Sport

Magnificent 7 you won't want to miss

A fully fit Usain Bolt should be too good in London, but will lightning strike twice?
A fully fit Usain Bolt should be too good in London, but will lightning strike twice? Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

THE Olympics provides the world with some of the most compelling stories and rivalries in sport. Talking points are plentiful and athletes abundant. But here are seven showdowns you won't want to miss during the London Games.

YOHAN BLAKE (JAMAICA) versus USAIN BOLT (JAMAICA)
Athletics: Men's 100m

Ask most people and it's not "if" Bolt will win three gold medals in London, but whether he can break his world records on the way. However, fellow Jamaican Yohan Blake may have a say in that, having claimed the 100m at the 2011 world championships after Bolt false-started to earn a disqualification. Since then there have been doubts about Bolt's fitness, with rumours of hamstring trouble getting some traction after Blake beat Bolt at the recent Jamaican trials in 9.75 seconds, the fourth fastest time in history. Asafa Powell wasn't far away at those trials either, while Americans Tyson Gay and Justin Gatlin have also put some recent good form on the board. A fully fit Bolt should be too good in London, but will lightning strike twice?

 

ANNA MEARES (AUSTRALIA) versus VICTORIA PENDLETON (GREAT BRITAIN)
Cycling: Women's track

It will be the Ashes on wheels, and you can be sure that the biggest rivalry on the track won't disappoint. Meares and Pendleton have long been the top two female sprinters in the world and their battle in London is going to be one of the highlights of the Games. Both are really competitive and never give an inch. Pendleton, the reigning Olympic champion, won bragging rights the last time they met after winning the world title in Melbourne earlier this year.

 

JAMES MAGNUSSEN (AUSTRALIA) versus CESAR CIELO (BRAZIL)
Swimming: Men's 100m freestyle

Australia's James Magnussen is the current world champion and has the fastest time (47.10) in a textile suit. Brazil's Cesar Cielo is the current world record holder, having stopped the clock at 46.91 when he won gold at the 2009 World Championships, but has struggled a little over the distance recently. But maybe Magnussen's rival will come from elsewhere - don't discount fellow Aussie James Roberts.

 

MICHAEL PHELPS (USA) versus RYAN LOCHTE (USA)
Swimming: Men's 400m individual medley / 200m individual medley

The world's two best swimmers go head-to-head in the sport's two multi-discipline events and both races will be incredible. A six-time World Swimmer of the Year, Phelps is the defending Olympic champion in both events, while "The Lochtenator" won both at the past two world championships after finishing with bronze behind Phelps in both in Beijing. After beating Phelps at the US trials Lochte said: "Once I was able to beat Michael, it gave me a motivation, an edge. I told myself, I can do this. Once I beat someone, they won't beat me again". Will this be the case in London?

 

SALLY PEARSON (AUSTRALIA) versus KELLIE WELLS (USA)
Athletics: Women's 100m hurdles

Pearson would have been filthy after losing to Wells in her final competitive run before the Olympics in the recent Diamond League meeting in London. Pearson, whose competitors refer to her as the 'angry white girl' looked even angrier after what was just her second defeat in two years and 34 races. A week before her defeat, the Gold Coaster had won the Paris Grand Prix in a time of 12.40secs, while Wells clocked 12.57 secs to win in London. The loss showed Pearson is only human, but she knows now that she'll need to be at her best if she wants revenge.

 

JORDYN WIEBER (USA) versus ALIYA MUSTAFINA (RUSSIA)
Gymnastics: Women's Individual All-Around

A classic post Cold War rivalry is expected to heat up as the USA and Russia battle it out for women's gymnastics supremacy. Mustafina was the all-around world champion in 2010, while Wieber claimed the title in 2011 after Mustafina gave the championships a miss to recover from knee surgery. While World Championships are important, everyone remembers the Olympic gold medallist and there is a very small window of time for these competitors to claim their chance for glory.

 

SHANE PERKINS (AUSTRALIA) versus CHRIS HOY (GREAT BRITAIN)
Cycling: Men's keirin

At 36, Scotland's Sir Chris Hoy is one of the legends of the sport of cycling. A four-time Olympic gold medallist, he became the first Briton to win three gold medals at a single Olympic Games since 1908 in Beijing and is the most successful Olympic male cyclist of all time. Standing in the way of another victory in the keirin is 2011 world champion, Australian Shane Perkins. They will also clash in the team sprint; Hoy as part of the reigning Olympic champions and Perkins as part of the Australian team that snatched the 2012 world title in Melbourne.

Topics:  anna meares james magnussen london olympics sally pearson usain bolt



Wonder Woman Kara runs for suicide awareness

Kara Sutherland just after she's hopped off the treadmill in her 24-hour treadmill marathon.

Kara's fundraiser brings tons of people to support suicide awareness

BACK-TO-BACK: McKimms clinch Grafton Cup naming rights for 2017

McKimms Real Estate celebrate winning the naming rights for the Grafton Cup for the second year in a row.

Family-owned real estate to be front and centre for July again.

NRRRL: Magpies on a mission for home fans

ON A MISSION: Captain- coach Dan Randall hopes to lead Lower Clarence Magpies to their first victory of the 2017 NRRRL season when they run out in front of their home fans against Evans Head Bombers at the Nest this Sunday.

Lower Clarence ready for another cracker at the Nest

Local Partners

Shot at the live shows slips through Sally's fingers

SUNSHINE Coast singer's dramatic elimination from The Voice nearly saw her form a duo with her battle round opponent.

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor split after 17 years

They were married in May 2000 and have two children, who they said will remain their priority.

Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor have called it a day

Why The Voice hasn't produced a star

Boy George responds to Brittania Clifford-Pugh's heart-warming message.

It's the industry, not the show, says Boy George

These actors hated their movies and didn’t mind admitting it

Channing Tatum and Marlon Wayans in a scene from GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra.

Every year, Hollywood blesses us with plenty of God awful movies.

Miranda Kerr and fiance hang up backyard tent for wedding

The decorators and caterers are arriving for the final preparations for the wedding of Miranda Kerr and Evan Spiegel. Pictures: Splash

Evan Spiegel and Miranda Kerr are set to marry today

Book review: Mia Freedman's book meets her critics head on

I appreciated Freedman's blunt honesty in the book

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

One of Maryborough's most historic homes is still for sale

FULL OF HISTORY: Trisha Moulds is owner of the historic Tinana state known as Rosehill. The beautiful home is currently for sale.

It has been the scene of both joy and tragedies over the years.

The face of the Sunshine Coast's overpriced rental crisis

Alyx Wilson had to rent a $385 unit in Currimundi because the market was too competitive for cheaper rental housing. She is now renting a room from friends who own a house in Currimundi, and says its much more affordable.

Young people feel the strain in competitive, expensive rental market

WATCH: Take a tour of a tradie's dream home

5a Bruce Hiskens Court, Norman Gardens, going for $720,000. INSET: Lea Taylor.

Huge block with potential for anything

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!