Olympic 24: Kennaugh victorious in Geelong while Gemili flies
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Olympic 24: Kennaugh victorious in Geelong while Gemili flies

01 February 2016 / 07:50

Peter Kennaugh claimed victory in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in Geelong while Adam Gemili impressed on his return from injury. Here’s our review of the last 24 hours.

  • Kennaugh wins Geelong road race
  • Adam Gemili beats James Dasaoulu in indoor clash
  • Andy Murray confident he’s not far off Novak Djokovic
  • Jo Konta pulls out of Fed Cup with illness
  • James Woods finishes fourth in the X-games

Kennaugh claims victory in Australia

Peter Kennaugh

London 2012 team pursuit champion Peter Kennaugh set his stall out for 2016 with victory in the Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race in Geelong, Australia.

The 26-year-old crossed the line six seconds clear of home favourite Leigh Howard in the 174km event, with Niccolo Bonifazio in third place.

Kennaugh mounted his assault on the field 15km from the finish, pulling well clear of the chasing pack before cruising home.

It marked a stark improvement for Kennaugh who finished ninth in the inaugural staging of the race 12 months ago.

And the Team Sky rider said: “It’s good for my morale.

“It's good to prove to people I’m not messing around.

“I don’t want to be just another rider. I want to be the rider the team can look to in order to lead races.

“It’s the first winter where I’ve had real structure to my training and it helped massively in that final 10km when I was able to hold that pace. I would never have been able to do that a year ago, or two years ago.

“It’s been hard but obviously rewarding.”

Gemili on fire on return to fitness

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Adam Gemili made a perfect return to action after recovery from a niggling hamstring problem with a personal best in victory over James Dasaoulu in the 60m at the Welsh Open Indoor Championships.

Gemili came home in 6.59 seconds, having earlier equalled his previous PB of 6.68 in the heats.

It was an impressive display from the 22-year-old, who had to pull out of last year’s outdoor World Championships with the hamstring injury, and was making his first indoor appearance since 2012.

Dasaoulu finished in second in 6.64 seconds, while Theo Campbell finished third.

Murray confident he can close the gap on Djokovic

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Andy Murray’s recent record against Novak Djokovic might make for difficult reading but he’s not lost belief that the trend can be reversed despite defeat in the Australian Open final.

 Since beating the world number one to win Wimbledon three years ago, he’s been victorious in just one of their subsequent 12 encounters.

He did beat the Serb to win both his Grand Slam titles, Wimbledon and the US Open in 2012, and also took his scalp on route to claiming Olympic gold in London.

But the world number one has proved unbeatable at the Australian Open, Murray is a five-time losing finalist in Melbourne and four times it’s been rival Djokovic on the other side of the net.

“I don't know how far off I was,” he said, following a 6-1, 7-5, 7-6 loss.

“The first set I wasn't there but the second and third sets I do think were very close.

“I do think I could have played a bit better and I didn't think I hit my forehand as well as I could have done. 

"Most of the matches we played in slams have been competitive. Whether that looks the same from the outside or not, I don't know. For a three-set match, two hours and 50 minutes, I didn't make it easy for him.”

Konta ill after Australian Open run

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Australian Open semi-finalist Jo Konta has been forced to pull out of Great Britain’s Davis Cup tie in Israel this week due to illness.

The 24-year-old, who was beaten by eventual champion Angelique Kerber in the last four in Melbourne, has been suffering from an intestinal issue which she picked up during the Grand Slam.

As a result she has been forced to pull out of the clashes against South Africa and Georgia as Britain looks to win promotion from Euro/Africa Zone Group 1

"This comes as a big disappointment to me and I regret not being able to play," she said.

"I have represented GB every time I have been asked to and fully intend to play again given the opportunity in the future."

In Konta’s absence, teenagers Freya Christie and Katie Swan will join Heather Watson as contenders for a singles spot in Judy Murray’s team.

Woods finishes just off the podium

Britain’s James Woods just missed out on a medal at the Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado as New Zealander Jossi Wells claimed victory in the men’s ski slopestyle.

Woods was sat in the bronze medal position heading into the final run after scoring 83.00 on his second effort, but was pipped by American Gus Kenworthy, who eventually finished second.

Wells was the standout performer with 88.33 in his first run before sealing the deal with a score of 90 on his final run.

That was enough for the 25-year-old to claim a first-ever X Games title; having previously finished as a runner-up in 2008 and 2013.

Norway’s Oystein Braaten came home in third place, just 1.33 points clear of Woods.

Sportsbeat 2016