Adele Norris brings you the week’s news in women’s sport
ROAD TO SOCHI – SKELETON
Lizzy Yarnold and Shelley Rudman showed their opponents what Team GB is capable of at Sochi next month as they both stood on the women’s skeleton World Cup podium together in St Moritz
Yarnold headed to the competition as World Cup leader with three wins, a second and a third from this season five races.
Rudman arrived in third place overall, having finished fourth in the opening two rounds in Calgary and Park City.
However Yarnold’s fierce competitor American Noelle Pikus-Pace who has been chasing her on the leader board this season beat both the women to first place in Switzerland.
Yarnold took silver while Rudman finally broke into the top three and took bronze after a storming second run which produced a track record.
Pikus-Pace took a new track record. She won by 0.40 ahead of Yarnold.
Team GB’s Rose McGrandle’s hopes of securing the nation a third quota place for the Sochi Olympic Winter Games were dented as she placed 23rd, not qualifying for a second run.
Paula Walker claimed her third eighth-place finish of the two-woman bobsleigh World Cup season in St Moritz ahead of Sochi
Walker finished in the top 13 on all five races prior to arriving in St Moritz.
Pushed by Rebekah Wilson, Walker steered Britain’s No.1 sled to eighth in 2:17.38 minutes.
She was 0.42 seconds behind Olympic champion Kaillie Humphries who started tenth and finish first.
Walker was seventh fastest in run one and sixth quickest in run two which equalled the best finish of the season as she recorded in both races at the Park City double header.
England’s women take a full six points from the opening match of the Women’s Ashes Series by claiming victory in the Test by 61 runs.
Charlotte Edwards, leading the team in all three formats, chose to bat first at the Waca in Perth.
On day one of the Women’s Ashes Test in Perth Australia closed on nine for two in reply to England’s 201.
By day two England were feeling frustrated with 18/3 leading by just 12 runs. Australia earlier recovered from 37/5 to make 207.
But finally a win reducing Australia to 57-5 after setting the hosts 185 on the third day.
It all ended with the Women showing the nation and the men how it is done! A Test match win by 61 runs.
‘It’s an unbelievable feeling,’ Edwards told ecb.co.uk.
‘I’m delighted. It’s been a really long four days, it’s been up and down, we’ve fought throughout and that’s the fight we’ve got within this team. To pull something off like that is absolutely fantastic. It’s one of my sweetest victories.’
Edwards praised Shrubsole for her finish with seven wickets in the match as well as celebrating the efforts of debutants Kate Cross and Natalie Sciver.
You can read more about the Test here.
Husband and wife team Chris and Gabby Adcock scored England’s first win of 2014 with a victory in their opening match at the Victor Korea Open in Seoul last week.
The mixed doubles pair rank number five in the world after a successful 2013 when they won the Yonex Sunrise Hong Kong Open title in November.
The Adcocks only trailed once, at 4-3 down in the opening game.
But the quarter finals turned sour for the couple when they lost their mixed doubles. The third seeds suffered a surprise 21-16 21-16 defeat by Yun Lung Chan and Ying Suet Tse, the Hong Kong pair they had defeated by an almost identical scoreline in the Victor China Open in November in their only previous meeting.
Chris Langridge and Heather Olver went out of the mixed doubles, losing 21-13 21-19 against Koreans Hye In Choi and Ji Wook Kang.
In the women’s doubles, Olver and Kate Robertshaw lost out to Indonesia’s Suci Rizky Andini and Tiara Rosalia Nuraidah 21-17, 21-15.
Adcock and Lauren Smith fell to Korea’s Kyung Eun Jung and Seung Chan Shin, 21-19 21-19.
AND SOME OFF PITCH WINS…
Ennis-Hill is used to months of preparation for a single event, but this time the early morning starts won’t be for training as the Olympic Champion begins nine months of pregnancy
The 27-year-old gold medallist from London 2012 revealed she and husband Andy are expecting their first child this year.
The couple were married last May.
It means Ennis-Hill will miss the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
She skipped the competition four years ago in Delhi to concentrate on the European Championships and winning bronze in Melbourne in 2006.
None the less she insists she is fully committed to defending her Olympic heptathlon title.
‘My plans for 2014 have been completely turned upside down,’ she said.
‘But having had a couple of weeks to think about things from a career point of view I am 100 per cent set on returning to full time athletics once our baby is born and go for a second gold medal at the Rio Olympics in 2016 – that challenge really excites me.’
The golden girl tweeted: ‘We’re overwhelmed with all the lovely messages! So thank you all so much! We couldn’t be happier. It’s a very exciting time.’
Laura Tomlinson, Olympic dressage team gold and individual bronze, has also announced she is expecting
Tomlinson with Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin won dressage team gold at London 2012 where she also took individual bronze aboard Mistral Hojris.
A statement on her Facebook page read: ‘Laura and Mark are delighted to announce that they are expecting their first baby in July. Laura is feeling well and will continue to ride and compete for as long as she feels comfortable.’
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