‘MIXED FORTUNES’ DESPITE GOLDS GALORE
Rowing: Reigning Olympic champions Helen Glover and Heather Stanning were among four British winners as the nation topped the medals table at the European Championships in Germany.
Britain’s total of seven medals – which also included gold for the women’s eight, a new-look men’s four and the lightweight men’s pair – was down on the 10 won at last year’s championships.
Katherine Grainger, who is aiming to become Britain’s most decorated female Olympian with a fifth medal, struggled to make an impact and finished fourth in the women’s double sculls.
GB Rowing team performance director Sir David Tanner said: “It’s been a day of mixed fortunes for the team with some exceptional performances.”
DOYLE’S DOHA DELIGHT BUT CONCERN FOR ENNIS-HILL
Athletics: Eilidh Doyle was the star British turn at the season’s first Diamond League meeting in Doha, setting the fastest 400m hurdles time in the world this year.
Doyle, nee Child, was competing for the first time under her married name and it was a race to remember for the European champion.
The other outstanding performance of the night came from South Africa’s former 800m world champion Caster Semenya, who claimed her first Diamond League win since 2011.
Away from Doha, Olympic champion Jessica Ennis-Hill has suffered a setback by pulling out of the prominent Rio warm-up event in Gotzis because of an ongoing Achilles tendon problem.
COOKE HAS RECIPE FOR SUCCESS
Modern pentathlon: Jamie Cooke enjoyed “a perfect day” as he became the first British man to win the sport’s World Cup Final.
The 25-year-old’s victory in Florida was his second in a row, having also clinched gold at the penultimate World Cup event of the season in Hungary.
In the women’s competition, Britain’s sole representative Freyja Prentice came a season’s-best sixth.
ALICE IN WONDERLAND
Judo: Israel-born Briton Alice Schlesinger clinched her first Grand Slam title since 2012 in Azerbaijan to bolster her chances of being seeded for the Olympic Games.
There was silver for Nekoda Davis – the second Grand Slam medal of her career – and a bronze for Ashley McKenzie.
Gemma Gibbons lost her bronze-medal bout but finished above her British rival Natalie Powell in the race for the sole Olympics spot in the women’s -78kg event.
TATTERSALL THIRD AS JUNG CLAIMS GRAND SLAM
Eventing: Britain’s Gemma Tattersall was third as Germany’s Michael Jung won the Badminton Horse Trials, claiming a £240,000 Rolex Grand Slam in the process.
Tattersall, riding Arctic Soul, was one of a number of Britons to meet the Rio 2016 qualifying standard, including Zara Tindall on High Kingdom.
Britain’s Rio 2016 eventing team will be chosen in July.
NEWS IN BRIEF
Athletics: The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) has sanctioned its fourth laboratory in a month, with South Africa’s Doping Control Laboratory joining Beijing, Lisbon and Moscow in being suspended from carrying out any Wada-related anti-doping activities.
BMX: Liam Phillips was eliminated at the quarter-final stage of the BMX Supercross World Cup in Papendal. The 2013 world champion will now turn his attentions to the World Championships in Colombia later this month.
Mountain bike: Two-time Olympic champion Julien Absalon won his fourth straight men’s title at the European Mountain Bike Cross-Country Championships in Sweden. Switzerland’s Jolanda Neff followed up her European Games gold last year with another continental title in the women’s race. Britain’s best hope, Grant Ferguson, had his race ruined by a bike mechanical issue, eventually finishing 56th.
Road cycling: Marcel Kittel dominated the early exchanges as the Giro d’Italia kicked off in the Netherlands. After home favourite Tom Dumoulin claimed the leader’s jersey with a narrow time trial victory on the first stage, German sprinter Kittel won the next two stages to claim the leader’s pink jersey in imperious fashion. Elsewhere, Australia’s Chloe Hosking won the Tour of Chongming Island.
Fencing: James Davis, Laurence Halsted and Richard Kruse have been selected for Great Britain’s squad for Rio. The trio also fenced at London 2012, finishing sixth in the team foil event.
Sailing: Great Britain’s Rio Olympics sailing team has been completed with the addition of Luke Patience and Chris Grube in the men’s 470, and Dylan Fletcher and Alain Sign in the 49er.
Table tennis: Great Britain have secured two quota places for Rio after the latest world rankings were released. The spots were earned by Liam Pitchford and Paul Drinkhall but no athletes have yet been selected by Team GB.
Taekwondo: Olympic bronze medallist Lutalo Muhammad will fight for the first time since December at this month’s European Championships after recovering from injury. He has been named in the British squad alongside the likes of Olympic champion Jade Jones and world champion Bianca Walkden.
Tennis: Andy Murray announced his split from coach Amelie Mauresmo a day after losing to Novak Djokovic in the Madrid Open final. Murray has dropped to number three in the world rankings following his defeat by Djokovic, while brother Jamie’s five-week reign as world doubles number one has come to an end.
THIS WEEK’S EVENTS
Aquatics: The European Championships (9-22 May) are under way in London, with diving and synchronised swimming taking place first ahead of next week’s swimming competition. Leading the British pursuit of diving medals is Tom Daley, who says he is in the best form of his life. His first event of the week is the synchronised 10m platform with Daniel Goodfellow on Thursday.
Athletics: After kicking off in Doha last week, the second round of the Diamond League takes place in Shanghai on 14 May. London 2012 champion David Rudisha is the headline act in the 800m, with two-time Olympic 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce among a host of high-profile athletes heading to China. Details of BBC coverage.
Fencing: The final World Cup foil event of the season takes place in St Petersburg. Britain’s newly-announced Olympic team of James Davis, Laurence Halsted and Richard Kruse will all be in action.
Road cycling: The Giro d’Italia, the first Grand Tour of the season, continues throughout this week. The three-week stage race ends in Turin on 21 May with 2014 Tour de France winner Vincenzo Nibali among the pre-race favourites.
Rugby sevens: The penultimate round of the men’s World Series in Paris (13-15 May) should be fascinating, with just eight points separating Fiji and South Africa at the top of the overall standings.
Sailing: Britain’s Nick Thompson defends his laser world title in Mexico (12-18 May).
Triathlon: It’s the fourth round of the World Series in Yokohama, Japan (14-15 May). America’s Gwen Jorgensen will be looking for a return to form after her 13-event winning streak was ended by Britain’s Helen Jenkins in Australia last month. There are no Britons in the women’s race in Japan and, while there are four Britons in the men’s contest, neither of the Brownlee brothers are racing.