Rafael Nadal extended his sizzling summer with a first-time title. One set away from her own breakthrough, No. 1 Serena Williams wilted.
Nadal took advantage of the few openings he got against John Isner on Sunday, grinding out a 7-6 (8), 7-6 (3) win at the Western & Southern Open in Mason, a suburb of Cincinnati, that added yet another title to his sensational summer.
The 27-year-old Spaniard won the championship in Montreal a week ago and has back-to-back hard-court championships for the first time in his illustrious career. He’d never even reached the finals in Cincinnati.
Williams had never won a Cincinnati title, either. Like Nadal, she was trying for her second championship in two weeks, fresh off her championship in Toronto.
She dominated the first set, then fell apart, giving No. 2 Victoria Azarenka a chance to rally for a 2-6, 6-2, 7-6 (6) win that ended Williams’ 14-match winning streak. Williams committed 58 unforced errors that turned the momentum.
• Mardy Fish beat Evgeny Donskoy 6-3, 3-6, 6-1 in the first round of the Winston-Salem (N.C.) Open. Fish — a wild-card entrant — advances to face Jarkko Nieminen of Finland, the tournament’s 11th seed, in the second round.
Track and field
Bolt wins third gold
Usain Bolt is perfect again. And with three gold medals in Moscow, the Jamaican great became the most successful athlete in the 30-year history of the world championships. The 4×100-meter relay gold erased the memories of the 100 title he missed out on in South Korea two years ago because of a false start. And, combined with an identical 100-200-relay triple from Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Bolt was instrumental in giving Jamaica the first sweep of the six sprint events. The United States won an impressive 25 medals. But only six of them were gold as Russia edged them with seven, making it the first time the U.S. failed to at least tie for the gold-medal lead since the first world championships in Helsinki 30 years ago.
Cashman: A-Rod a ‘liar’
Brian Cashman escalated the warfare between the Yankees and Alex Rodriguez by calling his third baseman a liar who has created a “litigious environment” unlike anything he has ever seen during his 16 years as general manager. Cashman lashed back at Rodriguez, as well as the accusations by the player’s attorney, Joseph Tacopina, during a 27-minute dugout session with reporters before Sunday night’s series finale at Fenway Park. The general manager said he’s no longer “comfortable” talking with Rodriguez beyond hello because of the hostile nature of his relationship with the Yankees and believes A-Rod has been dishonest in his dealings with the team.
• The Mets placed right-hander Jenrry Mejia on the 15-day disabled list after he had to leave Saturday’s start because he experienced pain in his surgically repaired elbow.
Tide CB charged with DUI
Alabama cornerback Geno Smith has been charged with driving under the influence. The Tuscaloosa County Sheriff’s Department’s online records show the sophomore for the top-ranked Crimson Tide was arrested Sunday and jailed on $1,000 bond. He had not been released as of Sunday afternoon.
• The Bengals released linebacker Aaron Maybin, a fifth-year player who signed with Cincinnati as a free agent in January.
• Buffalo quarterback EJ Manuel had what Bills coach Doug Marrone would only call “a procedure” on his left knee Sunday morning and will miss the rest of the preseason.
• Derek Wolfe says he’ll be back on the football field soon. The Denver Broncos hope fellow starters Champ Bailey, Wes Welker, Louis Vasquez and Stewart Bradley will be there with him. All of them were hurt in Denver’s 40-10 preseason loss at Seattle on Saturday night.
• Pro Bowl running back Jamaal Charles returned to Chiefs practice with no hesitation despite a lingering right foot strain that caused soreness to travel halfway up his leg.
• Dustin Keller will miss the entire season with a knee injury that leaves the Miami Dolphins without much experience at tight end.
• Titans wide receiver Kendall Wright will miss Tennessee’s third preseason game with Atlanta after an MRI exam shows he sprained his right knee in a loss at Cincinnati.
Europe claims Solheim
Europe showed Sunday it can win the Solheim Cup anywhere. Caroline Hedwall became the first player in Solheim Cup history to win all five of her matches, holing a 4-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole in Parker, Colo., for a 1-up victory that assured the Europeans retaining the cup. Moments later, Catriona Matthew finished off a rally to halve her match against Gerina Piller. That gave Europe 14½ points for its first win on American soil since this event in 1990.
• Patrick Reed won the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C., for his first PGA Tour title, beating Jordan Spieth with a birdie on the second hole of a playoff. Reed earned $954,000 money and 500 FedEx Cup points for winning the final tournament before the playoffs.
• Matt Fitzpatrick won the U.S. Amateur, beating Oliver Goss 4 and 3 in the 36-hole final in Brookline, Mass., to become the first English champion of the tournament since 1911.
Sam Mikulak ran away with the U.S. men’s gymnastics championship in Hardford, Conn., winning the all-around title with ease over Alex Naddour. The two-time NCAA champion put together a two-day total of 181.400, a whopping 2.9 points ahead of Naddour.
Barker downs champ
British middleweight Darren Barker won the IBF championship Saturday night in Atlantic City with a split decision over defending champ Daniel Geale of Australia.
Italy, Kiwis tied
Emirates Team New Zealand fell out of the second race of the Louis Vuitton Cup finals in San Francisco because of a mechanical problem, handing Italy’s Luna Rossa a victory that evened the series at one apiece.
• Up With the Birds won the $500,000 Breeders’ Stakes at Woodbine Racetrack in Toronto, running 1½ miles on the turf course in 2:28.69 in the final leg of the Canadian Triple Crown.
• Snowboarder Devin Logan of the United States made a successful return from a serious knee injury to win a women’s freestyle world cup half-pipe event in New Zealand.
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