World Sports News in Brief

Djokovic wins fifth Italian Open to make Masters history

Tuesday, 2020-09-22 10:35:30
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Novak Djokovic celebrates his fifth Italian Open trophy. (Reuters)
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World number one Novak Djokovic overcame a sluggish start to lift his fifth Italian Open title on Monday, defeating Argentine Diego Schwartzman 7-5 6-3 for a record 36th ATP Masters crown.

* Top seed Simona Halep gave her French Open preparations a boost when she claimed the Italian Open in Rome on Monday after second seed Karolina Pliskova retired from the final with injury when she was down 6-0 2-1. Victory gave Halep her first title in Rome and her third consecutive title of the year after wins in Dubai - before the COVID-19 hiatus - and Prague last month.

* Aston Villa got their season up and running with a laboured 1-0 home win against 10-man Sheffield United on Monday as Ezri Konsa's second-half header proved enough to settle a dour game.

* Next month's Eifel Grand Prix at Germany's F1 racing track Nuerburgring can have as many as 20,000 fans in attendance, local authorities said on Monday (Sep 21), with the region's coronavirus infections under control.

* Manchester City got their Premier League campaign off to a flying start with a 3-1 win at Wolverhampton Wanderers thanks to first-half goals by Kevin De Bruyne and Phil Foden plus a late Gabriel Jesus strike on Monday (Sep 21).

* Aston Villa have signed Burkina Faso international Bertrand Traore from Olympique Lyonnais for EUR18.4 million (16.88 million pounds) plus up to EUR2.2 million in incentives, the Ligue 1 club announced on Monday.

* AC Milan's veteran forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic scored twice and missed an open goal as he secured a 2-0 win over Bologna to get their Serie A campaign off to a winning start on Monday.

* An equaliser from Baghdad Bounedjah two minutes from time earned Qatar's Al Sadd a 1-1 draw with Al Nassr in Doha on Monday which saw them progress to the last 16 of the Asian Champions League along with their Saudi opponents.

* Barcelona striker Luis Suarez has agreed a deal with the club to end his contract and settled on personal terms with Atletico Madrid, according to reports in Spain on Monday.

* Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) president Luis Rubiales was re-elected unopposed, with a new four-year mandate, the federation said on Monday. Spain's former World Cup-winning captain Iker Casillas withdrew his candidacy in June, citing the coronavirus pandemic as a reason.

* Sporting announced on Monday they will re-name their academy after former attacker and five-time Ballon d'Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo. Ronaldo, who scored in Juventus' first Serie A game of the season on Sunday (Sep 20), joined the capital city side aged 12.

* Croatia midfielder Ivan Rakitic has called time on his international career with the 2018 World Cup runners-up, he said on Monday (Sep 20). Rakitic, who made 106 appearances and scored 15 goals for his country, discussed the decision with national captain Luka Modric, coach Zlatko Dalic and Croatian Football Association president Davor Suker.

* Stan Wawrinka has split with his long-time coach Magnus Norman, the man who helped him win three Grand Slam titles, the Swiss player announced on Monday (Sep 21). Wawrinka posted a message on Instagram saying his eight-year alliance with the Swede was over.

* Arsenal have signed Iceland goalkeeper Runar Alex Runarsson from Ligue 1 club Dijon on a four-year deal, the Premier League club said on Monday. Arsenal did not disclose the transfer fee but British media reported that they paid 1.5 million pounds for the 25-year-old, who played 13 games in all competitions for Dijon last season.

* The Premier League's latest round of COVID-19 tests produced three positive results, it said in a statement on Monday. There were 1,574 players and staff tested for the novel coronavirus from Sept. 14-20 at the top flight clubs.

Reuters, CNA