Monday, October 7th
« It’s great to see Murray back on the court ! » We completely share Roger Federer’s enthusiasm : it’s surely great news to see Andy, who won his first match in the singles since he had a hip replacement surgery last January. The Scot defeated Londero in the first round of the Shanghai Masters 1000, where all the top dogs of the ATP ranking, except Nadal, decided to show up. Federer, on his side, got ready by cooking a barbecue during a promotional event. In women’s tennis, the program of the week included the Tianjin and Linz tournaments, while Naomi Osaka got back to the top 3 of the WTA ranking after her recent triumph in Beijing. In the rest of the news, Vladimir Putin celebrated his 67th birthday with a trip in the wilderness, and around a hundred passengers of a luxury train in Australia were hit by an illness.
Tuesday, October 8th
Let it goo, let it goooo! The Princess Elsa of the day is called Benoît Paire, who looks at his lowest point psychologically, and who was knocked out in the first round in Shanghai by Basilashvili, but not without screaming in the middle of the match: « I want to go home, set me free, I can’t take it anymore. » We don’t really know if we should keep on laughing or start worrying… No worries however for Federer, who won for his return, just like Medvedev who confessed, the day before, that seeing a psychologist helped him a lot to concentrate. Maybe he could pass on his phone number to the Frenchman? The Spaniard Zapata Miralles was not sanctioned for holes in his brain, but in his shorts, as the umpire of his match in the minor tournament of Mouilleron-le-Captif judged that his outfit was « inappropriate ». The sanction? The world number 232 was simply disqualified! A swift justice, just like the one which will be in charge of judging Samuel Little, who is already considered to be the biggest serial killer in history, after confessing the murders of 93 people. Here’s one who won’t be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, unlike Raoni or Greta Thunberg, the favorites of this year according to the bookmakers.
Wednesday, October 9th
It was expected, but Maria Sharapova met decided to put an end to her 2019 season, and announced that she will be back next year. Meanwhile, Cori Gauff, on her side, is well and is now sure to enter the Top 100 at only 15. She should soon overtake Caroline Garcia, who can’t seem to win a match at the moment and who lost her title in Tianjin after yet another defeat. As for Ostapenko, who’s not doing well either, she decided to partner with Marion Bartoli who will now be her coach. In men’s tennis, the day was mainly marked by the great « NextGen » match won by Tsitsipas against Auger-Aliassime. In England, a punter won 190 million euros after buying the winning Euromillions ticket. A sum which will probably have him thinking about Brexit…And finally in Norway, a young horse rider payed tribute to her late horse by cooking him in a chili with mango and hot pepper.
Thursday, October 10th
Naomi Osaka has made her choice: the player who has a Japanese mother, a Haitian father, and has a dual US and Japanese nationality decided to defend the Japanese flag at home at the next Tokyo Olympics. One of her main rivals for the olympic title should be Ashely Barty, who entered the Australian Sports hall of fame. Speaking of olympic medals, Juan Martin Del Potro - who won the silver medal in Rio in 2016, and the bronze medal in London four years before that - postponed his return to competition, and will now come back in a moth, and therefore miss the Stockholm Open next week. Federer, on his side, is carrying on his journey in Shanghai, as he knocked out David Goffin after a hard-fought battle. Meanwhile, in Germany, you shouldn’t mess with the highway code: 254 people who took part in the famous Munich Oktoberfest had their driving licence taken away after testing positive for alcohol while riding… electric scooters.
Friday, October 11th
It was a triumphant day for the youth on the courts in Shanghai: Alexander Zverev defeated Roger Federer and Stefanos Tsitsipas knocked out Novak Djokovic. Medvedev and Berrettini, who respectively defeated Fognini and Thiem, joined them later on in the semi-finals. Power to the NextGen! For Djoko, this defeat will have heavy consequences as Nadal will take back his world number 1 spot at the end of the Bercy Open, whatever the outcome of the tournament in Paris. But the true champion of the day is named Abiy Ahmed, prime minister of Ethiopia and winner of the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize.
Saturday, October 12th
After enjoying an early retirement, the 31-year old Frenchwoman Tatiana Golovin made her official return to competition by playing her first match on the circuit since 2008. The result? A narrow defeat against Kaja Juvan, the world number 134, at the Luxembourg Open, but her bet is already partly won. Meanwhile, Cori Gauff, who is only 15, qualified for her first WTA final in Linz. In men’s tennis, Medvedev and Zverev qualified for the final after defeating Tsitsipas and Berrettini. In the US, Melania Trump unveiled a tennis court in the gardens of the White House. In Scotland, the police mistook a respectable man with the most wanted French fugitive who has been on the run for 8 years, after being suspected of murdering his entire family. A violent typhoon also hit Japan, while a Spanish paratrooper ended up hitting a lamppost during the National Day.
Sunday, October 13th
How good is Daniil Medvedev! He’s been almost unbeatable since the summer. The Russian triumphed in Shanghai, and let Zverev only win five small games, before clinching the first Masters 1000 of his career. « I’ve been invincible this week », he said at the end of his demonstration. Cori Gauff has been invincible as well, as she won her first title in Linz, after starting the tournament as a lucky looser… Another crowned woman was Rebecca Peterson, who triumphed in Tianjin. But the sporting feat of the day was achieved by the Japanese rugby team, who qualified for the quarter-finals of the World Cup played at home, the day after being hit by a deadly typhoon. We wish them luck, but also to Jane Fonda, who was arrested during a march for climate. Greta Thunberg might have not won the Nobel Peace Prize, but she has won an ally in her fight for a better future.
By Régis Delanoë