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#SportsReport: Serena Willaims beats No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit at U.S. Open

Serena Williams becomes oldest women’s World No. 1 at Open in Doha, Qatar.
Hanson K Joseph
Serena Williams becomes oldest women’s World No. 1 at Open in Doha, Qatar.

Serena beats No. 2 seed Kontaveit at US Open to reach 3rd Rd

NEW YORK (AP) — Serena Williams has eliminated No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-2 in the U.S. Open’s second round to ensure that the 23-time Grand Slam champion will play at least one more singles match. The 40-year-old Williams has hinted this will be the last tournament of her illustrious career. Williams missed about a year of action before returning to the tour in late June at Wimbledon. She lost in the first round there and was 1-3 in 2022 entering the U.S. Open, where she is 2-0 so far this week. She beat Danka Kovinic in the first round before following that up against Kontaveit on Wednesday night in front of a full house at Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Tiger Woods shows up to support Serena Williams at US Open

NEW YORK (AP) — Serena Williams credits Tiger Woods with offering advice before she made her recent comeback from a year-long injury absence. Woods sat courtside at the U.S. Open on Wednesday night, throwing uppercuts in the stands to cheer Williams on to victory. Williams says Woods is "one of the reasons I’m here.” She beat No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit 7-6 (4), 2-6, 6-2 to reach the third round at Flushing Meadows in what could be the last tournament of her career. Woods was in Williams’ guest box at sold-out Arthur Ashe Stadium, two seats over from her sister, Venus.

2021 runner-up Fernandez, No. 3 Sakkari ousted at US Open

NEW YORK (AP) — The last two women’s champions were already out of the U.S. Open and now the 2021 runner-up and another semifinalist is gone. Top players are falling fast in Flushing Meadows, and Serena Williams took care of another one Wednesday night. Hours before Williams beat No. 2 seed Anett Kontaveit, third-seeded Maria Sakkari was ousted 3-6, 7-5, 7-5 by Wang Xiyu of China in the second round. Then, minutes after Williams’ victory, No. 14 Leylah Fernandez was knocked off 6-3, 7-6 (3) by Liudmila Samsonova, a year after the Canadian lost to Emma Raducanu in the final. Defending men's champion Daniil Medvedev won in straight sets.

Commanders prepare to play without Robinson after shooting

ASHBURN, Va. (AP) — The Washington Commanders are preparing to start the NFL season without Brian Robinson Jr. after the rookie running back was shot in his right leg in an attempted robbery Sunday. Robinson was released from the hospital earlier this week and visited with doctors at the team facility. There is optimism Robinson could play at some point this year after bullets did not damage anything structurally in his right knee. Robinson's unexpected injury caused the Commanders to keep an extra running back on their initial roster. Antonio Gibson reclaims the starting role at least for now with Week 1 against Jacksonville on the horizon.

AP sources: Presidents meeting to discuss CFP expansion

The university presidents who oversee the College Football Playoff are scheduled to meet Friday to discuss expanding the four-team format. The presidents hope to accelerate a process that bogged down last year and re-open the possibility that a new model for crowning champion could be implemented as soon as the 2024 season. Two people familiar with the situation told The Associated Press the CFP’s Board of Managers, led by Mississippi State President Mark Keenum, is set to convene by video conference. All the people spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the board's plans were not being made public.

Aaron Donald on helmet swing: 'It was just a practice'

Aaron Donald downplayed swinging a helmet at Cincinnati Bengals players in a brawl at a joint practice between last season’s Super Bowl teams last Thursday. “It was just a practice. It was football,” Donald said Wednesday in an interview for an upcoming episode of the AP Pro Football Podcast. “I don’t really wanna go back to nothing negative that happened and talk about something that happened in a practice. My main focus is Buffalo.” The three-time AP Defensive Player of the Year and seven-time All-Pro was thrown to the ground after swinging a helmet while players threw fists in a free-for-all that ended the session between the visiting Los Angeles Rams and the Bengals.

Gruden 'ashamed' about emails that cost him his job

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Former Raiders coach Jon Gruden says he is “ashamed” about his old offensive emails that cost him his job and hopes to get another chance in football. Gruden spoke publicly about the affair at the Little Rock Touchdown Club for the first time since he resigned as coach of the Raiders last October. The resignation followed the publication by The New York Times and Wall Street Journal of emails he had sent from 2011 to 2018 that contained racist, homophobic and misogynistic comments.

Week 1 preview: Irish-Buckeyes matchup tops juicy slate

The first big weekend of college football is bursting with storylines. No. 5 Notre Dame visits No. 2 Ohio State. New Oregon coach Dan Lanning faces his old team when the 11th-ranked Ducks meet defending national champion and No. 3 Georgia in Atlanta. Lanning was the Bulldogs' defensive coordinator last season. No. 7 Utah goes to The Swamp for Billy Napier's first game as Florida's coach. No. 23 Cincinnati is coming off its College Football Playoff appearance and is an underdog at No. 19 Arkansas. The Backyard Brawl returns when West Virginia visits No. 17 Pittsburgh.

Panthers' Mayfield denies using malicious words vs. Browns

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Carolina Panthers quarterback Baker Mayfield denies that he said anything malicious toward his former team, the Cleveland Browns. Mayfield said “first, I didn’t say that" and added that “everybody is going to write what they want.” Mayfield said he was shocked to hear the report on Tuesday that NFL Network analytics analyst Cynthia Frelund, who was working as a Buffalo Bills sideline reporter for Friday night’s preseason game against Carolina, said on a podcast that Mayfield had some choice words for his former team. The Panthers will open the regular season at home against the Browns on Sept. 11.

Timmy Trumpet plays horn, Nimmo saves Mets in 2-1 win vs LAD

NEW YORK (AP) — Brandon Nimmo saved Jacob deGrom and the New York Mets with a breathtaking catch atop the center-field fence, and Edwin Díaz entered to Timmy Trumpet’s live horn at pulsing Citi Field before closing out the Los Angeles Dodgers for a scintillating 2-1 victory. Starling Marte hit a two-run homer off All-Star lefty Tyler Anderson as the Mets evened a three-game showdown between the top two teams in the National League. Mookie Betts connected off deGrom for his 32nd home run, but it wasn’t enough for the Dodgers in a tight pitching duel with a playoff feel. Making his sixth start of the season after returning from injury, deGrom hit 102 mph on the radar gun and struck out nine in seven innings. He allowed three hits and walked one.