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1.7m World Cup tickets sold – FIFA

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Russia 2018 World Cup tickets 1.7 million sold

Russia 2018 World Cup tickets 1.7 million sold


FIFA says almost 1.7 million tickets have been sold for the World Cup in Russia after
some 400,000 were snapped up in the latest sales stage which ended on Tuesday.

The ruling body FIFA said that 394,433 tickets were sold during a first-come, first-served window since March 13.

Russians dominated by buying 216,134 of them, followed by fans from the not qualified U.S. (16,462),
Argentina (15,006), Colombia (14,755) and Mexico (14,372).

In all, 1,698,049 tickets have now been sold for the June 14 to July 15 tournament in 11 Russian cities, FIFA said,
naming overall international demand at 53 per cent.

A final sales phase starts April 18, also first come, first-served.

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Wolves see off Leicester in Seven Goal Thriller

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Wolves’ Diogo Jota breaks the heart of Leicester in thriller at Molineux Stadium

Wolves’ Diogo Jota breaks the heart of Leicester in thriller at Molineux Stadium

Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Diogo Jota had the last word in the pulsating seven goal thriller against Leicester City at Molineux Stadium on Saturday afternoon, slotting in the winning goal in stoppage-time.

His last gasp goal completed a hat trick and enabled Wolves to steal a decisive victory over never-say-die Leicester.

Jota netted the opener from Joao Moutinho’s cross after four minutes, and eight minutes later it was 2-0 when Ryan Bennett headed in after out-jumping Harry Maguire.

Two minutes after half-time Gray raced clear to tuck a fine finish beyond Patricio, and Harvey Barnes’s shot, on his first Premier League start, was deflected in by Conor Coady on 51 minutes.

Neves set Jota free to make it 3-2, before a towering header by Morgan levelled the match with three minutes left. But in stoppage time, Jota netted the winner, breaking the hearts of the visitors.

“I think this is Premier League. Every team believes until the end. In a game like this when you win, it feels like the greatest win in the world,”Jota said after the match.

Wolves’ only previous home Premier League encounter against Leicester also finished 4-3, in October 2003.

Wolves climb to eighth on 32 points, a point and a place above Claude Puel’s side.

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EPL: Sarri reveals player he’ll avoid resting till end of season

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Chelsea manager, Maurizio Sarri has said he will avoid resting a tiring Jorginho because he believes the club is not ready for the tactical change the midfielder’s absence would force on the team.

Italy international, Jorginho has started all but one of the club’s Premier League fixtures to date and has featured 25 times in all competitions.

Cesc Fabregas’ departure for Monaco has left Chelsea with no natural alternative at the base of midfield and Sarri admitted a heavy workload is beginning to affect his deep-lying playmaker.

The Blues are chasing Leandro Paredes to provide Jorginho with relief but, for now, the 27-year-old will be asked to continue, with Sarri opposing a switch that might accommodate two holding midfielders.

Goal.com quoted him as saying to reporters in England, “We are not ready to change at the moment.

“Jorginho has played with me for four seasons. It’s very difficult for him to improve more. He played very well for 20 matches (this season), I think.

“Now, maybe, in the last two matches he was a little bit tired. He moved the ball a little bit slowly than before. But I think that it’s normal.

“You cannot stay at the top for 60 matches, so it’s normal to have a different period, a period when you are not so lucid as usual. But it’s not a big problem. Of course, it’s the reason I said we needed a replacement for Cesc.”

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Serena to tearful opponent: ”You’re gonna make it, don’t cry”

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Serena Williams to her Ukrainian opponent Dayana Yastremska: You will make it, don’t cry

Serena Williams to her Ukrainian opponent Dayana Yastremska: You will make it, don’t cry

Serena Williams crushed Ukrainian teenager Dayana Yastremska 6-2, 6-1 on Saturday before consoling her at the net as she burst into tears.

“You did amazing, you’re gonna make it, don’t cry”, Serena told her.

It was Day 6 at the Australian Open in Melbourne.

“I just play each match at a time, play as hard as I can and do the best I can. That really is all you can do,” Serena said as she zeroes in on an eighth Australian title.

The 37-year-old, seeded 16, has dropped just nine games in her three matches so far and will now face Simona Halep, the world number one for a berth in the quarter-finals. Halep beat Venus Williams in two straight sets 6-2 6-3.

The Romanian finally hit form to pull off her best win of the year and cruise past the veteran American.

“I was super-motivated today,” she said after being taken to three sets in both her opening two matches as she bounces back from a herniated disc that ended her 2018 season early.

“I have nothing to lose,” she added, looking ahead to Monday’s clash against 23-time Grand Slam winner Serena. “I playing against a great champion. Its’s going to a bigger challenge but I’m ready to face it.”

Fourth seed Naomi Osaka looked down and out against Taiwanese veteran Hsieh Su-wei before battling back to win 7-5, 4-6, 6-1 and set up meeting with Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova.

Osaka’s win equals the 21-year-old’s best performance at the Australian Open, where she reached the last 16 in 2018 but lost to Halep.

But she looked headed for the exit when she conceded the first set and was down 4-1 in the second, before winning five straight games to force a decider.

“I just didn’t want to give up,” said the Japanese, who received a code violation after throwing her racquet.

Sixth seed Elina Svitolina struggled with a painful shoulder complaint that required treatment at every changeover, and medical timeouts, before she somehow beat China’s Zhang Shuai 4-6, 6-4, 7-5 as the temperature rose in the centre court sunshine.

“I just told myself ‘you’re going to die or win’,” said Svitolina, who scored her biggest career win by clinching the WTA Finals in Singapore last October.

She will next meet 17th-seeded American Madison Keys.

In the men’s event, World number one Novak Djokovic continued his relentless drive towards more Australian Open glory as he cranked up another gear Saturday with third round drubbing of his Canadian opponent, Denis Shapovalov.

The Serb dropped a set for the first time this year against the fast-rising Shapovalov, before demolishing him in the fourth stanza to win 6-3, 6-4, 4-6, 6-0.

Djokovic, with 14 Grand Slams to his credit is gunning for a record seventh Australian title.

“I just tried to be in the moment and weather the storm,” said the Serb, who was unsettled when the lights were switched on in Rod Laver Arena for television reasons, despite it still being daylight.

“Completely unnecessary to turn on the lights,” he said in roasting the organisers.

Djokovic’s victory means he is guaranteed to stay world number one when the new rankings are released after the tournament.

He next plays another up-and-coming star, Russia’s 15th seed Daniil Medvedev, who eased past David Goffin and has yet to drop a set.

Another young gun Alexander Zverev made the last 16 for the first time when he swatted aside Australian Alex Bolt in three sets and will play former world number three Milos Raonic for a place in the quarter-finals.

Eighth seed Kei Nishikori made it back-to-back victories for Japan, following Osaka on court by beating Portugal’s 44th-ranked Joao Sousa in three sets.

The 29-year-old has won all three of his first week matches on Margaret Court Arena to reach the last 16 for the seventh time in nine appearances.

“I love to play this court,” said the 2014 US Open finalist after delighting a large contingent of Japanese fans.

He next plays Spain’s 23rd seed Pablo Carreno Busta.

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