Semenya early Olympic 800m favourite after winning in Doha

first_imgDOHA, Qatar (AP): Caster Semenya made herself the early Olympic frontrunner by easily winning the women’s 800 metres in the Doha Diamond League meet yesterday. Semenya decimated the field in a season’s best 1:58.26 seconds, almost nine-tenths of a second better than second-place Habitam Alemu of Ethiopia, 1:59.14. It was her second standout result to start the Olympic year, after announcing her ambition last month with an unprecedented hat-trick of 400m, 800m, and 1,500m titles at the South African championships. They were all the more remarkable because she’s hardly featured since her 2012 Olympic silver medal. She still hasn’t come close to the 1:55.56 she set in winning the 2009 Worlds’, when news leaked that she would be subject to gender testing. Semenya improved on her 800m time in Stellenbosch at Doha and was delighted. “I feel very good this year. I am focused on what I am doing,” she said. “My preparation has gone really well, but I can’t say there have been many changes in my training or my attitude.” DISAPPOINTED WITH LOSS Not so happy were Dafne Schippers, the World 200 champion, who was pipped in the 100m by American Tori Bowie, and the home favourite in the men’s high jump, Mutaz Essa Barshim. Barshim, who has jumped as high as 2.43 metres in setting the Asian record, could not do any better than 2.26, and was seventh in a competition won by American Erik Kynard at 2.33. “It’s all part of the plan. This being an Olympic year, I’m taking things slow,” Barshim insisted. “Last year, I peaked early, and by July, I was practically dead. I’m not going to repeat that mistake.” Bowie, the 100 bronze-medal winner at the Worlds last year in Beijing, said: “I gave the race my everything, and the win was mine. This being an Olympic year, I’m eagerly looking ahead at the outdoor season. I feel I’m a much better runner now than I was last season.” The women’s 3,000m featured two World champions in a fascinating duel. World champion Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia prevailed against World 10,000 champion Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya. Ayana was pushed to clock a season’s best 8:23.11. Cheruiyot was fourth. The men’s 200m was won by American Emir Webb in a meet record of 19.85s. He was the only person to break 20 seconds. Kenyans swept the 1,500m and 3,000m steeplechase. Asbel Kiprop led Elijah Motonei Manangoi and Silas Kiplagat to the podium in the 1,500m in 3:32.15, and Conseslus Kipruto won the steeplechase.last_img read more

“We Have to Geographically Balance This Country “

first_imgLofa County Senator Stephen J. H. Zargo: “My role is to provide a leadership that will work selflessly with the new government in answering to the calls of our people.”-Sen Zargo asserts; throws hat into Pro Tempore raceThe chairman of the Senate Statutory Committee on National Security, Defense, Intelligence and Veteran Affairs has announced his candidacy for the position of President Pro Tempore of the Liberian Senate, which vacancy will be declared next Tuesday.“There is no better time to unite ourselves, the Legislature, than now; and more besides, we have to geographically balance this country in this critical period of our country’s history,” Lofa County Senator Stephen J. H. Zargo said at a press conference yesterday in his Capitol Building office in Monrovia.Zargo told Legislative reporters that his decision to vie for the Pro Temp position was communicated to his colleagues in a letter dated December 5, 2017, but with a caveat that he would not do so in the event that Vice President Joseph Boakai were to win the Presidential election, “because both of us are from the same political sub-division of Lofa County.”But with the victory of Senator George Weah as the next President of Liberia, Senator Zargo said there was a need for a geographical balance especially with increasing signs that strong candidates are emerging for the posts of Speaker of the House of Representatives and the Pro Tempore of the Senate, all from Southeastern region.“Despite the Monrovia factor regarding Senator Weah, it is inarguably true that the President-elect hails from Grand Kru County, the same district as one of my opponents in the race,” Zargo disclosed in an apparent reference to Grand Kru County Senator Albert Tugbe Chie.Senate Zargo underscored the need to correct the mistake of the past government when the President, Speaker of the House of Representatives, and Senate Pro Temp hailed from the same county and sub-region.If elected, Zargo said his immediate priority will be the introduction of basic short, medium and long-term capacity building of the staffers of the Legislature for their effective and efficient services to the Liberian people.“We will have to re-brand the image of the Legislature by the systems and policies we establish in order to reclaim the public trust and the respect that we deserve as individual lawmakers and collectively as an institution,” Senator Zargo affirmed.Zargo, a former security expert and a practicing lawyer, told journalists that he is currently holding discussions with institutions such as Center for Security Development and Rule of Law, the International Security Sector Advisory Team, and the UNDP to “conduct training for staffers who will serve as institutional memory, even while we are no longer serving as legislators.”Strengthening the Senate’s relationship with the other branches of the government, Zargo said, is a demanding obligation if the country must move forward, and that mutual respect for fellow Senators must crown such an effort.“We must provide a leadership that has the commitment to protect our economy and upholds institutional integrity, and my role is to provide a leadership that will work selflessly with the new government in answering to the calls of our people; a change for the good of every Liberian,” he added.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Neymar on fast track to full fitness says Brazil teammate Danilo

first_img0Shares0000Brazil’s striker Neymar (R) high-fives Willian (L) as they take part in a training session at Tottenham Hotspur’s Enfield Training Centre, north-east of London ahead of their friendly with Croatia. © AFP / Ben STANSALLLONDON, United Kingdom, May 30 – Brazil star Neymar is getting fitter every day as the striker recovers from a broken foot, Brazil teammate Danilo said from their pre-World Cup training camp in London on Wednesday.The Paris Saint Germain forward was injured in February and is yet to play a match since then, with two weeks to go before the World Cup kicks off in Russia. “He’s getting better every day, getting faster, more agile and more difficult to defend against,” said Manchester City’s Danilo, who knows Neymar from his Santos days.“He’s so fast you wouldn’t know whether to go, left, right, forwards or backwards,” Danilo said of Neymar’s trickery.“We hope he’ll be 100% ready or as ready as is possible.”Brazil play Croatia at Liverpool June 3 and against Austria in Vienna on June 10 before their opening World Cup game with Switzerland June 17.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more