Olympic24: Levine laps up title as Christie wins bronze

16 February 2015 / 07:53

A host of British stars shine on day two of the British Indoor Athletics Championships while England claim silver at the European Mixed Team Badminton Championship. Here's our review of the last 24 hours.

  • Nigel Levine and Jenny Meadows among those who star on day two of the British Indoor Athletics Championships
  • England pipped to European Mixed Team Badminton Championship gold by Denmark
  • Elise Christie claims World Cup 500m bronze in Turkey
  • England Sevens lose Plate final to Australia in Las Vegas
  • Great Britain's synchronised swimming team won bronze at the European Games qualification event in Turkey
  • Muhammad and Sansum pick up medals in Turkey
  • Dom Parsons signs off from skeleton World Cup with top-ten finish

LEVINE LAPS UP FIFTH STRAIGHT NATIONAL INDOOR TITLE

Nigel Levine admitted his delight at coming away from the British Indoor Championships with his fifth successive 400m title.

The London 2012 semi-finalist's pedigree was on display for all to see as he cruised across the line in 46.86 seconds – 0.19 seconds ahead of  second-placed Jarryd Dunn.

Third went to Jamie Bowie but neither athlete was able to push Levine to his limits as the 25-year-old looked composed throughout to trot to victory.

And, with the European Indoor Championships coming up in Prague in March, and the World Championships in Beijing this summer, Levine admits it was the perfect way to kick off a busy year of competition.

“I’m so pleased to win that fifth successive gold at the indoors,” he said. “It really means a lot to me and puts in a good place going forward.

“I love running the 400m that’s what I’m here to do so I’ve had a really good day.

“I still do get a bit nervous at these Championships even though I’ve competed here quite a few times. I’d like to get a better time but this was my first indoor race for a while.

“I had to come in here cold turkey because it didn’t work out with some of the other competitions I’d planned to race in. This summer I just need to run a PB, it’s as simple as that.

“I know it sounds simple, I just need to run faster. It will take a lot of work but that’s something I’m willing to do and me I will work hard for it.”

While there were heroics from Katarina Johnson-Thompson in Saturday's high jump – where she broke the national record – there was no double gold for the hepthathlete who finished fourth in the women's 60m hurdles.

There was more success for Jenny Meadows as she comfortably won the women’s 800m in 2:01.43 minutes.

And in the women's 3000m Emelia Gorecka saw off the challenge of Jessica Judd to take gold in 9:06.27 and Laura Muir showed her class to take gold in the 1500m.

ENGLAND SETTLE FOR SILVER IN BELGIUM

Head coach Jakob Hoi admitted he could have no complaints after England were pipped to European Mixed Team Championship gold by Denmark.

After two previous bronze medals England faced off against Denmark in the final in Belgium with their sights firmly set on a first gold since 1984.

However it wasn’t to be as the Danes built up a convincing and unassailable 3-0 lead as they stormed to their tenth success in the last 11 European Mixed Team Championships.

Line Kjaersfeldt beat Fontaine Chapman 21-14 21-11 in 31 minutes to hand Denmark an early lead.

With England number one Rajiv Ouseph rested after a niggling injury, Toby Penty, the world number 112, then found himself 11-8 up against world number two, Jan O Jorgensen, in the opening game.

However, the European champion rallied and won five points in a row to snatch the first game and experience then told as he won 21-18 21-14.

And Denmark clinched the title with the men's and mixed doubles still to be played when Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl outplayed Heather Olver and Lauren Smith in the women's doubles.

"They were the favourites and they were better than us," said Hoi. "We don't have a player here who is proud of losing and we just didn't have the team here.

"There was nothing we could do about the order of play. It was a shame we couldn't gain momentum by getting one of our doubles pairs out early to gain intensity and competition.

"I don't have a smile on my face right now and nor do the team as most of them have been in this position before and wanted to changed that. But to reach the final is an accomplishment despite being seeded second."

CHRISTIE COLLECTS WORLD CUP 500M BRONZE

Great Britain's Elise Christie brought the curtain down on the short track speed skating World Cup season by claiming 500m bronze in Erzurum, Turkey.

Christie posted a time of 43.263 seconds to claim third place, with 500m World Cup winner Kexin Fan of China claiming victory in 43.009 and Russian Sofia Prosvirnova sandwiched in between for silver.

It all means that Christie finishes this season's World Cup campaign sat fourth over 500m on 30016 points, 565 behind third-placed Marianne St-Gelais of Canada, with South Korean Ji-Soo Jeon second on 31714 and Fan someway out ahead on 56400.

Elsewhere for Great Britain, Jack Whelbourne reached the men's 1000m final but failed to force his way onto the podium as he finished fourth.

PARSONS SIGNS OFF WITH TOP-TEN FINISH

Dom Parsons recovered from a difficult first run at the Olympic track in Sochi, Russia, and finish tenth overall in the final World Cup of the season.

Twelfth at halfway, Parsons produced a faster start and shaved 0.76 seconds off his run time to record 1:54.64 minutes overall at the Sanki Sliding Centre.

Meanwhile, Ed Smith showed promising signs in his first race back from an injury lay-off as he took 0.30 seconds off his first run time to complete the race in 1:55.54, finishing 16th.

These results meant that Parsons finished fifth in the overall World Cup rankings, with 1232 points and Ed Smith was 21st with 462 points.

ENGLAND RUGBY SEVENS

England Sevens finished as runners up in the Plate competition of the Las Vegas Sevens, losing 21-14 to Australia in their final.

Australia had raced into a first half 21-0 lead, but England had the last say of the half when Alex Gray superbly set up Charlie Hayter to race through and score.

Tom Mitchell’s second-half try reduced the deficit to seven points, but the Australians held firm to secure the Plate win, and valuable series points.

MUHAMMAD AND SANSUM WIN SILVER AND BRONZE

Lutalo Muhammad and Damon Sansum were among the medals for a third successive tournament to boost GB Taekwondo's final tally at the Turkey Open in Antalya.

London 2012 bronze medallist Muhammad claimed silver in the -87kg division, losing out to Uzbekistan’s Jasur Baykuziev in the final 4-3.

And US Open champion Sansum finished with bronze at -80kg as the GB squad took their weekend medal haul to seven. 

GREAT BRITAIN MAKE A SPLASH

Great Britain's synchronised swimming team won bronze at the European Games qualification event in Turkey.

And relay swimmers claimed double gold at the Arena Pro Series in Orlando.

Luke Greenbank, Calum Tait, Craig Bowman and Duncan Scott won the gold in the men’s 4x100m medley while Lauren Quigley, Abbie Wood, Amelia Clynes and Chloe Tutton won the women's event.

Greenbank and Evans also won 200m backstroke bronze while Hannah Miley won 400m medley silver and 200m medley and 200m breaststroke bronze.

ON THIS DAY ... SOCHI 2014

Zoe Gillings missed out on a place in the snowboard cross final after narrowly finishing fourth in her semi-final.

The 28-year-old was edged out by Italy's Michela Moiolo in a photo finish and ended the competition ninth overall, one place below her position at the Vancouver Games.

"I was hopeful [of making it through to the final] but I knew the Italian was right behind me and I just tried to ping it over the last jump and tuck in as much as I could," she said.

"The wait for the decision was agony. It didn't go my way, but that's boarder cross for you."

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