Warriors 121, Clippers 104: Steph Curry achieves another milestone

first_imgHe does not need to worry about that. He has made a comfortable living making a lot of 3’s. So much that … Click here if you’re unable to view the video or gallery on your mobile device.OAKLAND – The play represented the soundtrack of Stephen Curry’s life. He stood from 28 feet behind the basket. He shot the ball quickly. And just as the crowd rose on its feet, the ball sailed into the net.“I shoot a lot of threes,” Curry said, grinning afterwards. “I’d better make a lot of them.”last_img

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Most consecutive games played in NHL history — Top 10

first_imgPatrick Marleau is set to become just the sixth player in NHL history to play 800 consecutive games Tuesday when the Sharks play the Chicago Blackhawks. Here are the top 10 longest games-played streaks in league history. Numbers listed are for before Tuesday’s games.Rank    Name           Position    Streak     Start date       End date  1. Doug Jarvis            C               964        10/08/1975    10/10/19872. Garry Unger           C              914         02/24/1968    12/21/19793. …last_img

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Darwin’s Sweatshop: Why Ethiopia Made People Hairless

first_imgFive scientists think they have figured out why people walk upright and don’t have fur like other mammals.  They had to evolve in Ethiopia, where it is hot.  This led to the loss of body hair, and the evolution of sweat glands and other adaptations to deal with the heat.    It’s not that the scientists from Caltech, Johns Hopkins and University of Utah actually found evidence for this.  It’s just that they studied rocks from the Turkana Basin, where some important fossils of alleged human ancestors have been found.  According to their analysis of carbonate rocks, the temperature has always been hot and arid in this area – for 4 million years, they claim.  They published their results in PNAS,1 and the story was picked up by Science Daily and PhysOrg.    Although their paper primarily concerned deducing climate and temperature from the rock record, they considered implications for human thermophysiology:This temperature record is relevant to the evolutionary origin or maintenance of a unique suite of adaptations that permit humans to remain active under high ambient heat loads.  For example, upright posture in hot, open environments confers thermophysiological advantages to bipedal hominins owing to reduced interception of direct solar radiation and to displacement of the body away from the near-surface environment, which may be excessively hot due to solar heating.  Derived human traits such as very little body hair, high sweating capacity, and high surface area to volume ratio are also advantageous for daytime activity in hot, arid climates, and temperature is a central variable in hypotheses of behaviors such as long-distance scavenging and persistence hunting.  However, the thermoregulatory advantages of these adaptations arise primarily under very hot, sunny conditions.  Our results suggest that such conditions were relevant to human ecology in the Turkana Basin, either directly within or at the spatial or temporal margins of human-preferred habitats….    Whereas our data are silent on the importance of ambient temperature in shaping human evolution, they comprise a necessary prerequisite for beginning to evaluate temperature-related hypotheses. [italics in original].If this is so, then it should also be a necessary prerequisite for beginning to evaluate the null hypothesis, or for evaluating why such conditions failed to generate similar physiological traits in the other mammals living alongside the humans in the same ecological environment.  It would also make one question why the hominids they believe inhabited South Africa, Europe and Asia for millions of years and during long ice ages did not quickly gain all that body hair right back.  The authors seemed to overlook those parts of the evolutionary logic.    The popular press swallowed it all without question, though.  “The need to stay cool in that cradle of human evolution may relate, at least in part, to why pre-humans learned to walk upright, lost the fur that covered the bodies of their predecessors and became able to sweat more, Johns Hopkins University earth scientist Benjamin Passey said.”  Perhaps they need to consider another uniquely human trait: blushing (see 12/19/2007 commentary).1.  Passey, Levin, Cerling, Brown, and Eiler, “High-temperature environments of human evolution in East Africa based on bond ordering in paleosol carbonates,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, published online before print June 8, 2010, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1001824107.This has the makings of a great cartoon: the Turkana Gymnasium, where all the camels, wildebeests, zebras, giraffes, oryx, lions, cheetahs, and gerbils all strip down to the skin, stand upright, and work up a sweat under the hot sun, dancing to the beat of “Do the Evolution” (08/31/2006).(Visited 50 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Afrique du Sud : aperçu economique

first_imgL’Afrique du Sud est la mine des nouvelles idees economiques de l’Afrique, a la tete du continent africain en termes de production et d’extraction miniere et produisant une grande partie de l’electricite de l’Afrique.Le pays est tres riche en ressources naturelles, possede des secteurs financier, juridique, de communications, energetique et de transport bien developpes, une bourse classee parmi les 20 premieres du monde et des infrastructures modernes assurant une distribution efficace des marchandises dans toute la region du Sud de l’Afrique.L’Afrique du Sud possede un cadre juridique progressiste et de rang mondial. La legislation regissant le commerce, la main d’œuvre et les questions maritimes est particulierement bien developpee et les lois sur la politique de concurrence, les droits d’auteur, les brevets, les marques et les conflits respectent les normes et conventions internationales.Le systeme financier du pays est elabore et solide. Les reglementations bancaires se classent parmi les meilleures du monde et le secteur est classe depuis longtemps parmi les 10 meilleurs du monde.Non seulement l’Afrique du Sud est une economie emergente mais elle est aussi la porte d’entree vers d’autres marches africains. Le pays joue un role important dans l’approvisionnement en energie, en aide humanitaire, transport, communications et investissement sur le continent. Ses liaisons routieres et ferroviaires bien developpees fournissent une plateforme et les infrastructures pour un transport terrestre au cœur de l’Afrique.La croissance economiqueL’economie de l’Afrique du Sud s’est trouvee dans une phase ascendante du cycle commerciale depuis septembre 1999, la plus longue periode d’expansion economique jamais enregistree dans le pays.Pendant cette reprise (selon des donnees jusqu’au quatrieme trimestre de 2007), le taux de croissance annuel moyen du pays etait de plus de 4 %. Dans la decennie precedant l’annee 1994, la croissance economique etait en moyenne de moins de 1 % par an.Le produit interieur brut (PIB) reel de l’Afrique du Sud a progresse de 3,7 % en 2002, de 3,1 % en 2003, de 4,9 % en 2004, de 5 % en 2005, de 5,4 % en 2006, pourcentage le plus eleve depuis 1981, et de 5,1 % en 2007. Au quatrieme trimestre 2007, l’Afrique du Sud a enregistre son 33eme trimestre d’expansion continue de son PIB reel depuis septembre 1999.L’economie d’Afrique du Sud a ete completement restructuree depuis l’instauration de la democratie dans le pays en 1994. Des reformes macroeconomiques audacieuses ont encourage la competitivite, ont fait progresse l’economie, en creant des emplois et en ouvrant l’Afrique du Sud aux marches internationaux.Au cours des annees, ces politiques ont cree une structure macroeconomique solide comme le roc. Les impots ont ete reduits, les prix ont chute, le deficit fiscal a recule, l’inflation a baisse et les controles sur le change se sont assouplis.La croissance economique et une gestion fiscale prudente ont vu le deficit budgetaire de l’Afrique du Sud reculer (la difference entre le total des depenses et des revenus du gouvernement, hors emprunts) a chute de façon importante, de 5,1 % du PIB en 1993/1994 a 0,5 % en 2005/2006, le deuxieme deficit fiscal le plus bas de l’histoire du pays apres celui de 0,1 % atteint durant le boom de l’or en 1980.En 2006/2007, le pays a enregistre son premier excedent budgetaire de 0,3 %.L’inflation a la consommation a suivi une tendance a la baisse depuis 2002 lorsque les prix a la consommation ont augmente en moyenne de 9,3 % suite a la tragedie du 11 septembre a New York. L’inflation a la consommation a atteint une moyenne de 4,3 % en 2004, 3,9 % en 2005, 4,6 % en 2006 et 6,5 % en 2007.Malgre une baisse des impots generale, l’economie optimiste, un plus grand respect fiscal et une administration fiscale et douaniere en amelioration ont vu les revenus du gouvernement augmenter en fleche et atteindre 475,8 milliards de rands en 2006/2007, plus de trois fois les chiffres de 1996/1997.La notation des investissementsPlus d’une decennie de reformes institutionnelles coherentes et d’une gestion economique saine a egalement ete recompensee par une solide notation des credits, impliquant moins de risques pour les investisseurs et reduisant le cout du capital pour les emprunteurs des secteurs public et prive du pays.Les notations de credit de l’Afrique du Sud n’ont cesse de s’ameliorer depuis 1994, avec une augmentation de Standard & Poor’s, Moddy’s et Fitch en 2005. Toutes les agences ont cite l’amelioration de la stabilite economique du pays, la reduction de la vulnerabilite aux chocs exterieurs, une dette moderee et des institutions politiques fortes et stables.En 2006, Moody’s et Fitch ont indique que la tendance a la hausse allait probablement se poursuivre, revisant leur prevision au sujet de la notation de l’Afrique du Sud de stable a positive. Fitch a explique que le changement de prevision traduisait l’amelioration de la performance et des previsions en matiere de croissance suite a une augmentation rapide des investissements publics et prives et des micro-reformes permanentes de l’economie.De plus, le pays a considerablement ameliore ses finances publiques deja solides et son bilan exterieur.Les defis: l’approvisionnement energetiqueLa plus grande menace immediate de la croissance economique permanente de l’Afrique du Sud est une contrainte de capacite qui s’est developpee precisement a cause de la bonne performance economique du pays au cours de ces dernieres annees.Cette croissance, associee a l’industrialisation rapide et au programme d’electrification de masse de ces dix dernieres annees, a finalement conduit, en janvier 2008, a une demande d’electricite depassant l’offre.Les coupures de courant qui en resulterent inciterent le gouvernement a agir rapidement pour regler la crise. Le plan de reaction comporte un investissement de 343 milliards de rands sur cinq ans pour financer une nouvelle generation de centrales electriques et un ensemble de mesures de reduction de la demande civile et industrielle.Les agences de notation Standard & Poor’s et Fitch ont declare en janvier 2008 que le manque d’electricite n’etait pas considere comme une menace immediate de la notation de credit du niveau d’investissement de l’Afrique du Sud mais pouvait devenir un probleme si cela limitait la croissance economique.Les defis: le chomageLe Fonds Monetaire International (FMI), dans son evaluation de pays annuelle de 2007, a indique que l’economie de l’Afrique du Sud traversait sa plus longue periode d’expansion jamais enregistree et que ces dernieres annees ont vu une croissance elevee dans un environnement d’expansion de credit rapide, de prix des actifs en hausse, de renforcement des finances publiques et de developpement des reserves internationales financees par des entrees massives de capitaux.Au meme moment, le FMI a exprime ses inquietudes sur le deficit actuel du pays et le taux d’inflation.Le rapport du FMI a aussi identifie le probleme de longue date du chomage comme etant l’un des principaux defis de la croissance economique dans le pays avec la pauvrete, les grands ecarts de richesse et l’incidence elevee de VIH/Sida.Mais le rapport a aussi approuve l’approche de ces problemes par les autorites sud-africaines avec des politiques visant a augmenter la croissance economique dans un environnement stable et des initiatives afin de reduire le chomage et ameliorer les conditions sociale.Le FMI a declare que cette strategie pourrait etre soutenue par des reformes du marche du travail et une plus grande liberalisation du commerce.La cle identifiee par le FMI pour repondre a ces defis sera l’integration economique de la majorite auparavant defavorisee de l’Afrique du Sud. L’economie de l’Afrique du Sud presente une dualite marquee avec une economie financiere et industrielle elaboree ainsi qu’une economie informelle sous developpee.Alors que le secteur economique financier et industriel de premier rang a cree des infrastructures et une base economique avec un grand potentiel de croissance et de developpement futurs, son secteur economique de deuxieme rang represente a la fois un potentiel inexploite et un defi pour le developpement du pays.Derniere mise a jour de l’article : Aout 2008SAinfo reporter. Sources (sites en langue anglaise) :South Africa YearbookSouth African Reserve BankSouth African TreasuryDepartment of Trade and IndustryStatistics South Africalast_img read more

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South Africa’s high-speed rail link opens

first_img1 August 2011 The long awaited, multi-billion rand high-speed rail link between Johannesburg and Pretoria opens this week, with expectations that it will take about 20 percent of traffic off the congested highways between South Africa’s legislative and commercial capitals. Gauteng’s provincial minister for roads and transport, Ismail Vadi, told a press conference in Johannesburg on Thursday that the high-speed train – known as the Gautrain – will be running from Rosebank in Johannesburg to Pretoria from next week. The short section of the route between Rosebank and Park Station in downtown Johannesburg will, however, only open “at a later date”. The train will run from Rosebank Station through to Hatfield in Pretoria from Tuesday, 2 August, stopping at eight of the 10 stations along the way. The Gautrain’s feeder buses will also run along this section of the route. “The independent certifiers for the project, Arup, have confirmed that they will be in a position to issue the operating commencement date certificate for this phase of operations on Monday, 1 August,” Vadi said. The problem along the Rosebank/Park Station section of track is that water is seeping into the tunnel, causing the delay, but Vadi maintained that the section was “completely safe” and that its continued closure was a “precautionary measure”. “Although safety had not been compromised, the Gauteng Province and Bombela [the operating company] are concerned about the impact of water ingress, above the agreed upon levels, on the long-term viability and integrity of the infrastructure,” Vadi said. He apologised for the delay in opening the next phase of the Gautrain. The proposed date of opening is the end of the year. The Bombela Concession Company will be responsible, at its cost, for re-grouting the tunnel, to ensure that water stops seeping into it. The tunnel runs under The Wilds and Roedean School in Parktown, and the water that feeds the ponds and waterfalls in The Wilds rises from a nearby spring, and is therefore a constant flow of water. At present some 6-million litres of water is being pumped out of the tunnel into the Sandspruit River, which runs around Gillooly’s Farm, through Modderfontein, and into the Braamfontein Spruit, where it becomes the Jukskei River.Tunnel Bombela was required to submit a tunnel works plan for additional engineering works that will be implemented to reduce the seepage of water into the tunnel. “The delayed opening of the tunnel section between Rosebank Station and Park Station will enable Bombela to address the water ingress problem in the shortest possible time with the least impact on the rest of the system,” Vadi said. The province will not contribute to the cost of this additional work. The Gautrain has cost R25.2-billion. Remedial work consists of drilling small diameter holes through the tunnel floor and injecting grout in the surrounding rock. It is hoped that this will reduce the permeability of the rock mass, and thus reduce the amount of water that is fed into the tunnel drains. “This is an iterative process and it is difficult to predict how long it will take to achieve the desired results; however, it is envisaged that the section between Rosebank and Park stations could be opened by the end of 2011.” In the meantime, buses will be provided for passengers wishing to travel from Rosebank to Johannesburg’s central business district. Jerome Govender, the chief executive of Bombela, was not able to confirm what the penalties for the delay would be, but said it would be “very, very small … We are absolutely excited to operate the Gautrain – go and get your gold card,” he said. All eight stations opened on Friday, and Govender encouraged commuters to go and get their gold travel cards, to avoid the queues on Tuesday. The Gautrain will run seven days a week between 5.30am and 8.30pm, at 12-minute intervals during peak periods on week days, and at 20-minute intervals during off-peak hours. The trains will run at 30-minute intervals over the weekends. There will be no bus service on weekends and public holidays. Predictions are that 108 000 passengers will use the Gautrain daily. It is hoped that it will take 20 percent of road traffic off the network of roads between Johannesburg and Pretoria. The Gautrain between OR Tambo International Airport and Sandton Station opened in June 2010, just in time for the 2010 Fifa World Cup, and has proved very popular – predictions of 75 000 commuters a week between Sandton and the airport have been met. Source: City of Johannesburglast_img read more

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WEF Africa 2016: connecting Africa’s resources through digital transformation

first_imgWith Africa’s economy under pressure, the World Economic Forum on Africa meeting in Kigali, Rwanda, will look at how the continent’s technology industry can help overcome its challenges.Rwanda’s capital, Kigali will host this year’s WEF Africa. (Image: Flickr, Lori Howe)Africa’s positive economic outlook is under pressure – mainly due to adverse changes in the global economy – and is expected to remain just below 5% in 2016.As many countries in the region improve their investment climate and undertake macroeconomic policy reforms, foreign direct investment flows are expected to continue to grow, although at a slower pace.Low global prices for major commodity exports, currency devaluations and debt sustainability considerations, as well as geosecurity threats that have weakened growth in some countries underscore the urgent need for economic diversification for sustained inclusive growth.In this context, Africa’s leaders need to pursue new approaches to ignite structural transformation, particularly in the face of rapid technological changes that have the potential to create new industries and reduce inequality.Under the theme Connecting Africa’s Resources through Digital Transformation, the 26th World Economic Forum on Africa, being held in Kigali, Rwanda, between 11-13 May, will bring together regional and global leaders from business, government and civil society.They will discuss digital economy catalysts that can drive radical structural transformation, strengthen public-private collaboration on key global and regional challenges, and agree on strategic actions that can deliver shared prosperity across the continent.Rwanda, the land of a thousand hills, has dramatically transformed since the 1994 genocide. The country is emerging as a regional high-tech hub and boasts one of sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest GDP growth rates. It is one of the continent’s most competitive economies and a top reformer in improving the business environment.This remarkable progress showcases the country’s rapid evolution as a knowledge economy, powered by smart policies and investments. Nonetheless, further reforms and alliances are called for to accelerate development by leveraging digital transformation to expand socio-economic opportunities.South Africa will be sending a delegation to Kigali for the conference. Follow them on Twitter using #SAinKigali.last_img read more

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Perdue confirmation hearing held

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The Senate Agriculture Committee held a hearing yesterday on the nomination of Sonny Perdue as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.“Today, Governor Perdue promised to be a ‘strong and tenacious advocate’ for America’s farmers and ranchers and ‘USDA’s chief salesman around the world.’ We could not agree more on the need for strong leadership at USDA, especially when it comes to trade. Governor Perdue pledged to work closely with the rest of the Administration to negotiate strong trade deals that benefit America’s farmers and ranchers. We also appreciate his commitment to a strong Renewable Fuel Standard,” said the National Corn Growers Association in a statement. “USDA has been without a Secretary for more than two months, at a time when there is much work to do. NCGA stands ready to work with Governor Perdue and the rest of the Trump Administration to support strong trade policy, continue investing in renewable fuels, protecting risk management programs, and preparing for the next farm bill. We urge the Senate to confirm him as soon as possible.”last_img read more

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Thiruvananthapuram temple riches spark ownership debate

first_imgKerala’s Padmanabha Swamy temple is being called the world’s richest. Riches worth over Rs one lakh crore have already been unearthed from the underground vaults of the temple, while one more chamber was being opened on Monday. The discovery has sparked off a controversy as to what happens to the treasure now. Does it belong to the public or to the royal family? The wealth was discovered when the underground vaults in the temple were opened on June 27 on the Supreme Court orders following a private petition seeking transparency in the running of the trust and what came out dazzled the seven-member panel appointed by the apex court. The treasure trove in Kerala temple includes a gold sheaf weighing 500 kilos, 18-foot gold chain weighing 10.5 kilos, three-and-a-half feet tall Lord Vishnu idol studded with diamonds, emeralds and rubies, 36-kilo golden veil, 1200 ‘Sarappalli’ golden chains, some sporting ‘navaratnas’, three gold stone-studded crowns, diamonds, precious stones, including cat’s eye, rubies and emeralds and 1,000 kg of gold coins. Former High Court Judge M.N. Krishnan said, “We are expected to take the inventories and submit before the Supreme Court.” Two of the six underground vaults of the temple have not been opened in 136 years. One chamber was last opened 140 years ago. The last remaining chamber – the oldest one termed the B vault, will be opened after July 8. Meanwhile, security has been heavily beefed up in and around the temple complex. But the question is who the wealth belongs to. What happens to this treasure now? Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said, “The government will assist in safeguarding the treasure.”  Former High Court Judge Justice C.S. Rajan said, “That is for the court to decide who is the owner. Who is the authority that is a dispute before the court – whether the maharaj is the owner or somebody else is the owner or the government can take over all this.” Legal Expert V.R. Krishna Iyer said, “The wealth should be used in public interest. The treasure should be handed over to a national trust and spent for the welfare of the poor.” Activist Jaya Jaitley told Headlines Today, “People offer money to the God. The God’s represented by the temple. There is no question that the state can say it has a right over the wealth. There will be huge turmoil in that event. Leave it to the temple.” However, Jaitley added, the temple can use some money for the welfare of the people. “The money belongs to the temple. It’s a great treasure we have found?it’s atrocious to suggest it’s black money,” Sabrimala temple spokesperson Rahul Easwar told Headlines Today. The government, though, says that the treasure will be used in public interest, but only if the Supreme Court allows. Till the time SC decides on who gets the treasure, the world’s richest temple will continue to be the guardian of God’s own wealth.  Experts believe the value of the treasure trove is nearly three times the annual budget size of Kerala. It is almost double of the annual budget of Bihar, which was Rs. 65,000 crore for year 2011-12.  The treasure trove is more than the budgetary allocation for rural development programmes with a total allocation of Rs 74,143 crore. It is four times the annual health budget, which was allocated at Rs 26,760 crore in this Budget.advertisementHow the Kerala temple compares to other rich temples  Five hundred and twenty two silver bricks were recovered from the ancient Jagannath temple in Puri in February this year. The bricks weighing 18 tonnes were worth Rs 90 crore. The recovery, from a room that had remained closed for decades, had been a surprise. It was the Balaji Temple in Tirupati that was the richest Hindu temple in the world, till the Padmanabha Swamy temple surpassed it. The insurance cover for Tirupati Balaji’s jewels is whopping Rs 52 thousand crore. The Tirupati temple is also known to have 3000 kg of gold, worth Rs 42 thousand crore. One third of this gold was deposited with the State Bank of India last year. Several temples in India have crores of rupees worth of wealth as devotees donate gold and other precious objects. But with one more vault left to be opened, the wealth of Lord Padmanabha could possibly be the largest in the world – larger than even the most celebrated religious repository of treasure, the Vatican. While the Vatican has more artefacts of proven artistic, historical and religious value, most of them cannot even be quantified in terms of money. Its Rs 1500-crore annual revenue pales in comparison to the treasure of Sree Padmanabha Swamy temple. The Sistine Chapel ceiling, painted by Michelangelo between 1508 and 1512, maybe priceless, but the gold from the Kerala temple would earn more interest per year, year after year. – With Sreekesh in Thiruvananthpuramadvertisementlast_img read more

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Venus rising: Williams back in Grand Slam semi 6 years later

first_imgLONDON (AP) — In some ways, making it to a Grand Slam semifinal is rather been-there, done-that for Venus Williams.She is, after all, already the owner of seven major titles, including five at Wimbledon.This one, though, is different.She’s 36 now, a half-dozen years removed from her last such run. And, in the interim, she has been through the daily struggles of dealing with a disease that can sap energy and cause joint pain.Williams made it to the final four at the All England Club for the first time since 2009, and at any Grand Slam tournament since the year after that, playing mistake-free to beat Yaroslava Shvedova 7-6 (5), 6-2 in the quarterfinals Tuesday.“Semifinals feels good. But it doesn’t feel foreign at all, let’s put it that way,” said Williams, whose first Wimbledon title came in 2000 and whose most recent came in 2008.Asked to compare her current level of play to that of the past, Williams shook her head, shut her eyes and laughed.“I don’t remember. Six years ago is ages ago,” she responded. “I was most likely kicking butt six years ago, if I was in the semis or the finals. You have to be.”Just like in the old days, Williams will be joined in the semifinals by a familiar face — younger sister Serena, who moved closer to equaling Steffi Graf’s Open-era record of 22nd Grand Slam championships by defeating 21st-seeded Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 6-4, 6-4, taking the last three games of each set. Serena hit 11 aces, including one at 123 mph to end it.This, then, is the latest chapter of the remarkable Williams sister tale: a pair of siblings from Compton, California, who rose to the top of tennis. It’s the 11th time they’ve reached the semis at the same major; in all previous 10, one took home the trophy. That includes four all-in-the-family finals at Wimbledon, with Venus winning in 2008, and Serena in 2002, 2003 and 2009.On Thursday, they will try to set up another title match when No. 1 Serena faces unseeded Elena Vesnina, while No. 8 Venus meets No. 4 Angelique Kerber.“It just means that she has a lot of perseverance. She’s a real fighter,” Serena said about Venus, the oldest woman in a major semifinal since 1994, when Martina Navratilova was 37 at Wimbledon. “Like I always say, it’s super inspiring for me.”Kerber, who surprised Serena in the Australian Open final in January for her first Grand Slam title, advanced by eliminating No. 5 Simona Halep 7-5, 7-6 (2). Vesnina, ranked 50th and never before a major quarterfinalist, moved on by overwhelming No. 19 Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 6-2.The last men’s quarterfinal spot was earned by 2010 runner-up Tomas Berdych, who completed his 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (8), 6-7 (9), 6-3 victory over Jiri Vesely in a match suspended after the fourth set Monday night because of darkness. On Wednesday, the semifinalists will be determined by these matchups: Andy Murray vs. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Roger Federer vs. Marin Cilic, Milos Raonic vs. Sam Querrey and Berdych vs. Lucas Pouille.There wasn’t much drama in the quartet of women’s matches Tuesday, although Venus was perilously close to dropping her opening set against the 96th-ranked Shvedova, now 0-3 in major quarterfinals.Shvedova led 5-2 in the tiebreaker before collapsing this way: forehand long, backhand wide, forehand into the net, forehand long. Those unforced errors were part of her 24 in the match, 15 more than Venus. They also created a set point for Venus, who converted it with a 99 mph service winner.Playing with her left thigh taped, Venus moved quite well, covering the court with speed and perfect timing, offering up enough defense and waiting for Shvedova’s miscues. When Shvedova’s final shot nestled in the net, Venus let out a cry of “Come on!” and raised her arms.“Once you get to this part of a tournament, motivation is going to kick in after a few games of every match,” said Venus’ coach, David Witt, “and you’re going to stop thinking about being sore, if you’re sore.”In 2011, Venus revealed that she had been diagnosed with Sjogren’s syndrome, and since then there have been repeated questions about when she might quit tennis — especially as early losses accumulated. She had six first-round exits at majors over the past six years, compared with three over her career’s first 14 years.“Retiring is the easy way out,” she said. “I don’t have time for easy.”About 1 1/2 hours later, Venus went back out to team with Serena and win a doubles match to get to that event’s quarterfinals.One more victory each in singles, and they’ll be sharing the court again — except on opposite sides of the net, reprising their one-of-a-kind rivalry. Just like in the old days. TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

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