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Wimbledon, NBA Finals, celebrity golf, Messi vs. Neymar fill weekend sports

Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic (pictured) battles Ash Barty of Australia in the Wimbledon 2021 women's singles final at 9 a.m. EDT Saturday in London. Photo by Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA-EFE
Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic (pictured) battles Ash Barty of Australia in the Wimbledon 2021 women's singles final at 9 a.m. EDT Saturday in London. Photo by Facundo Arrizabalaga/EPA-EFE

July 9 (UPI) -- Wimbledon 2021 title matches, the NBA Finals, a celebrity golf tournament and high-profile international soccer games lead the sports weekend schedule. Three NASCAR races and several UFC bouts also air this weekend.

World No. 1 Ash Barty of Australia takes on No. 13 Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic in the Wimbledon 2021 women's singles final at 9 a.m. EDT Saturday in London. The match airs on ESPN.

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Barty is 5-2 against Pliskova in seven career meetings. She is 3-0 in their most recent matchups. The 2019 French Open champion lost in the fourth round of Wimbledon 2019. She needed three sets to win her first-round match this year at the All England club, but beat her next five opponents in straight sets to reach the final.

Pliskova has two previous semifinals appearances and one finals appearance at Grand Slams. She won her first five matches in straight sets at Wimbledon 2021. She beat No. 4 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus in three sets Thursday to advance to the final.

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The men's final will feature No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia or No. 12 Denis Shapovalov of Canada against No. 9 Matteo Berrettini of Italy or No. 18 Hubert Hurkacz of Poland.

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Berrettini faces Hurkacz in a semifinal at 8:30 a.m. EDT Friday at the All England Club. Djokovic then battles Shapovalov in the other men's semifinal. Both matches air on ESPN.

"He has an all-around game," Djokovic told reporters, when asked about Shapovalov on Wednesday. "He has a huge serve, which is always tricky.

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"He is conformable coming to the net and his movement has improved. He is probably making less errors. We played a tight two sets earlier this year. ... It's impressive the way he is playing."

The men's singles final is at 9 a.m. EDT Sunday on ESPN.

Celebrity golf

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The 2021 American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament runs from Friday through Sunday in Stateline, Nev. Fans can watch 15 former Cy Young Award winners, several football Hall of Famers, current NFL stars and other celebrities at the annual event on NBC.

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers, Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, NBA legend Charles Barkley, singer/actor Justin Timberlake and comedian Larry the Cable Guy are among the competitors in the 90-player field.

Former tennis star Mardy Fish will attempt to defend his title at the three-round event at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course on the shore of Lake Tahoe. Former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo is the favorite for the event, which features a $600,000 purse with $125,000 for the winner.

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"They're just odds. They're just guessing," Romo told reporters Wednesday during a Zoom video conference. "But I feel like last year Mardy played some incredible golf.

"I know he set the course record and he shot 63. That's going to be hard to beat in any year."

First round coverage of the tournament starts at 5 p.m. EDT Friday on NBCSN. Second and third round coverage starts at 2:30 p.m. EDT Saturday and Sunday on NBC.

Soccer: Messi vs. Neymar

Neymar Jr. and Lionel Messi, two of the world's best soccer players, will compete in the 2021 Copa America Final at 8 p.m. EDT Saturday at Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro.

Neymar and Brazil are favored to beat Messi's Argentine squad. The matchup airs on FS1.

Brazil won the South American soccer tournament in 2019. Argentina hasn't won a major title since 1993. Messi and Neymar won the Champions League together when they were teammates at Barcelona in 2015.

No fans will be present Saturday at Maracana because of coronavirus pandemic safety precautions.

Two more major international soccer matches air Sunday. Italy takes on England in the postponed UEFA Euro 2020 title game. That match is at 3 p.m. EDT Sunday at Wembley Stadium in London and airs on ESPN.

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The United States Men's National Team takes the field for a matchup against Haiti in the CONCACAF Gold Cup at 8:30 p.m. EDT Sunday at Children's Mercy Park in Kansas City, Kan. The Group B match airs on FS1.

NBA Finals

The Milwaukee Bucks host the Phoenix Suns in Game 3 of the 2021 NBA Finals at 8 p.m. EDT Sunday at Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee. The best-of-seven series stays in Milwaukee for Game 4 at 9 p.m. EDT Wednesday. The NBA Finals air on ABC.

Friday

Wimbledon tennis

Men's semifinal: Matteo Berrettini vs. Hubert Hurkacz at 8:30 a.m. EDT on ESPN

Men's semifinal: Novak Djokovic vs. Denis Shapovalov at 10:30 a.m. EDT on ESPN

MLB

Cardinals at Cubs at 2:20 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Tigers at Twins at 8:10 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Reds at Brewers at 8:10 p.m. EDT on YouTube

Yankees at Astros at 8:10 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Golf

American Century Championship: First round at 5 p.m. EDT on NBCSN

Soccer

MLS: Columbus at Cincinnati at 7:30 p.m. EDT on ESPN+

NASCAR

Camping World Truck Series Corn Belt 150 at 9 p.m. EDT on FS1

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Saturday

Wimbledon tennis

Women's final: Ash Barty vs. Karolina Pliskova at 9 a.m. EDT on ESPN

MLB

Blue Jays at Rays at 1:10 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Athletics at Rangers at 4:05 p.m. EDT on FS1

Reds at Brewers at 7:15 p.m. EDT on Fox

Yankees at Astros at 7:15 p.m. EDT on Fox

Cardinals at Cubs at 7:15 p.m. EDT on Fox

Rockies at Padres at 10:10 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Diamondbacks at Dodgers at 10:10 p.m. EDT on MLB Network (Out of market only)

Golf

American Century Championship: Second round at 2:30 p.m. EDT on NBC

NASCAR

Xfinity Series Credit Karma Money 250 at 3:30 p.m. EDT on NBCSN

Soccer

Copa America final: Argentina vs. Brazil at 8 p.m. EDT on FS1

UFC 264 on ESPN+

Sean O'Malley vs. Kris Moutinho at 10 p.m. EDT

Irene Aldana vs. Yana Kunitskaya after first fight

Tai Tuivasa vs. Greg Hardy after second fight

Gilbert Burns vs. Stephen Thompson after third fight

Dustin Poirier vs. Conor McGregor after fourth fight

Sunday

Wimbledon tennis

Men's final: Novak Djokovic or Denis Shapovalov vs. Matteo Berrettini or Hubert Hurkacz at 9 a.m. EDT on ESPN

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MLB

Yankees at Astros at 2:10 p.m. EDT on TBS

Golf

American Century Championship: Final round at 2:30 p.m. EDT on NBC

Soccer

Euro 2020: Italy vs. England at 3 p.m. EDT on ESPN

Gold Cup: United States vs. Haiti at 8:30 p.m. EDT on FS1

NASCAR

Cup Series Quaker State 400 at 3:30 p.m. EDT on NBCSN

NBA Finals

Game 3: Suns at Bucks at 8 p.m. EDT on ABC

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