Monday 27 March 2017

In brief: Injury wrecks Bolt's season

Athletics

Usain Bolt has brought his 2010 season to an early close to avoid risking a serious injury that could hamper the defence of his world titles in Daegu, South Korea, next year.

The Jamaican triple Olympic champion was diagnosed with a tightness in his lower back and has followed medical advice by pulling out of the IAAF Diamond League meetings in Zurich and Brussels.

Meanwhile, former world 400m champion Antonio Pettigrew has been found dead, his University of North Carolina employers said in a statement yesterday.

The sprinter also won a 4x400m gold at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, but the relay team, including Michael Johnson, were stripped of their medals after Pettigrew admitted at the trial of banned coach Trevor Graham that he had used performance-enhancing drugs from 1997 to 2003.

Sailing

With winds gusting close to gale force, Irish Olympic contenders delivered a string of top results at the London 2012 Olympic venue at the Sail for Gold Regatta in Weymouth, including two race wins.

Annalise Murphy won last night's fourth race in the women's Laser Radial class, ably proving her potential, despite the testing conditions.

The Dun Laoghaire single-hander surged ahead in the gusting winds and bettered an earlier second place in her 45-boat fleet after she had led that race and came close to winning.

And the weather didn't stop Ireland's Peter O'Leary, with substitute crew Frithjof Kleen, from leading the Star class' single race of the day.

Rugby

NEW Springbok duo Johann Muller and Pedrie Wannenburg will feature for Ulster in their pre-season friendly against Bath on Friday night, but the province's other high-profile South African signing, Ruan Pienaar, will miss out through injury.

In the absence of Rory Best and Chris Henry, lock Muller will skipper the side on his return to action following five months out after breaking his arm, while Wannenburg will line out in the back row.

Coach Brian McLaughlin is without a host of stars. Stephen Ferris (cheekbone), Andrew Trimble (finger), Best (leg), Simon Danielli (shoulder) and Bryn Cunningham (knee) all miss out, along with Ireland summer tourists Dan Tuohy, Paddy Wallace, Tom Court and Henry. Prop BJ Botha is currently involved in the Tri Nations Championship.

squad in factfile

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