01172017Tue
Last update: Tue, 17 Jan 2017 03pm

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Tears as Muller grabs first title with Sydney win SYDNEY: Luxembourg's Gilles Muller broke through for his first career ATP World Tour title with a straight sets win over Britain's Daniel Evans in the Sydney International final on Saturday.Left-hander Muller, 33, one of the Tour's biggest servers, finished too strongly for the 67th-ranked Evans, winning 7-6 (7/5), 6-2 in 88 minutes.He finally claimed a title after 17 years on the circuit with his victory continuing his impressive record of consistency in Sydney after reaching the semi-finals in the past two years.Muller at 34 was the highest-ranked player in the top 50 without a tournament title after losing in five finals, including two last season, both on grass in 's-Hertogenbosch and Newport.Muller, who was handed his winner's trophy by Australian Grand Slam great Rod Laver, became emotional and broke down in tears during his victory speech at the presentation ceremony."What a night! I've waited a long time for this," he ...

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Golf: McIlroy defies back pain to stay in SA Open hunt JOHANNESBURG: World number two Rory McIlroy defied severe back pain to fire a second-round 68 Friday and trail South African Open leader Graeme Storm by three shots. McIlroy admitted after his rollercoaster trek around the Glendower Golf Club near Johannesburg that he considered withdrawing from the European Tour event."I thought about pulling out before teeing off today (Friday)," the 27-year-old from Northern Ireland told reporters."I tweaked my back somehow and was not very comfortable playing ...

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Konta crushes Radwanska to win Sydney title SYDNEY: Britain's Johanna Konta overpowered Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4 6-2 in a one-sided victory in the final of the Sydney International on Friday to claim her second career WTA title. The Sydney-born world number 10 reached the semi-finals at the Australian Open last year and will be a major threat again next week going by her form in this week's warm-up.The 25-year-old had lost both her previous meetings with 2013 champion Radwanska but simply brushed aside ...

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Bouchard not listening to 'haters' SYDNEY: Canadian starlet Eugenie Bouchard says she has learnt to take no notice of the "haters", revealing she has spoken with fellow young gun Nick Kyrgios on how to handle the intense scrutiny.Despite a slump in form, she and the Australian are two of the sport's hottest drawcards, with both having to deal with a spotlight on their professional and private lives.Bouchard, on the comeback trail after her high-flying career plunged into a tailspin, said ...

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Serena's tough draw in quest for Aussie Open No.7 MELBOURNE: Six-time champion Serena Williams was handed a tough draw Friday at the Australian Open, while defending champion Angelique Kerber has a slightly easier route towards another final.The American powerhouse, bidding for a 23rd Grand Slam crown at the tournament starting in Melbourne on Monday, faces dangerous former world number seven Belinda Bencic of Switzerland in the opening round.Second seed Williams, who lost the top ranking to Kerber last year, could then encounter in-form Briton ...

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Sock scents redemption in Auckland AUCKLAND: American fourth seed Jack Sock reached the final of the ATP Auckland Classic on Friday, earning a chance to make amends for a disappointing loss in last year's decider.Sock beat compatriot Steve Johnson 6-4, 6-3 to set up a clash against Portugal's Joao Sousa, who brushed aside Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus 6-1, 7-5 in his semi-final.Sock made the Auckland final last year but was forced to retire due to a bout of flu and ...

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Murray, Kerber top seeds at Australian Open MELBOURNE: World number ones Andy Murray and Angelique Kerber were named the top seeds on Thursday for next week's Australian Open with organisers aligning with the current rankings.Scotland's Murray is chasing his first title at Melbourne Park after losing in the final five times, including in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2016 to Serb rival Novak Djokovic, who is seeded two.Kerber will be defending her first Grand Slam having upset Serena Williams, seeded two this year, ...