0Shares0000Gareth Southgate congratulates England defender Harry Maguire © AFP / Johannes EISELENIZHNIY NOVGOROD, Russian Federation, Jun 24 – England coach Gareth Southgate was keeping his feet firmly on the ground after England’s 6-1 World Cup group-stage rout of Panama, declaring “I didn’t particularly like the performance”.With a grin Southgate explained to the BBC: “I’m being hyper-critical, but I didn’t like the start, I didn’t like the goal at the end. The bits in the middle were pretty good though!” Southgate was speaking after a hat-trick from Harry Kane, a double from John Stones and another from Jesse Lingard saw off Panama and qualified England into the knockout stages.As it stands England are level on goal difference with also-qualified Belgium but top the group by virtue of yellow cards — two compared to the Belgians’ three.The countries meet in Kaliningrad on Thursday.Asked about possible changes to his XI to face Belgium, Southgate commented: “I want to keep the momentum, we have to think about the team we want to put out, it’s an opportunity for players who need a match who haven’t played for a while but on the other hand we want to keep winning.“It’s a nice decision to have!”Reflecting on a record World Cup win for England — their previous best result was 3-0 — he added: “I was a bit anxious at the start, they (Panama) had six at the back and three in middle, but once we worked that out I thought we played some really good stuff for 35 minutes.Southgate’s main gripe was his defence allowing Felipe Baloy to score Panama’s first ever World Cup goal in the 78th minute.“At half-time we talked about one more goal to be top of the group, that’s why the goal at the end was disappointing,” he said.“We’d rather be in control of the group than not, and confidence wise it’s important to score goals.“It was a big moment for Lingard and great for the captain (Kane) to score a hat-trick, that way he didn’t have the hump when I took him off!”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova says Naomi Osaka’s shyness is a problem for her as she struggles to deal with the increased scrutiny in the wake of her success at the Grand Slams and her rise to the top of the world rankings.A tearful Osaka admitted difficulty in dealing with the attention of being the world’s top-ranked woman after a shock defeat by France’s Kristina Mladenovic at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Tuesday.It was the 21-year-old’s first match since her Australian Open triumph in January for the second Grand Slam title of her career. Kvitova said Osaka would have to get used to having a target on her back.”She’s number one, Grand Slam winner, everyone just wants to beat her. That’s how players are thinking,” Kvitova, beaten by Osaka in the Melbourne final, told reporters.”I remember when I was young, I totally had same mindset. That’s how it is … it’s about experiences and coming to the court knowing that you are the favourite of every match. Every player on the other side wants to beat you.”World number four Kvitova clinched her first Wimbledon title in 2011 but found it difficult to build on that success.”It took me a while, … three years to win another Grand Slam. I was still in the top 10. I was still fighting, but in the big stages I couldn’t do it,” Kvitova, whose career stalled after a knife attack by a home intruder in 2016, added.”She [Osaka] is kind of a shy person, probably like me at the time. It was really difficult for me, that time, for sure. I totally understand Naomi.”advertisementAlso Watch:
Even though they held a one-point lead with just more than a minute left in Game 4, Kawhi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors found themselves with their backs against the wall on Sunday in Philadelphia.The Sixers and their raucous home crowd at Wells Fargo Center could almost taste a victory, one that would have given them an enormous 3-1 series advantage over Toronto heading into Game 5. And they would be accomplishing that despite getting a poor scoring effort from Joel Embiid, who was under the weather for the second time during the series.But as the clock ticked down to that final minute, Leonard, who’d gotten almost everything he’d wanted Sunday, had other plans. He used a screen from teammate Marc Gasol, and four dribbles to his right, but both of Philly’s pick-and-roll defenders — Embiid and Ben Simmons — opted to follow Leonard to the right wing. Where another player might have passed the ball, Kawhi chose to elevate, lofting a rainbow 3-pointer over the outstretched left arm of the 7-foot-2 Embiid.Aside from all but assuring that Toronto would knot the best-of-seven series at two games apiece, the shot punctuated yet another virtuoso performance by Leonard, who logged 39 points on 13-of-20 shooting and 14 rebounds, and is so far having one of the most efficient postseason runs we’ve ever seen from an NBA player, let alone a wing player specifically.In this series against Philly, Leonard is somehow averaging 38 points on 62 percent shooting, with a perfect-looking shot chart. He’s drained an unthinkable 21 of his 24 uncontested shot attempts through the four games, including hitting 6-for-6 on Sunday.Leonard did all this while continuing to have an impact on the defensive end, where he held Simmons in check during the first half before sliding over during the third period and heavily limiting swingman Jimmy Butler, who had scored efficiently up until that switch occurred.Leonard wasn’t solely responsible for Toronto’s win Sunday. Gasol — who’d been held to eight points or fewer in Games 1-3 — was more aggressive and finished with 16 in Game 4. Similarly, Kyle Lowry looked for his shot early and finished with 14 points after having just seven in Game 3. Danny Green was a perfect 8-for-8 from the line. All of these contributions were helpful in light of Pascal Siakam, arguably Toronto’s second-best player, shooting 2-of-10 from the floor while playing through a calf injury, and Serge Ibaka being the only Raptor to score off the bench.But make no mistake: Kawhi has played as if he were content to do this all by himself if need be. And in many ways, that spectacle is still noteworthy considering how far a cry it is from what Leonard was earlier in his career, before he became a clear-cut franchise player.During this postseason, just 33 percent of Leonard’s baskets have been assisted, according to NBA Advanced Stats, while the other two-thirds have been self-created. Snapshots over time illustrate how that’s flipped almost entirely, as he’s become more of a 1-on-1 player. During the 2012-13 regular season, for instance, 65 percent of Kawhi’s makes were assisted. That share of assisted baskets dropped to 54 percent during 2014-15, and to just under 48 percent in 2016-17 before dwindling to just a third during these playoffs.The question to raise here, of course, is whether it’s possible for Leonard to keep this up. He can’t keep shooting 70 percent from midrange when he was a 46-percent shooter from there during the regular season, right?On some level, the answer to that may depend on whether the Sixers are willing to be more aggressive about forcing the ball out of Leonard’s hands. We’ve written before about what makes Leonard so different from the other stars in the NBA (aside from how mysteriously quiet he seems to be): He does just about everything at an above-average level, while defending and scoring better than almost anyone. But if there’s one area to test, it’s his playmaking, which generally pales in comparison to LeBron James’s or even Kevin Durant’s. (Both contemporaries regularly enjoy 2-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratios, while Leonard has yet to post such a season.) Leonard, who had five assists and seven turnovers Sunday, has closer to a 1-to-1 ratio this postseason, with 31 assists and 29 turnovers so far.Going one level deeper, Kawhi was the NBA’s least efficient wing player1Among the 60 players who faced at least 25 traps and blitzes. this past regular season when opposing defenses either blitzed or trapped him in pick-and-rolls, with the Raptors scoring just 0.46 points per chance in such situations, according to data from Second Spectrum.So while Philadelphia hasn’t been able to stop The Terminator-like Kawhi yet, the Sixers at least have something they can try in hopes of slowing him down as the series moves back to Toronto.
February 9, 2018 Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter Posted: February 9, 2018 SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — A bandit armed with a shotgun held up a Fox Canyon neighborhood convenience store early Friday morning, then smashed out the window of his own getaway car after apparently locking his keys inside, authorities said.Based on the suspect’s description, the weapon used and the getaway car, robbery detectives believe the gunman may be the same man who robbed an adult book store about 24 hours prior to Friday’s robbery.The latest heist occurred around 4:40 a.m. at the 7-Eleven at 4919 University Ave., just east of Euclid Avenue and about a mile east of Interstate 15, San Diego police Officer Tony Martinez said. The suspect entered the convenience store, threatened the clerk with a shotgun and made off with an undisclosed amount of cash.Once in the parking lot, the bandit apparently smashed the driver’s side window of his dark Nissan Sentra and fled westbound on University Avenue, Martinez said. The suspected thief smashed the window after apparently locking his keys in the car.The suspect was described as a clean-shaven, long-haired Hispanic man in his 20s with a heavy build. He wore a black baseball hat and a red and black sweater.The suspect’s physical appearance, clothing, weapon and car all matched the descriptions given Thursday of a man who robbed the Adult Depot on Pacific Highway in Mission Hills a little after 5:30 a.m., Martinez said. Robbery detectives were investigating whether the heists on back-to-back days were connected. Armed bandit locks keys in car after robbing Fox Canyon convenience store Updated: 8:53 AM ,