Monday, February 26, 2024

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Mainz terminate Anwar El Ghazi’s contract over social media posts
MAINZ, Nov 4: German football club Mainz terminated the contract of Dutch forward Anwar El Ghazi on Friday following his social media posts about the Israel-Hamas war. The announcement by Mainz came two days after El Ghazi disputed the club’s version of events when it lifted an earlier suspension. German news agency dpa reported Friday that prosecutors in the city of Koblenz were also investigating. Mainz originally suspended El Ghazi on October 17, saying he had posted and then deleted a message about the war that the club deemed “unacceptable.” On Monday, the club said his suspension was lifted and that he would receive a reprimand. Mainz said that followed talks with the management and that El Ghazi “regrets publishing the post and also was remorseful about its negative impact.” The club added that the player “also stated that he does not question Israel’s right to exist.” However, in a further social media post on Wednesday, El Ghazi indicated that the club had issued its statement without his permission. “I do not regret or have any remorse for my position,” the player wrote. “I do not distance myself from what I said and I stand, today and always until my last breath, for humanity and the oppressed.” (AP)


Olympic medallist hurdler
Levy fails doping test
Kingston (Jamaica), Nov 4: Olympic bronze medallist hurdler Ronald Levy has received notification from the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission that he failed an out-of competition test early last month. Levy, who finished third in the 110m hurdles at the Tokyo Olympics in 2021, said on Instagram that he was surprised’ by the adverse finding and was awaiting the results of his B-sample test. “I am stunned at the turn of events because I have always conducted myself with the highest level of integrity in the sport, which I love dearly and would never seek to gain an unfair advantage,” Levy said. “I intend to defend my integrity during this process because I am certain I did not knowingly breach the rules.” (AP)


Bopanna-Ebden advance to Paris final, move closer to World No. 1
Paris, Nov 4:Rohan Bopanna and Matthew Ebden are one win away from capturing their third title of the season together as they overcame Harri Heliovaara and Mate Pavic 6-7(3), 6-4, 10-6 to enter final, at the Rolex Paris Masters. In a hard-fought clash, the third seeds won 88 percent (46/52) of their first-serve points and were strong in the key moments, saving all three break points to advance after 89 minutes. If Bopanna and Ebden triumph in Paris, the Indian-Australian team would pass Ivan Dodig and Austin Krajicek by 60 points to become World No. 1 in the Pepperstone ATP Live Doubles Teams Rankings. Bopanna and Ebden are chasing their second ATP Masters 1000 crown of the year, having triumphed in Indian Wells in March. They have won 12 of their past 14 matches, advancing to the final at the US Open and in Shanghai. They will aim to go one step further in Sunday’s title match when they meet Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury or Santiago Gonzalez and Edouard Roger-Vasselin. Bopanna and Ebden will compete at the Nitto ATP Finals in Turin later this month to round out their season. (IANS)


Djokovic beats defending champion Rune to reach Paris Masters semis
Paris, Nov 4: Novak Djokovic took his revenge over defending champion Holger Rune to reach the semifinals of the Paris Masters after a nearly three-hour battle. The Dane beat Djokovic in last year’s final but could not prevail this time. Djokovic won the quarterfinal match 7-5, 6-7(3), 6-4 on Friday. The top-ranked Djokovic, a six-time champion at the Paris Masters, advanced to the last four for the ninth time. Rune saved a match point when trailing 5-4 in the second set and played an excellent tiebreaker to level at one-set apiece but Djokovic raised his level in the decider, dropping just three points on his serve. (AP)


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