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Lukaku Representative Requests Action After Racist Incident

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MILAN, Italy — The Inter Milan forward’s management company was outraged after being shown a second yellow card and then sent off for a gesture toward Juventus supporters who chanted racist chants at him.

On Tuesday, Lukaku converted a penalty in stoppage time to win Inter a 1-1 draw in the Italian Cup semifinals.

After scoring, Lukaku put his finger to his lips as if to quiet the crowd.

The opposition side was enraged by Lukaku’s gesture, and the game ended in a brawl between the two teams, with Juventus winger Juan Cuadrado and Inter keeper Samir Handanovic both sent off.

“Tonight’s racist remarks made by Juventus fans in Turin towards Romelu Lukaku were beyond despicable and cannot be tolerated,” Roc Nation Sports International president Michael Yormark said. “He was subjected to hostile and disgusting racist abuse before, during, and after the penalty.” Romelu celebrated victories in the same way he had previously.

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After scoring, Lukaku put his finger to his lips to quiet the crowd.

“The referee’s response was to show Romelu a yellow card.” “Juventus owes Romelu an apology, and I expect the league to condemn the behavior of this group of Juventus fans immediately,” Yormark added. “Rather than punishing the victim of the abuse, the Italian authorities should seize this opportunity to address racism.”

On Wednesday, the Italian league released a statement that did not name Lukaku but stated that it “strongly condemns every episode of racism and every form of discrimination.”

“A few people in the stands cannot ruin the soccer show, and they do not represent the views of all fans,” the league stated.

The league judge will almost certainly initiate a disciplinary case into the issue, and Juventus has stated that it will work with authorities to identify the fans responsibly.

During his two stints at Inter, Lukaku, who is Black, has been subjected to racist chants on numerous instances.

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SOURCE. – (AP)

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2-Time French Open Runner-Up Dominic Thiem Loses In Qualifying In Final Roland Garros Appearance

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Thiem | NDTV Image

PARIS — Dominic Thiem, a two-time runner-up, was knocked out in the second round of qualifying at the French Open.

Otto Virtanen defeated Dominic 6-2, 7-5 on Court Suzanne Lenglen, and Dominic will miss his 11th and final appearance in the clay-court Grand Slam main draw.

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Thiem | AP News Image

2-Time French Open Runner-Up Dominic Thiem Loses In Qualifying In Final Roland Garros Appearance

Dominic, who reached the Roland Garros finals in 2018 and 2019, revealed earlier this month that he will retire at the end of the year after struggling to regain peak form following a wrist injury.

Following his defeat, Dominic received a standing ovation during a goodbye ceremony, with chants of “Thank you Domi, Thank you Domi.”

Dominic, a former US Open champion, has plummeted to 131st in the rankings and failed to obtain a wildcard into the French Open. He didn’t keep a grudge.

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Thiem | The Times Image

2-Time French Open Runner-Up Dominic Thiem Loses In Qualifying In Final Roland Garros Appearance

“I slowly built up a great, great relationship with the tournament, relationship with all of you guys, with all fans,” stated Dominic. “I’ve really enjoyed every single year of it.”

The 30-year-old Austrian won his only Grand Slam at Flushing Meadows in 2020. Dominic defeated Alexander Zverev in five sets, becoming the first man in 71 years to recover a two-set deficit in a U.S. Open final.

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Thiem | Reuters Image

2-Time French Open Runner-Up Dominic Thiem Loses In Qualifying In Final Roland Garros Appearance

Dominic also finished second at the 2020 Australian Open, reaching a career-high No. 3 ranking that year. He remained in the top five until June 2021, when he hurt his right wrist, which kept him out for nine months and has hindered his playing ever since.

Dominic has a total of 17 titles.

SOURCE – (AP)

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Stenhouse Fined $75,000 By NASCAR, Busch Avoids Penalty For Post All-Star Race Fight

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Concord, North Carolina – NASCAR penalized Ricky Stenhouse Jr. $75,000 on Wednesday for clashing with Kyle Busch following the All-Star race at North Wilkesboro Speedway. Stenhouse’s father, who participated in the fray, was suspended indefinitely.

Busch was not penalized for his actions during the Sunday night race

The two collided on the first lap, and Busch appeared to intentionally destroy Stenhouse on the second lap. Stenhouse put his damaged Chevrolet in Busch’s pit stall, forcefully mounted the spotter’s ladder, and spoke with Busch’s crew members.

Stenhouse then stormed to his carrier, allowing his car to be taken to the pits.

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NASCAR | AP News Image

Stenhouse Fined $75,000 By NASCAR, Busch Avoids Penalty For Post All-Star Race Fight

He also hinted that he’d return after the race to confront Busch. The two exchanged brief words before Stenhouse, dressed in shorts and a t-shirt, delivered a right hook to Busch, sparking a melee involving members of both teams. Stenhouse’s father, who has no association with the team, then confronted Busch, throwing fists.

On Wednesday, NASCAR banned Stenhouse mechanic Clint Myrick for eight races and engine tuner Keith Matthews for four races.

NASCAR

NASCAR | AP News Image

Stenhouse Fined $75,000 By NASCAR, Busch Avoids Penalty For Post All-Star Race Fight

Stenhouse has pledged to wreck Busch this Sunday in the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

“Bring it,” Busch responded. “I suck as bad as you,” meaning that neither driver is having a fantastic season.

Neither driver has won any races this season. Busch is 13th in the points standings, while Stenhouse, a single-car team, is 26th.

Busch’s vehicle owner isn’t taking Stenhouse’s warning lightly, though. Richard Childress has threatened to fight Stenhouse if he gets near Busch’s car at Charlotte Motor Speedway.

NASCAR

NASCAR | AP News Image

Stenhouse Fined $75,000 By NASCAR, Busch Avoids Penalty For Post All-Star Race Fight

The Coca-Cola 600 is the longest Cup Series race of the season, so Busch and Stenhouse will have plenty of time to catch up on the 1.5-mile track. They will undoubtedly keep a close eye on the feuding drivers.

SOURCE – (AP)

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US Open Champ Coco Gauff Calls On Young Americans To Get Out And Vote. ‘Use The Power That We Have’

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Gauff | AP News Image

ROME – She won the U.S. Open. The best-paid female athlete in the world. And a disgruntled Floridian.

American tennis player Coco Gauff has always been eager to use her voice.

Not when she was 16 and gave an impromptu speech at a Black Lives Matter event. And not now, at the age of 20, when she will be voting for the first time in a presidential election in the United States later this year.

Gauff, one of the favorites when the French Open begins on Sunday in Paris, recently spoke with The Associated Press about the present political situation in her home state.

She commented that it’s “a crazy time to be a Floridian, especially a Black one.”

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Gauff | Britannica

US Open Champ Coco Gauff Calls On Young Americans To Get Out And Vote. ‘Use The Power That We Have’

Gauff referred to a two-year debate over removing books from Florida schools that started with a bill that Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed, saying, “We aren’t happy with the current state of our government in Florida, especially everything with the books and just the way our office operates.”

Last month, DeSantis backtracked on the measure by signing a bill that limited its scope. He accused liberal activists of violating the law rather than the individuals whose objections to specific books account for the majority of book withdrawals from school libraries and classrooms.

“At the end of the day, it comes down to the youth and the community being outspoken,” Gauff told the Italian Open last week. “So I encourage everyone to vote and to utilize their voice, regardless of who they vote for. There’s no point whining about the world’s political atmosphere if you don’t vote.”

Gauff has been speaking out against racial inequality and police violence since her 2020 statement in front of Delray Beach’s City Hall.

“I feel like sometimes in my generation, people think their vote doesn’t count,” Gauff explained. “We should just all just use our voices and use the power that we have.”

When contacted about Gauff’s comments in an email, DeSantis’ staff chose not to directly address them, instead saying the state is “thriving.”

Gauff will not be advocating for any specific candidate in the general election.

“I will keep who I vote for to myself,” she replied. “I’m not publicly backing any candidate.”

Gauff remains a well-known character in the Delray Beach neighborhood. In March, she revealed rebuilt courts at the public park where she used to play. She’s also been playing with the coordinates of the Pompey Park courts imprinted on the toes of her left tennis sneaker.

Gauff’s father, Corey, wrote on the toes of her right sneaker, “You can change the world with your racket.”

Teen Success

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guaff | AP news Image

US Open Champ Coco Gauff Calls On Young Americans To Get Out And Vote. ‘Use The Power That We Have’

Gauff became the first American teenager to win the U.S. Open since Serena Williams did so in 1999.

According to the sports-business publication Sportico, Gauff became the world’s highest-paid female athlete last year, earning $22.7 million in prize money and endorsements thanks to her New York crown.

She had already made a name for herself as the youngest qualifier in Wimbledon history at 15, and she advanced to the fourth round in her Grand Slam debut in 2019. Then, in the 2022 French Open, she made her first major final and finished second to Iga Swiatek.

Snails with Hot Chocolate

Gauff believes she still has unfinished business in Paris after losing to Swiatek at Roland Garros in 2022.

Because Paris is her favorite place.

She initially visited the city when she was 10 years old and was offered to train at Patrick Mouratoglou’s academy, Williams’ former coach.

The city where she won her first junior Grand Slam championship, the French Open girls’ trophy, in 2018.

“I fell in love with the city because I went at such a young age and it felt so magical and I think that feeling has just stayed with me,” Gauff explained.

While she’s still learning to speak French—”I’ve been on and off learning since I was really 10 years old. But one day, hopefully, I’ll get there” — Gauff has developed an appetite for Paris’ culinary delights.

So, what foods does she enjoy in Paris?

“A lot of croissants, certainly. Escargot is something I like. I know it’s hit or miss with some folks, but don’t be too concerned about the snails,” Gauff explained. “Crème brûlée is pleasant. And foie gras is tasty. In addition, there is hot chocolate. There is good hot chocolate in Paris.”

MET ZENDAYA

Zendaya, who stars in the tennis film “Challengers,” has yet to meet.

Brad Gilbert, Gauff’s coach, served as Zendaya’s tennis adviser for the film, and the actress recently expressed her desire to meet Coco.

“It’s kind of her court,” Gauff added. “I’m not sure because we are both busy. But it’s going to happen. I simply don’t know when.”

Zendaya sent flowers to Gauff to celebrate her U.S. Open victory after Gilbert revealed the player’s home address

Could Gilbert function as a go-between for Zendaya and Gauff’s meeting?

“I think Zendaya has way more pull than Brad does,” Gauff laughed.

Olympic goals

This year at Roland Garros, the third-ranked Gauff aims for more than simply the French Open. She also hopes to win gold in multiple events at the Paris Olympics.

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Gauff | ABC News Image

US Open Champ Coco Gauff Calls On Young Americans To Get Out And Vote. ‘Use The Power That We Have’

Tennis will be played in Roland Garros during the Olympics, and Gauff is particularly motivated after missing the Tokyo Games due to a coronavirus infection.

“It’s at the top of my priority list,” said Gauff, who wants to play singles, doubles, and mixed doubles. “Winning a medal would mean almost as much as completing the Grand Slam. While I would want a Grand Slam, I would prefer a gold medal in doubles. I want to win a medal.

“It’s just something unique that I can relate to, like a track athlete or a gymnastic athlete,” said Gauff.

While Gauff does not intend to live in the Athletes community full-time — “because I heard the village is far from Roland Garros” — she does have a list of Olympians from different sports she wishes to meet.

Simone Biles is ranked first, followed by Sha’Carri Richardson and Katie Ledecky.

“Maybe some WNBA players, too,” Gauff added. “I don’t know if Caitlin Clark is going to make the USA team, but that would be cool.”

SOURCE – (AP)

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