World Cup bronze medals for Olympic canoe sprint silver medallists Richard Hounslow and David Florence as well as shooter Amber Hill, while British swimmers toast a record-breaking World Championships.
- Belated birthday celebrations for David Florence after he finishes third alongside Richard Hounslow at World Cup 4
- Amber Hill puts aside unfortunate distraction to shoot her way to bronze in Azerbaijan
- Bill Furniss reflects on record-breaking performances for British swimmers after they finish World Championships with nine medals in total
- British number one Heather Watson joins fellow Brits in Rogers Cup after coming through qualification
Florence and Hounslow secure Worlds boost with World Cup bronze
Olympic silver medallists David Florence and Richard Hounslow showed they are on track going into next month’s World Championships after picking up a World Cup podium finish at La Seu d'Urgell in Spain.
Just 0.67 seconds separated the top three finishes in the men’s canoe double final, with France’s Gautier Klauss and Matthieu Peche taking top honours.
It was a welcome boost for the British pair who have struggled to make the World Cup podium in C2 this season despite an early season bronze at the European Championships.
“We would like to have won gold because we know we are capable of it, but we are pleased to have got a medal,” said Florence, who turned 33 over the weekend.
“It is really frustrating because we can't see an obvious reason why the C2 hasn't gone well in the World Cup until now, so we are just glad to be back where we want to be before Worlds.”
The World Championships will be held at Lee Valley White Water Centre from September 16-20.
Hill overcomes nose bleed to win World Cup bronze
Amber Hill admits she exceeded her own expectations after overcoming a nosebleed to pick up skeet shooting bronze at the World Cup in Gabala, Azerbaijan.
Hill shot a perfect 16 in the bronze medal match, despite earlier suffering a nosebleed, to beat Poland’s Aleksandra Jarmolinska.
Azerbaijan is fast becoming a happy hunting ground for the 17-year-old, who has admitted she is targeting a place at next year’s Rio Olympics, after she won gold at the inaugural European Games in Baku earlier this year.
“To come away with bronze was more than I could have asked for,” she said.
“To win two medals in a matter of a couple of months is an amazing feeling and it really feels that my hard work has paid off.
“I've got a great support team around me which is helping me get to that point.”
Furniss eyeing Rio after record swimming haul
Great Britain narrowly missed out on more medals in the final session of the World Championships but British Swimming head coach Bill Furniss insists their record haul in Kazan bodes well for the Olympic Games next year.
British swimmers picked up nine medals in total, five of which were gold, during the week in Russia – more than any other GB team in history.
The men’s 4x100m medley relay quartet almost made it a perfect ten on Sunday evening but missed out on a podium place by 0.17 seconds despite setting a British record of 3:30.67 in the final.
And Furniss believes the sheer volume of strong performances over the week means the future is bright, although the team cannot afford to become complacent.
“We’ve got the depth and another pleasing thing is the percentage of people on the team who have swum season’s bests at this meet,” Furniss told British Swimming.
“It’s a massive improvement on what we’ve done at previous Worlds or Olympics and that’s why we’ve been so successful.
“But we’ve got to move it on again. My message to the swimmers will be to have a short rest but you’ve got to be on it.” Read more here.
Watson reaches Rogers Cup main draw
Heather Watson produced a battling display to reach the main draw of the Rogers Cup in Toronto by seeing off Jarmila Gajdosova in three sets in qualifying.
Watson, who reached the third round at Wimbledon before agonisingly losing to world No.1 Serena Williams, eventually overcame her Australian opponent 6-1, 3-6, 6-2.
The British No.1 will now join a field including the likes of Williams and second seed Simona Halep.
There was less joy for James Ward however as he lost to Colombia’s Alejandro Falla to miss out on a spot in the main draw of the men’s event in Montreal.
Andy Murray will receive a first-round bye for the tournament, and will face Feliciano Lopez or Tommy Robredo in round two, but has also entered the men’s doubles event with India’s Leander Paes.
And if they beat first-round opponents Jeremy Chardy and Kevin Anderson they will face Jamie Murray and John Peers in round two – the first time the Murray brothers would have faced each other in a competitive game on the ATP tour.
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