Angelique Kerber loses in 3 sets at Zhengzhou Open

Angelique Kerber. (File/AFP)
Updated 10 September 2019

Angelique Kerber loses in 3 sets at Zhengzhou Open

ZHENGZHOU, China: Three-time Grand Slam champion Angelique Kerber lost in the opening round of the Zhengzhou Open on Tuesday, falling to Alison Riske of the United States 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (6).
Unseeded Kristina Mladenovic advanced, beating local wildcard Ying-Ying Duan 6-2, 6-3. Mladenovic finished with only 10 unforced errors while Duan had 25.
“It was very tricky conditions: It’s super humid, and it’s never easy to start a tournament,” Mladenovic said. “Every first round is difficult, and Ying-Ying, I’ve played her in the past and she’s a very powerful player with a big serve.”
Mladenovic will next face another Frenchwoman, Caroline Garcia.
Two more French players advanced. Fiona Ferro beat Zhaoxuan Yang 6-2, 6-3, and Alize Cornet defeated Jia-Jing Lu 7-6 (1), 6-1.
Also, 2017 French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko beat You Xiaodi 6-3, 0-6, 6-2.


Amaala lift champion trophy in Saudi Arabia’s first-ever desert polo tournament

Updated 19 January 2020

Amaala lift champion trophy in Saudi Arabia’s first-ever desert polo tournament

  • Amaala earned the bragging rights as the 2020, and inaugural, AlUla Desert Polo champions

JEDDAH: Renowned Argentine polo player Nacho Figueras scored all his side’s goals as Amaala hammered out an emphatic 7-3 victory over host team AlUla to win the Kingdom’s first-ever desert polo tournament on Saturday at AlUla UNESCO heritage site.

Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki bin Faisal, chairman of the General Sports Authority, presented the trophy to Amaala after the final.

The event forms part of Winter at Tantora festival, featuring international polo players, who had the experience of playing on compacted desert sand instead of grass amid the stunning surroundings at AlUla.

The Royal Commission of AlUla organized the three-day tournament in cooperation with the newly formed Saudi Polo Federation.

In winning the tournament, Amaala earned the bragging rights as the 2020, and inaugural, AlUla Desert Polo champions.

Players from all over the world took part, including team members from the world famous La Dolfina polo outfit from Argentina, including Adolfo Cambiaso, Pelon Stirling and Pablo Mac Donough.

In the match for third place, Al Nahla Bentley defeated Team Richard Mille 4-2 with Sheikha Alya Maktoum scoring a hat trick of goals.

Figueras said: “It’s an amazing place with an amazing history, an amazing heritage and an amazing first tournament for the Saudi Polo Federation. I’m very honored to be here and I’m delighted that we were able to win.

“This country is going through a transformation and there are amazing years to come.”

Mac Donough added: “For us it was a completely new place; polo-wise Saudi Arabia wasn’t something we were doing before. Having the chance to come to such an amazing country and having the chance to play a tournament and promote the sport, all this makes us feel very proud and we hope we can continue it.”

Saudi Polo Federation chairman, Amr F. Zedan, who played for Team Richard Mille during the tournament, said: “I see this event as a launching pad for the future. We have big plans for polo in Saudi Arabia that include the establishment of development programs and the construction of facilities to assist in building a polo infrastructure in The Kingdom.”

Amr Madani, CEO of the Royal Commission of AlUla, said: “Our tourism strategy for AlUla has been built around certain anchors — heritage, culture, nature and arts. Equestrianism has always been a key industry for us, and the surroundings here make AlUla one of the best locations to ride horses.”