Mar 242018

Jelena Ostapenko proved to be once again the source of delightful moments on the tennis court. The Roland Garros champion revealed deft piece of footwork at Miami Open during the match against Timea Babos whom she defeated 6-4, 6-4.

jelena ostapenko

Jelena Ostapeno (pic: wikimedia commons)

When her opponent served, Ostapenko moved like she was following some dance rhythms, fact which was also noticed by her new coach, David Taylor, who tried to make some suggestions during an on-court coaching.

Taylor: “When returning stay calm”
Ostapenko: “But I wanna do this (“making dancing moves”)

In the end the coach had to get used to the idea that she likes to dance and there’s nothing he can do about.

Photo credit: By Carine06 from UK (Jelena Ostapenko) [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Feb 122018

South Korean officials have confirmed that a cyber attack occurred during the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang Olympic Games. The hack attempt hit a number of systems, but fortunately no critical element became inoperable.

Pyeongchang 2018

Winter Olympics venue in Pyeongchang (pic: Pyeongchang2018)

The organizers did not want to clearly say who carried out the attack, but there are two primary suspects: North Korea -the historic enemy-, and Russia -the country excluded from the 2018 Winter Olympics because of its intense doping program.

Internet and TV-related systems were reportedly affected by the attack, but organizers say critical infrastructure wasn’t compromised.

The 2018 Winter Olympic Games are held in Pyeongchang, just 80 km from the North Korean border, and everyone has initially turned eyes on the northern neighbour famous for its long streak of IT attacks.

Another suspect possibly linked to the hack is Russia, the country that did not get the permission to take part in the Games with its standard team due to a doping program involving many athletes.

However, Russian athletes who could prove they were not part of the state-run doping plan were allowed to compete in Pyeongchang.

Jan 062018

Simona Halep vs. Katerina Siniakova 6-1, 2-6, 6-0 / Simona Halep champion in Shenzhen for the second time.

Simona Halep of Romania earned her second Shenzhen Open title and her 16th career success after beating defending champion Katerina Siniakova 6-1, 2-6, 6-0 in women’s singles final on Saturday. In Shenzhen, Halep claimed also the women’s doubles title alongside country fellow Irina Begu.

simona halep shenzhen

Simona Halep (pic:

“Of course it’s a good start into 2018 considering that I won a title so fast. It’s great, but thinking of a Grand Slam title is maybe too much at this point … I take everything step by step, I am not thinking that far. Of course, I am going to do my very best to fulfill my dream and win a Grand Slam this year ,” said Halep.

“It was a very good week for me, I performed pretty well, every game was a difficult one. Today was tough as well because Siniakova played very well, she had beaten Sharapova in the semis. It was not easy, but I did my job and I’m glad I won the first trophy of the year,” concluded Halep.

After winning the 2018 Shenzhen Open title, Simona received 280 WTA points and prize money worth $163,260. As a runner-up, Katerina Siniakova of Czech Republic earned 180 points and 81,251 dollars.

The next challenge for Simona Halep is to win Australian Open (15-28 January), the first Grand Slam of 2018. In Melbourne, Halep will be the number one seed.

Halep vs Siniakova, Game statistics: Shenzhen Open 2018:
Aces: 0-2
Double mistakes: 3-5
First serve points: 59% -53%
Second serve points: 65% -24%
Breakpoints saved: 25% -25% (1/4 vs 2/8)
Break points won: 75% -75% (6/8 vs 3/4)
Total points won: 59% -41% (71-49)
Match time: 1h 12 min.

Jul 132017

Venus Williams delivered a harsh upset to Britain’s pride Johanna Konta to qualify in the final match at Wimbledon 2017.

In the semifinals, Venus Williams, seed no. 10, defeated Konta in two straight sets 6-4, 6-2, after an hour and 13 minutes.

37-year-old Williams reached for the ninth time a Wimbledon final and is now set to play against Spain’s Garbine Muguruza, the 14th seed of the competition.

Muguruza progressed to the final stage after winning 6-1, 6-1 over Slovakian Magdalena Rybarikova.

May 242017

Spain’s Supreme Court confirmed on Wednesday that Lionel Messi and his father Jorge Messi received prison sentences of 21 and 15 months respectively in relation to a tax fraud case.

lionel messi prison sentence

Lionel Messi lost appeal against 21-month jail sentence

The magistrates unveiled their decision on May 24 after Barcelona’s star and his father appealed against last year’s initial sentence. The two convicts – Lionel and Jorge Messi – have demanded the annulment of the 21-month jail term pronounced in July 2016, while the prosecution has demanded the Supreme Court to uphold it.

Both men were convicted of three counts of fraud, for using tax havens in Belize and Uruguay between 2007 and 2009, and were also given heavy fines.

They were found guilty of resorting to fictitious companies to evade Spanish taxes on income from companies using Lionel Messi’s image rights, writes BBC.

Despite paying the € 4.1 million damages, the Messi family did not escape punishment after recognizing the tax fraud charges.

In the end, footballer’s sentence was maintained at 21 months, while Jorge Messi’s was reduced to 15 months.

The Supreme Court has also confirmed the € 2.1 million fine that the player has to pay. As for his father, the financial sanction was reduced from € 1.6 million to €1.3 million.

Despite this convictions, Lionel Messi’s freedom is not jeopardized as sentences less than 24 months do not lead to imprisonment in Spain, therefore the Angentine star will serve it under probation.

May 232017

US motorcycle racer Nicky Hayden, a former MotoGP world champion, died Monday at the age of 35, five days after he suffered a freak cycling crash in Italy, reports BBC.

Nicky Hayden

Nicky Hayden died in Italy. RIP (pic: Facebook)

Hayden was riding his bike last Wednesday on a road between Tavoleto and Riccione, near Rimini, when he was hit by a car. He suffered serious head and chest injuries and was induced coma over the past days.

But Monday, Maurizio Bufalini Hospital announced the tragic news that Nicky Hayden had died. A hospital statement issued on Thursday said Hayden had suffered “a serious polytrauma”, which is a medical term to describe the condition of a person who has multiple traumatic injuries.

Nicky Hayden, nicknamed The Kentucky Kid, won the MotoGP World Championship in 2006 with Red Bull Honda.

Feb 062017

Lady Gaga made history with a remarkable performance at Super Bowl 2017 (Super Bowl LI (51)) in Houston, Texas on Sunday.

Lady Gaga Show Super Bowl NFL 2017

Lady Gaga @ SuperBowl 2017

The pop diva delivered a message of tolerance during the much-awaited final of the American National Football League (NFL).

Standing atop the roof of NRG Stadium, dressed in a sort of metallic outfit and surrounded by red and blue drone lights swirling behind her in the sky, the singer kicked off the half-time show with patriotic songs such as “God Bless America” ​​and “This Land is Your Land” pointing at the fact that the United States is “a nation of liberty and justice for all”.

She then jumped off the roof as secured by ropes and made it to a ground stage where she continued with her super-hits “Poker Face”, “Born This Way” and “Just Dance”.

“Hello, Houston, hello world, we are here to make you feel good,” she said in front of tens of thousand spectators and more than a hundred million TV viewers.

After thirteen minutes of spectacular colorful display, Lady Gaga ended her halftime set by throwing the microphone and leaping again into empty space.

Super Bowl is presented as the most watched sporting event in the world with over 100 million viewers in the United States. This year, Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots disputed the Championship final that was claimed in the end by “The Patriots”.

Video: Lady Gaga Show Super Bowl NFL 2017, Houston, Texas (FULL SHOW)

Dec 022016

Nico Rosberg of Mercedes-Benz announced this afternoon his retirement from Formula 1 with immediate effect and the shocking news comes just days after he was crowned a world champion.

Nico Rosberg retirement

Nico Rosberg unveils shocking retirement (pic: Facebook)

The unexpected decision was explained by 31-year-old German driver in an open letter that was posted on both social media websites Facebook and Twitter:

Nico Rosberg retirement statement:
“Since 25 years in racing, it has been my dream, my ‘one thing’ to become Formula One World Champion. Through the hard work, the pain, the sacrifices, this has been my target.And now I’ve made it. I have climbed my mountain, I am on the peak, so this feels right. My strongest emotion right now is deep gratitude to everybody who supported me to make that dream happen.

“This season, I tell you, it was so damn tough. I pushed like crazy in every area after the disappointments of the last two years; they fuelled my motivation to levels I had never experienced before. And of course that had an impact on the ones I love, too – it was a whole family effort of sacrifice, putting everything behind our target. I cannot find enough words to thank my wife Vivian; she has been incredible. She understood that this year was the big one, our opportunity to do it, and created the space for me to get full recovery between every race, looking after our daughter each night, taking over when things got tough and putting ourchampionship first.

“When I won the race in Suzuka, from the moment when the destiny of the title was in my own hands, the big pressure started and I began to think about ending my racing career if I became World Champion. On Sunday morning in Abu Dhabi, I knew that it could be my last race and that feeling cleared my head before the start. I wanted to enjoy every part of the experience, knowing it might be the last time… and then the lights went out and I had the most intense 55 laps of my life. I took my decision on Monday evening. After reflecting for a day, the first people I told were Vivian and Georg (Nolte, from Nico’s management team), followed by Toto.

“The only thing that makes this decision in any way difficult for me is because I am putting my racing family into a toughsituation. But Toto understood. He knew straight away that I was completely convinced and that reassured me. My proudest achievement in racing will always be to have won the world championship with this incredible team of people,the Silver Arrows.

“Now, I’m just here to enjoy the moment. There is time tosavour the next weeks, to reflect on the season and to enjoy every experience that comes my way. After that, I will turn the next corner in my life and see what it has in store for me…”

Nico Rosberg won his first Formula One trophy last Sunday at the Yas Marina circuit in Abu Dhabi after he finished second in the Grand Prix of the United Arab Emirates, behind his teammate Briton Lewis Hamilton who in turn ranked second in the 2016 overall driver standings, writes BBC.

Nico claimed the world title after his father Keke Rosberg (Finland) became a F1 world champion for Williams back in 1982.

The Rosbergs are the second family in which father and son claim the Formula 1 world trophy after the British Graham Hill (1968 Lotus) and his son Damon Hill (1996, Williams).

Nov 282016

Lewis Hamilton faces the risk of being suspended by his F1 team Mercedes-Benz because he deliberately disobeyed orders received during the last Formula 1 Grand Prix of the season in the United Arab Emirates on Sunday.

Lewis Hamilton

Lweis Hamilton (pic: wikimedia commons)

In the last laps of the race in Abu Dhabi, the Briton slowed down the pace in efforts to deny his teammate and rival, Nico Rosberg, a first world title. As a consequence, Rosberg was about to be caught up by Sebastian Vettel and Max Verstappen, but fortunately he mananged to defend his 2nd position and thus preserve the leading position in the overall rankings.

Hamilton’s strategy could have given results, but aroused the wrath of Torger Christian “Toto” Wolff, the Executive Director of Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team. Wolff was irritated by the fact that Hamilton undermined the public authority of team’s race managers after being urged several times to speed up and not jeopardize the stage victory.

Radio intervention (lap 51/55) between Mercedes’ technical director Paddy Lowe and Lewis Hamilton:

“Lewis, this is Paddy. We need you to pick up the pace to win this race”.

“I’m in the lead right now. I’m quite comfortable where I am”, answered Hamilton.

Hamilton applied his tricky strategy until the end of the race, even if it became apparent for him that he will lose world title in favor of Nico Rosberg. According to The Telegraph, Lewis Hamilton is likely to be fired because he violated team orders and created anarchy in Abu Dhabi. Pressed on whether Hamilton could face sanction or even suspension, Wolff replied: “Everything is possible.”

Hamilton’s contract with Mercedes is valued at 30 million pounds per year.

Photo credit: Dcnarad [GFDL or CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Nov 272016

Nico Rosberg ranked second in Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the last race of the 2016 Formula 1 season, and this result was enough for the German driver to win the world title, the first of his career. “The big loser” of the day was Lewis Hamilton, who, despite winning the contest in United Arab Emirates, ended the year on the second place in the overall standings.

nico rosberg formula 1

Nico Rosberg (pic: Wikimedia)

With this F1 world title, Nico Rosberg joined the select list of families – both father and son – who won the world crown in Formula One: – Keke Rosberg won in 1982. The short list features also Briton Damon Hill (Williams – 1996 ) and his father Graham Hill (1968 Lotus), writes BBC.

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix: F1 rankings:
1. Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes 1: 38: 04 013
2. Nico Rosberg – Mercedes +00: 00 439
3. Sebastian Vettel – Ferrari 00: 00 843
4. Max Verstappen – Red Bull – TAG Heuer 00: 01 685
5. Daniel Ricciardo – Red Bull – TAG Heuer 00: 05 315
6. Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari 00: 18.816
7. Nico Huelkenberg – Force India – Mercedes 00: 50.114
8. Sergio Perez – Force India – Mercedes 00: 58.776
9. Felipe Massa – Williams-Mercedes 00: 59.436
10. Fernando Alonso – McLaren 00: 59.896
11. Romain Grosjean – Haas – Ferrari 01: 16.777
12. Esteban Gutierrez – Haas – Ferrari 01: 35.113
13. Esteban Ocon – Manor – Mercedes
14. Pascal Wehrlein – Manor – Mercedes
15. Marcus Ericsson – Sauber – Ferrari
16. Felipe Nasr – Sauber – Ferrari
17. Jolyon Palmer – Renault
Carlos Sainz Jr – Toro Rosso – Ferrari
Daniil Kvyat – Toro Rosso – Ferrari
Jenson Button – McLaren
Valtteri Bottas – Williams-Mercedes
Kevin Magnussen – Renault.

Video: F1 2016 Abu Dhabi: Rosberg and Hamilton Post-Race Interview

About Nico Rosberg
Nico Rosberg is the son of Finn Keke Rosberg and german Sina. He was born just four days after his father Keke won the Detroit Grand Prix back in 1985.

Rosberg greu up in Monaco, where he now lives with his wife Vivian and daughter Alaia. He speaks five languages, but not Finnish, the native language of his father.

Nico Rosberg and Lewis Hamilton were teammates in the famous racing karting in 2000.

Nico Rosberg made his Formula 1 debut in 2006, in the Bahrain GP for the team Williams.

Rosberg joined Mercedes in 2010 when he had Michael Schumacher as a teammate. During that season, Nico gathered 142 points, while Schumacher just 72.

2016 Driver Standings Formula One:
1. Nico Rosberg – Mercedes 385 points / champion
2. Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes 380
3. Daniel Ricciardo – Red Bull 256
4. Sebastian Vettel – Ferrari 212
5. Max Verstappen – Red Bull 204
6. Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari 186
7. Sergio Perez – Force India 101
8. Valtteri Bottas – Williams 85
9. Nico Huelkenberg – Force India 72
10. Fernando Alonso – McLaren 54
11. Felipe Massa – Williams 53
12. Carlos Sainz Jr – Toro Rosso 46
13. Romain Grosjean – 29th Haas
14. Daniil Kvyat – Toro Rosso 25
15. Jenson Button – McLaren 21
16. Kevin Magnussen – Renault 7
17. Felipe Nasr – Sauber 2
18. Jolyon Palmer – Renault 1
19. Pascal Wehrlein – Manor 1
20. Stoffel VANDOORNE – McLaren 1
21. Esteban Gutierrez – Haas 0
22. Marcus Ericsson – Sauber 0
23. Esteban Ocon – Manor 0
24. Rio Haryanto – Manor 0.

Constructors Rankings Formula One 2016:
1. Mercedes 765 points – world champion
2. Red Bull – TAG Heuer 468
3. Ferrari 398
4. Force India – Mercedes 173
5. Williams-Mercedes 138
6. McLaren 76
7. Toro Rosso – Ferrari 63
8. Haas – Ferrari 29
9. Renault 8
10. Sauber – Ferrari 2
11. Manor – Mercedes 1.

List of F1 world champions since 1990 until today:
2016 – Nico Rosberg – Mercedes
2015 – Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes
2014 – Lewis Hamilton – Mercedes
2013 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull
2012 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull
2011 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull
2010 – Sebastian Vettel – Red Bull
2009 – Jenson Button – Brawn
2008 – Lewis Hamilton – McLaren
2007 – Kimi Raikkonen – Ferrari
2006 – Fernando Alonso – Renault
2005 – Fernando Alonso – Renault
2004 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
2003 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
2002 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
2001 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
2000 – Michael Schumacher – Ferrari
1999 – Mika Hakkinen – McLaren
1998 – Mika Hakkinen – McLaren
1997 – Jacques Villeneuve – Williams
1996 – Damon Hill – Williams
1995 – Michael Schumacher – Benetton
1994 – Michael Schumacher – Benetton
1993 – Alain Prost – Williams
1992 – Nigel Mansell – Williams
1991 – Ayrton Senna – McLaren
1990 – Ayrton Senna – McLaren

Most titles won in Formula 1:
7 – Schumacher
5 – Fangio
4 – Prost, Vettel
3 – Brabham, Stewart, Lauda, ​​Piquet, Senna, Hamilton
2 – Ascari, Graham Hill, Clark, Fittipaldi, Hakkinen, Alonso.
Photo credit: By AngMoKio (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0], via Wikimedia Commons