Colors: Yellow Color

Leading middle-distance running stars have today been confirmed for the Emsley Carr Mile race which will take place at this year’s Müller Anniversary Games.

The competitive field will not only include nine British runners for the London Stadium crowd to get behind but will also feature 1500m indoor world record holder Samuel Tefera (ETH), London 2017 bronze medallist Filip Ingebrigsten (NOR), double Olympic medallist Nick Willis (NZL) and European and Commonwealth bronze medallist Jake Wightman (GBR).

Founded in 1953, The Emsley Carr Mile is one of the most famous races in the history of athletics with some of the world’s leading runners claiming the title including Lord Sebastian Coe (GBR), Steve Ovett (GBR), Haile Gebrselassie (ETH), Hicham El Guerrouj (MAR) and Bernard Lagat (USA).

The iconic race, which was inaugurated in the memory of former News of the World editor Sir Emsley Carr, was last won by a British athlete in 2017 when Jake Wightman claimed the title with a time of 3:54.92.

Wightman, 24, who won both European and Commonwealth 1500m bronze last year, has been confirmed as one of the leading Brits in the field for the Emsley Carr Mile at this year’s Müller Anniversary Games.

One of the highlights of the distance running calendar also takes place tonight in Highgate at the Night of the 10,000m PBS event, where Wightman will be supporting the event by taking over British Athletics’ social media channels.

Edinburgh AC athlete Wightman said: "This is a really special night in the calendar at the Night of the 10,000m and I’m excited to be there in person to be able to take over British Athletics’ social media to help be a part of this great event.

“There will be a massive crowd at Parliament Hill tonight for the Night of the 10,000m for real quality athletics in London, and for me I know that my big night in London comes in a couple of weeks’ time when I’ll race in at the Müller Anniversary Games in The Emsley Carr Mile.

I was buzzing to win the event in 2017 and it had real significance in my confidence and development the following year. On top of that, I know from experience that the support I will receive at the London Stadium is like nothing else, so I’m sure it make all the difference as I take on a world class field."

IAAF President and previous winner of the Emsley Carr Mile, Lord Coe said: “I have fond memories of running in and watching The Emsley Carr Mile. In fact winning it in 1977, beating Filbert Bayi of Tanzania put me on the back pages of the UK national newspapers for the first time. It is one of the must-not-miss running events that attracts audiences from across the world.

“Previous editions of the Emsley Carr Mile have seen some of the biggest names in global athletics compete – and claim the title – and this year looks set to continue that trend as the world’s most iconic middle-distance race comes to the London Stadium.”

The Müller Anniversary Games takes place just ten weeks before the IAAF World Championships in Doha.

The two-day Diamond League event has seen history made on numerous occasions in recent years, with some memorable performances from British names such as Sir Mo Farah, Laura Muir and Dina Asher-Smith, while para athletics stars Kare Adenegan and Sophie Hahn both broke world records at the 2018 edition of the event.

British Athletics has announced it has started a ground-breaking new partnership with industry experts PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to improve how the Olympic and Paralympic World Class Programmes work with performance data and analytics.

One of the world’s largest professional service firms, PwC will work with British Athletics’ Olympic and Paralympic World Class Programmes as the Official Data Intelligence Partner to improve the support and value delivered to coaches and athletes through the provision of enhanced information and insights.

PwC will provide a range of services from data acquisition and modelling to reporting, visualisation and advanced analytics, generating insights not previously possible from the full range of data sources available to the Programmes.

The British Athletics World Class Programme is UK Sport’s National Lottery-funded initiative to support the delivery of success at the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The partnership with PwC aligns and supports the strategic aim to win more medals in more events at Tokyo 2020 and beyond.

British Athletics Performance Director Neil Black said: “This is an absolutely ground-breaking partnership for British Athletics to work with PwC and I am thrilled to welcome them into the sport.

“The sport of athletics is statistically and data rich, but there are limitations as to how successful it is if it is not recorded and interpreted correctly, and then provided to coaches and athletes in a way that they can make use of it – whether it is in planning a year or altering the focus of their day-to-day training.

“We truly believe that by more effectively and efficiently using data and analytics, British athletes across the Olympic and Paralympic World Class Programmes can be the best prepared in the world.

With the help and support of PwC and their services, our athletes and coaches will have fast and effective access to data and analytics, all in one place, which is something we have up until now not been able to provide.

“The improvements will be gradual but continuous as new capabilities are developed and there is a learning of what can actually be valuable to ultimately help athletes achieve their goals. It is a very exciting time for our sport to have this input.”

Alex Cooke, Data Intelligence Partner at PwC, said: “Our Data Analytics team support many organisations to get more value from their data and gain competitive advantage or disrupt their industries by optimising their insights operating models. Over the years athletics has brought the country many memorable moments and we are delighted to be partnering with British Athletics to ensure, through the use of data insights, we bring more success in the future.”

Jon Andrews, Head of Technology and Investments at PwC, said: “We’re really excited to partner with British Athletics in this initiative. Working with them, we hope to collectively combine the power of technology with human insight to help them and their athletes achieve superior performance. Speed is of the essence to stay ahead and we aim to bring our experience of mining data to give athletes and coaches more objective information to help them make better decisions.”

After a unanimously agreed by clubs to conduct a feasibility study into the idea at a shareholders' meeting last month, and in the wake of the massive impact made by England during the FIFA Women’s World Cup, the English Premier League has moved a step closer to taking over the Women's Super League from the Football Association.

It follows recent talks between the Premier League and FA, but no timeframe has yet been proposed.

The FA, who set up the WSL in 2011, has overseen its development, seeing the WSL becoming the only full-time professional competition with 12 teams for 2019-20 with Premier League-affiliated clubs making up 13 of the 22 sides in the women's top two divisions, with the top flight securing a £10m sponsorship deal with Barclays.

Attendances, though, have dropped below an average of 1,000, and some Premier League clubs now feel there is significant scope for growth in sponsorship and broadcasting deals, especially after England reaching the World Cup semi-final - which was watched by record television audiences.

A spokesperson for the FA said: "We can confirm that we are supporting the Premier League in exploring the long-term feasibility of the Premier League running the Women's Super League. This is a purely exploratory project and based on a long term timescale”.

Continuing, the spokesperson said: "The FA is proud that it set up the first European women's professional league and the relevant player pathways as part of its commitment to growing the women's game. We have recently established a joint WSL/Women's Championship Board with the clubs to oversee the future strategy and policy of the professional game.

"It is this Board that will recommend the best way forward to The FA as it determines what is in the best interests of the leagues. However, The FA has always been clear that it is open to an external body running the WSL in the long term, as The FA's remit is to support the game from grassroots to elite teams."

Further to that, it is also understands that talks are ongoing about the possibility of playing multiple matches at Premier League stadiums on the opening weekend of the 2019-20 WSL season, which starts on Saturday, September 7 - during an international break for the men's sides.

Any possible takeover, though, could still be several seasons away.

With the World DanceSport Federation (WDSF) warmly welcoming the decision by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Session to include Breaking on the sports programme, b-boys and b-girls are already sharpening up their moves and groves ready for its inclusion in the Olympic Games Paris 2024.

Breaking made its Olympic debut last year at the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, but its inclusion on the Paris 2024 programme is the first time any DanceSport discipline has appeared at an Olympic Games.

“This is history for the DanceSport community and the discipline of Breaking,” said WDSF President Shawn Tay. “We are sure Breaking will be an outstanding success in Paris and will add lots of energy, athletic excellence, innovation and youth appeal to the Olympic Games. WDSF, together with the Breaking community, is ready to collaborate closely with Paris 2024 and the IOC to make the Olympic dream of the world’s best b-boys and b-girls come true.”

The Paris 2024 organisers proposed four sports - Breaking, together with Skateboarding, Sport Climbing and Surfing - in response to a new level of flexibility afforded to Olympic Games Host Cities to encourage innovation in the Olympic programme. Host Cities, beginning with Tokyo 2020, now have the option of suggesting new sports and events for inclusion in their edition of the Games that are not binding on future Games hosts.

The new sports were proposed in February by the Paris 2024 Organising Committee for inclusion at the XXXIII Olympiad. In March, the IOC Executive Board (EB) gave the green light to the proposal, which was then put to a vote by the IOC Session (the assembly of all IOC members), currently meeting in Lausanne, Switzerland.

B-boy, Mounir, the Vagabond Crew member who joined the Paris 2024 delegation presenting at the IOC Session, said: “This is historic. We were humble, but we never doubted. A pessimist never changed the world. We started from nothing, we learned how to make more with less, we believed in the impossible and today the impossible becomes possible.”

DJ Renegade, who has been involved in UK breaking since the 1980s, said the proposal for the event to be at the 2024 Olympics was "one of the most exciting things that's happened in our scene.

He said: "People were mentioning this back in 1983".

"Right now people are training in train stations.

"We don't have any gyms or studios, you have to pay for that stuff. It would be nice if there was an academy where you can go and learn about the culture."

The 2024 Summer Olympic Games are scheduled to take place in the French capital from 26 July to 11 August.

Former England, Crystal Palace, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Nottingham Forest footballer, leukaemia survivor and Patron of blood cancer charity Cure Leukaemia Geoff Thomas, has announced he will ride the full Tour de France route one day ahead of the professionals for the last time in 2020 to mark 15 years since he was declared in remission from the disease.

Yesterday marked exactly 16 years since Geoff was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukaemia and told he had just three months to live. Luckily, he lived close to Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth Hospital and Cure Leukaemia’s co-founder Professor Charlie Craddock CBE. Under his care, Geoff was able to access the latest treatments for this form of blood cancer enabling him to undergo a life-saving stem cell transplant as his sister, Kay, was a perfect match.

Reflecting on this time he said: “I was so lucky. Had I not met Charlie (Professor Craddock), been able to receive the latest treatment for the disease and my sister not been a match I would not be here today. So many patients I met during that time didn’t make it and that’s why I have dedicated my life to giving back ever since.”

During his treatment Geoff drew inspiration and comfort from Lance Armstrong’s book ‘It’s Not About The Bike’ which detailed the American’s own battle with cancer. Geoff continued:

“It gave me hope that there could be a future for me and it’s the reason I took up cycling, and the rest is history!”

In 2005, just months after being declared in remission from blood cancer, Geoff defied the odds and first took on the full Tour de France route, one day ahead of the professionals.

“It was the start of a true love/hate relationship for me! It was incredibly tough but it was the memory of the patients who didn’t make it that drove me on. I made great friends during that challenge in the world of cycling, the likes of Matt Lawton, Neil Ashton, Matt Dickinson and Tom Cary and they have supported me ever since.”

Since then, Geoff has taken on cycling’s toughest challenge three more times to raise funds to support others and in 2020, 30 years after he captained Crystal Palace in the FA Cup Final, he will ride over 3,400km, one day ahead of the likes of Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas with the aim of raising £1m for Cure Leukaemia.

He continued: “Yes this is it! I can’t keep doing these Grand Tour challenges and this feels like the right time. Cure Leukaemia recently announced its nationwide expansion thanks to the UK Charities of the Year partnership with Deutsche Bank. From January 2020, Cure Leukaemia will be funding specialist research nurses across the UK and the funds we raise from GT15 will connect so many more patients with the treatments I was lucky enough to receive 16 years ago.

“Our vision is to accelerate the global progress that is being made in the world of blood cancer and help find effective treatments for all forms of the disease within the next 15 years.”

To raise £1m for Cure Leukaemia, Geoff is looking for 14 amateur cyclists to join him for this ultimate experience next summer.

“I am looking for a team to join me for my last tour. It’s a year away so there is time for people to prepare for this experience. I’m not going to dress it up, it is tough, really tough but it is amazing what people can achieve when they have a focus and determination to succeed. There are no blockers here – young or old, male or female we would like to hear from you.”

Cyclists who are keen in joining Geoff should go to www.GT15.co.uk where they can register their interest. It costs £10,000 per rider to take part initially with a commitment to raise at least a further £20,000.

Geoff added: “It is vital that the fundraising is not forgotten about in this story – it’s why I took up cycling and it’s why I am going through the pain of another Tour. To finish my cycling career knowing that we have raised at least £1m for this fantastic charity would be so special to me.

“We would love a headline sponsor for the event to ensure more funds go to Cure Leukaemia and we would welcome conversations with interested businesses.

“It’s nice that next year will be 30 years since the FA Cup Final as well, bringing everything together in the same year. Perhaps our shirt sponsor from that year might be interested in being a part of this challenge?”

The sports industry is known to be dominated by men. But Khalia Collier didn't let that stop her from owning her own sports team back in 2011.

At just 23, Collier became the owner and general manager of the St. Louis Surge, the only women's professional basketball team in St. Louis, Missouri, in the USA.

She has always loved basketball since she was a child - and she was good at it.

She used to join basketball teams from grade school, high school, and college. Collier, who finished college with a degree in Marketing, has also been interested in business from seeing her mother, who is an entrepreneur herself

Khalia started thinking about owning a team when she became a player for the Surge. As she continued learning more about team ownership, she thought it would be a great opportunity to buy the team she used to play for.

Aside from the business aspect, it is also important for Collier to "show and prove that a women's franchise is not only viable but sustainable in the market," she said in an interview with Shoppe Black. And it actually happened. She became one of the youngest owners in sports at any level.

Since then, the St. Louis Surge has successfully won five regional championships and two national championships play at Washington University. What's more, she herself is a winner for she is able to inspire other women that they could be leaders as well.

"My responsibility as a woman is to create more opportunities for women that look like me not just providing a platform for professional athletes but leadership and front office positions. Once the door is open it is my responsibility to leave it open for all of the incredible women willing and prepared to work hard to achieve their dreams."

Britain’s men’s sprint relay teams are set to take on the world, in one of the biggest 4x100m relay races of the year, at the Müller Anniversary Games, in the London Stadium on 20–21 July.

Two Great Britain & Northern Ireland 4x100m quartets will line up against Australia, China, Chinese Taipei, Germany, Japan, Netherlands and Poland for an exciting showdown, which is sure to set the stadium alight.

Great Britain’s men’s sprint relay teams have returned to top form with some exceptional performances in recent years. In 2017, they produced an unforgettable display to win gold at the IAAF World Championships in London, and they have also won the 4x100m at the last three European Championships.

European 100m and 4x100m relay champion Zharnel Hughes has established himself as one of Britain’s leading relay runners and will be aiming for selection for the Müller Anniversary Games and beyond.

He believes the 4x100m will be one of the most exciting events of the weekend at the Diamond League meet, which takes place just ten weeks before the start of the IAAF World Championships in Doha.

Hughes said: “The men’s sprint relay at the Müller Anniversary Games is going to be a huge race. We’ll have two GB men’s relay teams battling each other for supremacy and taking on some of the best sprint quartets in the world. So, the fans can expect some fireworks in the London Stadium.

“The 4x100m relay is a really special event for the GB sprinters and it’s a privilege for me to be part of this exciting, current quartet. Racing as part of team that’s perfectly in sync, is a truly magical feeling.

“The crowd always goes wild when the relay is on, and the noise in the London Stadium when Great Britain won gold there two years ago was unbelievable. I hope lots of fans will come and cheer the Brits on again this year, at the Müller Anniversary Games.”

The Müller Anniversary Games has seen history made on numerous occasions in recent years, with some memorable performances from British names such as Sir Mo Farah, Laura Muir and Dina Asher-Smith, while para athletics stars Kare Adenegan and Sophie Hahn both broke world records at the 2018 edition of the event.

As part of its three years to go celebrations, the team behind Birmingham 2022 is dialling up the countdown to the Commonwealth Games by rolling out an art-led community research project that aims to connect communities across the West Midlands.

Birmingham 2022 is staging an innovative research project called Common Ground, which will visit nine locations across the region throughout June and July, inviting people to have a conversation about the Games and to explore how Birmingham 2022 can benefit their community and create a legacy in the region.

Featuring local artist illustrators Room 0121 and Void One who will be joined by a team of researchers, Common Ground hopes to engage local people to explore how they feel the Games can bring people together and provide a catalyst for change to benefit them and others living in their local area. The findings will be used by the artists to create a visual interpretation of the conversations, as they happen, at each location.

Common Ground will conclude with an exciting Birmingham 2022 milestone, an event called Commonwealth Social taking in Birmingham city centre on Saturday 27 July. The Commonwealth Social will mark the momentous milestone of three years to gountil the Opening Ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in 2022 by uniting the people of the city and the region, who are pivotal in helping to shape Birmingham’s inaugural Games. The Commonwealth Social will also reveal the new Birmingham 2022 brand identity, which has been co-created with local communities across the West Midlands to truly reflect the region.

Common Ground will take place in the following locations on the dates below:

Saturday 22 June        Cannock                     Cannock Shopping Centre

Saturday 6 July           Coventry                     Broadgate

Sunday 7 July             Wolverhampton          Wolverhampton Food & Drink Festival

Friday 12 July             Stourbridge                 Ryemarket Shopping Centre

Saturday 13 July         West Brom                  Sandwell Arts Café, New Square

Sunday 14 July           Sutton Coldfield          Community Games - Wyndley Leisure Centre

Wednesday 17 July    Solihull                        Touchwood Shopping Centre

Saturday 20 July         Walsall                         Saddlers Shopping Centre

Saturday 27 July         Birmingham                City Centre – Centenary Square

Josie Stevens, Chief Marketing and Communications Officer for Birmingham 2022, said: “We’re putting local people at the heart of the Games and celebrating what makes the region special. For us to do this effectively it’s important that we hear from local communities and give them a voice to share their ideas, which in turn will help shape our approach. We want to create a Commonwealth Games that unites the region, benefits local people and marks the occasion in a way that only Birmingham can.”

The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will bring athletes, officials, spectators and local people together in a unique celebration of sport, culture and business, creating growth and positive change in Birmingham and wider the West Midlands.

Described as a 'champion in the making', teenage sensation Cori 'Coco' Gauff, who at 15 years and 122 days became the youngest player to qualify for the main Wimbledon draw since the Open era began in 1968, swept aside five-time winning legend of the game, Venus Williams 6-4 6-4 on Court One in front of a packed crowd.

Comes from sporting stock - she is coached by her father Corey, who played basketball at Georgia State University and her mother Candi was a gymnast before moving into track and field – the tournaments new sensation adds this new record to that of her becoming the youngest US Open girls singles finalist at the aged just 13.

She won the French Open equivalent last year, aged 14.

BBC's Today at Wimbledon two-time US Open champion Tracy Austin said: "People have been talking about Coco for years”.

"They have now started to recognise her internationally. Obviously she's a tremendous athlete, but to walk on court to face Venus, a player who she idolises, there were plenty of opportunities for her to get tight and nervous.

"She has been raised for greatness and this is just the beginning".

Three-time Wimbledon singles champion John McEnroe said: "Gauff's not only physically mature, but also mentally.

The 7-times Grand Slam winner adding: "I look at the way she plays. If she's not number one in world by 20 I will be absolutely shocked."

Atlanta, Georgia-born Gauff idolised Venus and Serena Williams sisters, so being drawn against the elder of the two in the first round, was a dream-come-true.

To beat the seven-times ‘Slam winner was beyond belief for her.

In the bustling surroundings of Birmingham Airport, dancers from the Freefall Dance Company, one of Birmingham Royal Ballet’s most long-standing and impactful programmes, strutted their stuff as the year long partnership with Birmingham Airport was launched.

At All Bar One, in Birmingham Airport, Paul James, Chief Commercial Officer for the Birmingham Royal Ballet opened, “There were two things that struck me one which was making ballet more accessible for all and the other was changing lives for others. “This partnership is to promote and help those with learning difficulties and to support them in their love of ballet.”

The Airport is donating to Birmingham Royal Ballet to support Freefall, their second company that works with young adults with severe learning disabilities. The event included the premiere of a new film featuring the Freefall dancers, directed by Birmingham Royal Ballet Director David Bintley with Ross MacGibbon.

“We look forward to joining you for the remainder of the year while this runs on,” explained Birmingham Airport chief executive, Nick Barton, “and we’ll see the success and the talent of these young people who have got real challenges but show great merit and great talent to overcome them”.

Leading up to the live performance a couple of the parents of the Freefall dancers beamed “he comes home and tells me how much he loves it every time.” The performance started off with three dancers by the end there were thirteen young adults expressing their passion for dance. The performance was very enjoyable to watch and at the end one dancer was extremely proud of the show.

His happiness was infectious, and really made you realise how much these dancers loved putting on the show. Freefall Dance Company is comprised of 10 adults with severe learning disabilities (SLD) and has been creating and performing daring, ground-breaking and award-winning dance since 2002.

By combining the dancers’ exceptional talents and individual styles, Freefall has repeatedly challenged and amazed audiences locally, nationally and internationally proving their artistic potential.

Dance Track is BRB’s talent identification programme within Birmingham schools, aimed at training young dancers aged from six to eight. Every year Dance Track invites 80 children who demonstrate a talent for dance to join the programme.

The participants, who might not otherwise have an opportunity to participate in dance, are given free weekly ballet lessons taught by Birmingham Royal Ballet staff. Throughout the year, they are invited to Birmingham Royal Ballet to have a look behind the scenes, meet Company dancers and are offered tickets to see Birmingham Royal Ballet performances at Birmingham Hippodrome.

Through this new partnership, Birmingham Airport will provide funding to enable one new school in the North East area of Birmingham to join the Dance Track programme, giving more children in the city access to the world of dance.

Commonwealth heptathlon champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson will compete on both days at the Müller Anniversary Games, in the London Stadium on 20–21 July.

The multi-events star will line up in the 200m on day one, followed by the long jump on day two, exactly ten weeks before the start of the IAAF World Championships in Doha.

Johnson-Thompson has, so far this year, continued to produce the good form and confidence she found in 2018, a pivotal year in which she won the World Indoor pentathlon title, followed by her first major senior heptathlon medals; gold at the Commonwealth Games in Australia and silver at the European Championships in Berlin.

In March this year, the Liverpool athlete won her second European Indoor pentathlon title in Glasgow. She then produced an exceptional performance in Austria last month, to win the heptathlon at the Gotzis Hypo-Meeting, with a personal best and world-leading score of 6,813 points. This beat her previous best score of 6,759, set in Berlin on her way to winning the European silver medal last year.

Johnson-Thompson will be hoping for a quick time over 200m where she will line up against some of the fastest women in the world. She’ll also be looking for a big distance in the long jump, one of her strongest disciplines and an event in which she won a World Indoor silver medal in 2014.

Johnson Thompson said: “I’m really looking forward to competing on both days at the Müller Anniversary Games this year. I love this meet and the London Stadium is such an amazing venue, there’s no place like it in the world.

“With just ten weeks to go until the world championships, all the best athletes will be competing with an eye on being in the best shape for Doha. I’ll be doing the same, trying to put together what I’d be working on in training to produce good performances on both days.”

She continued: “I’m really settled now, in France, and the improvement in my performances have reflected that. My coach and training group are great and working with them has definitely given me more confidence.”

The Müller Anniversary Games has seen history made on numerous occasions in recent years, with some memorable performances from British names such as Sir Mo Farah, Laura Muir and Dina Asher-Smith, while para athletics stars Kare Adenegan and Sophie Hahn both broke world records at the 2018 edition of the event.  

 

British Athletics has selected a team of 15 for the World Para Athletics Junior Championships which take place in Nottwil, Switzerland from 1-4 August 2019.

Among those set to represent the country are two medallists from the 2017 edition of these championships, Karim Chan and Ethan Kirby, with 11 athletes earning their first junior international cap for the Great Britain & Northern Ireland team.

Chan won the T20 long jump title – for athletes with an intellectual impairment - in Nottwil two years ago and earns his place in the 2019 squad following a season so far which has seen him extend his personal best by 13cm to 6.33m.

Kirby won silver back in 2017 in the T20 400m and will compete over the distance once more in Nottwil. He lowered his PB to 52.92 at the end of May, dipping under 53 seconds for the first time. He will be joined in the T20 400m by Prince Reid who has a best of 52.49s, set in Watford last month. The athletes come into the under 20 contest as two of the leading names in the season’s rankings.

In the women’s T20 400m, Faye Olszowka will make her British debut in the U20 age-group, heading into the event ranked second in the junior world standings after revising her lifetime best to 1:03.08 in May.

Matthew Cooper, ranked second in the world in the junior T34 rankings in 2019, will be one to watch out for when he goes in the combined U20 T33/34 100m in August. The Weir Archer Academy athlete will additionally contest the 200m and 400m in Switzerland, as will Zien Zhou who also contests all three distances.

Ben Callander – a T33 athlete who is ranked number one junior in the world in the classification – will join the pair in the T33/34 100m, 200m and 400m.

One athlete has been selected in the U17 category; Wales-based Molly Hopkins who will race in the T62 100m – for athletes with lower limb amputations competing with a prosthetic – in her first international competition.

Team Leader Sarah Benson commented: “We are delighted to select 15 athletes for the second World Para Athletics Junior Championships. This event serves as an important step for these athletes in the Paralympic performance pathway and will be a fantastic opportunity to experience the international competition environment.

“It will be a great learning experience for these exciting prospects and I’m sure it will help them in preparation for future potential Paralympic Games and senior world championships.”

Plans showcasing the emerging design for the redevelopment of Alexander Stadium have been published, as public consultation begins.

The venue at Walsall Road, Perry Barr, will be the focal point of the 2022 Commonwealth Games, hosting the Opening and Closing Ceremonies as well as the athletics programme.

New artist impressions of the stadium have been released revealing Birmingham City Council’s intentions to create a legacy asset the city and its residents can be truly proud of.

The redeveloped stadium will increase its permanent seating capacity from 12,700 to 18,000 allowing up to 40,000 during the Games through additional temporary seating.

Key features include:

  • A new western stand replacing the Main, Knowles and Nelson stands
  • New tiered seating to the north and south
  • A new 400m 6-lane warm up track and re-laying of a new IAAF Category 1 track (400m 9-lane competition standard track)
  • Improved public realm and parking provision, with additional landscaping and signage
  • Installation of new stadium lighting and practice throwing field
  • A new access road from A453 Aldridge Road (to be used for event/maintenance use only)
The design will facilitate the temporary ‘Games overlay’ elements and additional infrastructure needed to deliver the 2022 Games. Further detail regarding the Games overlay will be consulted on at a later date.

Demolition of the current west stand within the stadium is subject to a separate application which will be submitted to Birmingham City Council in summer 2019.

Members of the local community are encouraged to attend the consultation events taking place at Alexander Stadium this evening (22 June) 11am-4pm. There will be an opportunity to meet members of the project team, view the indicative plans and provide feedback before a planning application is submitted in the autumn.

Councillor Ian Ward, Leader of Birmingham City Council, said: “We’re now in an exciting phase of the design process where we would like to share our plans for the future with the community and hear their thoughts.

“The team has designed a redeveloped stadium which will meet the needs and aspirations of the community for generations to come. This is about creating a destination venue, shaping a legacy beyond the Commonwealth Games.

“We are making lots of information and detail available, so I encourage as many people as possible to come along, have a look at the designs and provide their feedback.”

Subject to gaining planning permission, the redeveloped stadium will be ready ahead of the Games which will take place between 27 July and 7 August 2022.

For anyone unable to attend the events, all consultation material is now live on the council’s Be Heard consultation website at: www.birminghambeheard.org.uk/place/alexander-stadium

Those unable to access the internet can pick up a consultation leaflet and paper questionnaire at the following libraries: Library of Birmingham, Birchfield Library and Tower Hill Library.

The deadline for providing feedback is 5pm on Friday 12 July 2019.

 

Former basketball superstar, Shaquille O'Neal, says that he is very interested in buying out Reebok. Retired Shaq, who was drafted by the Orlando Magic in 1992, made more than $300 million from his NBA salary and various endorsement deals.

As a long-time serial entrepreneur, he has invested in several franchises and reportedly owns 155 Five Guys restaurants, 17 Auntie Anne’s, 9 Papa John's, 40 24-hour fitness gyms, and 150 car washes. According to CNBC, in America, he has also profited quite a bit from early investments in Google and Apple.

During a recent interview after candidly mentioning that he is a part of the investment group that just purchased Sports Illustrated, he also told CNBC that he would love to purchase Reebook.

The champion turned sports commentator signed his first shoe deal with Reebok in 1992, which was worth $15 million. He says though that Adidas, who currently owns Reebok, has “diluted [the brand] so much to where it’s almost gone.”

“If they don’t want it, let me have it,” Shaq said. “I want to bring them back to basketball and to fitness.”

He added that Reebok struggles to compete with brands like Adidas and Under Armour, and he thinks he knows how to fix the problem.

If Reebok is up for sale, it would be costly - definitely a multi-billion deal even though their exact value today is unknown. But O’Neal can easily afford it. According to Forbes, he himself is worth $400 million and his portfolio is worth up to $8 billion.

Hundreds of London youngsters are preparing to battle for the opportunity to compete at one of the world’s biggest athletics events, the Müller Anniversary Games, in the London Stadium on the weekend of 20–21 July.

The London Boroughs Connect Relays will see young athletes representing their schools and boroughs, in an initiative which will bring community athletics in London, together with the elite end of the sport, as part a four-day Festival of Athletics at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, from 18–21July.

Teams of children from four age groups (under 11, under 13, under 15 and under 17), will race at a qualification event on Thursday 18 July, and the top teams will then go head-to-head in the grand final as part of the pre-show at the Müller Anniversary Games on Saturday 20 July.

Relays will take place over three distances; 4 x100m, 4x200m and 4x400m.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “The Anniversary Games are well established as one of the highlights of the international athletics calendar and we look forward to welcoming the elite competitors to London for what is sure to be another exciting edition of this event.

“What’s more, it’s fantastic that the best of London’s young up-and-coming athletes will have the chance to compete and I wish them all the best of luck.”

London’s European 100m and 200m champion, Dina Asher-Smith is just one of the big stars competing at the Müller Anniversary Games this year.

She said: “I love competing in the London Stadium, and I think it’s fantastic that so many young people from across London, will get the opportunity to be part of the Müller Anniversary Games and the Festival of Athletics.

“It will be a special week for everyone involved, and my advice to all the London Boroughs Connect Relays competitors is, run as fast as you can, but above all have fun.”

Newham’s Olympic and double world 400m champion Christine Ohuruogu added: “I’m so excited that children from community athletics programmes in London will be racing on the same stage as the best athletes in the world at the Müller Anniversary Games.

“The London Stadium is my home track and competing there is an unforgettable experience. I hope the London Boroughs Connect Relays will help young people from the city, to see how exciting and rewarding athletics and sport can be.”

Major Events Director for British Athletics, Cherry Alexander OBE said: “The London Boroughs Connect Relays is an exciting development of our successful Club Connect Relays, and will offer the opportunity, for children and teenagers from community athletics programmes in London, to be part of one of the world’s biggest and best athletics meetings.

“I’m delighted that so many young people from London will be part of the Festival of Athletics and the Müller Anniversary Games. I’m sure it will be a memorable experience for the competitors, and I hope their friends and families come along to support them and enjoy what will be a wonderful celebration of athletics.”

London Legacy Development Corporation CEO, Lyn Garner, said: “This summer we are proud to be hosting some incredible free sporting opportunities on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park for people living in east London. Working with British Athletics, we have a fantastic opportunity for young sportspeople to enjoy the incredible atmosphere of the London Stadium - the best venue for athletics in the country.”

Track Academy, an athletics charity working with young people in London, is the Official Charity Partner to the 2019 Müller Anniversary Games.

Track Academy member Confidence Lawson said: “Borough connect relays is a great initiative for young kids around different boroughs to come together and showcase their talents. Relays is one event in track that creates team spirit and shows the value of working as a team. No one great gets to be where they are without a support system behind them.

“Athletics has been good to me in a sense of giving me constant motivation to always want to better myself and keep pushing forward. My only regret is not starting earlier than I did. Seeing my achievements inspires the younger generations is a blessing and I want to help as much as I can to motivate the younger generations.”

The Müller Anniversary Games has seen history made on numerous occasions in recent years, with some memorable performances from British names such as Sir Mo Farah, Laura Muir and London sprint star Asher-Smith, while para athletics stars Kare Adenegan and Sophie Hahn both broke world records at the 2018 edition of the event. Each participant in this year’s inaugural London Borough Connect Relays will be distributed with a Nike t-shirt as part of the event.

Greene King IPA, the Official Beer of England Cricket, has teamed up with cricketing legend Darren Gough to offer customers the chance to meet him and watch England this summer.

The former England fast bowler and talkSPORT broadcaster Darren Gough is calling out to cricket super fans to win a once in a lifetime opportunity to watch England take on Australia during the fifth test of the Ashes on Saturday 14th September. Starting the day with a breakfast at a Greene King pub hosted by Darren, the lucky winners and their guests will then be whisked across to the Kia Oval Cricket Ground alongside Darren to watch the England super stars in action.

Fans can win this unique prize through ‘Goughie’s Giveaway’, a Greene King IPA pub promotion, spearheaded by Darren across over 2500 pubs throughout the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup and Ashes. Punters who buy a pint of Greene King IPA at participating pubs will be given a scratch card with the chance to win top prizes. There are twenty-one pairs of tickets for the exclusive VIP cricket experience with Darren and over 99,000 instant prizes to be won including free pints.

Speaking about the promotion Darren Gough said: “What a summer of cricket we have ahead of us. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy watching England in action than with a group of cricket fans and a few pints of Greene King IPA. Get yourself down to the pub to be in with a chance to win and I’ll see you later this summer.”

Matt Starbuck, managing director of Greene King Brewing and Brands added; “For England cricket fans the chance to meet one of England’s greatest ever players and spend a day watching our national team is a dream come true. We are proud to be the Official Beer of England cricket and to celebrate our national team by rewarding our loyal customers with this money can’t buy experience.”