Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 7th 2015 Contents A44
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, September 7, 2015
NEW YORK---Serena Williams
is three wins away from com-
pleting the first Grand Slam since
1988 after a crisp straight-set vic-
tory over young American Madi-
The 21-time major champion
had been getting off to slow starts
recently but was focused from the
beginning yesterday, winning 6-
3, 6-3 in just 68 minutes in the
fourth round. She faces sister
Venus in the quarterfinals.
The 20-year-old Keys nearly
matched Williams booming serve
for booming serve but made just
enough mistakes. She had 19
unforced errors to just six for
Williams, including six double-
faults --- most of them coming at
inopportune times, including
match point. We've all seen this
before from Venus. It's just been
a while. Serving well and hitting
groundstrokes cleanly, Williams
reached the U.S. Open quarterfinals
for the first time since 2010, set-
ting up a showdown against her
younger sister, by beating 19-year-
old qualifier Anett Kontaveit of
Estonia 6-2, 6-1.
It was about as quick and lop-
sided as a fourth-round Grand
Slam match tends to get, taking
only 50 minutes. The 23rd-seeded
Williams won 21 of 25 first-serve
points, faced merely one break
point --- saving it, in the last game
--- and committed just nine
unforced errors, 12 fewer than her
After that, Williams had a deci-
sion to make: How much of the
next match in Arthur Ashe Sta-
dium, Serena Williams vs. Madison
Keys, was she going to watch? That
winner would move on to face
Venus in the round of eight.
"I get very nervous, because even
if I have to play Serena, I still want
her to win, so I have a hard time
watching unless she's winning.
Then it's easy to watch," said
Venus, who won U.S. Open titles
in 2000 and 2001, but had lost in
the third round or earlier each of
the past four years. "So it depends
on how my nerves, are and I hope
we can play in the quarterfinals."
Venus, 35, is about 15 months
older than Serena, who headed
into her all-American matchup
against the 19th-seeded Keys hop-
ing to keep alive her bid for a cal-
endar-year Grand Slam, something
last accomplished 27 years ago by
Steffi Graf. "I'm so proud of Serena,
and I think she's proud of me,"
"We inspire each other."Earlier,
defending champion Marin Cilic
overcame a tweaked right ankle
thanks in large part to 23 aces,
returning to the quarterfinals by
eliminating 27th-ranked Jeremy
Chardy of France 6-3, 2-6, 7-6
The ninth-seeded Cilic rolled
his ankle early in the second set
but seemed to be moving fine by
late in the third, which he ended
with a down-the-line backhand
passing winner on the run.
"First couple games weren't easy.
I was conscious about it," Cilic
said about his ankle. "It was caus-
ing a bit of trouble."
But when ace after ace arrives,
movement isn't as important.
"They key today," Cilic said,
"was finding my rhythm on the
serve." Now there's an understate-
ment. He smacked serves at up to
132 mph, relying on that shot to
carry him in the pivotal third-set
tiebreaker, when Cilic hit four
serves: 120 mph ace, 131 mph ace,
123 mph ace, 112 mph ace.
Next up for the Croatian is a
matchup against 19th-seeded Jo-
Wilfried Tsonga of France, whose
serve has been just as good, if not
better, so far.
Through four matches, Tsonga
has not only never dropped a set,
he hasn't even been broken once,
saving the only two break points
Tsonga didn't have to deal with
any break chances Sunday, defeat-
ing another Frenchman, 41st-
ranked Benoit Paire, 6-4, 6-3, 6-
4. The 2008 Australian Open
runner-up, Tsonga has reached at
least the semifinals at every major
tournament except the U.S. Open.
powered up the final ascent of
the mountainous 15th stage of
the Spanish Vuelta to reduce
Fabio Aru's overall lead to just
one second yesterday.
Rodriguez attacked over the last
two kilometers (1.2 miles), riding
high off his seat and breaking into
a smile as Nairo Quintana faded
and Aru also dropped behind, leav-
ing the Spaniard alone to crest the
grueling peak. He finished the
175.8-kilometer (109.2-mile) ride,
culminating at the Sotres catego-
ry-one summit, in 4 hours, 33
minutes, 31 seconds.
Aru was fifth across the line, 15
seconds behind. Adding the 10-
second bonus for Rodriguez's stage
win, the Italian just saved the
leader's red jersey for Monday's
third consecutive stage with a
summit finish in the northern
It was the 36-year-old
Rodriguez's first stage win of this
Vuelta and his ninth career stage
win at the three-week Grand Tour.
"I had been looking for this during
the entire Vuelta," said the Katusha
leader, who also won two stages
at this summer's Tour de France.
"We are in a perfect position only
one second behind Aru. The
strongest rider will win this. My
feelings are good."
Dutchman Tom Dumoulin fell
from third overall to fourth, now
1 minute, 25 seconds back. Rafal
Majka of Poland finished the stage
second to move into third place in
the general classification, one sec-
ond in front of Dumoulin.
Dumoulin has so far stayed in
contention in the mountains, with
one more tough stage to go before
a rest day.
Dumoulin, the time-trial bronze
medalist at the 2014 world cham-
pionships, could make a grab for
the red jersey in the 17th stage
individual time trial.
Rodriguez previously said
Dumoulin had become the favorite
after Chris Froome withdrew due
to injury, and he stuck by that pre-
diction on Sunday.
"I think he is doing it on pur-
pose, marking his own pace,"
Rodriguez said about Dumoulin.
Aru agreed, saying "Dumoulin is
Monday's stage stays in the
northern mountains, taking riders
through 185 kilometers (115 miles)
from Luarca to a summit finish at
Ermita de Alba.
The 21-stage race ends in
Madrid on Sept. 13.
RIO DE JANEIRO---The second day of
an Olympic canoeing test event on
Saturday brought more complaints
about weeds floating in Rio de
Janeiro's polluted course, with
canoeists saying it was too shallow
and needed to be dredged.
The Rodrigo de Freitas Lagoon is also
the venue for rowing in next year's
The lagoon in central Rio has been
the focus of concern --- along with sep-
arate venues for sailing, triathlon, and
open-water swimming --- since The
Associated Press published its own
independent study six weeks ago show-
ing high viral levels from sewage con-
tamination in all of Rio's Olympic water
"One of the things that's clear is that
the race course must be cleared," Por-
tuguese canoeist Fernando Pimenta
said. "Remove as much weed as pos-
Canoeists complained that the
aquatic weeds were getting caught in
rudders and hung up on their paddles,
making fair racing impossible.
Simon Toulson, general secretary of
the International Canoe Federation,
said this would not happen in the
Olympics where weeds would be cut
Toulson blamed the weed growth on
warm weather in Rio's winter, though
others speculate it's related to pollu-
On Friday, German canoeist Franziska
Weber described the water as "red and
brown. It's not the typical water color."
German canoeist Max Hoff lost a
1,000-meter race Saturday that Pimen-
ta won, and said he got tangled in
"The Olympic Games is the most
important race we have all of the year,"
Hoff said. "And for that, we should
have the best conditions we can get."
Hoff also said the lagoon was too
shallow __ he estimated 2 meters deep
and said rules specified it must be twice
that deep --- and too windy.
"They have to make a fence --- 1,000
meters long --- along both sides of the
course, that if there (is) wind starting
we can go into this lane," Hoff said.
Canoeists said they tried to take pre-
cautions with the contaminated water,
cleaning their paddles and hands and
limiting contact with the water.
The lagoon in central Rio registered
the highest viral readings in AP's study
with a low of 17.3 million viruses per
liter, and a high just over 1 billion.
Water experts contacted by AP said
a level of 1,000 per liter would be con-
sidered "highly alarming."
Carlos Nuzman, head of the Rio
organizing committee, said several days
ago that viral testing would be done in
Rio's waters. He did not say when.
This was a reversal after previously
saying --- along with the International
Olympic Committee --- that bacterial
testing was sufficient.
Organizers said, however, that they
would not move any of the venues no
matter what the viral tests showed.
event hit with
worries over weeds
Venus to face
Serena in quarters
Rodriguez cuts Aru lead to one second
Katusha's Team Joaquin Rodriguez of Spain drinks sparkling wine on
the podium after winning the 145th stage between Comillas and
Sotres Cabrales, 175,8 kilometres (109 miles), of the Spanish Vuelta
cycling race that finish in Sotres Cabrales, northern Spain, yesterday
Venus Williams, of the United States, serves to Anett Kontaveit, of
Estonia, during the fourth round of the U.S. Open tennis tournament,
yesterday in New York. AP PHOTO
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