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Davydenko, Monfils reach quarterfinals in Qatar

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Davydenko, Monfils reach quarterfinals in Qatar

DOHA, Qatar (AP) After struggling with injuries last year, Nikolay Davydenko and Gael Monfils are playing some of their best tennis at the Qatar Open.

Davydenko reached the quarterfinals by beating fourth-seeded Mikhail Youzhny 7-5, 6-3. He was joined by Monfils, who upset third-seeded Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-4, 2-6, 6-4.

Top-seeded David Ferrer beat Germany qualifier Tobias Kamke 6-3, 6-2. Second-seeded Richard Gasquet rallied past 55th-ranked Grega Zemlja of Slovenia 6-7 (7), 6-4, 7-6 in a match that lasted nearly 3 hours.

Davydenko, once ranked as high as No. 3, combined a consistent first serve with aggressive play to unnerve the 25th-ranked Youzhny.

Davydenko broke his opponent to take a 6-5 lead in the first set and won when Youzhny hit a forehand into the net. Davydenko kept the momentum going into the second set, forcing Youzhny to save a break point in the first and third games. At 2-2, Davydenko won three straight games to take control.

``Tough match,'' said Davydenko, who won the tournament in Doha three years ago. ``Maybe we didn't start well with so many mistakes. I know against Russians when you play in second round, it's not easy.''

The 44th-ranked Davydenko said he was targeting a place in the top 20 this year after failing to win a tournament in 2012.

``If I really concentrate and (practice) and play, I want to see results,'' Davydenko said.

Monfils, who has fallen to 77th in the rankings after knee troubles forced him to cut short his 2012 season, used his powerful service game to take the lead. But in the second set, the Frenchman appeared frazzled by a new rule that requires players to serve in 25 seconds.

Monfils repeatedly argued with the umpire after getting a warning that he was taking too long. Soon, Kohlschreiber had a 5-1 lead.

In the third set, Monfils served four of his 10 aces and Kohlschreiber started making more unforced errors. The German also missed three early chances to break Monfils.

``It's always good to have a great victory like this under your belt,'' Monfils said. ``Physically I'm happy because I served very fast and there was no pain, so I was pleased with that. At the end of the match, I was very aggressive and made the shots, so I was happy with that.''

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Patriots' Julian Edelman invites DeSean Jackson to Holocaust Museum in D.C.

Patriots' Julian Edelman invites DeSean Jackson to Holocaust Museum in D.C.

DeSean Jackson's Instagram posts containing anti-Semitic quotes falsely attributed to Adolf Hitler has put the Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver at the center of racial controversy. 

Jackson has since apologized for his actions and the Eagles released a statement condemning what their player did. Meanwhile, former NBA star Stephen Jackson has defended the wide receiver, saying Philadelphia "threatened to fire" DeSean over the incident and described his posts as "speaking the truth."

Another well-known athlete has now offered his thoughts on the situation in New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman. Edelman is Jewish, and while he acknowledged Jackson saying "ugly things," he wants to use this as an opportunity to educate.

In a video Edelman posted, he invited Jackson to tour the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C., and in return, he would accompany Jackson to D.C.'s Museum of African-American History and Culture.

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“I think the black and Jewish communities have a lot of similarities,” Edelman said. “One unfortunate similarity is that they are both attacked by the ignorant and the hateful.

“We need to listen, we need to learn, we need to act,” he said. “We need to have those uncomfortable conversations, if we’re gonna have real change. So to that end, DeSean, let’s do a deal. How ’bout we go to D.C. and I take you to the Holocaust Museum, and then you take me to the Museum of African-American History and Culture. Afterward, we grab some burgers, and we have those uncomfortable conversations.”

RELATED: REDSKINS MINORITY OWNERS REPORTEDLY COULDN'T GET SNYDER TO SELL

Edelman shared his own experience of anti-Semitism as well, but also made note of the importance of the Black Lives Matter movement. 

"I remember experiencing a little bit of this hate in 2011 when I was called a [expletive] on the football field," he said. "There's no room for anti-Semitism in this world. Even though we're talking about anti-Semitism, I don't want to distract from how important the Black Lives Matter movement is, how we need to stay behind it."

Since the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum began operations in 1993, the museum has seen over 40 million visitors from over 211 countries. The Museum of African-American History and Culture opened in 2016 and has since seen over two million visitors and has more than 40,000 objects in its collection. 

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Redskins Talk and Friends: How to watch

Redskins Talk and Friends: How to watch

Amid internal pressure from investors, last week the Washington Redskins announced they will conduct a 'thorough review' of their team name. 

On Thursday, the trio from the Redskins Talk podcast - JP Finlay, Mitch Tischler and Pete Hailey - will be joined by former Washington Redskins cornerback Fred Smoot at 5 p.m. on Thursday to talk about everything going on around the team's name.

Want to ask the group a question? Leave it in the event discussion on Facebook.

When: Thursday, July 9
Time: 5 p.m. ET
Where: NBC Sports Washington's Facebook page (click here)

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Listen to the full episode of Sports Uncovered's Sean Taylor: The NFL Superstar We Didn't Get to Know, click here.