BUENOS AIRES, Oct. 8 (Xinhua) -- Lionel Messi said he hoped Argentina's 1-0 defeat of Ecuador in their opening 2022 World Cup qualifier on Thursday would provide some relief to Argentines suffering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Team play was lacking but at least the defense was doing its job by keeping the lurking Scots away from the penalty box. As a result, the first half did not produce a single shot a goal on either side.
Messi told Barcelona officials that he wanted to leave in August before changing his mind two weeks later to avoid a legal battle with the club he has called home since the age of 13.
The 21-year-old Kenin, by contrast, has escaped some tough battles en route to Saturday's showdown as four of her six matches have been decided in the third set and in two matches she had to fight from one set down.
Scaloni also spoke about the challenge of preparing for Argentina's qualifiers during the coronavirus pandemic and underlined the difficulty of South America's 18-round qualifying tournament.
The former Sao Paulo and Porto player praised his teammates for respecting their unfancied opponents.
As Ji missed a big three-pointer which could have sealed the win in regulation time, both teams battled hard and were unable to establish a double-digit lead all the way into overtime.
"As a young team, we haven't played many tough games like this, so we cherish it a lot," Sun noted.
"It's even more difficult now in these strange times, having to play without fans. It's not easy to play against Bolivia in the altitude of La Paz. The qualifying rounds are complicated and whoever thinks this will be easy is wrong," he added. Enditem
"We were not able to keep up with the aggressive approach of our opponents. We produced no final passes. I tried to switch things up in the roster but nothing helped," said Slovakia's coach Hapal after the game.
In the men's event, Hungary's Gaspar Csere, 29, won with a time of 2:17:43, whereas the fastest female athlete was Tunde Szabo, 31, also from Hungary, in 2:43:39. Enditem