Delhi 2010: A medal-filled day for home nations

ENGLAND’S sprint relay squads and divers Tom Daley and Max Brick struck gold on Day Nine of the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

ENGLAND’S sprint relay squads and divers Tom Daley and Max Brick struck gold on Day Nine of the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.

And Scotland’s shooting success story continued with two more gold medals secured by Jen McIntosh and Neil Stirton and Jon Hammond.

There were two more medals for the North East, too, as Gateshead-born sprinter Vicki Barr and Saltburn table tennis player Paul Drinkhall claimed bronze in the women’s 4x400m relay and mixed doubles respectively.

The Middlesbrough-born 20-year-old had already won silver with England in the team event at the Games. His singles bid ended at the quarter-final stage yesterday, however, as he was beaten by Singapore’s Zi Yang, who also ended Drinkhall and mixed doubles partner Joanna Parker’s bid for gold at the semi- final stage with his partner Yuegu Wang.

There were three more shooting medals for the Home Nations with England’s Mike Babb and Richard Wilson taking silver behind Stirton and Hammond, Wales’ Johanne Brekke landing bronze behind McIntosh and Mick Gault and Iqbal Ubhi a bronze in the men’s standard fire pistol pairs.

England’s 4x400m men and women weighed in with bronzes and Kate Dennison had to settle for one in the women’s pole vault.

Rhythmic gymnastics trio Rachel Ennis, Francesca Fox and Lynne Hutchison won a bronze medal for England in the women’s team competition.

Kelly Massey, Barr, Meghan Beesley and Nadine Okyere claimed a bronze in the women’s 4x400m relay as India stunned Nigeria on the final lap to take gold in three minutes 27.77 seconds.

Earlier in the day, child prodigy Daley and Brick claimed the Home Nations’ first diving medal of the competition, edging the Australian pair of Matthew Mitcham, the Olympic 10m platform champion, and Ethan Warren into second.

The young English pair, with London 2012 chairman Sebastian Coe looking on, scored 439.65 points, 15.84 ahead of Australia with Canada third and Malaysia last in a four-team final in which only gold and silver medals were awarded.

Stirton and Jon Hammond scored 1181- 74x in testing conditions to clinch Scotland’s second shooting gold medal of the day in the men’s 50m rifle prone pairs. And earlier McIntosh had fired a Games record score of 597-42x in the women’s singles 50m rifle prone competition, missing just three shots in the six series.

Gault’s bronze with Ubhi was his second medal of the Games and took his medal tally in all Games to 17, one short of the 18 medals won by Australian Phillip Adams, who is the most medalled Commonwealth Games athlete.

Gault, a 56-year-old civil servant from Dereham, has one more event left in Delhi – the singles version of the 25m standard pistol – to equal Adams’ record and will retire after the Games. England’s dreams of gold in the men’s hockey were dashed as India fought back from two goals down to win on penalties.

Bharat Chetri dived full-length to his left to save Glenn Kirkham’s penalty shot and India’s win, 5-4 from the spot after a thrilling 3-3 draw, sent them to the final and England into a bronze medal play- off.

While England can still claim bronze consolation in hockey their rugby sevens team missed out on the medals after defeats against New Zealand and South Africa. England’s hopes of claiming gold ended with a 33-12 semi-final defeat against New Zealand, who went on to beat Australia 24-17 in the final. And the bronze medal slipped from England’s grasp too with a 17-14 defeat against South Africa, after they had led 14-5. Scotland faced Samoa in the Plate final and went down 34-0. Earlier Lee Jones’ extra time try had given them a 22-17 win over Kenya. Wales bowed out after their 38-12 defeat against Samoa.

England duo Jenny Duncalf and Laura Massaro fought back from a game down to beat the favourites Kasey Brown and Donna Urquhart in a gripping squash women’s doubles semi-final.

World number two Duncalf then teamed up with James Willstrop for a mixed doubles semi-final against Brown and Cameron Pilley with the Australians winning 2-1.

Nick Matthew and Adrian Grant beat Pilley and Ryan Cuskelly 11-10 11-9 in the men’s doubles semi-finals and face Australian pair Stewart Boswell and David Palmer in the final after they had beaten Scotland pair Alan Clyne and Harry Leitch.

Andrew Baggaley and Liam Pitchford marched into today’s men’s doubles table tennis semi-finals after storming back from losing the first game to beat fancied Singaporeans Cai Xiaoli and Ma Liang 6-11 11-7 11-9 11-4. They now face Indians Sharath Achanta and Subhajit Saha.

Defending champion Nathan Robertson and new partner Jenny Wallwork came back from the brink of defeat to reach the badminton mixed doubles final beating Malaysian fourth seeds Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying 19-21 21-13 23-21.

In the final they will face unseeded Malaysians Koo Kien Keat and Chin Eei Hui or Singaporean third seeds Chayut Triyachart or Yao Lei.

Robertson and Anthony Clark progressed to the men’s doubles final and Rajiv Ouseph reached the men’s singles final.

But there was disappointment for Liz Cann, who lost her singles semi-final against Wong Mew Choo, who won 21-12 18-21 21-17 and now faces a bronze medal play-off against Scotland’s Susan Egelstaff who lost out to Indian top seed Saina Nehwal.

England’s hopes of making a first Games netball final were shattered as they went down to a 51-45 defeat against Australia. England play Jamaica in the bronze medal match at 7am today


David Whetstone
Culture Editor
Graeme Whitfield
Business Editor
Mark Douglas
Newcastle United Editor
Stuart Rayner
Sports Writer