Olympic Daily News: 29 September 2020

Get your daily update of Olympic news: Trivia, trends, and talking points as Alysa Liu readies for 2020 debut, badminton World Cup finale set

By Scott Bregman

Today is International Coffee Day!

That got us thinking – which Olympian would you like to grab a cup of Joe with? Let us know by tweeting us at @OlympicChannel.

U.S. figure skating champ Alysa Liu readies for digital season debut

In a year of so much change, U.S. figure skating champion Alysa Liu is no expectation. The 15-year-old, two-time U.S. figure skating champion is preparing to make her season debut – digitally – alongside a new team of coaches.

"I really enjoyed working with [my long-time coach] Laura [Lipetsky], and I really am so thankful that I got to take [lessons] from her," Liu told the U.S. Figure Skating Fan Zone. "Now I have a new team and I'm also thankful for them. We've just been training really hard and everything is going really well."

That new team, a trio of coaches that includes Lee Barkell, Lori Nichol, and Massimo Scali, are helping her mature as a skater and improve her technical aspects, as well, says Liu.

"During the short time we've been on the ice, we've been training really hard,” she said. “We've been doing sections of the programs, we've been working on technique and new jump exercises, and we've also been working on my speed into the jumps.”

Fans will get their first glimpse of Liu on 6 October as part of U.S. Figure Skating’s International Selection Pool Points Challenge where she will debut a new short program set to “La Strada” and a free skate to “New World Symphony.”

Asian swing of badminton’s 2020 World Tour set for January

The Asian leg of the Badminton World Federation’s World Tour 2020 is now scheduled for January 2021 in Bangkok, Thailand. The event will feature two Super 1000 tournaments before the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals, according to a statement from the BWF.

“Badminton World Federation and Badminton Association of Thailand, in collaboration with the Government of Thailand, completed a feasibility study to ensure all parties can provide a safe COVID-19 framework to stage the three tournaments,” the statement reads in part. “The study concluded Thailand to be the agreed host of the three-tournament Asian leg.”

The three events get underway 12-17 January with the Asian Open 1, followed by the Asian Open II from 19-24 January. The HSBC BWF World Tour Finals wrap up the festivities 27-31 January.

Williams, Nadal, Thiem advance at French Open

Serena Williams slammed the door on fellow American Kristie Ahn Monday to advance to the second round of tennis’ final Grand Slam of 2020, the French Open. After battling back from a break down to win the first set in a tie-break, Williams shut out Ahn in the second set, winning the match 7-6 (7-2), 6-0.

“The biggest difference was just confidence,” Williams said, according to The Washington Post. “I just need to play with more confidence, like I’m Serena. So that was it. I just started playing like that, and I love the clay and I started playing like it, opening the court and moving and sliding.”

On the men’s side, defending champ Rafael Nadal advanced after beating Egor Gerasimov, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 while U.S. Open champion Dominic Thiem defeated Marin Cilic 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 to move on.

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is scheduled to take on Mikeal Ymer later today.

Also, noteworthy from Roland Garros: Monday saw Lorenzo Giustino triumphant in the second-longest match in the tournament's history. Giustino won the six hour, five minute match against Corentin Moutet 0-6, 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (7-3), 2-6, 18-16.

It’s an epic tennis moment that reminds us of this award-winning video about the day last year when the men’s finals of Wimbledon and the Cricket World Cup both took place in London. Take look.

Trivia Tuesday

Yesterday, we asked which nation has the second most golds (behind Team USA) in basketball. That would be the Soviet Union, which won gold four times plus a 1992 women’s gold as the Unified Team.

Here’s today’s question. In what year was badminton officially added to the Olympic programme?

  1. 1972

  2. 1988

  3. 1992

  4. 1996

Our hearty congrats to the Tampa Bay Lightning!

The NHL team held off the Dallas Stars in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals Monday night to win its second title.

Today’s ‘Daily Dog’ says safety first

We all have that friend whose driving is… questionable.