Sport-in-brief - your weekly update from the high performance sports community

Published 18 December 2014

2014 Getty Images

Athletics: Great Britain and Northern Ireland topped the medal table and equalled last year’s medal haul with nine medals at the European Cross Country Championships in Samokov, Bulgaria. This included individual gold medals for Gemma Steel (coach: John Nuttall) and Rhona Auckland (Joyce Hogg) in the senior women’s and U23 women’s races respectively on a great day of cross country for the British team.

In other athletics news, Asha Philip and James Dasaolu (both coached by Steve Fudge) have confirmed that they will compete at the Sainsbury’s Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham on 21 February 2015.

British Athletics

Badminton: Chris and Gabby Adcock squandered a match point before going down to Korea's Kim Ha Na and Ko Sung Hyun in their opening group stage encounter at the year-end BWF Destination Dubai World Superseries Finals.

In a thrilling mixed doubles tussle, the Koreans prevailed 14-21 21-18 22-20 over 66 minutes after holding off a brave comeback by the Adcocks.

Defeat for England's number one doubles pair means that the Adcocks must now beat China's world number one partnership, Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei, to give themselves a chance of progressing to the semi-finals in the emirate.

Badminton England

Hockey: England sealed a 3-2 victory over Belgium to finish seventh at the 2014 Champions Trophy.

Belgium’s Florent van Aubel scored twice for his country, but two goals for East Grinstead’s David Condon in the first and second quarter and one for his club teammate Chris Griffiths on the stroke of half-time made it 3-2 and secured England the seventh place finish. 

England Hockey

Modern Pentathlon: Joe Evans and Kate French topped the men’s and women’s points list at the end of the first of three Pentathlon GB ranking competitions for the 2015 season.
 
French recovered from what she describes as a “disappointing swim” to move into top position after the fencing competition in the women’s competition.  She followed that with a strong riding performance and entered the final discipline, the combined run-shoot, with a good lead.
 
Evans, still only 22, led throughout the men’s competition and comfortably finished in first position after the combined event.
 
His nearest rival and former World Junior Champion Jamie Cooke from Cheltenham was by far the fastest in the run-shoot moving him up from 11th place after the ride to second overall.

Pentathlon GB

Rowing: The GB Rowing Team’s Paralympic and World Champions will line up alongside new Military Para rowers for the British Rowing Indoor Championships in February.

Tom Aggar and Pamela Relph, Paralympic gold winners in 2008 and 2012 respectively, will be joined at the Olympic Velodrome in London on February 8 by World Champions Grace Clough, James Fox and Dan Brown – although both Relph and Fox will need to prove their fitness in the new year first. 

Rachel Morris, a hand-cycling Paralympic champion, whose switch to rowing saw her reach the World Championships final in 2014 in her debut season, will also take part.

Entries are now open and group discounts are available. For groups of 10 or more, the individual adult entry price is only £26. Enter now. 

GB Rowing Team

Sailing: Ed Wright and Alison Young made the most of their trips to the ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne, each claiming gold and early confirmation of their places at the 2015 World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi next October.

Wright, who won bronze at the 2014 World Championships in Santander, cut a dominant figure in Port Phillip Bay.  He led the Finn fleet from day one, not finishing any race outside the top two and with only Australia’s Oli Tweddell – Wright’s friend and his host for the week – realistically able to post a threat in Sunday’s final medal race.

Bewdley’s Alison Young took a comfortable victory 16-point in the 30-boat Laser Radial fleet at her third regatta in as many weeks with a fourth place in the medal race more than enough to secure gold over Belarus sailor Tatiana Drozdovskaya.

British Sailing

Shooting: Richard Faulds MBE has announced his retirement from competitive target shooting.

Faulds became Great Britain’s first Olympic shooting gold medallist for 12 years at Sydney 2000 and was also a double world bronze medallist and European champion.

On announcing his retirement, Faulds said: "Over the years I have often said 'that's it, no more double trap' but I have many other commitments in life now, with family and business.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped me to reach the pinnacle of my sport over the years and I wish everyone who competes wearing the GB badge the best of luck for the future."

British Shooting

Short Track Speed Skating: Elise Christie and Jack Whelbourne were back in action for the Asian leg of the ISU World Cup series, in Shanghai.

Christie finished fourth in 500m after a good performance in the quarter and semi-finals where she came first and second respectively, but she fell in the final and finished behind bronze medallist, Korean Alang Kim.

After falling in the qualifying rounds, Whelbourne had a promising start in both 1000m and 1500m repechage heats, finishing in first place in both events. He just missed out on a place in the 1000m semi-final when he finished second in the repechage semi-final.

Whelbourne flew through the 1000m repechage events too, where he finished in first position in both the quarter and semi-finals, which secured him a place in the quarter final. He just missed out on a place in the semi-final to finish 12th overall.

The pair will now be looking to improve on their positions as they turn their focus to next weekend’s ISU World Cup in Seoul, South Korea.

GB Short Track

Skeleton: British Skeleton has withdrawn Lizzy Yarnold from the season’s second World Cup in Calgary under medical advice.
 
Yarnold experienced some symptoms of dizziness during her victory at the season opener in Lake Placid on Friday.

“It is better that Lizzy sits out the second World Cup”, said Andi Schmid, British Skeleton’s Performance Adviser. “The forces experienced by sliders are considerable during their runs down the track. We must make sure that she is fully fit before racing again”.

British Skeleton

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