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Lin Zhu Upsets Zhang Shuai, Heads To Jiangxi Semifinals

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Lin Zhu upset top-seeded Zhang Shuai 7-6 (3), 4-6, 6-1 at the Jiangxi Open on Friday to advance to the semifinals to take on sixth-seeded Saisai Zheng.

The 2 1/2-hour match saw a lot of drama, and Zhang committed 50 unforced errors and eight double faults over the course of the marathon match.

It’s been more than 2 years since Zhu has appeared in a semifinal on the WTA tour.

 

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Lynx Lindsay Whalen Retiring

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Minnesota Lynx point guard, a four-time WNBA champion,  announced on Monday that she is retiring from the WNBA  after 15 years in the league, according to ESPNW’s Mechelle Voepel.

“I would like to thank the WNBA, the Connecticut Sun, and the Minnesota Lynx for believing in me all of these years,” Whalen said in a statement. “I look forward to the next chapter in my basketball career and wish my Lynx coaches and teammates all of the best in the future.”

Whalen, 36, was named women’s basketball coach at her alma mater, Minnesota, back in April. Whalen sparked the Gophers run to the 2004 Women’s Final Four. She will take the helm after the season is over.

Whalen has averaged 11.5 points, 4.9 assists and 3.8 rebounds in her WNBA career and is Minnesota’s career assists leader with 2,337, which is third all-time in the WNBA behind Seattle’s Sue Bird and the retired Ticha Penicheiro.

“I feel so fortunate to have been on the sidelines for so many of her wins,” Lynx coach and general manager Cheryl Reeve said. “Lindsay’s will to win made her special, along with always putting her team and teammates first. I will always cherish the times we spent together over the last eight years bringing championships to her home state of Minnesota.”

Whalen poured in averaged 14.9 points, 5.8 assists and 4.4 rebounds back in 2013 en route to leading the Lynx to a WNBA Championship.

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Johnny Manziel to Start for Montreal Alouettes on Friday

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Johnny Manziel will finally get his chance in the CFL as he will start for the Montreal Alouettes on Friday as they take on his former team, the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Alouettes head coach Mike Sherman made the announcement on Tuesday.

Manziel spoke about his first season in the CFL, last Friday.

“I’ve tempered my expectations to not reach too high,” Manziel said (h/t ESPN). “I want to come in and I want to play solid football. That’s what I want to do. I realize there are going to be some growing pains to get there, because it is a process. I have been away from the game a little bit. I’m excited to get some reps, and I know I’m going to be putting in the time that I need to off the field to expedite that process.”

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Blue Bombers’ Andrew Harris Eyes Big Performance

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Winnipeg Blue Bombers running back Andrew Harris is looking to have a big game on Friday night against the Toronto Argonauts.

Harris is looking for a second straight victory over Toronto on Friday, and to follow up a big win with a wedding social on Saturday night at the stadium for he and fiancee Carina Fiorentino.

“The biggest thing is getting the win (Friday) and Saturday will just continue the celebrations,” Harris said, according to CFL.ca. “It’s just great to have it all in the same place.”

Harris will head into the game with plenty of momentum, having surpassed the 100 yard rushing mark in 3 straight games.

“I just want to win the game, that’s the biggest thing.” Harris, who leads the league with 610 rushing yards this season, said.

Harris had a big game last week in the victory over Toronto, rushing for 177 yards, which was more than Toronto’s entire team output of 165 yards.

Toronto head coach Marc Trestman is looking for better quarterback play and better pass protection in this week’s tilt.

“We’ve got to get better play and more efficient play out of our quarterback,” Trestman said. “That would be for anybody who’s playing. It starts there at the quarterback position.

“I think James [Franklin] has shown himself to be very resilient. He’s going through a growing process now in a new system with new verbiage and really his first time playing a lot of football.”

Franklin, the Toronto signal caller, was frustrated with the lack of offensive, but more so that Harris had more rushing yards than Toronto’s total offense could muster.

“It’s frustrating to think, ‘OK, I wish we would have put up more yards,’ ” he said. “I think personally I’m not like, ‘Oh no, it bothers me that he had more rushing yards than we had total yards.’

“But I mean we definitely need to do a better job of that, help our defence out because they made a lot of plays and they put us in really good positions.”

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