Instead of No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. No. 2 Rafael Nadal for the ATP Finals trophy, it’ll be No. 3 Dominic Thiem against No. 4 Daniil Medvedev. Nadal had won 71 matches in a row when grabbing the opening set, and he served for the victory in Saturday’s semifinals when leading 5-4 in the second set. But Medvedev broke at love there and came all the way back to win 3-6, 7-6 (4), 6-3. That came after Thiem frittered away four match points in his semifinal against Djokovic because he was “tight and nervous” during a second-set tiebreaker. Thiem gathered himself and eventually reeled off seven of the match’s last eight points after trailing 4-0 in the last tiebreaker, winning 7-5, 6-7 (10), 7-6 (5) to record his 300th career tour-level victory. “What he did from 0-4 in the third-set tiebreaker was just unreal,” said Djokovic, a 17-time Grand Slam champion. “I don’t think I played bad . . . He just crushed the ball and everything went in.” Thiem ended Djokovic’s bid for a record-tying sixth ATP Finals trophy, while Medvedev prevented Nadal from continuing to pursue the most significant title the 20-time major champ hasn’t won. Whoever wins Sunday on the indoor hard court at O2 Arena in London — where things will be quiet because spectators are banned due to the coronavirus pandemic — will be the tournament’s sixth different champion over the past six years, the longest such stretch since 1974-79 . . . The Tennis Integrity Unit banned Bulgarian female player Aleksandrina Naydenova for life and fined her $150,000 for match-fixing offenses. Naydenova, 28, “had partaken in match-fixing activity multiple times between 2015 and 2019,” the anti-corruption body said in a statement Friday.
Raiders activate 7 from COVID list
The Las Vegas Raiders activated seven players off the COVID-19 list after they missed practice this week as “high risk” close contacts to a teammate who had tested positive. Safety Johnathan Abram, defensive tackle Maliek Collins, defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins, cornerback Isaiah Johnson, defensive end Arden Key and defensive tackle Kendal Vickers all were activated Saturday and are on target to play Sunday against the Kansas City Chiefs. Those players still need to get negative tests back Sunday before they can be cleared to play. The Raiders placed all seven players on the list following defensive end Clelin Ferrell’s positive test Tuesday. Defensive back Lamarcus Joyner also had been placed on the list Tuesday because of contact with Ferrell. Ferrell, linebacker Cory Littleton and right tackle Trent Brown remain on the COVID-19 list after having tested positive. Las Vegas also placed backup running back Theo Riddick on the COVID-19 list Saturday.
Bengals put RB Mixon on IR
The Cincinnati Bengals placed running back Joe Mixon on injured reserve with a foot injury. The announcement means backup Giovani Bernard will start for the fourth straight game when Cincinnati faces Washington on Sunday. Mixon, a fourth-year player, suffered a right foot injury in the Week 6 loss at Indianapolis and has been week-to-week . . . The Jacksonville Jaguars activated veteran cornerback D.J. Hayden from injured reserve Saturday and expect him to play significantly against Pittsburgh on Sunday. Hayden missed the last three games because of a strained hamstring. His return comes days after the Jaguars (1-8) placed rookie cornerback CJ Henderson (groin) on injured reserve . . . The Los Angeles Chargers placed linebacker Kyzir White on the COVID-19 list. White is in his third season and is the Chargers leading tackler with 68.
Orlando wins shootout in wild MLS playoff
Benji Michel’s goal in a second penalty shootout and a late save by a reserve defender summoned to play goalie helped send Orlando City into the MLS Eastern Conference semifinals with a wild 1-1 (6-5) victory over NYCFC on Saturday. No. 4 seed Orlando next plays Nov. 29 against top-seeded Philadelphia or No. 8 New England . . . Pedros Santos, Darlington Nagbe and Gyasi Zardes scored for the Columbus Crew in a 3-2 victory over the New York Red Bulls to advance to the MLS Eastern Conference semifinals. Third-seeded Columbus will play Nov. 29 against the winner of Tuesday night’s match between second-seeded Toronto FC and No. 7 Nashville.
Atlético Madrid snaps drought vs. Barcelona
Yannick Carrasco scored after defensive blunders as Atlético Madrid ended a decade-long winless streak against Barcelona in the Spanish League with a 1-0 victory. Carrasco netted the winner after mistakes by both Barcelona captain Gerard Piqué and goalkeeper Marc-André Ter Stegen. Piqué lost possession near midfield and Ter Stegen unsuccessfully came far out of his area to try to intercept a pass to Carrasco. The Belgium midfielder neatly slipped the ball between Ter Stegen’s legs to set himself up for a shot from long range into the open net.. . . With his team top of the English Premier League, Jose Mourinho enjoyed bragging rights over Pep Guardiola in their longstanding rivalry as Tottenham beat Manchester City, 2-0. A typical Guardiola vs. Mourinho game saw City enjoy the lion’s share of possession, only to be frustrated by Tottenham’s compact defense and sliced apart on counter-attacks. “Everyone worked their socks off,” Tottenham forward Harry Kane told Sky Sports. “We knew in the second half that chances would be available and thankfully we took some in the end.” Kane has either scored or assisted at least one goal in each of his last eight league games. Mourinho was marking a year in charge at Tottenham, while Guardiola acknowledged he had work to do to turn City’s season around after signing a two-year contract extension. Tottenham has 20 points, two more than Chelsea and Leicester. A win over Liverpool on Sunday could put Leicester top, though . . . Bruno Fernandes scored the only goal of the game as Manchester United beat West Bromwich Albion, 1-0, with some help from VAR. First, a video replay overturned a penalty given against United by showing Fernandes got the ball when challenging an opponent. Then it gave Fernandes two chances at a spot-kick. Fernandes stepped up to take the penalty after West Brom’s Darnell Furlong handballed. The Portugal midfielder’s first attempt was saved by West Brom goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, but VAR showed that Johnstone was slightly off his line. That meant a retake and Fernandes duly scored.
Dressel sets swimming world record
Caeleb Dressel set a pair of short-course world records at the International Swimming League final in Budapest, Hungary. Expected to be one of the top US stars at next summer’s Tokyo Olympics, Dressel, 24, became the first swimmer to eclipse 48 seconds in the 100-meter butterfly, touching with a time of 47.78. About 40 minutes later, Dressel took won the 50 freestyle in 20.16, eclipsing his own short-course record by 0.08. In the 100 fly, the Florida native broke the mark of 48.08 set by South Africa’s Chad Le Clos at 2016 Short Course World Championships. Le Clos finished second at Duna Arena in 48.45 . . . Hockey East officials announced the men’s game between New Hampshire and Boston College originally scheduled for November 21 had been postponed. A new date for the rescheduled home-and-home series has yet to be determined.