Sport-in-brief - your weekly update from the high performance sports communitySubscribe
Grace Cullen 26 April 2012
Archery: Larry Godfrey, Simon Terry, Amy Oliver and Naomi Folkard have secured selection for London 2012 after claiming the top two spots in the men’s and women’s final selection shoot.
Alison Williamson, who finished in third place in the women's tournament, remains on course for a sixth successive Olympics, while Alan Wills fought off Michael Peart's determined challenge to clinch the men's third place in the selection standings. The third selection place is at the discretion of Archery GB's Performance Director Sara Symington and Head Coach Lloyd Brown, and will be confirmed at a British Olympic Association hosted Press Conference at Lords on May 9.
Sara Symington said: "We've had three days of outstanding archery from eight very talented archers, and they can all be very proud of themselves. Obviously I'd love them all to be able to compete at the Olympics, but there's only six places, and those who've made it have done so under considerable pressure and against superb opposition.”
Disability Athletics: It was double delight for Britain in the wheelchair races at the London Marathon, with David Weir and Shelly Woods both winning their races, putting themselves in very strong positions to be selected for the ParalympicsGB for the Paralympics based on their race times and world rankings.
David Weir has now equalled Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson’s record of six titles. Against a world-class field, Weir pipped Marcel Hug to the post in an exciting sprint finish to record a time of 1:32.26.
He said: “It was very windy out there. I know it wasn’t a really fast time today, but I think everyone realised it was going to be a race between us and the clock. This is really special and better than the first one. I haven’t decided what I’m doing after the Games so this could be my final time and I was really emotional because of that.”
Shelly Woods celebrated her second London Wheelchair Marathon victory, in a time of 1:49.10, which was made even sweeter by the early break she made in the world class field. She finished almost four minutes ahead of second and third placed Japanese Tsuchida (1.53.04) and Canadian Roy (1.53.05) respectively.
UK Athletics has announced the 20-strong GB & NI team that will travel to the IPC European Athletics Championships in Stadskanaal, Netherlands (24-28 June)
The last edition of the IPC European Athletics Championships took place in Finland in 2005. On this occasion, no track wheelchair athletes have been selected onto the Aviva GB & NI team, as they, along with a select group of others, will compete at the US National Paralympic Championships in Indianapolis (29 June-1 July) where the competition is expected to at a more appropriate level for those particular event groups.
Aviva GB & NI Head Coach Peter Eriksson, said: “We’re fortunate to have a number of high quality competition opportunities across Europe and further afield over the next few months. While this event wasn’t in everyone’s plans, it provides the perfect platform to develop our athletes where we believe that’s a priority, and in other cases fine tune their performances in events where they will be required to step up their game against their toughest rivals - and for many those athletes are in Europe - prior to London. It’s also a good test for the younger athletes.”
GB & NI Team
Hollie Arnold (F46 Javelin); Graeme Ballard (T36 100m/200m); Paul Blake (T36 400m/800m); Sally Brown (T46 100m/200m); Libby Clegg (T12 100m/200m); Aled Davies (F42 Discus/Shot Putt); Derek Derenalagi (F57 Discus); Kyron Duke (F40 Javelin/Shot Putt); Thomas Green (F32 Club Throw); Katrina Hart (T37 100m/200m); Tracey Hinton (T11 100m/200m/400m); Bev Jones (F37 Discus/Shot Putt); Jenny McLoughlin (T37 100m/200m/400m); Stephen Miller (F32 Club Throw); Scott Moorhouse (F42 Javelin); Ben Rushgrove (T36 100m/200m); Sophia Warner (T35 100m/200m); Richard Whitehead (T42 100m/200m); Claire Williams (F12 Discus); Bethy Woodward (T37 200m/400m).
Boxing: Josh Taylor and Anthony Ogogo became the sixth and seventh boxers to earn their places at the London 2012 Olympic Games, following strong performances in the Olympic qualifying tournament in Trabzon, Turkey.
Taylor will fight in the 60kg division after reaching the semi-finals of the final European qualifying event, coupled with team mate Sam Maxwell's defeat. Ogogo reached the final of the event, beating Vitalk Bandarenka of Belarus 14-7 in his semi-final to become the seventh and final member of the men’s squad.
Diving: Double Commonwealth Champion Tom Daley won individual gold in the 10m platform at the fourth and final round of the FINA/Midea Diving World Series in Mexico, helping him to clinch the overall World Series title.
Daley and Pete Waterfield had earlier produced their best score of this year's World Series to earn bronze in the synchronised 10m platform in Mexico, meaning they also claimed the overall title.
Of the other Brits competing in Mexico, Chris Mears and Nick Robinson-Baker won silver in the men’s 3m Springboard with a score of 436.74. The second placing gave them their first World Series medal as a pair. The women’s 10m Synchro saw Tonia Couch and Sarah Barrow win the bronze medal with a score of 317.94.
Fencing: Natalia Sheppard qualified for London 2012 by reaching the top two at the European Olympic Zonal qualifying event in Bratislava, Slovakia. She started the day in a field of 15 fencers in an event designed to fill the two remaining European spots for the Olympic individual women's foil competition. Sheppard beat world number 230, Ghita of Romania, 10-6 to guarantee her place at London 2012.
Speaking about qualifying, Sheppard said; "I couldn't have done this without my coach, Maciej and all the performance support team which was put in place after the appointment of Alex Newton. Since the women's foil squad have been part of the World Class Programme we have gone from strength to strength. l can't wait for London to show the rest of the world just how far we have come."
Football: Following the draw for the London 2012 Football Tournament, Team GB Women’s have been placed in Group E alongside New Zealand, Cameroon and Brazil. The very first event of London 2012 will see Team GB take on New Zealand in Cardiff on 25 July. They then play Cameroon, again at Cardiff on 28 July and finally Brazil at Wembley on 31 July. Team GB Men’s have been drawn in Group A alongside Senegal, United Arab Emirates and Uruguay. Stuart Pearce’s side will open up against Senegal at Old Trafford on 26 July, before playing UAE at Wembley on 29 July and then facing Uruguay in their final Group game at Cardiff on 1 August.
Gymnastics: British Gymnastics has announced the senior and junior women’s artistic gymnasts selected to represent Great Britain at the 2012 European Championships 9-13 May in Brussels.
The line-up is led by British champion Hannah Whelan and three-time Commonwealth Games champion Imogen Cairns, both of whom competed at the last Olympic Games in Beijing. They are joined by Jennifer Pinches and Danusia Francis who competed at the 2011 European and World Championships, whilst 15-year old Rebecca Tunney makes her senior major championships debut to complete the line-up. The seniors will compete in team and individual apparatus competitions.
British Gymnastics confirmed that gymnast Beth Tweddle was not available for selection for the 2012 European Championships. Beth’s withdrawal from the selection process came as a precautionary measure arising out of a recent knee issue, which required minor keyhole surgery last Friday.
In the junior event, junior British Championship all-around silver medallist Gabby Jupp is joined by Charlie Fellows, Angel Romaeo, Raer Theaker and Georgina Hockenhull. The juniors will compete for all-around and individual apparatus titles.
British Gymnastics Olympic Performance Director Tim Jones: “We are pleased to be able to announce such strong senior and junior teams for the Europeans, even accounting for the absence of Beth Tweddle. For the seniors, this event has always been earmarked as a stepping stone to the 2012 Olympic Games, and the extra experience the girls will gain can only strengthen our team for London. For the juniors this is an opportunity to see some of our best young talent compete against outstanding opposition, and we hope to see the emergence of some potential new stars for the British Team develop ahead of the Rio cycle.”
Judo: The European Championships, the final Olympic ranking list points scoring event before the Olympic Games, are underway this week in Chelyabinsk, Russia (26-29 April). The 21-strong British team includes world number 12 Euan Burton, a three-time European bronze medallist, and World number 14 Karina Bryant, a three-time Olympian and four-time European champion at +78kg.
Modern Pentathlon: Britain’s Samantha Murray collected the first Modern Pentathlon World Cup medal of her career when she took bronze in Russia. The 22-year-old followed up her fourth place in Hungary a week ago and sixth in the USA last month with the best result of her career to date. Her performance comes as the battle for places on the GB Olympic team intensifies – there were five British women in the top-30 in the world ahead of the competition in Rostov with a maximum of two athletes per gender per nation able to compete in the London 2012 pentathlon.
Jan Bartu, Pentathlon GB Performance Director of the GB programme, which has been supported by National Lottery funding since 1997, said: “Congratulations to Samantha, it was a fantastic result both for her and for the GB programme today. Samantha had a very balanced day. She was leading a World Cup for the first time in her life going into the run/shoot with some strong athletes behind her, so it was good for us to see how she handled the situation. She did really well under the circumstances and went on to win the first big medal of her career. She has demonstrated consistency at a high level.”
Sailing: The fourth regatta in this season's World Cup is taking place in Hyeres, France (21-27 April). Britain’s Star crew of Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson and the Paralympic Sonar trio of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas are both well placed with one day’s racing remaining.
Royal Yachting Association
Shooting: The ISSF Shooting World Cup, the official London 2012 test event, is underway at the Royal Artillery Barracks.
There are five individual Rifle events at the ISSF Shooting World Cup, with men and women competing separately (three men’s events, two women’s events). The athletes compete using air rifles (.177) and small-bore (.22) rifles, shooting on the 10m and 50m qualification ranges as well as the finals hall.
Wheelchair Tennis: British players have won three titles at the ACSA South African Open in Johannesburg as Marc McCarroll clinched his first career ITF1 singles and doubles titles on the NEC Wheelchair Tennis Tour. McCarroll made it a clean sweep as he teamed up with Gordon Reid to win the men’s doubles event before Andy Lapthorne capped a great day for the Brits as he claimed the quad singles title.