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Wimbledon phenom Coco Gauff coming to D.C.'s Citi Open

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Wimbledon phenom Coco Gauff coming to D.C.'s Citi Open

Coco Gauff, the 15-year-old tennis sensation that stole hearts around the world at Wimbledon, will make an appearance and play at the 2019 Citi Open in Washington D.C. 

She was granted a spot in the Citi Open's qualifying draw on Friday. There she will have the opportunity to win her way into the event’s main draw.

Gauff's acceptance into the qualifying field was not promised. She did not earn direct entry into the main draw or the qualifying draw due to her No. 313 ranking that she held prior to Wimbledon when the Citi Open’s original field was announced. To make it into the main draw against top-100 players, the young American must win two matches in the qualifying tournament on July 27 and 28. 

Gauff was ineligible to receive one of the Citi Open’s wild cards into the main WTA draw as she has already used her maximum allotment of three as a 15-year-old. With her making the qualifying field, this will be only her third WTA event of 2019.

Whether she was selected for qualifying or not, Gauff will host the Citi Open Kids’ Day on Sunday, July 28.

“Coco’s story is a perfect fit with the history and mission of our tournament and, as potentially the next great American star, she also embodies our future and our re-imagination of this storied tennis event,” said Mark Ein, who owns management rights for the Citi Open, in a press release.  “Coco’s fairytale run at Wimbledon captured the hearts of fans worldwide and Washington D.C. cannot wait to host her first post-Wimbledon tennis appearance back in the United States at the Citi Open.  We hope she gets into the qualifying but if not, we will provide our community and her fans a great opportunity to meet her and watch her play and practice as she prepares for the US Open.”

At Wimbledon, Gauff rolled through the qualifying tournament and then upset seven-time Grand Slam Champion Venus Williams in the First Round. She continued her magical run to the Round of 16 where she would fall to eventual champion Simona Halep. 

Her world rankings have catapulted her to No. 141 in the world and put her in position to qualify for the U.S. Open over the next month. This will be her first action on the court since playing on the lawns in London. A run in Washington D.C. could help push the young American even closer to a main draw spot in New York. 

The Citi Open will be held from July 27 to August 4 at the Rock Creek Park Tennis Center. The main ATP and WTA draws will begin play on Monday, July 29.

This story has been updated to reflect Coco Gauff's entrance into the qualifying tournament. 


Former boxing champ Floyd Mayweather to pay for George Floyd's funeral

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Former boxing champ Floyd Mayweather to pay for George Floyd's funeral

Former boxing champion Floyd Mayweather has offered to pay for George Floyd’s funeral and memorial services, and the family has accepted the offer.

Mayweather personally has been in touch with the family, according to Leonard Ellerbe, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions. He will handle costs for the funeral on June 9 in Floyd’s hometown of Houston, as well as other expenses.

Floyd, a black man, died May 25 after a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee into Floyd’s neck while Floyd was handcuffed and saying that he couldn’t breathe. His death sparked protests in Minneapolis and around the country, some of which became violent.

TMZ originally reported Mayweather’s offer, and said he will also pay for services in Minnesota and North Carolina.

“He’ll probably get mad at me for saying that, but yes, he is definitely paying for the funeral,” Ellerbe told ESPN.com on Monday.

Mayweather, who lives in Las Vegas, has not met the Floyd family.

Mayweather, who retired undefeated after 50 fights, winning five division titles, also paid for the funeral of an opponent. Mayweather won his first world championship when he stopped Genaro Hernandez for the WBC super featherweight title in 1998. Hernandez died 13 years later of cancer, and Mayweather handled funeral expenses.

Mayweather is considered one of the best boxers of his generation. Among the champion boxers he defeated before retiring in 2017, are Manny Pacquiao, Canelo Alvarez, Oscar de la Hoya and Miguel Cotto.

In The Loop: Gritty goes to space, Arnold Schwarzenegger's workout buddy

In The Loop: Gritty goes to space, Arnold Schwarzenegger's workout buddy

First up in this Monday look around the sports world, not long after the successful launch of two astronauts to the International Space Station this past weekend, Philadelphia Flyers mascot Gritty shared this video of his experience to space. Somewhere no mascot has ever gone before! 

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I just need some space.

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While Gritty was headed off to space, LeBron James, Anthony Davis and J.R. Smith continued to do some cardio work. They were all spotted last week by a fan who was driving around and saw the three biking around the city of Los Angeles.

Lastly, ever wonder where Arnold Schwarzenegger gets his motivation to work out? Well it turns out his pet donkey Lulu is his pump up buddy. The 72-year old Hollywood actor and icon shared this video on his Instagram of Lulu monitoring his at-home workout session.

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Lulu pumps up.

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