STRICTLY Come Dancing is back for another year as the latest batch of stars vye to waltz their way to victory. Want some help deciding who to back for the Glitterball trophy? Have a look at the bookies’ odds on who will rock the floor in 2017… Sun Bets odds: 5/2 Who is Aston Merrygold? Aston Merrygold was a member of UK boy band JLS, who came second to Alexandra Burke on The X Factor in 2008. Sun Bets odds: 4/1 Who is Alexandra Burke? Alexandra Burke is singer, stage star and actress, who shot to fame after winning The X Factor in 2008. Sun Bets odds: 6/1 Who is Debbie McGee? Debbie McGee is a performer, TV personality and the widow of magician Paul Daniels. Sun Bets odds: 8/1 Who is Mollie King? Mollie King is a former member of five-piece girl band The Saturdays. Sun Bets odds: 8/1 Who is Gemma Atkinson? Gemma Atkinson is an English actress and ex-glamour model who recently starred on Emmerdale and is now into mixed martial arts. Sun Bets odds: … [Read more...] about Who will win Strictly Come Dancing 2017? Latest odds as Aston Merrygold is tipped to win and Simon Rimmer trails
Australia’s Olympic and Commonwealth Games medal-winning cyclist Jack Bobridge has been charged with drug offences after police raided his home in Perth on Wednesday. Bobridge, who retired from professional cycling due to rheumatoid arthritis after last year’s Rio Olympics, appeared at Perth magistrates court on Thursday to face drug dealing charges. Bobridge was bailed and will reappear in court next month after an undercover police operation culminated in searches at his home in the suburb of Yokine and a north Perth business. Bobridge, 28, was charged with several counts of selling and supplying MDMA, police said. Australian champion Jack Bobridge announces retirement from pro cycling Read more Bobridge, who was riding for the Trek-Segafredo team last year, quit the sport as one of Australia’s top cyclists following a successful Olympic campaign in Brazil, where he won a silver medal in the team pursuit event. He also won silver in the same … [Read more...] about Olympic cycling medallist Jack Bobridge charged with drug offences
IT’S official, we are in a golden age of women’s sport – and quite frankly I’m thrilled. This summer it’s been impossible to miss our girls triumphing in cricket, rugby, football, tennis and athletics. Our female cricketers won the Women’s World Cup, reached the semi-finals of the football Euros and won two relay silver medals at the athletics World Championships, while Johanna Konta became the first British woman in the Wimbledon semis since 1978. Meanwhile, our rugby world champs are set to defend their title this weekend and the hockey team are into the World League semi-finals. It comes just a year after the Rio Olympics, in which our women were once again on a gold rush. Nicola Adams became the first British boxer to retain an Olympic title for 92 years, winning gold in the women’s flyweight final, cyclist Laura Kenny got two gold medals and our women’s hockey team won their first Olympic gold in a dramatic penalty shoot-out. All of … [Read more...] about As Brit women thrash men in sports, shouldn’t they be on a level playing field?
A top chef who served meals created from surplus produce to London's homeless over the summer was so inspired by the idea that he is taking an anti-food-waste campaign to his native Italy. Francesco Mazzei used leftover supermarket food collected by The Felix Project, a charity that feeds homeless and other disadvantaged people in the St Cuthbert's Centre, Kensington. Other well known chefs including Michel Roux Jr and Angela Hartnett also served up gourmet dinners. Mr Mazzei is now promoting the use of leftover food in his home town of Cerchiara di Calabria, at a festival which thousands of people are expected to attend. “Where I come from, Calabria, is known for the Mediterranean diet," he told The Independent. "We don't waste anything." "Being a top chef, a big name, these days there's a responsibility for us to tell people how to use food, how to have correct storage at home." He added: … [Read more...] about Top chef takes his anti-food-waste campaign home to Italy
It is not widely known that when the BBC’s Panorama alleged that Alberto Salazar had broken or bent several anti-doping rules in June 2015, Mo Farah’s initial instinct was to split from the American coach who had guided him to Olympic and world championship glory. That was certainly his position when he boarded a flight from Portland to the United Kingdom, via Amsterdam, two days later. Yet by the time he arrived in Birmingham for a Diamond League meeting he had dramatically changed his mind. According to one source, Farah decided it would be unfair to ditch his coach and thus throw him to the wolves, when he had seen no evidence of wrongdoing. Another believes that, deep down, the urge to stay with the man who had transformed him from a decent distance runner, finishing sixth and seventh in the 5,000m at the 2007 and 2009 world championships, into the world’s best was simply too strong. Whatever the reason, it is striking, as Farah returns to Birmingham for his final … [Read more...] about Mo Farah at a crossroads on day of his UK track farewell
We need to talk about Rio de Janeiro. In my first article for the Guardian in August 2015 , I said we were not ready for another mega event. I had some criticism from friends, who said such words were arrogant. But I think sometimes it hurts to see the sad reality of life in Rio. We hit rock bottom, both financially and socially. Cariocas – natives of Rio – are suffering because of the lack of government planning and the allegations of corruption that plague national politics. The former governor of Rio de Janeiro state, Sérgio Cabral, was arrested three months after the Olympics for commanding a criminal organisation that took 224m reais (£54m) in bribes. He has been sentenced to more than 14 years in prison as a result of investigations conducted by the Lava Jato taskforce. View from the Rio favelas: ‘We're fighting for life while seeking peace’ | Thaís Cavalcante Read more Rio city’s former mayor, Eduardo Paes, … [Read more...] about View from the Rio favelas: ‘We hit rock bottom, financially and socially’
One year after all eyes were on the “marvellous city”, we are reinventing ourselves amid the crisis in the economy, violence and popular power. The Olympic Games determined what the quality of life in favelas would be. We are already feeling the impact of the huge amounts of money spent on the games. The conversations I hear most are about the economic crisis and everyday violence. Most people are concerned about public health services – getting access to free medicines and emergency treatment, while hospitals are threatened with closure. This is one of our greatest needs. We have to fight for our lives, living with violence and hoping for good health, since the healthcare available is either basic or non-existent. We still don’t have what is most important: peace. View from the favelas: Developments in Rio masked the bleak reality | Thaís Cavalcante Read more More spending is always needed, but it is not always directed to the right … [Read more...] about View from the Rio favelas: ‘We’re fighting for life while seeking peace’
From popping the question in front of the telly, going down on bended knee in the pub or staging embarrassing public stunts, men have a habit of messing up spectacularly. As a new survey reveals that nearly half of British women felt let down by their proposals, causing one in 20 to dump their partners, we look back at some of the most bizarre, ill-judged and downright cringeworthy from around the world: ● Marriage was furthest from Chinese diver He Zi’s mind as she stood on the podium at last year’s Rio Olympics to receive her silver medal. Boyfriend and fellow diver Qin Kai had other ideas, suddenly appearing clutching a red rose encased in glass and dropping to one knee. There was a painful silence before He, 25, who initially covered her face in shock, allowed a ring to be popped on her finger. “My feelings were complicated,” she said later. ● In one proposal stunt that could easily have backfired, a Romanian man enlisted a group of … [Read more...] about Worst proposals EVER? Nearly half of British women left disappointed – new poll reveals
Shane Perkins’ switch to Russia has been rubber-stamped after president Vladimir Putin signed an executive order to grant the Australia-born Olympic bronze medallist and dual world champion Russian citizenship. Perkins, who represented Australia and won individual sprint bronze at the 2012 Olympic Games, applied for citizenship in February after informing Cycling Australia of his intention to switch allegiances last year. He had missed out on the Australian team for the 2016 Rio Olympics and said he wanted to pursue other options to chase his dream of Olympic representation at Tokyo 2020. Shane Perkins on defecting to Russia: ‘I have a clean slate to prove myself' | Kieran Pender Read more “I’m very grateful and I’d particularly like to thank the Russian Cycling Federation, president Vladimir Putin, my coach Vladimir Khozov and the strong team of people behind me that have made this transition possible,” Perkins … [Read more...] about Australian cyclist Shane Perkins thanks Vladimir Putin after defecting to Russia
Becky James, the two-time Olympic silver medallist and former world champion, has announced her retirement from cycling aged 25. James won two gold medals and two bronze medals at the 2013 Track Cycling World Championships in Minsk, Belarus, aged 21. But preparations for the Rio Olympics were disrupted by a chronic knee injury and cancer scare. James responded to claim silver medals in the sprint and keirin events in Brazil. "Over the past year, I have had time to think about my future and have decided to retire from international track sprint racing," James said on Thursday. "After 13 years of racing my track bike, it is time to start an exciting new chapter in my life. "I have given cycling 100 per cent and know how much commitment it takes to make it to the highest level in elite sport. "The pressure of competing at the top can be mentally and physically draining, but the rewards have been incredible and I have absolutely no regrets. "I have achieved my dreams of becoming a … [Read more...] about Becky James retires one year on from Rio Olympics silver double
In a major blow for Great Britain’s women’s sprint medal hopes at the Tokyo Olympics, the country’s leading sprinter Becky James, a double silver medallist in Rio and former double world champion at the sprint and keirin, announced her retirement today at only 25 years of age. A year out from the Commonwealth Games, her absence will also be strongly felt by the whole of Welsh sport. James had taken an extended break after the Rio Olympics to decide her future. The Guardian understands that her decision was based around the fact that she has had to make multiple comebacks from illness and injury during her career, and that she felt there were no guarantees that a further push for Olympic glory would be met with success. Stephen Wooldridge, Australian Olympic cycling champion, dies aged 39 Read more Having begun racing seriously as an under-16 in 2007 – when she won the junior women’s national championship at 500m – James can … [Read more...] about Becky James retires from cycling at 25, one year after Olympic silver medals
IF you're a Strictly fanatic, Rip It Up is a show you won't want to miss. Natalie Lowe, Louis Smith and Jay McGuiness will be touring the UK with the new 50s themed stage show - but what's it about and where can you buy tickets? Rip It Up is a live 50s themed dance show starring Natalie Lowe, Louis Smith and Jay McGuiness. The show will see the trio swing, bop, jitterbug, lindy hop, jive and ballroom to the sounds of the 50s along with a cast of dancers. It has been created by the producers and director of last year’s smash tour Remembering Fred, which stars Strictly pros Janette Manrara and Aljaz Skorjanec. Rip It Up will also feature Radio 2’s Leo Green and his 1950s band, playing hits including La Bamba, Reet Petite, Unchained Melody, Mambo Italiano, Hound Dog, Shout and Magic Moments. Natalie Lowe was a professional dancer on Strictly Come Dancing for seven years until she recently announced she would be leaving the BBC show. Her previous … [Read more...] about The lowdown on Rip It Up – the new stage show with Louis Smith and Jay McGuiness
LOUIS Smith is an Olympic medallist and Strictly Come Dancing champ. Now, the gymnastics champ will be starring in new stage show Rip It Up alongside Natalie Lowe and Jay McGuiness - here's what we know about him... Louis Smith was born on April 22, 1989. He was raised in Peterborough. Louis was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in 1995. He was offered a choral scholarship when he was seven, but he wanted to focus on gymnastics instead. He first learned to use the pommel by putting his feet in a bucket that was tied to a rope and hung from a ceiling. He attended Arthur Mellows Village College in Glinton, Cambridgeshire. Louis gymnastics career has been filled with highlights. As a junior he won the European Champion on the pommel horse in 2004 and 2006. He won gold on Pommel Horse for England at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia and came fourth in the Pommel Horse final at the European Championships in 2007. He competed … [Read more...] about All you need to know about Louis Smith as he gets ready to star in new show Rip It Up
Image copyright PA Image caption Sports minister Shane Ross established the inquiry into the selling and reselling of tickets for the Rio Olympics last August The report into circumstances around the distribution of Irish tickets for the Rio Olympics is to be published.The inquiry was launched last year following the arrest of Olympic Council of Ireland president Pat Hickey's during the Games.Brazilian authorities charged Mr Hickey with facilitating ticket touting, forming a cartel and illicit marketing. He denies the charges. A non-statutory inquiry into the issue was established last August.It was set up by Shane Ross, the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport. The inquiry, led by retired judge Carroll Moran, was to look at the ticketing procedures and practices of the Olympic Council of … [Read more...] about Rio Olympics ticket-touting report to be published
As Tom Bosworth prepares to hunt for gold on the streets of London on Sunday Britain’s most prominent gay athlete says he doubts that a top-flight English footballer will ever come out because “nothing is changing” in the game. Bosworth, who has high hopes of a world championship medal in the men’s 20km race walk having led the Rio Olympics before finishing sixth, has been an impressive advocate for LGTB rights since coming out in 2015. However he admits that he is frustrated that some fans still create an atmosphere where footballers daren’t come out. Russia’s Darya Klishina engages in neutral to earn long jump silver Read more “There are plenty of gay footballers, there’s no doubt about that,” he said. “I can say that 100% there are, and while they are supported but they are not able to come out. I don’t know whether we will ever see an out English footballer in the current situation because nothing … [Read more...] about Tom Bosworth says football must make it easier for its players to come out
SIR MO FARAH has made us weep for joy many times over the years – but tonight there will be tears of sadness. It is time to say goodbye as one of our true all-time sporting greats takes to the track for the last time. The 5,000m final at the World Championships takes place at the same stadium where he won not just double gold at the 2012 London Olympics, but also the hearts of the nation. Although he won the 10,000m last Friday, Mo knows that victory tonight will be tough. Last Saturday his fellow 2012 legend Usain Bolt found himself coming a disappointing third at his own last solo race of his career in the 100m. Mo, 34, who is switching his focus to marathons, said of his chances tonight: “It ain’t easy. It ain’t easy. We’ve seen it with Usain Bolt. It happens. “No one is going to give it to you and these boys are coming for me.” But of the possibility of winning his eleventh global title in a row, he said: “It would be incredible, … [Read more...] about As Brit legend Sir Mo Farah prepares for his last race on track… we say thanks for the memories
Darya Klishina was accused of being a traitor to her nation when she was the only Russian athlete allowed to compete at the Rio Olympics. A year later, she became her country’s darling again as she ended a compelling long jump competition with a silver medal. The Russian’s leap of 7.00m was a season’s best but it was agonisingly short of the American Brittney Reese’s leap of 7.02m that brought her a fourth world championship gold medal. “I’m really glad and I’m really happy,” said the 26-year-old Klishina, who is one of 19 Russians competing as neutral athletes in London. “This is my first medal from a world championships and, for me, it’s my most important result. I didn’t jump seven metres for six years and I just missed those longer jumps.” She was not allowed to wear Russian clothing or celebrate with her country’s flag, due to IAAF regulations, but her smile at the end of the competition showed her … [Read more...] about Russia’s Darya Klishina engages in neutral to earn long jump silver
DINA ASHER-SMITH holds the British records for both the 100 metres and 200 metres. She’s back on the track in London at the World Athletics Championships after recovering from a broken foot. Born on December 4, 1995, Asher-Smith has excelled at youth level as a sprinter, winning gold medals in the World and European Junior Championships. She has just graduated from her history degree at Kings College. In February 2017, Asher-Smith broke her foot in her final training session before the Birmingham Indoor Grand Prix, and was forced out of the event. She tweeted: “What are the odds!!” Asher-Smith charged to victory in the 200m at the European Championships in Amsterdam last year. She had won the 100m at the 2014 World Junior Championships in Oregon, and gold in the 100m at the European Junior Championships in 2013, as well as the 200m at the Commonwealth Youth Games in 2011. She was part of Britain’s 4 x 100m relay team who sealed bronze at the 2016 Rio … [Read more...] about Who is Dina Asher-Smith, what is the British sprinters record times and what has she won?
6.17pm BST 18:17 Anyway, coming up next we’ve got the heats of the women’s 5000m featuring GB’s Laura Muir, Stephanie Twell and Eilish McColgan. Facebook Twitter Google plus Share Share this post Facebook Twitter Google plus close 6.14pm BST 18:14 Should Makwala win, Botswana will hold a national holiday in his honour. Did you know: on the island of Bermuda there’s a Shaun Goater day. Facebook Twitter Google plus Share Share this post Facebook Twitter Google plus close 6.06pm BST 18:06 Brendan Foster reckons the organisation at the meet has been “outstanding”. I wonder if Isaac Makwala and Colleen Quigley agree. Facebook Twitter Google plus Share Share this post Facebook Twitter Google plus close 6.05pm BST 18:05 Further note to BBC: people … [Read more...] about World Athletics Championships: men’s 200m final and more – live!
SAM Quek's starring role in Team GB's hockey gold medal at the Rio 2016 Olympics catapulted her into the spotlight. The historic achievement earned her an MBE but she has revealed she has now become a target of repeated break-ins at her Merseyside home. Sam was born in the Wirral on Merseyside on October 18, 1988. The 28-year-old attended Birkenhead High School and Calday Grange Grammar School. She decided that she wanted to stay fairly close to home and studied a BSc in Sport and Exercise at Leeds Metropolitan University in 2010. She won her first international cap while studying at university. The hockey star is also a loyal supporter of Liverpool F.C. and considers former Liverpool striker Ian Rush as one of her heroes. Sam missed out on being part of Team GB at the London 2012 Olympics but competed for England at the 2013 EuroHockey tournament and 2014 Commonwealth Games, which she won silver medals at. She won the gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics after the GB hockey … [Read more...] about All you need to know about Sam Quek, star of the victorious Team GB hockey team