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US Open day two: Five players retire on ‘Heat-related’ issues.

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Djokovic

Conditions at the US Open were described as “dangerous” as five men had to retire from their first-round matches on Tuesday because of heat-related issues.

Temperatures close to 38C (100F) in New York were made more stifling by humidity levels of over 50%.



French player Julien Benneteau, who won on day two, said matches in the middle of the day should not have been played.

“They were lucky they only had retirements,” said the world number 60.

The conditions led to tournament organisers implementing an extreme heat policy in men’s matches for the first time.

Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic, who said he “struggled” with the heat in his win over Marton Fucsovics, added that the physical issues affecting some players were “really sad to see”.

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Six players were forced to retire from matches on Tuesday, with the United States Tennis Association (USTA) saying five of the withdrawals – Italian qualifier Stefano Travaglia, Lithuanian Ricardas Berankis, Argentine Leonardo Mayer, Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny and Serb Filip Krajinovic – were “heat-related”.

For Youzhny it was a sad end to his final Grand Slam tournament, with the former world number eight set to retire from tennis next month at the age of 36.

The women’s WTA has an extreme heat policy for its players, unlike the men’s ATP, which has a discretionary rule.

USTA managing director Chris Widmaier said the decision to introduce it for the men was made after consulting its medical team.

The ruling offered a 10-minute break to both players after the third set and was taken if either or both wanted it.

The break took place in women’s matches between the second and third sets.

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Morocco Get $2.9bn Credit Line Approval from IMF

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The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has approved a $2.97 billion Precautionary and Liquidity Line (PLL) to help Morocco face unexpected economic setbacks.



The IMF said in a statement that the new PLL arrangement “will provide insurance against external shocks and support the authorities’ efforts to further strengthen the economy’s resilience and promote higher and more inclusive growth”.

The two-year credit line signed on Monday is the fourth of its kind between Morocco and the IMF.

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In 2012 the IMF approved a $6.2 billion PLL for Morocco, then in 2014 the global finance body approved another worth $5 billion, and in 2016 another $3.5 billion was approved for Rabat.

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“Morocco’s economic growth remains strong in 2018 and is expected to accelerate in the medium term, provided that external conditions improve,” the IMF said. However, the outlook remains vulnerable to adverse external risks, including increased geopolitical risks and the volatility of global financial markets, it added.

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Lionel Messi wins record fifth Golden Shoe award

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Barcelona forward Lionel Messi says he “never imagined having so much success” after being presented with a record fifth European Golden Shoe award.




The Argentine scored 34 goals in 36 La Liga appearances in 2017-18, making him the highest goalscorer in Europe ahead of Liverpool’s Mohamed Salah (32).

Messi’s latest Golden Shoe award moves him one ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo, who has won four in total.

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“The truth is I had no idea this would happen when I started,” said Messi.

“I dreamt of playing professional football and enjoying success, I love the game, but I never imagined I would have so much.”

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Tottenham’s Harry Kane finished third in the rankings with 30 Premier League goals, while former Real Madrid forward Ronaldo – now at Juventus – ended the season with 26 goals in 27 league matches.

Messi currently leads Europe’s goalscoring charts once again, with 14 goals so far this term, as he targets a sixth Golden Shoe award.

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