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Commonwealth Games: Meares ready to defend sprint title

By:
Sadhbh O'Shea
Published:
July 26, 2014, 16:30 BST,
Updated:
July 26, 2014, 17:01 BST
Edition:
Second Edition Cycling News, Saturday, July 26, 2014
Race:
2014 Commonwealth Games
Anna Meares with another national title to her name

Anna Meares with another national title to her name

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Kennaugh returns to the track

Anna Meares (Australia) moved one step closer to taking her second gold medal at the Commonwealth Games, as Australia dominate the sprint competition.

Australia took the top two spots in qualifying with defending Commonwealth champion and reigning Olympic champion Meares taking second. It was her teammate Stephanie Morton who took top spot. Morton was the only one of the 13 starters to dup under the 10 second mark, smashing Meares’ Commonwealth Games record and closing in on the world record of Christina Vogel.

Meares and Morton both eased through the quarter-finals in two straight fights. Morton will face Fatehah Mustapa (Malaysia) in the semi-final this afternoon, while Meares will take on England’s Jess Varnish. The final will take place on Sunday and if Meares can take gold it will be the second of the Games for the Australian.

Kennaugh returns to the track

Peter Kennaugh (Isle of Man) made his first competitive appearance no the track since winning gold in the team pursuit at the 2012 Olympic Games. Kennaugh has taken part in a number of exhibition events, but has been focusing on the road for the past two years.

Kennaugh is riding for his native Isle of Man at the Games in the points race on the track and the road race next Sunday, where he will also lead the team after Mark Cavendish injured himself in a crash at the Tour de France.

The 25-year-old got off to a solid start, winning his heat in the points race qualifier and beating his teammate Mark Christian. Kennaugh will have a full squad of support going into the final with Joe Kelly also making it through his heat. Kennaugh will be one of the favourites for gold, along with Australia’s Glenn O’Shea and Jack Bobridge, and Thomas Scully of New Zealand.

Fachie and MacLean hoping to make history

For the first time at the Commonwealth Games, Para-Sport is taking place in junction with able-bodied sport. The second of the tandem events, the sprint, will take place on Saturday evening with Neil Fachie and Craig McLean hoping to double their tally and take Scotland’s second gold in as many days.

Fachie and MacLean went into the event as favourites, with Fachie holding the world record – which he set earlier this year at the World Championships in Aguascalientes, Mexico. However, the Scots were pipped to the fastest time by Australia’s Kieran Modra and Jason Niblett.

As expected, the two teams sailed into the gold medal race after defeating their opponents in two races. They will be the second medal up for grabs in the afternoon session.
 

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