Williams Rallies to Remain Alive
After playing so infrequently, it’s as if Serena Williams is starting from scratch.
Sure looked that way for a bit more than a half-hour in the French Open’s second round on Thursday, when she dealt with muscle soreness, a lack of verve and a bunch of mistakes. So many mistakes.
And then, suddenly, after unleashing one particularly powerful backhand return winner that she punctuated with a shout, Williams was back. She was animated. Determined. Dominant, even. Shaking off some rust in her first Grand Slam tournament since giving birth nine months ago, Williams recalibrated her shots and erased a deficit of a set and a break to beat 17th-seeded Ashleigh Barty of Australia 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in a match that ended shortly before dusk.
Three women share lead
The sun shone brightly at rain-soaked Shoal Creek. So did Ariya Jutanugarn, Sarah Jane Smith and Jeongeun Lee.
Jutanugarn, Smith and Lee each shot a 5-under 67 to share the first-round lead at the U.S. Women’s Open, where the course held up better than some feared after heavy rains in recent days.
Thailand’s Jutanugarn spent hours in front before Smith and Lee caught her in the evening. Jutanugarn is coming off a Kingsmill Championship win and kept up the momentum, including an eagle on No. 6.
Hideki Matsuyama and Tiger Woods hit their stride at the end of their rounds at the Memorial, and it paid off in different ways.
Matsuyama was in the middle of the pack at Muirfield Village when he ran off four straight birdies and then holed out with a wedge from 130 yards on the 17th hole for an eagle that sent him to a 7-under 65 and a share of the lead with 19-year-old Joaquin Niemann of Chile and Abraham Ancer of Mexico.
“As the round went along, I played better and better,” said Matsuyama, who got his first PGA Tour win at the Memorial four years ago.
Woods three-putted from 25 feet to fall to 3 over with five holes to play. He answered with three straight birdies -- two of them on par 5s on the front nine -- and got up-and-down from 62 yards on the ninth hole for a 72.
Lue deals with anxiety
Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue is being treated for anxiety, saying before Game 1 of the NBA Finals that the pressure-packed playoffs bring him so much joy.
He also realizes there are so many people dealing with challenges in life, so his story may help others.
Lue took a leave of absence on March 19 for health reasons and when he returned April 5 acknowledged he experienced “piercing” chest pains during two games this season.
Minnesota Twins first baseman Joe Mauer has not been able to shake the concussion-like symptoms he has experienced since hurting his neck three weeks ago. ... Marcedes Lewis wasn’t sure if the Green Bay Packers were the right fit for him. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers and tight end Jimmy Graham made him feel at home at Lambeau Field. Lewis visited Green Bay last week thinking he wanted to explore his options during his first stint as a free agent following 12 years with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
He received calls from other teams, but he said that the Packers were the most persistent so he made Lambeau his first stop.