Sport-in-brief- your weekly update from the high performance sports communitySubscribe
Grace Cullen 30 October 2012
Athletics: UK Athletics has named Peter Eriksson as the newly appointed Olympic Head Coach.
Eriksson, who will move on from his role as UKA’s Paralympic Head Coach with immediate effect, has worked for the governing body since January 2009. As Paralympic Head Coach he masterminded a dramatic rise in performance of the British Team, finishing second in the medal table in the 2011 World Championships and third at the London Paralympic Games.
Performance Director Neil Black said: "Peter has proved time and again that he has the priceless ability to lead and inspire athletes to deliver when it matters most – at the biggest championships, on the global stage. He is a rare talent, fantastically well positioned to now assume leadership of the Olympic team, and to build on the impressive progress the sport has made between Beijing and London."
Eriksson said: "It is a great privilege to be asked to take on this role. I will continue with the methods and approach that has proved so successful in the Paralympic arena, and that has been about strong performance management of our best medal prospects to maximise the likelihood of medal winning performances.
“The Olympic team performed very well in London, finishing fourth in the world with four golds so I have a great platform on which to build. But I believe that we can still do better in Rio 2016, and of course when the IAAF World Athletics Championships take place in the London Olympic Stadium in 2017. The next five years look like an exhilarating time for British athletics."
Former Olympic Champion and reigning 400m silver medallist Christine Ohuruogu said:
“I have such a lot of respect for Peter and what he’s achieved.
“I’ve been in the fortunate position where I was with him over the summer at the Paralympic Games holding camp and I was struck by the fact that he did whatever he could do get the best out of the athletes – he had a real no-nonsense approach and was totally focused on winning medals.”
Badminton: Chris Adcock and Imogen Bankier's fine run at the Yonex French Open came to an end in the mixed doubles semi-finals in Paris when they lost to top seeds and world No 1 pair Xu Chen and Ma Jin of China, 21-14 21-19.
But the Anglo-Scottish pair made them fight for victory in the second game where they led 11-8 at the interval and responded when the Chinese moved ahead 15-13 to draw level at 16-16.
They also saved a match point at 20-18 before the Chinese clinched victory on their second match point.
Cycling: British Cycling has announced the team selected to represent GB in the UCI Track Cycling World Cup in Glasgow, Scotland from 16-18 November 2012.
The team includes seven gold medallists from the London Olympics and they will be joined by a crop of young talent, including Jon Dibben who will make his World Cup debut. The Glasgow World Cup will also see two-time Olympic Gold medallist Ed Clancy make the transition from Endurance to the Sprint discipline.
Performance Director Dave Brailsford said: “The period of time immediately after an Olympics is an interesting one for the team as it allows us to try out new line-ups and look at how the younger squad members are developing. The men’s team pursuit will be interesting for us in that respect, and I’m also looking forward to seeing how Ed gets on in the Sprint events. Now that the London Olympics are behind us I’m hoping we can carry some of that momentum on into the World Cup and I know the whole team is looking forward to racing again in front of a home-crowd on our first step towards Rio.”
Men’s Sprint: Ed Clancy, Philip Hindes, Jason Kenny
Women’s Sprint: Becky James, Jess Varnish
Men’s Endurance: Steven Burke, Jon Dibben, Owain Doull, Sam Harrison, Joe Kelly (reserve), Andy Tennant, Simon Yates
Women’s Endurance: Dani King, Joanna Rowsell, Laura Trott
Short Track Speed Skating: British speed skaters raced their way to yet more finals in the second ISU World Cup at the Maurice-Richard Arena in Montreal. The Brits showed improvements from their performance in Calgary, but faced tough competition from Canada who relished the home advantage and won a total of twelve medals.
Britain picked up another fantastic medal courtesy of Elise Christie in the 1000m. She fought her way to silver in 1:31.237, finishing just behind the Canadian Valeria Maltais.
Christie, who also won silver in the 1000m in Calgary, said: “Montreal’s been challenging after racing last weekend, obviously I was really tired and it was hard to re-motivate myself for round two, but I did believe I could do it.
“Last year I didn’t even get into two finals at back to back World Cups, so it shows I’m mentally stronger. I’m pleased with another silver, and it’s been a good start to the season.”
Her performance this weekend means Christie continues to be ranked world number one in the 1000m, but unfortunately problems with her blades meant Christie fell in the 500m and failed to progress past the preliminaries.
Following their fall in the qualification rounds in the relay in Calgary last week, skaters Jon Eley, Paul Stanley, Richard Shoebridge and Jack Whelbourne put in a strong performance to qualify for the A final of the 5000m relay. They just missed out on a medal in the final, finishing fourth overall behind Korea, China and the USA.
The Nottingham based team will return home tomorrow and start their preparations for the next two stages of the ISU World Cup in Japan, beginning in Nagoya on the 31 November.
Wheelchair Tennis: British number one Gordon Reid was beaten by world number two Maikel Scheffers in the men’s singles final at the Nottingham Indoor Wheelchair Tennis Tournament, but teamed up with the Dutchman to claim the doubles title.
Scheffers got the better of defending champion Reid in a repeat of last year's final as he won in straight sets 6-2, 6-4 to collect his third Nottingham Indoor title following wins in 2007 and 2009.
However Reid finished the tournament on a high, teaming up with Scheffers in the men's doubles final where the top seeds took the title against Brits Marc McCarroll and David Phillipson 6-1, 6-1.
Reid said: “It’s our second title together from the only two tournaments we've played as partners, so we’re delighted to stay unbeaten. We made a good start today and managed to sustain it and put in a solid performance and it's great to finish with a title.”
In the quad singles round-robin event Andy Lapthorne won the title with an unbeaten record, securing his fourth win out of four with a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Antony Cotterill.
The quad doubles crown was won by Cotterill and Adam Field as the pair defeated fellow Brits Richard Green and Ian Payne 6-2, 6-2.