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May 10, 2015

Atletico miss chance to pull away in third

MADRID (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid squandered a chance to all-but secure their place in next season’s Champions League group stage when Fernando Torres had to come off the bench to rescue a 2-2 draw at La Liga strugglers Levante on Sunday.

After fourth-placed Valencia drew 2-2 at Real Madrid on Saturday, a win for the champions would have propelled them six points clear in third with two games left but they slipped up against a team fighting for their top-flight status.

May 10, 2015

Soccer-Atletico miss chance to pull away in third

MADRID, May 10 (Reuters) – Atletico Madrid squandered a chance to all-but secure their place in next season’s Champions League group stage when Fernando Torres had to come off the bench to rescue a 2-2 draw at La Liga strugglers Levante on Sunday.

After fourth-placed Valencia drew 2-2 at Real Madrid on Saturday, a win for the champions would have propelled them six points clear in third with two games left but they slipped up against a team fighting for their top-flight status.

May 10, 2015

Nadal to face Murray in heavyweight Madrid final

MADRID (Reuters) – Holder Rafa Nadal looked something close to his old masterful self on clay again as he crushed Czech Tomas Berdych 7-6(3) 6-1 on Saturday to set up a heavyweight Madrid Masters showdown against Andy Murray.

Third seed Nadal, bidding for a third consecutive title in the Spanish capital but still searching for form and consistency, edged a tight first set before turning the screw in the second to exact revenge for a straight-sets defeat by Berdych in this year’s Australian Open quarter-finals.

May 10, 2015

Barca four points clear after Real held by Valencia

MADRID (Reuters) – Real Madrid’s hopes of overhauling La Liga leaders Barcelona suffered a stinging blow when they were held to a 2-2 draw at home to Valencia on Saturday to slip four points behind their arch rivals with two games left.

Treble-chasing Barca had earlier secured a nervous 2-0 victory at home to Real Sociedad and Real’s stumble capped a superb week for the Catalan giants after Wednesday’s 3-0 drubbing of Bayern Munich put them on the brink of a place in the Champions League final.

May 9, 2015

Real’s La Liga hopes not totally extinguished, Ancelotti says

MADRID (Reuters) – Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti refused to throw in the towel after Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Valencia left their hopes of overhauling La Liga leaders Barcelona hanging by a thread.

Real fought back from two goals down at the Bernabeu but were unable to snatch a winner and slipped four points behind their arch rivals with two games left.

May 9, 2015

Soccer-Real’s La Liga hopes not totally extinguished, Ancelotti says

MADRID, May 9 (Reuters) – Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti refused to throw in the towel after Saturday’s 2-2 draw at home to Valencia left their hopes of overhauling La Liga leaders Barcelona hanging by a thread.

Real fought back from two goals down at the Bernabeu but were unable to snatch a winner and slipped four points behind their arch rivals with two games left.

May 9, 2015

Barca edge Sociedad 2-0 to pull five clear of Real

MADRID (Reuters) – Barcelona moved within touching distance of a fifth La Liga title in seven years and piled pressure on chasing Real Madrid when Pedro scored a late stunner to seal a 2-0 win at home to Real Sociedad on Saturday.

The leaders’ victory over the mid-table Basque club at the Nou Camp stretched treble-chasing Barca’s lead over second-placed Real to five points ahead of the Madrid club’s game at home to Valencia later on Saturday.

May 9, 2015

Kvitova downs ailing Kuznetsova for second Madrid title

MADRID (Reuters) – Petra Kvitova swept to a second Madrid Open title and put her recent struggles behind her when she thumped an ailing Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-1 6-2 in a hopelessly one-sided final on Saturday.

Champion on the clay at the premier event in 2011, the Czech fourth seed’s powerful ground strokes were far too much to handle for the unseeded Kuznetsova, a former world number two who was hampered by a thigh problem.

May 9, 2015

Tennis-Kvitova downs ailing Kuznetsova for second Madrid title

MADRID, May 9 (Reuters) – Petra Kvitova swept to a second Madrid Open title and put her recent struggles behind her when she thumped an ailing Svetlana Kuznetsova 6-1 6-2 in a hopelessly one-sided final on Saturday.

Champion on the clay at the premier event in 2011, the Czech fourth seed’s powerful ground strokes were far too much to handle for the unseeded Kuznetsova, a former world number two who was hampered by a thigh problem.

May 9, 2015

Nadal into Madrid final after seeing off Berdych

MADRID (Reuters) – Defending champion Rafa Nadal continued to look more like his old self as he crushed Czech Tomas Berdych 7-6(3) 6-1 to reach the Madrid Masters final on Saturday.

The home favorite, bidding for a third consecutive Madrid title but still searching his for his best form, will face either Andy Murray or Kei Nishikori in the final.