger also faced fan protests towards the end of his reign, but he eventually departed on his own terms at the end of the 2017-18 season. Continue reading “Staying at Arsenal for 22 years was a mistake – Wenger”

Serena Williams vowed to return stronger

Serena Williams vowed to use the pain of her shock Wimbledon final defeat against Angelique Kerber to fuel her bid for future Grand Slam glory.

Williams was hoping to equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 major titles by winning her eighth Wimbledon crown on Saturday.

But instead, the 36-year-old produced an error-strewn display in a 6-3, 6-3 loss that ranked as her first Wimbledon final defeat since 2008.

While Serena was frustrated by the surprise setback, she took heart from her run to the final in just the fourth tournament of her comeback following daughter Olympia’s birth in September. Place bet on today’s #Tennis games on NaijaBet

“It was such an amazing tournament for me. I was really happy to get this far,” Williams said.

“It’s obviously disappointing, but I cannot be disappointed. I have so much to look forward to and I am just getting started.

“I entered Wimbledon just wanting to win some matches. It was super encouraging to know that I can compete and do well.” Continue reading “Serena Williams vowed to return stronger”

Gerrard gets off to a perfect start with Rangers victory

Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is satisfied with the team’s 2-0 win against FK Shkupi in his first competitive match at the helm but says there is still “a lot of work to do” in the second leg of the Europa League preliminary qualifying round tie.

Goals from winger Jamie Murphy and skipper James Tavernier helped Rangers beat the visiting minnows at the Ibrox Stadium but Gerrard, a former England and Liverpool captain, was underwhelmed that his team did not finish off the tie.

“I’m satisfied with the result, satisfied with parts of the performance but it’s not any better than satisfactory,” the 38-year-old told the club’s website. Place bet on today’s games on NaijaBet

“I think there are a lot of positives to take from the game… but one concern would be that we didn’t win the game a lot more comfortably and put the whole tie to bed tonight. Continue reading “Gerrard gets off to a perfect start with Rangers victory”

Federer out as Nadal set to face Djokovic semi final

Eight-time champion Roger Federer was sensationally knocked out of Wimbledon on Wednesday by South African giant Kevin Anderson while Rafael Nadal edged Juan Martin del Potro in a Centre Court epic and will meet Novak Djokovic in the semifinals.

Defending champion Federer lost a Court One thriller, 2-6, 6-7 (5/7), 7-5, 6-4, 13-11 as 32-year-old Anderson became the first South African in the Wimbledon semifinals since Kevin Curren in 1983.

“Down two sets to love I tried my best to keep fighting. Beating Roger Federer here at Wimbledon will be one I remember, especially in such a close match,” Anderson said. Place Bet on Live tennis matches on NaijaBet

“I kept telling myself to keep believing. I said today is going to be my day.”

In a nail-biting four hour and 13 minute classic, it was 36-year-old Federer’s earliest exit at the All England Club since his shock second round defeat against Sergiy Stakhovsky in 2013.

“Sometimes you don’t feel good, and you try your best. Today was one of those days. I didn’t see it coming,” said Federer.

“I had moments where I was great, I felt like I was reading his serve, other moments where I don’t know where the hell I was moving to.”

Eighth seed Anderson will play American ninth seed John Isner on Friday for a place in Sunday’s final. Continue reading “Federer out as Nadal set to face Djokovic semi final”

Serena sets to win her eighth Wimbledon title

As Serena Williams prepares for her 35th Grand Slam semifinal, the American star says a fear of failure is driving her bid for an eighth Wimbledon title.

Williams avoided a major upset on Tuesday as the former world No 1 battled back to beat unseeded Camila Giorgi 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in a Centre Court thriller.

The 36-year-old’s quarterfinal escape act set up a last-four showdown with German 13th seed Julia Goerges on Thursday.

Serena hasn’t won a Grand Slam since the birth of daughter Olympia in September and her last trophy came at the 2017 Australian Open.

“You’re only as good as your last win. It’s been a while since I’ve won a championship,” Williams said. Place bet on today’s tennis games on NaijaBet

But the 23-time major winner is heavily favoured to end her wait this week, fuelled by the thought of suffering the painful sting left by her rare defeats.

“I hate losing. I mean, that’s no secret. But I feel like every time I lose, I get better,” she said.

“It’s important for me to have the losses. Just the fewer the better for me!” Continue reading “Serena sets to win her eighth Wimbledon title”

Top seed Federer, Zverev and Monfils into last 16

Defending champion Roger Federer advanced to the Wimbledon last 16 without dropping a set after a 6-3 7-5 6-2 win over German Jan-Lennard Struff on Friday.

Federer, seeking a record ninth Wimbledon title, eased through the first set before the big-serving Struff put up more of a fight in the second.

But Federer clinched it with a superb service game that included a wonderful volley at the end of a long rally followed by a winning drive down the line.

The 36-year-old Swiss proceeded to win his 29th consecutive set at the All England Club and wrap up victory on Centre Court in just over one and a half hours. Place bet on LIVE games on NaijaBet

“Against big servers who go for a lot it’s always difficult to find rhythm and be sure that you are in driver’s seat until the match is over,” Federer said.

“I was happy to stay calm and finish off the job. I thought I did very well today. I created more chances in the second set and was always able to stay pretty clean on my own service game.

“It’s a wonderful feeling walking out there, I take every match one at a time, I try to put on a good match, try hard every time, and will never underestimate anybody – that keeps me in check.” Continue reading “Top seed Federer, Zverev and Monfils into last 16”

Belgium sink Brazil to face France semi-final

Neymar’s Brazil crashed out of the World Cup on Friday, failing to erase the pain of their humiliation on home soil four years ago as Belgium beat them 2-1 to set up a semifinal against France.

The five-time champions came to Russia desperate to make amends for their stunning 7-1 semi-final defeat on home soil to Germany in 2014.

But they were outplayed and out-thought by the fleet-footed European side in Kazan, with Premier League stars Kevin De Bruyne, Romelu Lukaku and Eden Hazard marauding forward at will in the first half before showing impressive resilience in the second. Place bet on today’s games on NaijaBet

“These boys deserve to be heroes in Belgium,” said Belgium coach Roberto Martinez. “The execution of the tactics was magnificent.

“It is special and we can’t let the people of Belgium down. We can pass that down the generations – beating Brazil.”

Coming into the match, Martinez acknowledged the gulf in World Cup pedigree between his side, who have never been further than the semifinals, and their illustrious rivals. Continue reading “Belgium sink Brazil to face France semi-final”

NAIJABET INSTANT SETTLEMENT OF FUNDS USING UNIQUE FIRSTBANK & mCASH  USSD CODES

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Sharapova, Kvitova crash out Wimbledon; Nadal, Djokovic win

Maria Sharapova suffered her first opening-round Wimbledon defeat and earliest Grand Slam exit in eight years on Tuesday when she was shocked by fellow Russian Vitalia Diatchenko, the world No 132.

Sharapova, the 2004 champion, was joined at the exit by 2011 and 2014 winner Petra Kvitova who was stunned by Belarusian world No 50 Aliaksandra Sasnovich.

However, two-time men’s champion Rafael Nadal and three-time winner Novak Djokovic eased into the second round. Place bet on today’s tennis games on NaijaBet

Sharapova was cruising to victory at one stage on Court Two with a set and 5-2 lead before qualifier Diatchenko shrugged off a back injury to win 6-7 (3/7), 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 after more than three hours of tense action.

Sharapova, playing Wimbledon for the first time in three years after missing 2016 through a drugs ban and 2017 due to injury, gave up the match on her 11th double fault.

It was her earliest exit at a Slam since a first round defeat at the 2010 Australian Open. Continue reading “Sharapova, Kvitova crash out Wimbledon; Nadal, Djokovic win”

Federer ready to start Wimbledon opener with high spirit

Reigning champion and top seed Roger Federer will begin his 20th consecutive Wimbledon campaign on Monday but the Swiss ace says he still feels nervous at the thought of playing the opening match of the tournament on Centre Court.

Federer made his Wimbledon debut in 1999 and is a favourite to win a record-extending ninth title there this year and yet the 36-year-old Swiss said he was not immune to the grandeur of the opening day.

“I think it remains a little bit nerve-racking… It’s a big deal. I mean, besides the history and the mythical place that it is, you cannot also practise on it,” Federer told reporters. Bet Now on NaijaBet

“When you come out, there’s a bit of uncertainty for both players… The entire atmosphere changes at Wimbledon, and you realise the eyes are on you. That naturally makes you a bit nervous.

“Basically the first one on the show court, it’s always a lot to ask for from the players but I love it. It’s a massive honour. You try to do your best.”

The 20-times grand-slam winner faces Serbian Dusan Lajovic in the first round and believes his big-match experience can guide him through a tricky opening encounter. Continue reading “Federer ready to start Wimbledon opener with high spirit”

Serena Williams is back at Wimbledon seeking eighth title

Four weeks on from her run to the last 16 at the French Open, Serena Williams is back at Wimbledon, having missed last year’s event as she prepared for the birth of her daughter.

Ranked 183 after just three tournaments back, the seven-time champion will go into Wimbledon as the 25th seed, the seeding committee having deviated from the WTA ranking list, an exception because she is coming back after maternity leave.

Having pulled out before her fourth-round match in Paris with a pectoral injury, Williams did not play a warm-up event on grass. Instead she arrived early at Wimbledon and has been practising hard under the eye of her coach Patrick Mouratoglou.

Such is the aura the American brings with her to south west London, British bookmakers make her second favourite for the title, behind the two-time champion, Petra Kvitova. Bet Now

Three months short of her 37th birthday, it is 16 years since she first won Wimbledon and as she continues to regain full fitness, she knows an eighth title is a big ask.

“Roland Garros was a mountain way steeper than the other mountains I’ve climbed,” she told her documentary, Being Serena, which is being streamed on Eurosport Player.

“And….I can honestly say that I didn’t enjoy all the demands and all the tugging. Continue reading “Serena Williams is back at Wimbledon seeking eighth title”

Sporting sacked Mihajlovic after just nine days

Crisis-hit Sporting Lisbon on Wednesday fired coach Sinisa Mihajlovic just nine days after he was apppointed by former club president Bruno de Carvalho.

“Sporting have decided to end his probationary period and cancel his contract,” said Jose Sousa Cintra, the club’s new president at a press conference. Play Bet on Virtual  Games on NaijaBet 24/7

“We will quickly seek a new coach, who should be presented by Monday.”

Mihajlovic was recruited on a three-year contract by De Carvalho on June 18, five days before his dismissal by a general meeting of club members.

The crisis at the club began when Sporting lost a Europa League game to Atletico Madrid in April and De Carvalho tweeted ferocious criticism of the players. Continue reading “Sporting sacked Mihajlovic after just nine days”

Federer starts Halle campaign with a victory

Roger Federer began his last week of pre-Wimbledon competition with a 6-3, 6-4 defeat of Slovene Aljaz Bedene on Tuesday to reach the second round of the ATP Halle grass event.

The world No 1 needs to lift a record 10th title on Sunday in order to remain at the summit of the rankings and assure himself the top seeding at Wimbledon starting a week from Monday.

Federer’s straightforward victory in 71 minutes marked his 17th straight on the grass dating to June, 2017, when he lost in Stuttgart to Tommy Haas. Place bet on today’s tennis games on NaijaBet

The Halle defending champion, who has a laneway leading to the stadium named in his honour, has won exactly half of his 18 grass trophies at the wooded north German venue.

Federer took back the top ranking from Rafael Nadal for the second time this season last week in Stuttgart as he returned to competition for the first time in three months after avoiding the clay season to prepare fully for the grass.

The 36-year-old Swiss got off to an early break in the opening set against the 72nd-ranked Bedene, who briefly played for Britain. Continue reading “Federer starts Halle campaign with a victory”

US, Mexico and Canada win right to host 2026 World Cup

The United States, Mexico and Canada won the right to host the 2026 World Cup after easily beating Morocco in a vote by FIFA member nations on Wednesday.

The North American bid received 134 of the 203 votes, while Morocco polled 65 in the ballot at a FIFA Congress held in Moscow on the eve of the 2018 World Cup.

Football’s showpiece event will return to the North American continent for the first time since 1994 when the United States hosted the tournament.

Delegates had been faced with a clear choice — the joint North American bid boasts modern, established stadiums and well-developed transport links underpinned by Mexican football fervour. Naija and Bet

Morocco, on the other hand, promised a “European” World Cup in Africa, playing on the north African nation’s proximity to Europe. Continue reading “US, Mexico and Canada win right to host 2026 World Cup”

Thiem hails “awesome” Rafael Nadal after final defeat

Dominic Thiem hailed Rafael Nadal’s “awesome” 11th French Open title after suffering a straight-sets defeat by the king of clay in the final at Roland Garros on Sunday.

The Austrian pushed Nadal hard early on but his spirit appeared crushed when the Spaniard won his service game to love to secure the first set, going on to win 6-4 6-3 6-2.

Dejected but gracious in defeat, Thiem told Nadal and the Philippe Chatrier court that his extended record for the most men’s Grand Slam wins at any tournament was “one of the most awesome things in sport. Congrats. Bravo.”

Thiem arrived in Paris in hot form, having picked up more Tour-level wins than any player in 2018 and beaten Nadal in the Madrid Open quarterfinals last month, snapping Nadal’s 21-match winning streak and his run of 50 straight sets won on clay. Place bet on today’s tennis games on NaijaBet

But beating an imperious Nadal at his favourite slam was too big an ask for the 24-year-old.

“To me it’s still been two great weeks,” Thiem told the Philippe Chatrier centre court and his opponent. Continue reading “Thiem hails “awesome” Rafael Nadal after final defeat”

Nadal reach 11th French Open semifinal

Rafael Nadal insisted he still “feels pressure” and is “only human”, after battling back from a set down to beat Diego Schwartzman on Thursday and set up a French Open semifinal clash with Juan Martin del Potro.

The 10-time champion was much-improved under the sunshine on Court Philippe Chatrier after finding life difficult the night before, clinching a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 victory over dogged Argentinian Schwartzman on his fourth match point.

It is the 11th time the 32-year-old Spaniard has reached the French Open last four, becoming only the third man in history to achieve the feat at a Grand Slam tournament, after Jimmy Connors at the US Open and Roger Federer at Wimbledon and the Australian Open. Latest today’s tennis odds are available on NaijaBet

“I don’t have any obligation to win, first thing. Second thing, if you don’t feel the pressure, it’s because you don’t love the sport,” said Nadal, who has never failed to win the title in Paris after reaching the semifinals.

Pressure is good. You are able to control that. That pressure, that adrenaline, can be in a positive way.

The 16-time Grand Slam champion was pushed for three hours and 42 minutes by 11th seed Schwartzman, but will face Del Potro for a place in the final after the fifth seed downed Marin Cilic 7-6 (7/5), 5-7, 6-3, 7-5. Continue reading “Nadal reach 11th French Open semifinal”

Anderson not underestimating Schwartzman in Paris

Kevin Anderson will tower over French Open fourth round opponent Diego Schwartzman on Monday but the big South African insists the Argentine’s short stature should not be interpreted as a weakness.

World No 7 Anderson, at 6ft 1in (2.02m), faces 5 ft 7in (1.7m) Schwartzman, bidding to make the quarterfinals for the first time in Paris.

On paper, it should be straightforward.

Anderson, the first South African man to make the US Open final in 52 years when he finished runner-up to Rafael Nadal in 2017, has a 2-0 record over Schwartzman.

One of those wins came on clay in Nice in 2016. Which games are you looking  to today, Bet Now NaijaBet

At this year’s French Open, Anderson has fired 57 aces and been broken just twice while Schwartzman has just nine aces.

But the Argentine has won all three rounds in straight sets while Anderson needed four to see off Pablo Cuevas and Mischa Zverev. Continue reading “Anderson not underestimating Schwartzman in Paris”

Nadal, Cilic, Del Potro through to French Open third round

Reigning champion Rafael Nadal bludgeoned his way into the French Open third round with a 6-2 6-1 6-1 defeat of outclassed Argentine Guido Pella on Thursday.

With rain showers forecast at Roland Garros the 31-year-old wasted no time on Court Suzanne Lenglen after saving four break points in the first game against the 78th-ranked Pella.

Once that early danger had been snuffed out Nadal offered up a masterclass against his fellow left-hander and his forehand was too hot for Pella to handle. Latest tennis games odds are Available on NaijaBet

The Spanish world No 1 has now won his last 27 sets at Roland Garros, having captured a 10th title last year without dropping a set.

Next in the firing line for Nadal is Frenchman Richard Gasquet.

CILIC INTO THE THIRD ROUND

Third seed Marin Cilic reached the French Open third round for the eighth time with a 6-2, 6-2, 6-7 3/7), 7-5 win over Polish qualifier and world number 188 Hubert Hurkacz. Continue reading “Nadal, Cilic, Del Potro through to French Open third round”

Halep, Kvitova, Svitolina reach French Open third round

World No 1 and top seed Simona Halep recovered from a disastrous first set to reach the French Open second round on Wednesday with a 2-6, 6-1, 6-1 win over Alison Riske of the United States.

Halep, the runner-up in Paris in 2014 and 2017, slumped 0-5 down in the opening set to world No 83 Riske whose only win at the tournament came in 2014.

The Romanian committed 16 unforced errors in the set but stepped up a gear from that point on to book a second-round match against Taylor Townsend of the United States.

“It’s always difficult in the first round of a Grand Slam, you are always nervous,” said Halep whose opening round match had been cancelled on Tuesday due to torrential rain. Place bet on today’s fixtures on NaijaBet

“But I started to run more, played better and kept more balls in play.”

Halep needs to reach the semifinals or better if she is to retain the world top spot. Continue reading “Halep, Kvitova, Svitolina reach French Open third round”

Lampard appoint as new Derby County manager

Former Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard has been appointed as manager of Championship side Derby County, with the second-tier side announcing the 39-year-old had agreed to a three-year deal on Thursday.

Lampard, who was capped 106 times by England between 1999 and 2014, won three Premier League titles, four FA Cups and one Champions League with Chelsea and will be taking his first steps into senior management.

“I’ve always wanted to manage a club with a big tradition and history like Derby County, so this is a huge opportunity,” Lampard said on the club’s website. Place bet on today’s games on NaijaBet 

“We want to build on the club’s top-six finish in the Championship last season, while at the same time bringing through some of the excellent youth and academy talent we have at Pride Park.”

Halep kicks off French Open campaign on day four

World No 1 Simona Halep, chasing a maiden Grand Slam crown, will begin her French Open campaign against American Alison Riske on Wednesday.

The 26-year-old Romanian’s first-round match was postponed on Tuesday because of a rain-affected schedule on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

Halep, twice runner-up at Roland Garros, will likely face the daunting prospect of playing for two days in succession to catch up with the rest of the women’s draw. Place bet on today’s tennis matches on NaijaBet

Australian Open champion Caroline Wozniacki is up against Spain’s Georgina Garcia Perez in the second round, while fourth seed Elina Svitolina takes on Viktoria Kuzmova of Slovakia. Continue reading “Halep kicks off French Open campaign on day four”

Nadal begins french open title defense against Bolelli

World No 1 Rafael Nadal begins his French Open title defence on Monday with a clash against Italy’s Simone Bolelli on Court Philippe-Chatrier.

Novak Djokovic, looking to get back to winning ways on the biggest stage following elbow surgery, takes on unseeded Brazilian Rogerio Dutra Silva.

Dominic Thiem, one of the players capable of denying Spaniard Nadal a record-extending 11th title at Roland Garros, opens his campaign on Court One against Ilya Ivashka of Belarus.

Five-time grand slam champion Maria Sharapova is also in action, with the Russian taking on Richel Hogenkamp of the Netherlands on Court Suzanne-Lenglen.

Click this link to place bet on Live Tennis matches 

French Open organizers are punishing Serena Williams for having a baby

The decision by French Open organisers not to grant Serena Williams a seeding on her long-awaited Grand Slam return has prompted renewed focus on the sport’s policy towards female players and parenthood.

“French Open is punishing Serena Williams for having a baby” read a USA report headline, arguing an exception for the 23-time major winner should be made for Thursday’s draw.

At 36, the American is looking to regain her top form following the birth of her daughter last September. After sitting out of competition for over a year, she no longer had a ranking upon her return to the WTA circuit in March. Place bet on NaijaBet Virtual games online

She has played just four matches this season across appearances at Indian Wells and Miami. But her results, far from convincing, have only been good enough to climb to 449th in the world rankings.

With a ranking so low, no player would typically even be able to take part in qualifying for the main draw. That is unless benefiting from a wildcard or using a protected ranking, which has at least allowed Williams direct entrance into the field. Continue reading “French Open organizers are punishing Serena Williams for having a baby”