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France footballer Hernandez avoids jail as Madrid court accepts appeal



Bayern Munich defender Lucas Hernandez will not go to a Spanish jail for violating a restraining order in 2017 after a Madrid court on Wednesday accepted an appeal by the French player. 

The court said Wednesday it had accepted Hernandez’s appeal based on his current family situation and the low probability that he would commit a crime again.

Originally published as France footballer Hernandez avoids jail as Madrid court accepts appeal




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Beijing Games organisers say virus ‘biggest challenge’, 100 days from start



Protecting the Beijing Winter Olympics from the coronavirus is the “biggest challenge”, organisers said Wednesday, as millions of people in China were under stay-at-home orders to contain small outbreaks 100 days before the Games.

“The pandemic is the biggest challenge to the organisation of the Winter Olympics,” Zhang Jiandong, executive vice president of the Beijing Organising Committee, told a press conference.

Originally published as Beijing Games organisers say virus ‘biggest challenge’, 100 days from start




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Unvaccinated players can compete at Australian Open: leaked email



A leaked WTA email says unvaccinated players will be welcome at the Australian Open

Unvaccinated players will be allowed to compete at the Australian Open but must complete 14 days in hotel quarantine, according to a leaked WTA email Monday, although a government official insisted the matter was not yet settled.

The rules would also likely apply to the men’s tour, leaving the door open for world number one Novak Djokovic to defend his title at Melbourne Park in January.

The email said that players fully inoculated against coronavirus would not have to quarantine or remain in bio-secure bubbles, enjoying “complete freedom of movement”.

“We feel the need to reach out to you all to clear up false and misleading information that has recently been spread by other parties about the conditions the players will be forced to endure at next year’s Australian Open,” the email read.

Vaccinated players could arrive any time after December 1, must have a negative test within 72 hours of departing for Australia and test again within 24 hours of arrival. Otherwise, there will be no restrictions, the email said.

– Still talking –

“We’re still talking to the Commonwealth (national government) about whether the rule for international unvaccinated arrivals is either 14 days quarantine or they’re not coming into the country at all,” he said in response to the leaked email.

Nine-time Australian Open champion Djokovic is one of many players who have refused to share their vaccination status, casting doubt over whether he will defend his title.

Reports have put the vaccination rate for tennis players at between 50 and 60 percent, but Pakula spoke with Australian Open chief Craig Tiley on Monday and he believed they were much higher.

Melbourne is in Victoria state, which on Friday emerged from one of the world’s most prolonged series of Covid lockdowns, in total more than 260 days since the pandemic began.

mp/ar/pst

Originally published as Unvaccinated players can compete at Australian Open: leaked email




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Man Utd humiliated as Salah treble fires Liverpool, West Ham rock Spurs



Michail Antonio (R) celebrates his winning goal for West Ham against rivals Spurs

Liverpool swept to a stunning 5-0 win at arch rivals Manchester United as Mohamed Salah’s hat-trick and Paul Pogba’s red card condemned the hosts to one of the darkest days in their history, while West Ham beat London rivals Tottenham on Sunday.

– Antonio fires Hammers past Spurs – At the London Stadium, a second-half strike from Michail Antonio gave West Ham their second successive league win and condemned Tottenham to a second consecutive 1-0 loss this week.

Originally published as Man Utd humiliated as Salah treble fires Liverpool, West Ham rock Spurs




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