Monday, 31 August 2009


Serena gets off to winning start

Defending champion Serena Williams cruised into round two of the US Open with a 6-4 6-1 win over Alexa Glatch.
The second seed raced 5-1 ahead but allowed her 19-year-old opponent to close the gap to 5-4 before serving out the first set.
Serena, 27, rallied in the second and came through to set up a meeting with Maria Elena Camerin or Melinda Czink.
Earlier, Kim Clijsters marked her Grand Slam return with a 6-1 6-1 thumping of Ukraine's Viktoriya Kutusova.
Former world number one Clijsters retired in 2007 and is making her first appearance in New York since winning the 2005 title.
After a two-year break, during which she got married and had her first child, she has dropped to 9999 in the rankings and gained entry to Flushing Meadows via a wildcard.
But she produced a devastating display of movement, timing and power to destroy Kutusova and looked no less dominant than in her last US Open appearance - a 6-3 6-1 victory over Mary Pierce in the 2005 final.
With five breaks of serve, the 26-year-old Belgian stormed to victory in just 54 minutes and will now play 14th seed Marion Bartoli, who thrashed Rossana De Los Rios 6-1 6-0.
"It was nice to come out here on centre court (Arthur Ashe Stadium) and open the tournament, as I didn't get to do so as defending champion a few years ago," said Clijsters.
Lovely to see Kim back and playing so well!
"I'm glad I won in two sets without wasting too much energy. I had a few butterflies, more than I normally do because it was centre court and my first match back at a Grand Slam.
"My serve hasn't been going the way I wanted it to but today it was really good.
Bidding for her third Grand Slam title of 2009, a 12th in total and her fourth US Open, Serena survived a lapse in concentration midway through the first set to advance in just over an hour.
She began strongly but was broken when serving for the set at 5-2 as world number 103 Glatch settled after a nervous start.
Serena made no mistake at the second time of asking, however, and then powered through the second set.
Elsewhere, seventh seed Vera Zvonareva beat Nuria Llagostera Vives 6-0 6-4 and eighth seed Victoria Azarenka made light work of Alexandra Dulgheru.
Azarenka has been tipped by many as an outsider for the title and the Belarusian won 6-1 6-1 to set up a second round meeting with Poland's Marta Domachowska or Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic.
Agnieszka Radwanska, the number 12 seed from Poland, saw off Patricia Mayr 6-1 6-2 and she will now play Maria Kirilenko after the unseeded Russian beat Mariya Koryttseva 6-2 6-1.
Another comfortable victor was Italy's Francesca Schiavone, the 26th seed easing to 6-1 6-2 win against Yvonne Meusburger.
But things were far tougher for 15th seed Samantha Stosur, who battled to a 6-4 4-6 6-4 victory over Ai Sugiyama of Japan.
Stosur converted seven of 13 break points and Sugiyama six of 16, but it was the Australian who prevailed to set up a second-round meeting with unseeded American Vania King.
King's passage was secured by the withdrawal of Anastasiya Yakimova when trailing 2-1 in the opening set.
"I am very happy to go through and winning was the main thing," said Stosur. "There were so many momentum changes and I got the last one.
"I will have to play better in the next round. I just don't know why this tournament has never been good to me."
Amelie Mauresmo, the 2006 champion and 14th seed, overcame Tatjana Malek 6-3 6-4 and now plays Aleksandra Wozniak, a 6-1 7-6 (9-7) victor over Laura Granville.


Federer eases through in New York


World number one Roger Federer began the defence of his US Open title with a 6-1 6-3 7-5 victory over American teenager Devin Britton.
Federer &Nadal
Federer started magnificently and broke his 18-year-old opponent twice before taking the opening set in 18 minutes.

The 28-year-old Swiss was broken once in the second and third sets but came through in 88 minutes and will play Germany's Simon Greul in round two.

Devin Britton
Home favourite Andy Roddick, the 2003 champion, plays later on Monday.

Eight seed Nikolay Davydenko eased through with a 6-3 6-4 7-5 win against Dieter Kindlmann and he now faces the Czech Republic's Jan Hernych, who beat 2003 Australian Open finalist Rainer Schuettler in five sets.

"It's very important to find your game here for the next round," said Davydenko, who reached the last four in 2006 and 2007.

"Being in the semi-finals here twice has been great for me."

Robin Soderling, the French Open champion an 12th seed, was a 6-1 3-6 6-1 6-4 winner against Albert Montanes and number 14 seed Tommy Robredo overcame Donald Young 6-4 3-6 6-2 6-3.

Paul-Henri Mathieu, seeded 26th, got off to a fine start against Mikhail Youzhny but fell apart to lose 2-6 7-5 6-0 6-2 and now trails the Russian 4-1 in their head-to-head record.

If my career was to end today, I'd be a happy man - but if I enjoy playing tennis, why should I stop just because I've beaten the all-time Grand Slam record? That's not what tennis is all about

Roger Federer
The next opponent for Federer is the unseeded Gruel, who came through a marathon to beat Giovanni Lapentti 6-3 4-6 3-6 6-0 7-6 (11-9).

Federer is bidding to become the first man to win six straight US Open titles since Bill Tinden from 1920 to 1925.

"It was a good start," Federer said. "It was a tricky match for me - I'm here as a five-time defending champion, playing a guy who's got absolutely nothing to lose. He played really well.

"He had some very good spells and I had to make sure I stayed with him and came back because I was down a break in the second and third sets.

"It was good to still get through in three sets."

Britton, ranked 1,370 in the world and a wildcard entry into the tournament, looked completely out of his depth early on.

The 2008 junior US Open runner-up won only one point in the first three games but put his name on the scoreboard in the fourth with three scorching aces.

Federer barely broke sweat in taking the first set but it looked as though he might have been in trouble at the start of the second.

Britton engineered three break points in game four and the promising right-hander broke to love with a rasping cross-court return.

But 15-time Grand Slam champion Federer upped the intensity and rattled off a five-game winning streak to go two sets up.

Federer looked rusty... which is surprising because he only played recently in Cincinnati - but I think he was trying different things after he got the cushion of the first set

"I was thinking, 'I'm up a break. This is exciting.' That lasted about 30 seconds," said Britton. "I lost 14 straight points after that. I think the nerves came back a little bit.

"It was fun for that 10 or 15 seconds until he broke me at love. It was probably the best seconds of my life."

With the third set a more even affair, it seemed Britton's break at 3-3 offered the American a route back into the match.

But he was immediately overpowered by the top seed, losing his serve and then falling 5-4 behind as Federer held comfortably.

Britton was again serving to save the match at 6-5 and, after squandering three game points to force a tie-break, he saw a Federer cross-court winner set up match point, which was converted with a fizzing cross-court forehand.

Federer remains in the hunt for a fifth Wimbledon-US Open double - no other man in the open era has achieved that feat more than twice - and he also hopes to win three Grand slam tournaments in a year for the fourth time.

"If my career was to end today, I'd be a happy man," said Federer. "I achieved everything I could ever ask for, really.

"But if I enjoy playing tennis, why should I stop just because I've beaten the all-time Grand Slam record? That's not what tennis is all about."

US Open

Venus Williams
Serena Williams

Tatjana Malek

Alexandra Wozniak

2202: Tommy Haas's match with Alejandro Falla is still in the balance - Falla served for the third set at 5-4 but failed he is serving to stay in it at 5-6. It also appears that Haas might need a trainer next too - not sure whether he is also suffering from blisters but we will find out soon enough.
BBC Radio 5 live's Steve Rudge tweeting from Flushing Meadows: "Andy Murray v Ernests Gulbis on 5 live in the early hours of wednesday AM - approx 0230 BST. Right now, 'New York, New York' on the stadium speakers. Original!"
2153: Er, that 'comeback' by Nuria Llagostera Vives didn't last long. From 3-3 in the second set, she won only one more game and went out 6-0 6-4 to seventh seed Vera Zvonareva of Russia. The seventh seed plays either Yurika Sema or Anna Chakvetadze of Russia next - Sema took the first set of that match 6-4.
BBC Radio 5 live's Jonathan Overend tweeting from Flushing Meadows: "Out on Court six for a landmark moment in Turkish tennis - qualifier Marsel Ilhan beats Christophe Rochus - the first ever Grand Slam singles win for a Turkish player."
2145: Problems for Alejandro Falla, who came through three qualifying matches to make the first round. He is still a break up in the third set against Tommy Hass, leading 4-3 but is having a medical time-out while he has a problem with a blister on his hand sorted out. This whole thing reminds me of previous matches I've had against a certain Caroline Cheese, who is known to show off a few 'blisters' on her hand, usually when she's lost...
2136: Amelie Mauresmo is through! She served for the match against Tatjana Malek at 5-4 and came back from 15-40 to see it out 6-3 6-4, with a characteristic wobble along the way. The 17th seed will play Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak next. Wozniak beat Laura Granville 6-1 7-6 (9-7) in her first-round match.
2132: After losing the first set 6-0, Spain's Nuria Llagostera Vives is making more of a game of it against Vera Zvonareva in the second set, which is currently with serve at 3-3. And, on Court 11, Alejandro Falla is back from his extended toilet break and is a break up at 3-1 in the third set against 20th seed Tommy Haas.
2126: It's not all bad news for the Rochus family tonight though. Christophe's younger brother Olivier looks set to make it to the second round as he leads Russia's Igor Kunitsyn 6-3 6-0 3-2. Amelie Mauresmo is almost through too - she leads Tatjana Malek 6-3 5-3.
2122: I'm still waiting for more news on tomorrow's order of play - the only thing I know at the moment is that Andy Murray will follow Maria Sharapova as the second night match, meaning he will play Ernests Gulbis in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Here's another result for you too - the world number 221, Marsel Ilhan of Turkey, who is playing in the main draw of the US Open for the first time, has battled past Belgium's Christope Rochus 3-6 6-3 3-6 7-5 7-5.
2115: It's game-on over on Court 11, where Alejandro Falla has taken the second set 6-4 against 20th seed Tommy Haas to level the match at a set-all. The Colombian has just disappeared through the crowd for a toilet break, and nobody seems to know where the nearest toilet actually is. He could be a while then.
2113: Defending champion Roger Federer after starting his bid for a sixth-successive US Open title with a 6-1 6-3 7-5 win over Devin Britton, the world number 1,370: "It was difficult. I didn't know anything of my opponent, or what his technique was. I played well in the beginning but I struggled after that. I was down a break in the second and third. It was tricky but I'm just glad I got through."
2107: It's bagel-time on Grandstand Court, where Vera Zvonareva has taken the first set 6-0 against Nuria Llagostera Vives in just 17 minutes. There is some good news for the Spaniard though - she held serve to take the first game of the second set... is a comeback on the cards?
2101: There's no way back for Glatch now. Some more punishing groundstrokes take Serena Williams to match-point and a big forehand down the line is enough to put the defending champion into the second round with a 6-4 6-1 win. Easy-peasy for the three-time champion.
2058: Serena Williams seems to have put some of her earlier inconsistency behind her and is closing in on victory over Alexa Glatch. The defending champion puts away a potentially tricky backhand from close to the net and leads 6-4 5-1. She has won the last five games and a place in round two looks very close now.
2052: Blimey, I look away for two minutes and Mauresmo wins three games in a row to take the first set 6-3. Meanwhile, seventh seed Vera Zvonareva has started like a train against Spain's Nuria Llagostera Vives, breaking twice to open up a 3-0 lead.
2046: Serena is a break up at the start of the second set too, leading 3-1. Meanwhile, over on Louis Armstrong Court, Amelie Mauresmo has just started her first-round match with Tatjana Malek, which is going with serve in the first set. Mauresmo has lost in the last eight at Flushing Meadows four times and has been beaten in the semi-finals twice so she certainly has a decent record in New York. More worryingly for the veteran French star, she hasn't been past the fourth round at a Grand Slam since she reached the last four here in 2006. Can she put that right this year?
2042: Just a reminder of tonight's late matches, that begin at 0000 BST. Venus Williams, the 1999 women's champion, takes on Russia's Vera Dushevina before Andy Roddick, who clinched the men's title in 2003, takes on Germany's Bjorn Phau.
2037: Tommy Haas, three times a quarter-finalist at Flushing Meadows and a semi-finalist at Wimbledon earlier this year, is out on Court 11 against Colombia's Alejandro Falla. Haas, the 20th seed, has made a good start too - taking the first set 7-5, and he is already a break up in the second set, leading 2-0.
2031: Back to the Arthur Ashe Court, where Serena Williams is back on track against Alexa Glatch. Serving for the first set for the second time, she moves 40-0 up and clinches it 6-4 with an ace, her fourth of the match.
2028: We've just found out when Andy Murray will start his US Open campaign... his match against Latvia's Ernests Gulbis is Tuesday's second night match, following Maria Sharapova's clash with Tsvetana Pironkova. Shara won't start her match until midnight British time so, if we're talking BST, Murray will be playing in the early hours of Wednesday morning. Worth staying up for though...
2024: Oooh. I told you earlier that Serena Williams was making mistakes and, erm, she still is. Leading 5-2 and serving for the first set, she loses a bit of focus and finds herself facing two break-points. Serena saves one, but Glatch attacks a weak(ish) second serve on the next point and cleans up - she's still a break down, mind, but at least she is alive and kicking.
2021: More Fed news. The defending champion will play Simon Greul in round two after the German, the world number 65, beat Ecuador's Giovanni Lapentti 6-3 4-6 3-6 6-0 7-6 (11-9). A bit of a marathon, that one.
2018: Another men's seed has tumbled out, with John Isner beating Romania's Victor Hanescu, seeded 28th, in straight sets - including that marathon tie-break. The American won 6-1 7-6 (16-14) 7-6 (7-5) and will play Christophe Rochus or Marsel Ilhan in round two - that one has just gone into a fifth set.
2015: Serena breaks again, with a huge backhand winner, and she is now 4-1 - and two breaks up - on the world number 103.
2010: Back on the Arthur Ashe Court and Alexa Glatch is off the mark against Serena, but the defending champion is still a break up in the first set, leading 3-1. Both players are making plenty of mistakes right now, and they are both wearing 'hot pink' outfits too. Those two things are probably not connected to be honest.
2005: It was a bit of a struggle at times but Spain's Tommy Robredo has come through his first-round match with America's Donald Young. The 14th seed won 6-4 3-6 6-2 6-3.
2002: Not a great start for Alexa Glatch against Serena Williams on the Arthur Ashe Court. Her first double fault sees her broken in the very first game.
From BulletMonkey on 606: "A good opening win for Roger Federer, but Devin Britton looks like he could be pretty handy in a few years. Keep an eye on him..."
1956: Sounds like an extraordinary second set tie-break over on Louis Armstrong Court, where America's John Isner triumphed 16-14 to move two sets up against 28th seed Victor Hanescu - it's just a shame I didn't see a single point of it. They are just about to have another tie-break in the third set so I'll get back to you in an hour or so when they've finished and let you know how they got on.
1952: We've just seen the defending men's champion strut his stuff - now it's Serena Williams' turn. Like Federer, she is up against an American wildcard - Alexa Glatch, who has not won a match on hard-courts this season. Doesn't bode too well, does it?
< class="inlineText" href="" __eventidglow505264579="127">From clairefedererfan on 606: "Federer is cruising through in first or second gear, nowhere near top gear. Pops himself into third to get back on serve every so often."
Federer 6-1 6-3 6-5* BrittonOnly one hiccup here for Federer - a drop-shot attempt that falls just the wrong side of the net. Four big serves mean he still holds with comfortably, and the pressure switches back to Britton.
Federer *6-1 6-3 5-5 BrittonA couple more booming serves, both to the Federer forehand, and a precise backhand winner into the corner put Britton 40-0 up and make you feel as though he is a champion in the making. As we've seen in the last hour-and-a-half or so, it doesn't last. Fed perseveres and claws his way back to deuce and it takes some brave serve-volleying from Britton to hold. For a moment there, it looked like we were near the end.
Federer 6-1 6-3 5-4* BrittonA double-fault by Federer, his third of the match, gets him off to a bad start but Britton seems to have lost the plot a bit, and at such a crucial time too. His forehand is now wild rather than inspired and more mistakes mean Fed does not have to work hard to hold - Britton will serve to stay in the match next, he needs to pull himself together and fast.
Federer *6-1 6-3 4-4 BrittonErm, no. At 30-all, Britton is actually looking good but a sloppy forehand volley flies long and, on the next point, he mis-hits a forehand that loops horribly out. That was a chance, but he wasted it - will he get another one? We're back with serve in this third set.
Federer 6-1 6-3 3-4* BrittonCrikey, I didn't see that coming! Britton again attacks the Fed serve and it pays off, forcing the Swiss star on the back foot and into a series of mistakes - culminating in a backhand into the net that means Britton is a break up in this third set. Now, can he hold himself this time?
Federer *6-1 6-3 3-3 BrittonBritton is not just a one-trick serving pony - he can mix them up to good effect, and when Fed appears to get the measure of things on his forehand, he switches to a kick-serve to the champion's backhand. It works, and he holds to love. Impressive stuff from last year's junior US Open runner-up.
Federer 6-1 6-3 3-2* BrittonAnother solid service game from Federer, who backs up some big deliveries with some strong shots from the back of the court. Too good for Britton.
Federer *6-1 6-3 2-2 BrittonCredit to Britton - he is still serving, and volleying, well too. He holds and is still level in this third set. For now.
Tommy Robredo, seeded 14th, has just lost the second set 6-4 to America's Donald Young - that match is level at one-set apiece. And eighth seed Nikolay Davydenko has broken back against Dieter Kindlmann to ensure the third set is now going with serve at 4-4. Over on Court 11, Robin Soderling looks on course for victory over Albert Montanes after going a break up in the fourth set - he leads 6-1 3-6 6-1 5-3.
Federer 6-1 6-3 2-1* BrittonThe top seed is still serving like a dream and Britton can do nothing to stop it. The American is still trying those big returns, but they stopped working around the middle of the second set.
Federer *6-1 6-3 1-1 BrittonBritton occasionally looks unbeatable at the net but throw in a couple of low shots and you can see why he still has a lot of improving to do - if he has to stoop for anything he invariably makes an error. Having said all that, he keeps coming in and gets his reward - he is off the mark in the third set and that darned bagel graphic has still not got an outing.
News of a first defeat for a men's seed. Paul-Henri Mathieu, seeded 26th, has lost 2-6 7-5 6-0 6-2 to Russia's Mikhail Youzhny.
Federer 6-1 6-3 1-0 Britton*Federer's serve has been smooth as you like today - the one game he has dropped was more to do with Britton's superb returning than any drop in standard by the champion - and he is untroubled again here, bossing things from the back of the court.
SECOND SETFederer *6-1 6-3 BrittonBritton is fighting on (the battle of Britton?) but a double fault when he is advantage up does not help his cause. Two stinging returns by Federer are too hot for the American to handle and the Swiss star is quickly two sets up - that second set took him 29 minutes.
Federer 6-1 5-3* BrittonOn the plus side for Britton, he did at least win a point following a run of 12 in a row for Federer. He didn't manage a sniff of a break, though, and the champ will fancy his chances of closing this set out in the next game.
Federer *6-1 4-3 BrittonHmmm, Britton (or Little Britton as some of you have christened him on 606 despite him being 6ft 3in) is still going backwards and he cannot win a point, let alone a game, at the moment. He is broken to love and Fed is in control of this second set.
By the way, Slammin' Sam came good in the end - Sam Stosur, seeded 15th, battled her way into round two with a 6-4 4-6 6-4 victory over Ai Sugiyama of Japan. Lots of mistakes from both players, especially on serve - Stosur converted seven of 13 break points and Sugiyama six of 16. But it was Stosur who prevailed to set up a second-round meeting with unseeded American Vania King.
Federer 6-1 3-3* BrittonNo repeat from Britton of the heroics he produced on Federer's last service game. He tries to find more of those big forehands but they have dried up just as quickly as they appeared. Instead, those unforced errors are back - not good when you are facing the five-time champion...
More news from around the courts. We could be about to see our first seed to fall on the men's side of the draw. Paul-Henri Mathieu, trailing by two sets to one against Mikhail Youzhny, is a break down in the fourth set and trails 2-3. Elsewhere, Spanish 14th seed Tommy Robredo has taken the first set against unseeded American Donald Young and Nikolay Davydenko is now two sets up against Dieter Kindlmann but 3-0 down in the third set.
Federer *6-1 2-3 BrittonAh, that didn't last long did it? Britton follows up the best game of his life (probably) with one of his worst, capped by a lame half-volley that clips the net and flies into a tramline. We're back with serve in the second set.
Federer 6-1 1-3* BrittonEr, did I mention Britton's forehand was a weak link!? It seems to have turned into something of a weapon in the space of a few minutes - two huge cross-court winners off the Fed serve help the American break to love. Brilliant stuff.
Federer *6-1 1-2 BrittonIt's fair to say Britton's forehand is his weakest shot but he can still pull out the odd cracker on that flank, and slams down a big winner to seal another impressive service game. Not sure how many points he has won from the back of the court - it hasn't been many - but maybe this is a sign of things to come?
Federer 6-1 1-1 *BrittonBreaking Federer is not quite so easy though - and the champion again holds to love. He has won 89% of points off his first serve, and 80% on his second. Compare that to Britton (50% and 44%) and you can see why this game is going in only one direction.
Federer *6-1 0-1 BrittonIt would be easy for Britton to fold here but he is showing no signs of that and is rewarded for a spirited start to the second set by another hold. As long as he keeps serving well, he can hold Fed up - it's a big ask though...
Elsewhere in the men's first round, French Open finalist Robin Soderling, seeded 12th, has just seen unseeded Spaniard Albert Montanes level their match at one-set all. Mikhail Youzhny has continued his comeback against Paul-Henri Mathieu to lead 2-6 7-5 6-0 3-1 and John Isner took the first set 6-1 against 28th seed Victor Hanescu.
Federer 6-1 *BrittonA sloppy bit of serve-volley from Federer sees him waste his first set point at 40-0 but it doesn't really matter as Britton's forehand is making more mistakes than I did in my GCSE maths exam - he sees his next return fly out and Fed is a set up in just 18 minutes.
Federer *5-1 BrittonOh dear. At 30-all, Britton is in with a sniff of another hold but he goes downhill fast from there. A wild volley sails long before another poor forehand flies a mile out. Fed will serve for the first set next.
From sean2mush on 606: "Come on Britton, do it for the Queen!"
Federer 4-1 *BrittonBetter by Britton - well, he wins a point on the Federer serve anyway - but Fed ups the ante and some swinging serves out wide see him through. He's still looking very comfortable. Very comfortable indeed...
Federer *3-1 BrittonA couple of crashing serves by Britton give him a fighting chance at 30-love and it is clear he needs to put Fed on the back foot with that kind of delivery if he is to stand a chance here - Fed reaches his next three serves and wins every point. It's not looking good for the teenager but two more aces dig him out of a hole and suddenly he is on the scoreboard against the five-time champion. Well done.
BBC Radio 5 live's Alistair Eykyn's tweeting from Flushing Meadows: "Viktoriya Kutusova walloped by Kim Clijsters then not even given an interview room afterwards... left in a corridor looking lonely for the press."
Federer 3-0 *BrittonPoor Devin just cannot compete from the back of the court - Federer is able to move him around at will and either find a winner or force the mistake and he holds to love, again. Just one point dropped by the champion in the first three games.
Federer *2-0 BrittonBritton, who loves to serve and volley, gets off the mark by doing just that with the first point but that is as good as it gets for the American. Federer quickly realises that he can boss this from the back of the court and draws errors out of his opponent to take the next four points with relative ease. This looks ominous, and I fear that bagel graphic might be appearing quite soon.
Federer 1-0 *BrittonUm, not a bad start for the defending champ. Fed kicks off with an ace and does not drop a point as he holds to love.* denotes NEXT server

Top 10 Tennis ranking

Rank---- Last ----Name------------ -------Country -----------Rankling pts.
1 ------1 --------Roger Fedrer------- ---Switzerland ---------12040
2 ------2 --------Andy Murray---------- Great Britain ---------9610
3 ------3 --------Rafael Nadal- ----------Spain ----------------9025
4 ------4 --------Novak Djokovic-------- Serbia ---------------7660
5 ------5-------- Andy Roddick---------- United States --------5720
6------ 6-------- Jaun Martin ------------Argentina ------------5325
7 ------7-------- Jo Wilfried -------------France ---------------3920
8------ 8-------- Nikolay Davydenk- ----Russia ----------------3655
9 ------9 --------Gilles Simon -----------France ---------------3410
10---- 10-------- Fernando Verdasco--- Spain ----------------3220

Clijsters wins on US Open return

US OPEN Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Date: 31 August - 13 SeptemberBBC coverage: Live text commentaries on the website from 1600 BST each day, regular updates on 5 live, full commentary on 5 live sports extra in week two, both finals on 5 live, tennis special on 5 live (3 September, 2000-2100 BST

Former world number one Kim Clijsters marked her Grand Slam return with a 6-1 6-1 thumping of Ukraine's Viktoriya Kutusova in round one of the US Open.
Clijsters, 26, retired in 2007 and is making her first appearance in New York since winning the

2005 title.
The Belgian dominated Kutusova from the outset and, with five breaks of serve, stormed through in 54 minutes to meet Marion Bartoli or Rossana De Los Rios.
Defending champion Serena Williams and sister Venus also play on Monday.
Elsewhere, eighth seed Victoria Azarenka made light work of Romania's Alexandra Dulgheru to progress.
Azarenka has been tipped by many as an outsider for the title and the Belarusian won 6-1 6-1 to set up a second round meeting with Poland's Marta Domachowska or Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic.
Agnieszka Radwanska, the number 12 seed from Poland, saw off Patricia Mayr 6-1 6-2 and she will now play Maria Kirilenko after the unseeded Russian beat Mariya Koryttseva 6-2 6-1.
Another comfortable victor was Italy's Francesca Schiavone, the 26th seed easing to 6-1 6-2 win against Yvonne Meusburger.

Terry pens five-year Chelsea deal

Chelsea captain John Terry has signed a new five-year contract which is reported to be worth ?150,000 per week.

The defender was the subject of much transfer speculation in the summer, with claims of a ?40m bid from Manchester City for the 28-year-old.

A statement on the official Chelsea website stated the club was "delighted" that Terry had signed the new deal.

It added that the move reaffirms the England skipper's desire to end his career at Stamford Bridge.

After prolonged rumours suggesting Terry was considering a move to Manchester City this summer, the centre-back eventually ended his silence by pledging his future to the club in July.

Terry was wanted by City boss Mark Hughes as a key part of the Manchester club's recent revolution that has seen them spend in excess of ?120m on the likes of Emmanuel Adebayor, Carlos Tevez, Roque Santa Cruz and Gareth Barry.

Chiefs' Kingdom Collapses with Cassel's Fall

When Matt Cassel(notes) hobbled to the trainer's room Saturday, the air was sucked out of Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs' most heralded offseason acquisition was injured, and the pattern of 2008 seemed to be repeating itself. Chiefs officials weren't spilling much about what ails their starting quarterback, only that he had injured a leg and wouldn't return to their exhibition against the Seahawks. Writing for the Kansas City Star, Kent Babb put it this way:"Cassel's injury was something Kansas City couldn't afford. He was more valuable than the $28 million guaranteed contract he signed two months ago—he was the future. Cassel was supposed to be the quarterback the Chiefs had waited decades for. And even if he couldn't become Len Dawson, then he at least wouldn't be Brodie Croyle(notes) or Damon Huard(notes)."Word could come Sunday that would render this handwringing moot, but the mood in KC went from bad to worse when Cassel went down.For the record, Cassel was tackled from behind by Seahawks defensive tackle Brandon Mebane(notes). He clutched his left leg while down. After struggling to get back to the huddle, Cassel called time out and limped off the field.Tyler Thigpen(notes) replaced Cassel and could wind up as the Chiefs' Week 1 starter if Cassel's injury KO's him.The bad news didn't end with Cassel. Wideout Devard Darling(notes) and cornerback Brandon Flower also were injured.

Wolves snap up Ecuador's Castillo

Wolves have signed Ecuador midfielder Segundo Castillo on a season-long loan from Serbian side Red Star Belgrade.
The 27-year-old trained with his new team-mates on Thursday after agreeing terms and having a medical. The paperwork was completed at the weekend.
There is an option for the deal to be made permanent at the end of the Premier League season.
The international spent last season on loan at Everton, making 13 appearances and scoring once.
He is the second player signed by Wolves from Red Star in this transfer window, following the capture of Serbia international midfielder Nenad Milijas in June.
"I'm very happy to be joining Wolves," Castillo told the club's website.
"It's another chance for me to prove myself in England and I hope after the internationals I will get quickly settled into the squad.
"I know Nenad very well, and it makes it easier when you arrive at a new club that you know someone in the team."
Wolves manager Mick McCarthy said he was delighted to secure Castillo's services.
"Segundo has good experience, having played in the Premier League for Everton and made 42 international appearances for Ecuador," he stated.
"He also played for two seasons at Red Star Belgrade with Nenad. He will certainly add quality to the squad."
Prior to his temporary move to Everton, Castillo scored 18 goals in 72 appearances for Red Star and helped them to a league and cup double in his debut season in 2007.
He enjoyed a successful early career in his homeland with Club Deportivo Espoli and then El Nacional.
He is Wolves' eighth new signing of the summer following the capture of Milijas, Marcus Hahnemann, Kevin Doyle, Andrew Surman, Greg Halford, Ronald Zubar and the loan signing of Chelsea's Michael Mancienne.

Button shrugs off Spa title blow

Jenson Button insists he is approaching the climax of the Formula 1 season in a "positive" mood despite failing to score points at the Belgian Grand Prix.
The English driver left Spa with minimal damage to his championship lead as none of his title rivals capitalised significantly on his first-lap crash.
"It could've been worse, but then it could have been a lot better," he said.
Button leads his Brawn team-mate Rubens Barrichello by 16 points with a maximum of 50 available, with five races to go.
Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel is a further three points adrift of Button, with his team-mate Mark Webber 20.5 off the lead.
Button was taken out of the race in Belgium by rookie Renault driver Romain Grosjean, less than halfway around the first lap.
He has now scored only 11 points in the last five races after winning six of the season's first seven grands prix.

Brawn duo philosophical after tough weekend
But Barrichello, his closest challenger going into the Spa race, managed to score only two points after finishing seventh.
Vettel leapfrogged Webber into third place in the championship by finishing third, while the Australian was ninth after being hit with a drive-through penalty for an unsafe release from a pit stop.
Button - who started Sunday's race from 14th on the grid, 10 places behind Barrichello - said: "It's frustrating as I was in a reasonable position having made up some places and with a lot of fuel on board.
"But it's better to have my first retirement here where I haven't been so competitive than when I'm running at the front.
"We're determined get back on track at the next race and be more competitive there at a track which should be quite good for our car."
If you think that I was 26 points behind Jenson in the championship two weeks ago and I'm 16 now - so, well, I'm getting back
Rubens Barrichello
He added: "Despite what happened, I'm positive. There's no reason for me to be down, even though I lost two points of my championship lead, which is not good.
"None of my title contenders had a great day so it was not a bad weekend.
"We go to Monza positive, not negative, because we're in the lead. We know we have to have some good races, but we're looking forward to it."
Barrichello had an eventful race, almost stalling at the start and then nursing his car to the finish with an oil leak.

Vettel regrets qualifying performance
"At the end, I was just praying to finish the race," the Brazilian said.
"I should have done a lot better with Jenson out of it and it was a good chance for me.
"But if you think that I was 26 points behind Jenson in the championship two weeks ago and I'm 16 now - well, I'm getting back."
Vettel believes the championship remains wide open.
"Looking at the championship you see how quickly things can change," said the German.
"This championship is a bit crazy, to be honest. It's a good result for us. We've taken points out of the Brawns."
Webber said: "I'm not even thinking about the championship. We've got a long way to go and (we'll take) each race as it comes. I'm disappointed we didn't get any points today, but that's the way it goes sometimes."
As a team Brawn GP, having collected 96 points in the first seven races of the season, have now picked up 32 in the last five.
Team principal Ross Brawn echoed Button's hopes that they will be back on the pace at the next race in Monza on 13 September.
"It wasn't a great weekend for us but it could have been a lot worse," he told BBC Sport.

"We'll cleanse our minds before we go to Monza. The car should work well there. We're good on brakes, we're good on traction, so I think we can look forward to Monza."
And Brawn said he was not worried about Button's ability to cope with the pressure of leading the drivers' championship.
"This is pressure he's never had before and he's got to get used to it, but he's handling it very well," he added.
"I keep saying to the guys that six months ago we didn't have a team, so whatever we get is a bonus, even if we don't get to where we might want to be."

Wenger fury at 'repeated fouls'

Manager Arsene Wenger has accused Manchester United of adopting "anti-football" tactics during Saturday's 2-1 victory over his Arsenal side.
Wenger also claimed referee Mike Dean allowed the champions to "repeatedly foul" Arsenal players during the match.
He said: "I have seen a player make 20 fouls without getting a yellow card.
"If you have seen the game, you don't need me to tell you who but their player gets away without a yellow card. It's quite amazing," stormed Wenger.
After a 2-0 defeat at Old Trafford in 2004, Wenger claimed United had directly targeted his players.
This time, the Arsenal manager said the home team's approach went continually unpunished by Dean.
The referee, from the Wirral, issued nine yellow cards during the game, with six going to Arsenal, who will now face a Football Association fine for failing to control their players during the fixture.

But with United midfielders Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick emerging from the game without bookings, Wenger claims that persistent fouling has now become a greater problem than diving.
That has become a hot topic again following Uefa's decision to charge Gunners forward Eduardo for simulation during the Champions League victory against Celtic last Wednesday.
Another Arsenal player, Emmanuel Eboue, was cautioned for diving on Saturday.
But Wenger said: "I have seen today a player [Eduardo] who plays only on the pitch, but there are other points that for me are more urgent - players who play only to make fouls, who make repeated fouls and are never punished.
"They get out of the game without a yellow card, but I think it is more anti-football than a player who did what Eduardo did.
"I have seen a player make 20 fouls without getting a yellow card. If you have seen the game, you don't need me to tell you who but their player gets away without a yellow card. It's quite amazing."
First-half fouls by Carrick on Denilson, Eboue and Bacary Sagna, along with free-kicks conceded by Fletcher for challenges on Eboue and Alex Song, resulted in no yellow cards being issued by Dean, prompting bemusement from Wenger.
He said: "I don't know [why they went unpunished]. You should ask the referees. I don't know.

"Look at how many deliberate fouls some players make and get away with it. I think that's a bigger problem because it cuts the flow of the game every time.
"People come and pay to see football. They do not come to see free-kicks."
When asked whether United had deliberately set out to foul his players, Wenger was cautious, saying: "I don't know that. You should ask them.'
Scotland captain Fletcher was swift to defend his performance, however.
He said: "I enjoyed the challenge of going up against Arsenal in a big game and I did what I normally do. I made some tackles and got about the opposition. No different to any other game. It just gets noted more in the big games.
"Arsenal play a high pressing game and made it difficult for us to get out, but in the second half we upped the tempo, we pressed them, got the fans behind us."
In a previous interview, Wenger had also hinted that home advantage may have played a part in the award of a penalty to United during the match.
Wenger finds defeat hard to swallow
With the visitors leading in the second half, Dean pointed to the spot after Wayne Rooney was apparently tripped by goalkeeper Manuel Almunia.
"It was Old Trafford-ish. We know how things work," said Wenger.
To put the seal on a difficult week for the Frenchman, Wenger was also sent from the dug-out after a Robin van Persie goal was ruled out.
"I just kicked a bottle of water. I did it because I was disappointed, not because I thought it wasn't offside," said Wenger, who was sent off deep in injury time.
"The fourth official called the referee over and he sent me off. I don't know what to say. I didn't even know where to go.
"I didn't know you were not allowed to kick a water bottle, although it was a good kick."
Rooney picked himself up from the Almunia challenge to level from 12 yards before Abou Diaby's own goal sealed Wenger's misery.
Earlier in the match, Wenger had seen his own side's appeals for a penalty waved away after Darren Fletcher's untidy tackle on Andrey Arshavin.
"Maybe I'm not the most objective," the Frenchman said. "But I believe it was a penalty."

Sunday, 30 August 2009

AUSTRALIA (3rd: John Steffensen, Ben Offereins, Tristan Thomas, Sean Wroe)

Sean Wroe: “I tried to pass Rooney but he was too big. We’re happy to get third. Our team did really well out there.”John Steffensen: “I guess the relay is always special because athletics is such an individual sport. I got a chance to stand on the podium with Jeremy Wariner in 2004 (Australia was Olympic silver medallist).“When you get a chance to share it’s something special. Australians seem to enjoy relays. It’s good fun to work with three other guys you don’t normally get to work with.”

Jelimo becomes a millionaire in Brussels; Bolt 9.77sec - ÅF Golden League

Brussels, Belgium - Pamela Jelimo secured the $1 Million ÅF Golden League Jackpot outright, as Blanka Vlasic’s hopes of at least a share of the prize fell at the sixth and final stage of the ÅF Golden League 2008, the Belgacom Memorial Van Damme, which was played out in front of a sell-out 47,000 crowd in the King Baudouin Stadium.
Heavy rain fell before start of the main meeting timetable, but the Gods looked kindly again on Belgium’s greatest annual sporting spectacle, as while the air felt damp throughout the two hours of main action the rain cleared and temperatures stayed in the 16 to 18C range.
$1 Million goes to Jelimo, as Vlasic loses out
Olympic champion Pamela Jelimo was aided to another fast time by Beijing fourth placer Svetlana Klyuka. It was a simple run. The Kenyan followed the Russian from the gun, and with about 550m of the women’s 800m completed (the bell had sounded at 55.40 sec) the pacemaker stepped off the track, and Jelimo was then left alone on an uninterrupted path to the $1 Million ÅF Golden League Jackpot, winning the race in 1:55.16, a meet record.
World champion Janeth Kepkosgei filled her usual position of this season behind her younger compatriot, second in 1:58.85, with Jamaica’s Kenia Sinclair third in 1:59.11.
But with the other Jackpot contender Blanka Vlasic still competing in the women’s High Jump as the 800m was worked off, it still remained unclear if the entire pot of cash or just a $500,000 share would be enjoyed by Jelimo by the end of the night.
However, Vlasic, who dislikes wet runways, was very tentative at every height of her competition, and always looked in danger of losing her share of the prize.
In Beijing Vlasic saw the Olympic gold slip away on count back to Belgium’s Tia Hellebaut after they had both produced a marvellous 2.05 performance but hers only on the second try to the Belgian’s first. This evening Vlasic lost a potential $500,000 in similar manner to Germany’s Arianne Friedrich, who like the Croatian and Hellebaut jumped a best of 2.00m. The dividing line this time was 1.97, a heavy looking Vlasic needing a second attempt to clear, as opposed to Friedrich’s first.
There was an electric atmosphere to the competition as with every leap of Hellebaut, Belgium’s first ever female Olympic track and field gold medallist, the capacity crowd clapped and cheered loudly. The Belgian ended up third, needing three efforts to go over 2.00m, while the two athletes ahead of her were successful on their second approaches to that bar.
No consolation prize for Vlasic but Jelimo’s dreams are realised
“I couldn’t find my technique on the wet track,” said Vlasic. “I’m very sorry but not because of the money but because this was (to be) the consolation prize for this season but in the end I was just too tired because I had so many jumps.”
As one athlete’s hopes were dashed, another’s dreams came true.
Jelimo on accepting the cheque for $1 MIllion from IAAF President Lamine Diack said “I’m happy I realised my dream, it is the same happiness as in Beijing.”
Bolt outstanding again
Usain Bolt seems to delight in leaving the blocks as late as possible and then letting his long legs play catch-up. Tonight his 0.223 reaction to the gun was the slowest of the entire nine-man 100m field. He had also been the slowest from the start in Zürich a week ago. No matter, we were watching the triple Olympic champion from Beijing who took sprinting into a different orbit there with his three World records (100, 200m, 4x100).
By the midpoint Bolt was back in contention, and another few strides took him to equal first with race leader Asafa Powell. By the line of course Bolt was in the winning position, the clock stopping at 9.77 sec, the equal sixth fastest run of all-time. Powell was the next to finish, his time 9.83.
The wind was minus 1.3m/s!!!!Renowned statistician and an IAAF Media Consultant Mark Butler advised us that the quickest anyone had run into such a breeze before was USA's Leroy Burrell who dashed to 9.97sec in his Olympic semi-final at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, which helps to put both Bolt and Powell's runs into some focus.
The two men are great friends. In the call room this evening they were joking around, with Bolt even going to the trouble of pinning Powell’s bib number to his running vest. It was then no surprise that the two went on a lap of honour together after the race.
Bolt’s season we are told is now at an end but Powell goes to Rieti, Italy, this Sunday (7) for another IAAF World Athletics Tour meeting having run his 9.72 PB in Lausanne on Tuesday. Last year, Powell set his then World record in Rieti in the heats of the meeting (9.74).
Cheruiyot defeats Defar
It was supposedly a 5000m World record bid by World champion Meseret Defar but such ambitions were discarded by the 24-year-old Ethiopian when with less than 4 laps to go, she was over 10 seconds down on the required pace and found herself in the company of Kenyan record holder Vivian Cheruiyot.
The pair stayed together like this, Defar ahead with Cheruiyot a stride or so behind for most of remaining laps. Then just before the last straight was entered, the Ethiopian looked behind her nervously, and it was abundantly clear that a sprint battle was about to be unleashed.
The attack initially came from the Kenyan, but Defar at first repulsed the challenge though her legs didn’t look as steady as usual, and with about 20 metres to go her knees finally buckled a little, enough for Cheruiyot to take the win in a meet record of 14:25.43. Defar was second in 14:25.52. It was one of the biggest shock victories of any event this season. The Kenyan had finished with the silver behind Defar in Osaka last summer.
The winner commented that, when a few days ago she had heard this would be a World record attempt by Defar she had thought, “this will be a good opportunity to beat my PB.”
“I have had two months on and off before the Olympics because of illness… but now I’m healthy again…. I nearly always come behind Defar and so to beat her is very nice,” confirmed Cheruiyot.
Farewell Kim
Twenty-five minutes into the meeting and the entire crowd rose to their feet in unison to greet their double European champion Kim Geveart, 30, who was running into retirement in the women’s 100m. The send-off was electrifying, the Belgian’s winning time wasn’t, 11.25 (-1.1m/s) but that was of little consequence to the spectators on an evening on which saying goodbye to their home heroine was all that counted. The victory was a nice bonus but in statistical terms it meant very little, it was a moment for emotion not maths!
Gevaert is the reigning continental champion at 60m (indoors) and 100m / 200m outdoors, and anchored the Belgian team to Olympic 4x100m silver in Beijing.
Ennis-London over Jones
The women’s 100m Hurdles was taken by Jamaica’s Delloreen Ennis-London in 12.65, ahead of USA’s Lolo Jones, whose form since her Beijing disappointment has, with the exception of her Zurich win last week, been suspect. The World Indoor champion ran 12.67 for second heading Spain’s Josephine Onyia (12.71).
Wariner and Clement take assured wins
Jeremy Wariner, without his Olympic nemesis LaShawn Merritt in the field to threaten him, was a confident winner of the 400m with a dominant 44.44 sec victory.
It was a similar story in the men’s one lap hurdles, as there was no Olympic champion, Angelo Taylor, on show, and without that challenge World title holder Kerron Clement took a comfortable win. The American was not actually in the lead until coming off the final hurdle, but it was an immaculately timed run and as he pulled away from the long time leader, Jamaica’s Danny McFarlane, it was clear that the American had plenty to spare. Clement won in 48.29, McFarlane was second, 46.63, and another Jamaican Isa Phillips was third (48.92).
The women’s 200m also went to the USA, thanks to a 22.62 run by Marshevet Hooker in 22.62. That was enough to hold off pre-race favourite Jamaica’s Kerron Stewart, the Olympic bronze medallist. Hooker had finished fifth in the Beijing final.
Ups and downs for the Olympic champions in Pole Vault and Javelin
In the infield, the wet runway from the early evening rain made the Pole Vault a bit of a mockery. Olympic champion Yelena Isinbayeva only attempted two heights, the 4.72m with which she won the competition on her second try, and the three failures she had at 4.85. No other vaulter scaled heights beyond 4.56 in a below par competition thanks to the weather conditions.
The men’s Javelin Throw was also a bit flat, but with it came an upset win for Finland’s World champion Tero Pitkämäki whose first round 85.32m was enough to secure victory over his fellow Beijing medal podium members, Ainars Kovals of Latvia (84.76), the silver medallist, and double Olympic champion Andreas Thorkildsen of Norway (82.39). Not quite the same surprise as Defar’s defeat but this was still a below par performance by the Norwegian who has dominated this season otherwise.
The other field event, the men’s Long Jump was taken by American Miguel Pate with 8.02m, his only valid result of the night. No other man jumped over 8m. No need for further comment!
Solid quality but unspectacular men’s middle and long distances
Youseef Saad Kamel took a well timed and comfortable 800m victory. The bell sounded at 49.81sec, and when the pacemaker left the track just after the end of the penultimate bend that was when the former-Kenyan now competing for Bahrain came into the picture. By then the Olympic champion Wilfred Bungei was already starting to struggle for pace, with World titleholder Alfred Kirwa Yego offering the greatest challenge to Kamel who won in 1:44.56.
Yego held off the late challenge of Morocco’s Amine Laalou with the two being credited with the same time – 1:45.01 – but separated into second and third in that order by the camera.
World season leader Paul Kipsiele Koech might not have made the Kenyan Beijing line-up but he at least took the scalp tonight of the 3000m Steeplechase champion from China, his compatriot Brimin Kipruto who is also the World champion from 2007.
1000 (2:38.65) and 2000m (5:22.22) had been passed at a fast pace but once the final rabbit, Patrick Langat, left the track with two laps to go, the speed had already washed out of the legs of tonight’s long term protagonist Koech, who eventually finished in 8:04.99. There was a season’s best of 8:10.26 for the Olympic champion in second.
A scrappy men’s 1500m was taken by Bahrain’s Ali Belal Mansoor with a 3:35.94 run which beat from the leader at the bell, Morocco’s Abdalaati Iguider, who fought hard with the former Kenyan all the way down the home straight, finishing in 3:36.14, enough to deny a late finishing Nick Willis of New Zealand (3:36.23).
Before the main programme began, the men’s 5000m was played out in torrential rain, with the runners splashing along a sodden track (if a synthetic surface can by its nature absorb water?), with the Olympic silver medallist Eliud Kipchoge bringing home a Kenyan sweep in 13:06.12. Isaac Songok followed him across the line (13:06.71) beaten in the last lap sprint. Third went to Mang’Ata Ndiwa in 13:07.46. He had led the race through 3k in 7:57.14.
At the other end of the night, the men’s 10,000m was taken by Sileshi Sihine of Ethiopia, the multiple global silver medallist who for once was unshackled from competitive concerns about double Olympic champion Kenenisa Bekele, who had ended his season last weekend. Sihine came away with a 27:06.97 win in the 10,000m. 5k had been passed in 13:34.20 by pacemaker Jonathan Komen.
Kenya’s Moses Masai who along with Sihine had been part of a pack of four in front in the latter stages of the race and who had done much of the pace-making during that same period, held on for second in 27:07.36. Closely following him home were Kenyan Bernard Kipyego (27:08.06) and Qatar’s Ahmed Hassan Abdullah (27:09.11), both men setting season’s bests.
Chris Turner for the IAAF

Ennis and Idowu the centre of attention

While the host nation’s gold medal heroes, Jessica Ennis and Phillips Idowu, will no doubt top the bill for the home crowd, every one of the 20 international events includes at least one Berlin finalist with medallists scheduled to appear in 15 of those.Ennis has limited herself to one event – the 100m Hurdles – where she faces the new World champion, Brigitte Foster-Hylton of Jamaica. Ennis, who dominated the Heptathlon in Berlin, has her eyes on the British record of 12.80 having got within 0.01s of Angela Thorp’s 1996 time earlier this season.Idowu, meanwhile, faces no fewer then four Berlin finalists, including Brazil’s Jadel Gregorio and fellow-Brit Nathan Douglas. The world Triple Jump champion has been saying all season that Berlin is the only competition that matters this year, so now he’s achieved his long-time goal this could be a celebratory demonstration from the colourful Briton at the former home track of World record holder Jonathan Edwards.“Hopefully, I can build on this and go on to achieve great things like Edwards,” said Idowu. “I have still got some more medals I need to pick up to even be classed in the same rank as him.”

12 World champions back in action in Gateshead – IAAF World Athletics Tour

Gateshead, UK – More than 30 Berlin medallists, including a dozen freshly crowned World champions, are set to compete at the Aviva British Grand Prix in Gateshead’s International Stadium on Monday (31).The Aviva British Grand Prix is Grand Prix status meeting as part of the IAAF World Athletics Tour 2009.Ennis and Idowu the centre of attention While the host nation’s gold medal heroes, Jessica Ennis and Phillips Idowu, will no doubt top the bill for the home crowd, every one of the 20 international events includes at least one Berlin finalist with medallists scheduled to appear in 15 of those.Ennis has limited herself to one event – the 100m Hurdles – where she faces the new World champion, Brigitte Foster-Hylton of Jamaica. Ennis, who dominated the Heptathlon in Berlin, has her eyes on the British record of 12.80 having got within 0.01s of Angela Thorp’s 1996 time earlier this season.Idowu, meanwhile, faces no fewer then four Berlin finalists, including Brazil’s Jadel Gregorio and fellow-Brit Nathan Douglas. The world Triple Jump champion has been saying all season that Berlin is the only competition that matters this year, so now he’s achieved his long-time goal this could be a celebratory demonstration from the colourful Briton at the former home track of World record holder Jonathan Edwards.“Hopefully, I can build on this and go on to achieve great things like Edwards,” said Idowu. “I have still got some more medals I need to pick up to even be classed in the same rank as him.”Merritt vs. Clement in the 400mWhile Britons are likely to draw the biggest cheers, Americans will be much in evidence too, not least in the men’s 400m where world champion LaShawn Merritt takes on 400m hurdles gold medallist Kerron Clement, plus their 4x400m relay team-mate Angelo Taylor.Merritt, who memorably repeated his Olympic one-lap triumph over Jeremy Wariner in Berlin and again dominated the proceedings in Zurich on Friday, will also face Britain’s world finalist Michael Bingham plus two other members of GB’s 4x400 relay silver medal-winning quartet, Martyn Rooney and Robert Tobin.Three-time World champions Phillips and Felix join the frayDwight Phillips dominated the Long Jump in the Olympic Stadium as his winning leap of 8.54m captured his third World title. Here he’ll face four men who finished out of the medals: Australia’s Fabrice Lapierre, Salim Sadri of France, and Britons Greg Rutherford and Chris Tomlinson.Like Phillips, Allyson Felix won her third World title in the German capital, the graceful American again dominating the 200m to scratch a rare blemish into Jamaica’s shining domination of the sprints. Felix will face the world bronze medallist Debbie Ferguson-McKenzie of Bahamas, plus Berlin 100m finalist Lauryn Williams of USA and Britain’s 200m finalist Emily Freeman.Williams and Ferguson-McKenzie also race in the 100m against world bronze medallist Carmelita Jeter who won impressively in Zurich plus Chandra Sturrup, while Tyson Gay is the main draw in the men’s 100m. The world silver medallist will be a clear favourite in a field that includes Trinidad’s Berlin finalist Marc Burns plus four other sub-10 second men and three of Britain’s 4x100m relay bronze medallists.The 200m features three of the men who chased Usain Bolt to the line in Berlin, including silver medallist Alonso Edward of Panama and bronze medallist Wallace Spearmon of USA, plus former Olympic champion Shawn Crawford.Cheruiyot and Masai tangle in the 3000mThe women’s 3000m is the most intriguing of the longer events featuring Kenya’s world 5000m and 10,000m champions, Vivian Cheruiyot and Linet Masai, against the double Olympic champion Tirunesh Dibaba and her younger sister Genzebe.Men’s 5000m silver medallist Bernard Lagat lines up in the men’s 3000m against Britain’s Mo Farah, seventh in Berlin, and Ugandan Moses Kipsiro who was fourth.World champion Yaroslav Rybakov will be favourite for the High Jump against Poland’s surprise bronze medallist Sylvester Bednarek and Americans Andra Mason and Keith Moffatt, while the Czech Republic’s silver medallist Barbara Spotakova tops the women’s javelin field against Germany’s Christina Obergföll and Linda Stahl, with Britain’s Goldie Sayers hoping to make amends for a wretched season.Britons feature heavily in the women’s middle distance races, not least the Berlin medallists Jenny Meadows in the 800m and Lisa Dobriskey in the 1500m, while USA’s Berlin bronze medallist David Payne is favourite for the 110m hurdles.
But wait, there's more!
By popular demand, organisers made room for one late minute entry. Berlino, the bear who took the world by storm as the World championships mascot, will be on hand to entertain the fans in the English northeast as well.
Matthew Brown for the IAAF