Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 1st 2014 Contents A48
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt June 1, 2014
RIO DE JANEIRO---Like other delayed ven-
ues for the beleaguered Rio 2016 Olympics,
work on the golf course has fallen behind
But grass has been going down for several
weeks at the course, which has created an
upbeat mood as golf prepares to return to
the Olympics after a 112-year absence.
That changed Saturday when Rio organisers
confirmed that a state prosecutor could halt
work on the course unless the developer
shows it is following environmental regulations
and other requirements under Brazilian law.
Rio 2016 spokesman Mario Andrada con-
firmed the inquiry on Saturday and said
developers had been asked to provide doc-
umentation that would allow the work to
"The state prosecutor is asking for the
papers to show the work is proceeding accord-
ing to the law," Andrada said. "We believe all
the rules are being followed."
Any delay would be another blow to Rio s
troubled Olympics. The International Olympic
Committee has dispatched a special trou-
bleshooter to accelerate Rio s work, and recent-
ly IOC vice president John Coates called Rio s
preparations were the "worst" in memory.
Construction on the privately-developed
course, located about 25 kilometres (15 miles)
west of Rio s famous Ipanema and Copaca-
bana beaches, had been delayed by an on-
going legal dispute over land ownership,
protests by environmentalists centred on the
loss of a wetland area, and teething problems
for a sport new to Brazil.
Plans call for the course to be public after
the Olympics, although it s being built in a
luxury apartment development where units
are selling for a minimum of $2.5 million with
many priced much, much higher.
In a recent interview with AP, American
golf architect Gil Hanse said the course should
be fully grassed by November, and could be
playable midway through 2015. He said it
would not be "tournament ready" until a few
months before the games begin on August
"I think we are as organised as we have
ever been," he said. "Going forward we have
to make sure we don t all of a sudden start
to rush the finish work. Because ultimately
the details of the finished surface are what
players are going to see. You need to lavish
lots of time and attention on the details of
the finished surfaces."
Hanse said a test event is likely before the
Olympics, although Peter Dawson, head of
the International Golf Federation, suggested
it might be difficult.
The course itself could be dwarfed by what s
going up around it in Barra da Tijuca, the
site for the Olympic Park and many games
Developers plan to build 160 luxury apart-
ments in four 20-story towers overlooking
the course. A key player in the project is Italy-
born Pasquale Mauro, one of the largest
landowners in the Barra area.
The opulent marble and glass units---most
from 266 square metres (2,850 square feet)
to 648 square metres (6,975 square feet)---
are selling for between $2.5 and $7 million
with completion set for a year after the
One building features a 1,308 square-metre
(14,100 square feet) penthouse serviced by
six elevators, two bedrooms for maids, and
one master bedroom for the "governess."
The development will have an Italian
flavour---called Riserva Golf-Vista Mare Res-
idenziale---and is billed in sales literature as
"Rio de Janeiro s most exclusive address."
Among the amenities are squash and tennis
courts, swimming pools in every building, a
50-metre outdoor pool, a golf simulator, ferry
service across the lagoon to the sea, a dance
Work on Olympic golf course could be halted
studio, gym and a multi-purpose court for basketball
or three-man soccer.
"Besides the workout academy, there are five massage
rooms and a martial arts room to help quell day-to-
day tension," the sales literature says.
A spokeswoman for the Rio city government, which
is supervising the private-sector project, said the course
would be public for ten years after the Olympics. It s
not clear how the course will be run after that. (AP)
PARIS---Rafael Nadal s back is giv-
ing him more trouble than his
opponents so far at the French
After pushing his winning streak
at Roland Garros to 31 matches with
a 6-2, 7-5, 6-2 victory over 65th-
ranked Leonardo Mayer of Argentina
in the third round yesterday, eight-
time champion Nadal said his both-
ersome back is forcing him to cut
back on the velocity of his serves.
Nadal s back also acted up in Jan-
uary during his loss to Stan Wawrin-
ka in the Australian Open final.
"During my career, I had (a) few
problems...Hopefully will not be
(the) case" the rest of the way in
Paris, the No. 1-ranked Nadal said.
"I served more slowly since I
started feeling the pain," he said,
noting that he s worn tape on his
back for extra support.
Against Mayer, Nadal averaged
only 102 mph (165 kph) on first
serves, with a top speed of 114 mph
(184 kph). That was down from an
average of 111 mph (179 kph) and
top of 122 mph (197 kph) in the first
round against Robby Ginepri last
Through six sets across his first
two matches, Nadal faced only five
break points and lost serve only
twice. He needed to deal with eight
break points against Mayer, losing
Still, Nadal made only ten
unforced errors all match---two in
the first set, three in the second,
five in the third---and equalled his
longest run at Roland Garros.
But the last time Nadal won 31
in a row in Paris, he failed to get
No. 32, losing in the fourth round
in 2009 to Robin Soderling. That
remains the Spaniard s only defeat
in 63 matches at the tournament.
Nadal has dropped 19 games
heading into his match against 83rd-
ranked Dusan Lajovic of Serbia, who
is in the second major of his career
and beat Jack Sock of the United
States 6-4, 7-5, 6-3. Another
American, Donald Young, lost in
five sets to Guillermo Garcia-Lopez
of Spain, leaving No. 10 John Isner
as the last US man in the field.
Before this French Open, the 23-
year-old Lajovic had a 10-21 career
record in tour-level matches, never
winning two in a row.
Asked whether he would seek
advice from another Serbian, No. 2
Novak Djokovic, before facing Nadal,
Lajovic joked: "Yeah, I will try to
ask everybody (for) some tips."
That won t help if Nadal produces
shots of the sort he did when Mayer
served at 5-all in the second set---
a stretching, scooping backhand lob
As Mayer watched the shot sail
overhead, he waved his left hand to
signal to the ball to go out, then
rolled his eyes when it curled in. At
the other end, Nadal pumped his
fist, ahead 6-5 and well on his way
to reaching the fourth round for the
tenth time in ten trips to Roland
Garros. Roger Federer is the only
other man to make it to the final
16 in Paris that many years in a row.
The man Nadal beat in last year s
final, No. 5 David Ferrer, defeated
No. 32 Andreas Seppi of Italy 6-2,
7-6 (2), 6-3. Ferrer now plays No.
19 Kevin Anderson of South Africa.
No. 23 Gael Monfils of France put
together a 5-7, 6-2, 6-4, 0-6, 6-
2 win over No. 14 Fabio Fognini of
Italy in a wild match that included
a point penalty for Fognini when
he threw his racket and it landed
near a ball boy. Monfils and Fognini
combined for more than twice as
many unforced errors, 137, as win-
Earlier yesterday, No. 15 Sloane
Stephens moved into the fourth
round for the sixth major in a row.
The American now meets No. 4
Simona Halep of Romania. Other
fourth-round matchups: 2009
champion Svetlana Kuznetsova
against No. 23 Lucie Safavora; 2012
runner-up Sara Errani against No.
6 Jelena Jankovic; No. 28 Andrea
Petkovic against 148th-ranked qual-
ifier Kiki Bertens of the Nether-
As the sun came out and the tem-
perature topped 70 degrees (20 Cel-
sius) after several days of overcast
skies and occasional rain, Stephens
eliminated No. 22 Ekaterina Makaro-
va of Russia 6-3, 6-4, while Halep
beat 55th-ranked Maria-Teresa
Torro-Flor of Spain 6-3, 6-0.
Halep is the highest-seeded
woman left, because of losses by
No. 1 Serena Williams, No. 2 Li Na
and No. 3 Agnieszka Radwanska.
Said Halep: "That s a surprise for
Murray, Kohlschreiber stop at 7-
7 in 5th at French
Also yesterday, the third-round
French Open match between Wim-
bledon champion Andy Murray and
28th-seeded Philipp Kohlschreiber
was suspended at 7-all in the fifth
set because of fading light.
There are no artificial lights at
the clay-court Grand Slam tourna-
ment. The match will resume today,
with No. 7 Murray serving.
Murray---who got both upper legs
massaged by a trainer during fifth-
set changeovers---twice was two
points from victory while leading
6-5 as Kohlschreiber served, but
couldn t get closer.
Kohlschreiber then held a break
point at 6-all that Murray erased
with a backhand winner.
Kohlschreiber won the first set
6-3. Murray took the next two 6-
3, 6-3, and Kohlschreiber took the
The match between Richard Gas-
quet and Fernando Verdasco was
suspended with Verdasco leading
6-3, 6-2, 2-2. (AP)
Nadal's back is
at French Open
Spain's Rafael Nadal returns the ball during the third round match of the French Open tennis tournament against
Argentina's Leonardo Mayer at the Roland Garros stadium, Paris, France, yesterday. AP PHOTO
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