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Monday 23 October 2017

Thiem sees off Souza in Kitzbuehel

TENNIS: Fifth-seeded Dominic Thiem defeated Joao Souza of Brazil 7-6 (4), 3-6, 7-5 in a rain-soaked first-round match at the Bet-at-Home Cup in Kitzbuehel, Austria last night.

The 50th-ranked Austrian converted his fourth match point as he broke Souza for a third time in the final set. After the second set, the match was interrupted for nearly an hour due to heavy rain.

In the second game of the match, Souza walked off the court after being warned by the umpire for taking too much time between his serves.

The Brazilian, who broke Thiem in the opening game, sat on his chair for several minutes but decided to play on after the umpire refused to call the supervisor during the game.

Thiem next plays Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic, who defeated Jan-Lennard Struff of Germany 6-4, 6-4.

Earlier, Pere Riba of Spain held off four set points in the opener before defeating Dustin Brown of Germany 7-6 (6), 7-5.

Riba trailed 6-2 in the tiebreaker before reeling off six straight points. Brown, who hit 14 aces, dropped serve at 5-5 in the second set.

Also, Maximo Gonzalez of Argentina beat eighth-seeded Pablo Carreno Busta of Spain 6-3, 4-6, 7-5; Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain rallied to beat Victor Galovic of Croatia 6-7 (5), 7-5, 6-2; and Andreas Haider-Maurer defeated Gerald Melzer 6-2, 7-6 (1) in an all-Austrian tie.

Ali to face 'Gaza' rap

CRICKET: England cricketer Moeen Ali is unlikely to face punishment after being photographed wearing wristbands saying "Save Gaza" and "Free Palestine" while batting in the third test against India.

The England and Wales Cricket Board says "we don't believe he has committed an offence."

It says it did not know Moeen, who is a practicing Muslim, was going to wear the wristbands before start of play on Monday. He was out for 12.

Azizulhasni Awang, a Malaysian cyclist competing at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games, was reprimanded by his team last week for wearing gloves saying "Save Gaza" and warned he would be expelled if he did it again.

Israel launched the military operation against Gaza's Hamas rulers three weeks ago.

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