Switzerland won the 37th edition of the World Women’s Curling Championship at Sapporo in Japan for their third crown in four years.
The defending champions met heavyweights Canada in the final for a repeat of last year’s showpiece match.
Canada were looking to extend their record gold-medal tally to 16.
It was third meeting of these two teams at this year’s Championship, with Switzerland having won both previous match-ups – in the round robin and the playoffs.
The start of the final didn’t give much hope of reversing the fortunes of Jennifer Jones’ Canada who fell behind 4-0 after 6 ends.
Swiss skip Alina Pätz and her team had complete control of the tie and despite Canada scoring two points in the seventh and one more in the ninth – Patz held the hammer – or the final stone – in the last end to see out of a 5-3 victory.
Russia thrashed Scotland 13-4 to win the bronze medal for the second straight year.
It meant the podium was identical to that of last year’s championships as a beaming Switzerland team held aloft their third world trophy from the past four years and fifth in total.
After Qatar the second Fencing Grand Prix of the season in the epee discipline took place at Budapest in Hungary.
The event gathered over 500 of the world’s best but there could only be one winner from each of the men’s and ladies’ draw.
Following a stunning comeback to win his semi-final earlier in the day 44-year-old Cuban-born Frenchman Iván Trevejo appeared spent when facing Nikolai Novosjolov in the final.
Novosjolov, a two times world champion from Estonia, breezed through the encounter highlighting the nine years difference in age between the pair.
He was rarely threatened and comfortably saw out a 15-6 victory to strike gold.
In the ladies’ final Romania’s Ana Maria Branza and Shin A Lam of South Korea could hardly get on the scoreboard.
After regulation time the score was 4-4, but Shin came to life in extra time adding another five points to win through 9-5 for her first success of the season.
The next epee Grand Prix is in Rio de Janeiro staring the 22 May.
The XCAT World Series is becoming more and more popular as the seasons roar past.
With twin V6 engines these powerboats are capable of reaching speeds of 120mph – it’s formula one on water.
After the Fujairah opener the 2015 World Series stayed in the United Arab Emirates for the second stop in Dubai.
Following a poor start to the season, last year’s Series champions XDubai had something to prove on their second-straight home waters race.
Pilots Arif Al Zaffain and Nadir bin Hendi strategically decided to complete their obligatory long lap immediately leaving the rest to power out in front.
But they steadily made their way through the field to catch up on race leaders T-Bone Station and Fujairah winners Abu Dhabi.
On the penultimate lap XDubai manoeuvered their way into the lead and stayed their to cross the line for victory with Abu Dhabi second.
Abu Dhabi remain at the top of the general standings ahead round three in Europe in May.
Looking to unify sport
Marius Vizer is a man on a mission – a mission to increase visibility, exposure and recognition for all sports under his umbrella.
Recently in Moscow we caught up with the president of SportAccord – the association of all Olympic and non-Olympic sports federations – to find out just a little bit more about him and his ambitions.
Vizer practiced Judo from a young age and went on to become a succesful coach.
The Romanian slowly but surely then turned his attentions to rising through the Judo federation ranks.
He was President of his National Federation, then President of Continental Union and Vice President of International Federation before being elected President of the International Judo Federation in 2007.
In 2013 Vizer was elected for a two-year term as President of SportAccord, succeeding Hein Verbruggen.
‘‘Sport is my life, I am totally dedicated. I can say today that this is the definition of my life’‘ said Vizer.
Of his goals as SportAccord president Vizer says: “Everything that I propose is just a solution to how to generate more money for the sport, more exposure, more credibility and attraction for some sports and to challenge young people and new generations to practise sport.
‘‘Everybody believes that the Olympic Games and the Olympic movement is one of the most significant value but does that mean that at the same time it has to be like a religion of sport because nobody can have or use a monopoly on sport.
‘‘Sport is a unity of all sports organisations and a family,’‘ said Vizer, who during the SportAccord Convention World Sport and Business Summit in Sochi from April 19-24, is set to be elected for a further four-year term – as he stands unopposed.
Return to the T
Born out of the game Rackets, Squash was invented at Harrow School in England around 1830.
Pupils discovered that a punctured ball, which “squashed” on impact with the wall, required a greater variety of shots and skill to hit.
Today the sport is played by over 20 million people world-wide.
If you want to add yourself to that number here’s a few basic rules to get you started.
Before you begin playing warm yourself up and the ball.
Also check which ball to use according to your level.
During play, the ball can hit anywhere below the top line, or outline, and above the bottom line which is also called the tin.
When serving, one foot must be inside the box, the ball must then hit the main wall between the outline and the service line and land in the opposite quarter.
After every shot try to get back to the ‘T-zone’ that will give you the best position to cover the next shot.
After playing a shot you need to get out of the way of your opponent.
If you try and fail it’s a ‘let’ and the point is replayed, if you don’t try to move out of the way your opponent wins the point.
A game is up to 11, but you must win by two points. A match is usually the best of five games.
We finish this week’s Sports United with some stunning action from Istanbul where the 50th running of the European Karate Championships recently took place. (see clip above)