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≡ THE 5-RING CIRCUS ≡
1. Richardson 10.71 world lead, javelin shocker highlight USATF day one
2. “The Track Collective” forms to help the unsponsored
3. Powerful U.S. swim squad readies for Fukuoka Worlds
4. U.S. men win water polo bronze on re-run of last 4:24!
5. Paris 2024 economic impact from €5.3 to €10.7 billion
Sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson was the talk of day one of the USATF National Championships in Eugene, grabbing the world lead in the women’s 100 m in 10.71, moving her up to equal-sixth all-time. National titles were claimed by Woody Kincaid (men’s 10,000 m), Sam Mattis (discus), Elise Cranny (women’s 10,000 m), Tori Franklin (triple jump) and the surprising Maddie Harris in the women’s javelin. More athlete concerns in track & field, as four women distance runners have formed The Track Collective, selling T-shirts and taking donations to help unsponsored competitors. Meanwhile, Richardson says e-mails to an athletes-only meeting in Eugene were sent out to “start this union that we most definitely deserve.” USA Swimming will send a strong team to the World Aquatics Championships in Japan, with nine world event leaders on time and 34 top-three performers in the world for 2023, fully a third of the total worldwide. But the U.S. won’t match its 2022 performance. Amazing turn at the World Aquatics men’s Water Polo World Cup Super Final last weekend, as the U.S. lost to Hungary, 18-15, for the bronze medal, but then protested a play in the fourth quarter. The last 4:24 was re-played and the U.S. took the bronze with a 14-13 win! A new report on the impact of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games said it could be anywhere from €5.3 to €10.7 billion, or about $5.8 to $11.6 billion U.S. Is this really helpful?
● Panorama: Athletics (Rojas takes world women’s TJ lead) = Basketball (Brazil and Canada undefeated in FIBA women’s AmeriCup) = Cycling (3: Pogacar brilliant in Tour de France stage win; good audience for NBC’s Le Tour opener; van Vleuten wins against in Giro Donne) = Fencing (USA Fencing declaration text signed by Russians to compete at Summer Nationals) = Football (2: U.S. men and women in action this weekend; Univision beat FS1 10 out of 10 in Gold Cup viewers) = Hockey (Dutch sweep men’s and women’s FIH Nations League titles!) = Sport Climbing (IFSC Med chair resigns, as new wellness indicia coming) ●
Richardson 10.71 world lead, javelin shocker
highlight USATF day one
It didn’t take long for the 2023 USATF National Championships in Eugene to heat up, with Sha’Carri Richardson storming to a world-leading 10.71 in the first heat of the women’s 100 m.
Running from lane seven, Richardson started brilliantly, was barely aided by a 0.1 m/s tailwind and won by a huge 0.25 margin over Brittany Brown (10.96), the only other runner to break 11 seconds.
It’s a lifetime best by 0.01 for Richardson from 2021 and she now ranks equal-sixth in history with Jamaica’s Shericka Jackson.
That was the headline, but there were also multiple finals on Thursday:
● Men/10,000 m: A huge pack ran together through 8,000 m, with former BYU star Conner Mantz taking over and leading with four laps to go. The running then started, with 2022 Worlds fourth-placer Grant Fisher taking charge at 8,800 m and eight others still in contention. With two laps left, Fisher was leading defending champ Joe Klecker and 2021 Olympic Trials winner Woody Kincaid, with ex-Stanford star Sean McGorty coming up to challenge. The bell had Fisher, Klecker, Kincaid and McGorty all close, and then Kincaid unleashed his patented kick around the final turn to win in 28:23.01 with a 54.76 last lap. Klecker (28:24.50) and McGorty (28:24.96) both passed Fisher (28:25.61) on the run-in, with two-time Olympic 5,000 medalist Paul Chelimo finishing fifth in 28:29.34 and Mantz sixth, 0.02 back.
● Men/Discus: Sam Mattis won his second USATF title – also in 2019 – with his fifth-round throw of 65.93 (216-3) to edge NCAA champ Turner Washington (65.60 m/215-3).
● Women/10,000 m: With five laps to run, there were eight in contention, forming up behind Natosha Rogers and 2022 Nationals runner-up Alicia Monson, and Monson took the lead soon after. Elise Cranny, the 2021 Olympic Trials fourth-placer, came into contention with three laps left, and with 800 to go, these were going to be the medal winners. At the bell, it was Monson and Cranny, with Rogers having lost contact. Cranny made the best move, sailing home to win going away, 32:12.30 to 32:17.51 for Monson, with Rogers third at 32:22.77.
● Women/Triple Jump: Three-time U.S. Indoor champ Tori Franklin put the field on notice with a 14.44 m (47-4 1/2) seasonal best in round one and everyone had to chase. Keturah Orji, winner of the last six USATF national titles was second with her first-round jump of 14.32m (46-11 3/4), and then got closer in round five at 14.38 m (47-2 1/4).
Orji gave it a final push in round six and looked good, but the measurement came in at a just-short 14.43 m (47-4 1/4) and Franklin won her first outdoor national crown. Florida star Jasmine Moore, the NCAA champ, finished third at 14.19 m (46-6 3/4).
● Women/Javelin:/Updated/Former American Record holder and two-time Olympian Maggie Malone was in the lead and looked unbeatable, at 58.56 m (192-1) in round three. But Maddie Harris, 22, the fourth-place finisher in the NCAA for Nebraska, found the throw of her life in round five and reached 60.73 m (199-3) – a lifetime best by just more than six feet! – to stun everyone and take the national title. She also moves to no. 9 on the all-time U.S. list. Shocker.
Malone responded, improving to 58.79 m (192-10), but could do no more and finished second.
In the men’s 100 m heats, there was less drama, with 2019 World Champion Christian Coleman posting the only sub-10 mark at 9.95 (+0.5 m/s). Among those not advancing were Ronnie Baker (10.28), 2022 Worlds 400 m winner Michael Norman (10.31) and 2022 Worlds silver medalist, Marvin Bracy-Williams (11.14).
Arkansas’ Chris Bailey led the 400 m qualifiers with a lifetime best of 45.04, just ahead of Vernon Norwood (45.06). Rio 2016 bronze medalist Clayton Murphy led the men’s 800 m qualifying at 1:46.36, with NCAA champ Will Sumner winning heat three at 1:46.49.
Yared Nuguse, who ran 3:29.02 in Oslo three weeks ago, led the 1,500 m qualifying, with Washington’s NCAA champ Joe Waskom, 3:35.37 and 3:36.31 in heat one. Tokyo Olympian Mason Ferlic led the men’s Steeple qualifiers at 8:24.14.
Harrison Williams led the decathlon after five events, at 4,465, ahead of Iowa’s Austin West, who won the 100 m (10.52) and the 400 m (46.31). Georgia’s NCAA runner-up, Kyle Garland, was fourth at 4,353.
The women’s 400 m had Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone leading the qualifying at 49.79 from heat two, with collegiate record-holder Britton Wilson winning heat one in 50.08.
At 800 m, only Nia Akins broke two minutes in the heats, at 1:59.09. Former World Indoor Champion Ajee Wilson, who looked so distressed at the NYC Grand Prix, advanced comfortably in 2:00.32 in third in heat one.
Olympic and World 800 m champ Athing Mu qualified easily in heat one of the 1,500 m, in a lifetime best of 4:10.33, behind winner Addy Wiley (4:09.53). Defending champion Sinclaire Johnson won heat two at 4:07.84, ahead of Heather McLean, the fastest runs of the day. Emma Coburn, the 2017 World Champion, and Logan Jolly won the Steeple heats in 9:36.69 and 9:48.56.
In the heptathlon, 2022 Worlds bronze medalist Anna Hall got a lifetime best in the shot (14.03 m/46-0 1/2) and led the first day with 4,003 points, to 3,890 for Taliyah Brooks.
The meet continues Friday, with CNBC offering live coverage from 7-9 p.m. Pacific (10-midnight Eastern).
“The Track Collective” forms to help the unsponsored
Another new group has formed with the goal of assisting track & field athletes with questions: The Track Collective.
Founded by Rio 2016 Steeple Olympian Colleen Quigley, 2023 U.S. Indoor 1,500 m champ Nikki Hiltz, 2021 Big West 1,500 m runner-up Katie Camarena and 2021 NCAA Steeple semifinalist Emma Gee:
“The Collective has two main goals.
“The first goal is to empower the next generation of track & field athletes by providing a collective of resources and information that can help bridge the gap to professional running. We hope to be a support system for athletes as they work toward signing a professional contract.
“Our second goal is to support athletes beyond the limits of a typical professional running ‘team.’ Our coaches, sponsors, and training locations may be different, but we show up for each other’s causes and communities. We are a collective of athletes who assist each other no matter our individual setups.”
Their initial effort, at the 2022 USATF Nationals is to raise money for unsponsored athletes:
“Recognizing the financial burden of traveling to Eugene, Ore. for the National Championships, The Track Collective will be selling limited edition t-shirts throughout this week with proceeds going to support unsponsored athletes competing at the event as the organization’s first program. T-shirt sales will be done inperson in Eugene on the Northeast corner of 15th Ave and Agate St starting on Thursday, July 6th at 3pm and cost $25.
“Anyone who wishes to make a donation that would go directly to support developing unsponsored track and field athletes who are competing at the National Championships can do so from the homepage of The Track Collective website.”
Observed: Chatter about athlete “unions” in track & field goes back at least to the 1960s and possibly before. This continued into the professional era in the late 1970s and has been demanded by high-profile stars such as Carl Lewis and Edwin Moses in the 1980s and appeared to have some momentum recently with the formation of The Athletics Association, using the tagline, “We Are the Sport.”
It debuted with some fanfare in 2019, head by triple jump star Christian Taylor and former U.S. Steeple record holder Emma Coburn, in the wake of the elimination of the triple jump and steeplechase from the Diamond League program. Those events were soon returned and the last entry on its Web site is from 10 December 2021.
Now, sprint star Sha’Carri Richardson is planning an athletes-only meeting at the 2023 Nationals in Eugene, and after an appeal on Sunday, she posted a short video on Instagram on Wednesday (5th) that included:
“To everybody who signed up, I am so excited and glad you guys signed up. Please, please, please check out your e-mail so we can have the athletes-only meeting, and start this union that we most definitely deserve and we’ve earned.”
So, a meeting is scheduled. Others have tried and gotten nowhere, but there is a sense that there are more people interested in this subject this time. But that’s a long way from anything happening. But Richardson, for one, is upset.
She tweeted a note on top of a photo of competitive eater Joey Chestnut receiving $10,000 for winning his 16th Nathan’s Famous International Hot Dog Eating Contest on the Fourth of July:
“USATF Championship this weekend first place only gets $8,000. What would y’all do if decide to boycott because the disrespect is bold now. Then see us at meets and try to smile in our faces when half of the athletes you speak to are the same people y’all are hurting!!”
Powerful U.S. swim squad readies for Fukuoka Worlds
As usual, the USA Swimming National Championships in Indianapolis produced plenty of fireworks and a thrilling selection event for the 2023 World Aquatics Championships. Looking at the 2023 world lists, American performers now on top of the world (on time) include:
● Men/800 m Free: 7:40.34, Bobby Finke
● Men/50 m Back: 24.10, Justin Ress
● Men/200 m Back: 1:55.03, Ryan Murphy
● Women/800 m Free: 8:07.07, Katie Ledecky
● Women/1,500 m Free: 15:28.64, Katie Ledecky
● Women/50 m Back: 27.13, Katharine Berkoff
● Women/100 m Breast: 1:04.75, Lilly King
● Women/100 m Fly: 56.18, Torri Huske
● Women/200 m Fly: 2:03.87, Regan Smith
Moreover, looking at the top three on the 2023 year lists, the U.S. has 12 men and 22 women listed, or a third of the total across the 34 individual events for men and women combined:
● Free: 50 m-1, 800 m-1
● Back: 50 m-2, 100 m-2, 200 m-1
● Breast: 100-1
● Fly: 50 m-1, 100 m-1
● Medley: 200 m-1, 400 m-1
● Free: 50 m-1, 400 m-1, 800 m-1, 1,500 m-1
● Back: 100 m-2, 200 m-2, 50 m-2
● Breast: 50 m-1, 100 m-2, 200 m-2
● Fly: 50 m-1, 100 m-3, 200 m-1
● Medley: 200 m-1, 400 m-1
Now, it is true that some of these stars will not be going to Fukuoka for the Worlds; much has been made in the swimming media about sprint star Michael Andrew, who won the men’s 50 m Fly, being left off of the team under USA Swimming selection procedures which prioritize relay swimmers over performers in non-Olympic events – he missed winning the 50 m Free by 0.01 – within the 26-swimmer quota allowed for each team.
Nevertheless, there are multiple athletes swimming in multiple individual events:
● Jack Alexy: 50-100 m Free
● Nic Fink: 50-100 m Breast
● Bobby Finke: 800-1,500 m Free
● Carson Foster: 200 m Fly, 200-400 m Medley
● Thomas Heilman: 100-200 m Fly
● Josh Matheny: 100-200 m Breast
● Ryan Murphy: 100-200 m Back
● Katharine Berkoff: 50-100 m Back
● Kate Douglass: 100 m Free-200 m Breast-200 m Medley
● Katie Grimes: 1,500 m Free, 400 m Medley
● Lilly King: 50-100-200 m Breast
● Katie Ledecky: 400-800-1,500 m Free
● Bella Sims: 200-400 m Free
● Regan Smith: 100-200 m Back, 200 m Fly
● Alex Walsh: 200-400 m Medley
● Gretchen Walsh: 50 m Free, 50-100 m Fly
● Abbey Weitzeil: 50-100 m Free
Grimes has the heaviest workload in Fukuoka, as she will also be swimming the open-water 5 km and 10 km races, prior to her two events in the pool. Ledecky qualified to swim the 200 m Free, but gave it up to concentrate on her other events; she is certainly a candidate for the 4×200 m Free Relay.
Ledecky and Chase Kalisz, the Tokyo Olympic 400 m Medley winner, both qualified for their sixth World Championships team (2013-15-17-19-22-23), joining Nathan Adrian, Elizabeth Beisel, Natalie Coughlin, Ryan Lochte and Michael Phelps as the only U.S. swimmers to make it to six Worlds.
The U.S. was nothing short of sensational at the 2022 Worlds in Budapest, winning 45 medals (17-12-16) ahead of Australia (17: 6-9-2) and Canada (11: 3-4-4). With multiple swimmers in those countries and others opting for the Commonwealth Games or European Championships, the U.S. will try to match its 2019 performance of 27 medals (14-8-5), leading the medal table over Australia (19: 5-9-5) and Russia (16: 3-7-6). The Russian situation is a continuing question mark, as World Aquatics will consider their situation soon, but likely not in time for any entries in Fukuoka.
The USA Swimming nationals drew respectable audience on NBC for highlight shows last week on Saturday and Sunday. Saturday’s show had average viewership of 502,000 starting at 1 p.m. Eastern. On Sunday, 761,000 tuned in at noon Eastern time.
U.S. men win water polo bronze on re-run of last 4:24!
This is unbelievable. Although the World Aquatics men’s Water Polo World Cup Super Final scoreboard showed that Hungary defeated the U.S., 18-15, in a shoot-out for the bronze medal in Los Angeles last Sunday (2nd) … it didn’t turn out that way.
“[A]n appeal was registered concerned a possession in the fourth quarter.
“At 4:24 during the fourth quarter of the regulation period, Team USA drew an exclusion and a subsequent penalty shot. Hungary blocked the penalty shot and the player from the exclusion corner was waived in. The teams were then ‘even’, even though there was :07 left for the player in the exclusion. USA appealed; it was deemed a ‘correctable error’ and determined to be replayed from the spot of the error.
“It was determined the match would be replayed following the conclusion of the gold medal match, which Spain won over Italy 10-4.”
Back into the pool, with the U.S. down by 13-12, Max Irving scored on the re-play of the penalty shot to even the score, and the teams battled inconclusively for almost four minutes, with U.S. keeper Adrian Weinberg making two key saves.
An American power play produced nothing, but Ben Hallock scored with 0:40 on the clock for a 14-13 lead. A Hungarian power play was wasted and the U.S. earned the bronze medal, 14-13. Irving scored four goals and assisted on four others.
It is the first medal for the U.S. men in this tournament since 1997, breaking a medal-less streak that appeared to reach a seventh tournament in a row.
Hall of Fame Yankee catcher turned Mets manager Yogi Berra was right: “It ain’t over till it’s over,” or whatever he actually said.
Paris 2024 economic impact from €5.3 to €10.7 billion
The latest in a stack of estimates of the economic impact of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games came on Wednesday (5th), with a report from the National Assembly seen by Agence France Presse.
The study, from the University of Limoges Center for Sports Law and Economics, estimated a wide range of impact, from €5.3 billion (~$5.77 billion U.S.) on the low end to €10.7 billion (~$11.64 billion U.S.) on the high side. An estimate from the bid phase – also from the University of Limoges – suggested a possible impact €10.7 billion.
These effects are only for the Ile-de-France region, which includes Paris, and does not include the impact of the competitions elsewhere in the country.
The tourism impact is expected to be significant, accounting for 36% of the impact from the Olympic Games and 18% from the Paralympics. The study also noted the impact of construction, with the government’s Solideo construction company having let €663 million (~$721.3 million U.S.) in contracts thus far.
≡ PANORAMA ≡
● Athletics ● Another world lead, this time in the women’s triple jump as world-record holder Yulimar Rojas (VEN) won the Central American and Caribbean Games at 15.16 m (49-9), the first woman past 15 m this season.
● Basketball ● The 17th FIBA women’s AmeriCup in Leon (MEX) has moved into the elimination stage, with Brazil and Canada the group-stage winners and the U.S. women facing questions.
Brazil won Group A with a 4-0 record, beating the two-time defending champion U.S., 67-54, thanks to a 35-25 lead at halftime. With the WNBA in mid-season, the U.S. team is composed strictly of college players. Canada won Group B, also at 4-0.
In the 7 July quarterfinals, Brazil will face Mexico (Group B: 1-3), and Puerto Rico (B: 3-1) will play Venezuela (A: 1-3), with the winners advancing to the semis on the 8th. Canada will face Argentina (A: 1-3) and the U.S. will play Colombia (B: 2-2). The championship match comes Sunday (9th).
● Cycling ● A brilliant final attack by two-time defending champion Tadej Pogacar (SLO) jumbled the 110th Tour de France on Thursday and put the pre-race favorites in first and second place.
After his stirring win in Stage 5, Australia’s Jai Hindley started the day in the lead by 0:47 over defending champ Jonas Vingegaard (DEN). But Thursday’s 144.5 km stage was a three-climb monster in the French Pyrenees, with the 1,485 m Col de Aspin in the first half, followed by a full descent and then the 2,112 m Col de Tourmalet. The race ended on a 15 km climb to Cauterets.
While a group of five riders crested the Tourmalet in front, Vingegaard and Pogacar were dueling behind them. But there were eight together heading toward the final climb and with 4 km left it was only Vingegaard, Pogacar and Michal Kwiatkowski (POL). The Pole was dropped with 3.6 km left and then Pogacar attached with 2.8 km left and rode solo to the line in 3:54:27, with Vingegaard 24 seconds back and Norway’s Tobias Johannessen some 1:22 back. Hindley was sixth, but 2:39 behind the winner.
That means Vingegaard is now the race leader, just 25 seconds up on Pogacar with Hindley dropping to third (+1:34).
Friday’s stage to Limoges is for the sprinters, with a stiffer test on Saturday, with a serious finishing climb to the Puy de Dome. Sunday is hilly, but with the last third of the race mostly downhill, before Monday’s first rest day.
NBC is showing almost nothing of the Tour de France, but its coverage of the opening day drew a good audience of 768,000 on Saturday, 1 July. This was especially impressive considering its 8 a.m. Eastern time slot!
Dutch star Annemiek van Vleuten continued to dominate the Giro d’Italia Internazionale Feminile on her way to a fourth career win and two in a row.
After winning Stage 6 on Wednesday, she added another victory in Stage 7, a hilly, 109.1 km route that ended in Alassio. She broke away in the final 1.7 km to beat Juliette Labous (FRA: +0:13) and Gaia Realini (ITA: +0:20).
With two stages left, van Vleuten now has a 3:56 lead on Labous, 4:25 on Realini and 5:35 on American Veronica Ewers, who dropped from second to fourth.
● Fencing ● Further to our Thursday post concerning the three Russian entries into the USA Fencing Summer National Championships in Phoenix, federation chief executive Phil Andrews provided the next of the declaration that Konstantin Lokhanov (sabre) and Sergey Bida (epee) were required to sign:
“I, [name], a citizen of [country], publicly renounce the invasion of Ukraine and the participation in official activities of USA Fencing by Russian and Belarussian nationals who have not renounced support for the war; and I will support USA Fencing’s official position on the participation of citizens of those nations in activities under the auspices of the International Fencing Federation.”
Bida’s wife, Violetta Khrapina Bida (epee), was entered, but did not compete and was therefore not obligated to sign the declaration. Both Bida and Lokhanov were identified as “FIE” athletes.
● Football ● The U.S. national teams will be busy this weekend, with the men facing Canada in the quarterfinals of the CONCACAF Gold Cup in Cincinnati on Sunday, and the semifinals to be played on the 12th.
The U.S. women will play a final friendly before leaving for the FIFA Women’s World Cup, also on Sunday, against Wales in San Jose, California. The Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand begins on 20 July.
The CONCACAF Gold Cup continued to draw good viewership on Univision and on the Televisa channel TUDN, consistently beating the English-language coverage on Fox:
● 26 June: 617,000 on UniMas for Costa Rica-Panama
● 26 June: 226,000 on TUDN for Costa Rica-Panama
● 26 June: 385,000 on UniMas for El Salvador-Martinique
● 27 June: 784,000 on UniMas for Guatemala-Cuba
● 27 June: 276,000 on TUDN for Guatemala-Cuba
● 27 June: 188,000 on FS1 for Guatemala-Cuba
● 27 June: 391,000 on UniMas for Canada-Guadeloupe
● 27 June: 170,000 on FS1 for Canada-Guadeloupe
● 28 June: 774,000 on UniMas for U.S.-St. Kitts & Nevis
● 28 June: 608,000 on FS1 For U.S.-St. Kitts & Nevis
● 28 June: 269,000 on TUDN for U.S.-St. Kitts & Nevis
● 28 June: 495,000 on UniMas for Jamaica-Trinidad & Tobago
● 28 June: 178,000 on FS1 for Jamaica-Trinidad & Tobago
● 29 June: 1.973 million on Univision for Mexico-Haiti
● 29 June: 554,000 on TUDN for Mexico-Haiti
● 29 June: 266,00 on FS1 for Mexico-Haiti
● 29 June: 1.187 million on Univision for Qatar-Honduras
● 29 June: 309,000 on TUDN for Qatar-Honduras
● 29 June: 171,000 on FS1 for Qatar-Honduras
● 30 June: 584,000 on UniMas for El Salvador-Costa Rica
● 30 June: 274,000 on FS1 for El Salvador-Costa Rica
● 30 June: 338,000 on UniMas for Panama-Martinique
● 1 July: 1.136 million on Univision for Guatemala-Canada
● 1 July: 238,000 on TUDN for for Guatemala-Canada
● 1 July: 224,000 on FS1 for Guatemala-Canada
● 1 July: 583,000 on Univision for Cuba-Guadeloupe
● 2 July: 2.190 million on Univision for Mexico-Qatar
● 2 July: 590,000 on TUDN for Mexico-Qatar
● 2 July: 391,000 on FS1 for Mexico-Qatar
● 2 July: 1.211 million on Univision for U.S.-Trinidad & Tobago
● 2 July: 1.088 million on FOX for U.S.-Trinidad & Tobago
● 2 July: 291,000 on TUDN for U.S.-Trinidad & Tobago
● 2 July: 397,000 on Univision for Honduras-Haiti
In all 10 matches that were broadcast by both Univision or UniMas and FS1, the Spanish-language audience was larger, even for games involving the U.S. team.
● Hockey ● An impressive sweep for the Dutch men and women in the just-completed FIH Pro League, finishing nine months of national-team match-ups.
The men’s 16-match schedule saw the defending champion Netherlands win its last five games to move up and eventually take the seasonal title with 35 points with an 11-5 record. Great Britain was also 11-5, but where the Dutch had 10 wins and a shoot-out win, plus three shoot-out loses, the British won only eight matches outright and had three shoot-out wins and two shoot-put losses for 32. Belgium was third (30) with India (30) fourth.
The Dutch had to get at least a point their final match against Belgium – on Antwerp on Tuesday – to win the title and won in style, leading 3-1 at half on the way to a 4-2 victory.
India’s Harmanpreet Singh was the top scorer with 18 goals. By finishing third, Belgium is the only team to win a medal in all four editions of the men’s Pro League.
The Dutch women finished second to Argentina for the 2021-22 season after winning the first two editions of the Women’s Pro League. This time, they left no doubt, piling up 46 points to 32 for Argentina and 31 for Australia. The U.S. finished ninth (3-13 for seven points) and were relegated to the Nations Cup.
The Netherlands finished 15-1, with only a shoot-out loss to Australia on 11 June to mar a perfect season. The Dutch had the top scorer in Yibbi Jansen (14) and the next three as well, as Pien Dicke, Joosje Burg and Frederique Matia all scored eight. All together, the Dutch scored 62 goals and gave up only 17.
Second-place Argentina had a 10-6 mark with two shoot-out losses for 32 points, ahead of Australia (31) and Belgium (30).
● Sport Climbing ● The International Federation of Sport Climbing posted a notice on Thursday, accepting the resignations of Medical and Antidoping Commission Chair Eugen Burtscher (AUT) and member Volker Schoeffl (GER), apparently dealing with changes in the IFSC “well-being.” According to the notice:
“[A]s announced in January this year, from 2024 the IFSC will adopt a holistic approach not based solely on BMI [body-mass-index] parameters, which alone are not sufficient to determine critical health condition.
“The IFSC maintains that athletes’ health is of primary importance and therefore the biopsychosocial conditions around athletes must be taken into account in order to prevent and treat the root causes of Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport (RED-S). In this context, the approach adopted until 2022 – based solely on BMI – does not answer the expectations of the IFSC in promoting a healthy sport. Furthermore, the Board has been informed of initiatives not in line with its approved protocols.”
The IFSC itself is now taking over the screening process, not its Medical & Antidoping Commission, and following up on its January 2023 directive:
“These measures [issued in March 2023] will be implemented in 2024, in addition to what has already been in place in 2021 and 2022, and, just like the current measures, they may result in the suspension of an athlete’s license.”
For our updated, 651-event International Sports Calendar (no. 2) for 2023 and beyond, by date and by sport, click here!