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Serena defends her integrity: ‘I have never cheated in my life’

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London :Serena Williams said she did not know her coach was giving her instructions and had “never cheated in her life” after her hopes of winning a 24th Grand Slam title ended in extraordinary scenes at the US Open.
The American received three code violations, including a game penalty for verbal abuse, from chair umpire Carlos Ramos in the final, where she was beaten by Japan’s Naomi Osaka 6-2, 6-4.
After Williams lost the first set to the Japanese 20th seed, Ramos gave Williams the first code violation in the form of a warning early in the second set for getting instructions from her coach Patrick Mouratoglou.
Mouratoglou later said he had been giving her instructions, but added he did not think Williams had looked in his direction. He said Osaka’s coach Sascha Bajin had also been giving his player advice.
“If I’m honest I was coaching, I don’t think she looked at me,” Mouratoglou told ESPN. “Sascha was coaching every point too.”
Out on court, an unsettled Williams protested her innocence, telling Ramos: “I don’t cheat to win. I’d rather lose. I’m just letting you know.”
She added in her post-match news conference that she had asked Mouratoglou why he said he was coaching her.
“I just texted Patrick, like, ‘What is he talking about?'” Williams told reporters. “I’m trying to figure out why he would say that.”
Williams continued protesting to Ramos during a changeover but returned to break Osaka’s serve to go 3-1 up in the second set.
But Osaka broke back in the next game and the American smashed her racket in frustration, earning a second code violation and a one-point deduction from Ramos.
The deduction enraged Williams and she screamed at Ramos at the next changeover, drawing the game penalty after she called him a thief.
“I have never cheated in my life,” she said. “I have a daughter and I stand for what’s right for her. I’ve never cheated, and you owe me an apology.
“You will never be on another court of mine as long as you live. Say it. Say you’re sorry.
“And you stole a point from me. You’re a thief.”
Afterwards, Williams said Ramos had never taken a game from a man for calling him a thief and referenced Alize Cornet being given a code violation for changing her shirt on court earlier in the tournament as an another example of double standards within the game.
“I can’t sit here and say I wouldn’t say he’s a thief, because I thought he took a game from me,” she said. “But I’ve seen other men call other umpires several things.
“I’m here fighting for women’s rights and for women’s equality and for all kinds of stuff. For me to say ‘thief’ and for him to take a game, it made me feel like it was a sexist remark.
“He’s never taken a game from a man because they said ‘thief’. For me it blows my mind. But I’m going to continue to fight for women and to fight for us to have equal — like Cornet should be able to take off her shirt without getting a fine.


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Yadav, Dhawan help India beat Kiwis by 8 wickets

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Napier:After Kuldeep Yadav bagged a four-wicket haul, opener Shikhar Dhawan struck a blistering unbeaten knock of 75 runs as India thrashed New Zealand by eight wickets in the first ODI of the five-match series at the McLean Park in Napier.

Chasing a lowly target of revised target of 156 runs to win after sun outrage delayed the play, openers Rohit Sharma and Shikhar Dhawan made a positive start to India chase as th duo shared a crucial 41-run stand for the first wicket before the former was dismissed for 24 runs.

Dhawan then joined forces with Indian skipper Virat Kohli and the Indian opener not only struck his 26th ODI fifty off 69 balls but also shared a good 91-run partnership to bring India on verge of victory.

 

After Kohli (45) fell just five runs short of his half-century, Dhawan and Rayudu helped India cross the mark in 34.5 overs.

Earlier, New Zealand had won the toss and opted to bat first.

Kuldeep Yadav tore apart the hosts’ batting order, finishing with brilliant figures of four for 39. Mohammed Shami also took three wickets while Yuzvendra Chahal and Kedar Jadhav chipped in with two and a wicket, respectively as India bundled out New Zealand for 157 runs.

India, who have taken a 1-0 lead in the series, will now play their second ODI against New Zealand on January 26 at Bay Oval.

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On-field taunt could land Sarfraz Ahmed in the dock

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London: Sarfraz Ahmed could be in serious trouble after he was caught on the broadcast stump mics making what seemed to be a racist comment against Andile Phehlukwayo.

Halfway through the 37th over of South Africa’s tense chase in the second ODI in Durban, Phehlukwayo inside-edged a Shaheen Afridi delivery to deep fine leg for a single. He was on 50 at the time and as he ran off to the non-striker’s end, Sarfraz was caught clearly on the stump mics saying, in Urdu: “Abey kaale, teri ammi aaj kahaan baitheen hain? Kya parwa ke aaye hai aaj?”.

Translated literally that is: “Hey black guy, where’s your mother sitting today? What [prayer] have you got her to say for you today?”

 

On commentary, Mike Haysman asked Ramiz Raja, “What’s he saying there Ramiz?”

“Difficult really to translate that,” Ramiz replied. “It’s a big long sentence.”

Phehlukwayo had enjoyed considerable fortune through the innings, not least when successfully reviewing an on-field lbw dismissal and a dropped catch in the over before this incident. Pakistan’s players had come hard at him early on, though in the post-match presentation he said, “it was good chat”.

Any disciplinary action can be instigated by the match officials. Potentially, if action is to be taken, it will be up to the match officials to decide whether they view Sarfraz’s comments under the ICC code of conduct for player behaviour or the ICC’s anti-racism code. Article 2.13 of the regular code covers the use of insulting or obscene and offensive language used by players against another in the regular code of conduct. But it says: “This offence is not intended to cover any use of language that is likely to offend another person on the basis of their race, religion, gender, colour, descent, national or ethnic origin.

“Such conduct is prohibited under the ICC’s Anti-Racism Code and must be dealt with according to the procedures set out therein.”

In the Anti-Racism code, in place since October 2012, an offence is described as “any conduct (whether through the use of language, gestures or otherwise) which is likely to offend, insult, humiliate, intimidate, threaten, disparage or vilify any reasonable person in the position of a Player, Player Support Personnel, Umpire, Match Referee, Umpire Support Personnel or any other person (including a spectator) on the basis of their race, religion, culture, colour, descent, national or ethnic origin.”

Phehlukwayo had a memorable day in any case, his unbeaten 69 part of an unbroken 127-run stand that steered South Africa home after they had wobbled to 80 for 5. And earlier in the day his 4 for 22, including the crucial wicket of Sarfraz, helped bowl Pakistan out for 203.

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I told East Bengal they will not win the league: Aucho

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Mumbai:Churchill Brothers midfielder Khalid Aucho had spent two months with East Bengal in a short stint last season. However, he feels that his former side does not have a squad that has the capability to win the I-League.

“I told East Bengal they will not win the league because you (they) change the team every time. To win a league, you must build a team with 11 to 15 players in the same team for at least two years,” he expressed in a chat with Goal.

The Ugandan, who earned himself a fair bit of recognition among the Red and Golds’ faithful, was roped in as a late signing by East Bengal ahead of the 2018 Super Cup and only played four matches in the competition with the team failing at the final hurdle against Bengaluru FC.

 

He had fared well in defensive midfield, which was a troublesome position for the Kolkata giants last season. But he did not sign for the Red and Golds this season and explained why.

“They (East Bengal) were offering me the same salary. So I said ‘No, I am not the same person if you want to give me that money.’ I told them that I will play somewhere else because I believe in my ability,” Aucho revealed as East Bengal turned towards Kassim Aidara.

The 25-year-old has since joined Churchill Brothers in the current season wherein he has clocked 990 minutes in the I-League from his 11 starts and scored twice.

“(This season) we (Churchill Brothers) want to win the league, Chennai City wants to win the league, Real Kashmir wants to win the league. If they (East Bengal) win, congrats to them, but I don’t think they can win this league. They must first start keeping the players. If they have that team, they have to continue with it for next season,” Aucho stated.

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