Tuesday, July 31, 2012


LONDON - Fencer Yana Shemyakina of Ukraine beat defending champion Britta Heidemann of Germany 9-8 to win the Olympic gold medal in women's individual epee Monday.

The event was overshadowed by an hour-long delay following an appeal by the South Korean team after Heidemann's 6-5 victory over Shin A-lam in the semifinals.

South Korean officials argued the match was already over when Heidemann scored the winning point in the last second, but the jury finally upheld its decision.

Top-seeded Sun Yujie of China won bronze after beating Shin 15-11.


Ruta Meilutyte

LONDON - Fifteen-year-old Ruta Meilutyte of Lithuania won the 100-meter breaststroke at the London Olympics on Monday.

Meilutyte finished in 1 minute, 5.47 seconds to hold off a late charge from world champion Rebecca Soni of the United States, who touched second in 1:05.55.

Satomi Suzuki of Japan finished in 1:06.46 to take bronze.

Defending champion Leisel Jones of Australia was fifth.



The changing of the guard at the top of British women’s tennis is all but complete.

While Elena Baltacha lost to Ana Ivanovic in what could prove to be the last singles match of her career, Laura Robson and Heather Watson, the two young guns firing their way up the world rankings, both won their first-round contests in emphatic style here in the Olympic tournament today.

Robson recorded a 7-6, 6-4 victory over the Czech Republic’s Lucie Safarova, who at No 23 in the world is the highest-ranked opponent the 2008 junior Wimbledon champion has ever beaten, to earn a second-round meeting with Maria Sharapova.

Watson, who at No 69 in the world rankings is already the British No 1, beat the world No 63, Spain’s Silvia Soler Espinosa, 6-2 6-2 and now faces Maria Kirilenko. With Baltacha and Anne Keothavong out of the singles tournament, Watson and Robson join Andy Murray as the three home players through to the second round.

After barely a quarter of an hour Robson was leading 5-1, but what was even more impressive was the way the 18-year-old steadied her nerves after Safarova had recovered to level at 5-5. Robson went on to win the tie-break 7-4, broke to lead 5-4 in the second set and served out for victory after saving three break points with unreturned serves.

Robson, who has regularly demonstrated how much she loves the big occasion, relished the support of the boisterous crowd, who sang an impromptu version of the national anthem during the warm-up. “You definitely wouldn't have that at Wimbledon, but it was very funny,” she said. “After every point they were pumping me up. In general they were just a lot louder than what you get used to at Wimbledon. This is more of a US Open‑type atmosphere.”

Watson, who needed just 69 minutes to win her match, is also relishing the chance to take part in the Olympics, her only regret being that after spending some time in the athletes’ village last week the British team have relocated to the Wimbledon area.

“The first few days we were there, I had so much fun,” Watson said. “I love that sort of stuff, meeting the other athletes. I just love talking to them about their sport, the things they have to do. I'm pretty good at just talking to random people, meeting people I've never seen or don't know before. I made a few new friends.”

Watson, a bubbly personality who barely seems to keep a smile off her face away from the court, said she had spoken to Roger Federer yesterday morning. “That was cool – he was playing cards,” she said. “I just said: ‘Are you winning?’ Then he said: ‘Of course’.”

Baltacha was beaten 6-4, 7-6 by Ivanovic, the world No 12, in a match that turned on just a few crucial points. The 28-year-old Briton is set to have ankle surgery next month which will keep her off the court for at least six months. “I would like to come back but if I find the home comforts are a little bit too important and I don’t want to get on another plane then I’ll retire,” she said.

Federer beat Julien Benneteau 6-2, 6-2, while Lleyton Hewitt became the only Australian to win a singles match here when he beat Sergiy Stakhovsky 6-3, 4-6, 6-3. Sam Stosur, who recorded the only singles victory by an Australian at the recent Wimbledon Championships, and Bernard Tomic, losing his seventh match in a row, both went out in the first round.

Andy Roddick continued his improvement after an injury-troubled year by beating Slovakia’s Martin Klizan 7-5, 6-4 and Richard Gasquet, a potential third-round opponent for Murray, eased to a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Robin Haase, of the Netherlands.


Picci and Team Italy


Missy Franklin

Missy Franklin

Missy Franklin

Federica Pellegrini, Missy Franklin and Allison Schmitt by Beth Harris, AP

LONDON - Federica Pellegrini qualified fastest in the 200-meter freestyle preliminaries at the Olympics, keeping the Italian on course to defend her Olympic title.

Pellegrini touched in 1 minute, 57.16 seconds on Monday in the third of five heats, with American teenager Missy Franklin swimming in the lane next to her. But the other American, Allison Schmitt, had the second-quickest time of 1:57.33 in advancing to the evening semifinals on the third day of swimming competition.

Franklin was third best in 1:57.62.


Row Erupts

A diplomatic row has broken out after an American coach described the performance of a Chinese swimmer as suspicious and disturbing.

Ye Shiwen, 16, has denied doping and says her results come from hard work and training.

She smashed a world record in Saturday's women's 400 metre medley - swimming the final 50 metres of the race faster than the men's champion, Ryan Lochte.

John Leonard, the executive director of the World Swimming Coaches Association, told the Guardian: "We want to be very careful about calling it doping.

"The one thing I will say is that history in our sport will tell you that every time we see something, and I will put quotation marks around this, 'unbelievable', history shows us that it turns out later on there was doping involved.

"That last 100m was reminiscent of some old East German swimmers, for people who have been around a while. It was reminiscent of 400m individual medley by a young Irish woman in Atlanta."

That was a reference to Irish swimmer Michelle Smith who was banned for four years in 1998, two years after Atlanta, after testing positive for androstenedione.

Leonard said: "She looks like superwoman. Any time someone has looked like superwoman in the history of our sport they have later been found guilty of doping".

Ye Shiwen took five seconds off her personal best and more than a second off the world record in the 400m individual medley.

Her swim was described as "insanely fast" by previous world record holder Steph Rice.

Ye herself insists the team have nothing to hide, saying: "The Chinese team keep very firmly to the anti-doping policies, so there is absolutely no problem."

IOC medical commission chairman Arne Ljungqvist, a veteran anti-doping competitor, did not express any concerns when asked if he had any suspicions regarding the swimmers in London.

Ljungqvist said: "I am pretty experienced in this matter, as you know, and have been at the Games since a long time and within anti doping for 40 years.

"You ask me specifically about this particular swimming. I say no, I have not personally any reason other than to applaud what has happened, until I have further facts, if so."

source:uk.news.yahoo.com/Sky News

Michael Biehn

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Sir Paul McCartney by Eurosport | London Spy

Bono passed Paul McCartney as the world's wealthiest rock star this year, thanks to having a 2.3 percent share of Facebook. That's a cool £1 billion for the U2 frontman, leaving the former lead singer of Wings in second place with a fortune estimated at slightly over $1 billion.

So Paul McCartney needs the money, obviously. Yet his biggest gig of the year — the featured performer at the London Olympic Opening Ceremony — earned him … £1.

From The Guardian:

Mike Oldfield, Dizzee Rascal and Emeli Sande are also among the stars who are thought to have been paid the token figure. The big names had originally agreed to play the show in the Olympic Stadium for free, but the inclusion of the £1 figure was to make the contract binding. It means the star names were paid less than 1/20th of the cost of the cheapest ticket for the ceremony. Seats ranged up to £2,012 for the best available.

A spokesman for the Games organizer Locog confirmed the £1 fee, which had been necessary for contractual purposes, although the acts had been happy to perform without any payment.

McCartney was originally offered a payment of "your lovin'" but informed LOCOG that it "don't pay my bills," opting for money, which is what he wants. Oh yeah, that's what he wants...

Many of the thousands of other performers in the ceremony were given a professional wage for their work, including the stuntman who impersonated the Queen parachuting out of a helicopter. But the headliners agreed to work for nothing.


Geraldine Chaplin

Happy Birthday. God bless.

J.K. Rowling

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Jean Reno

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Jaime Pressly

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Mr. Paul Anka

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Christopher Nolan, Lisa Kudrow, Hilary Swank, Laurence Fishburne, Simon Baker and Yvonne Strahovski

Happy Birthday guys. God bless.

Camille Muffat


Rebecca Adlington


Camille Muffat, Allison Schmitt and Rebecca Adlington

by Tom Fordyce

Britain's Rebecca Adlington saw Camille Muffat of France take her Olympic 400m freestyle crown but came through late on to secure a hard-earned bronze as American Allison Schmitt took silver.

Adlington's swim gave Great Britain their first medal in the pool and represented a fine return in the weaker of her two events against a fearsome field.

At the halfway mark she was down in sixth but charged through over the last 100m to edge out Lotte Friis of Denmark and Italy's world record holder Federica Pellegrini.

Muffat led Schmitt from the first turn and touched in a new Olympic record of four minutes 01.45 secs, with the American 0.32 secs down and Adlington third in 4:03.01.

That time for the Briton was faster, in a textile swimsuit, than the time she produced in the now-outlawed fast suit when taking gold in Beijing.

The improvement, allied to Muffat's record and Pellegrini's finishing position, underlines that this was a medal won rather than a title lost, although the 23-year-old had swum faster at the British Trials in March.

"After this morning, I didn't know what to expect, only qualifying in eighth. Tonight there was no pressure on me at all," Adlington told BBC Sport.

"I know everyone else wanted to say, 'Oh, you got the gold in Beijing' but to me I was not expecting that at all, so I am so so pleased.

"I would have liked to go a tiny little bit faster and kind of equal what I did in March, but to be honest - with the whole environment and the event - that kinds of adds stuff and you forget that all that is a toll on you, and the emotion can take it out of you a little bit."

Four years ago, Adlington used her 800m endurance to close down her rivals in the last 50m and snatch that shock gold.

Here in London the task was made harder by her comparatively slow time in winning her morning heat, which meant she began the final out in lane eight.

With ear-splitting support from the partisan home crowd she made light of that draw and began to claw her way past Pellegrini in lane one, Coralie Balmy in three and Friis in two.

Muffat and Schmitt were clear and away in the middle two lanes but Adlington began to tick off her other rivals - from sixth to fifth between 200m and 250m, up to fourth at 300m and then through past a tiring Balmy on the final turn.

"The crowd was so overwhelming. Twelve years' hard work has gone into that," Adlington added. "Four hundred metres always feel so hard for me and they were so far ahead. I'm so glad I've got a medal at a home Games. Not many people can say that."

Adlington, who is the first British woman to win swimming medals at successive Olympic Games, begins her quest to defend her 800m freestyle title in the heats on Thursday, with the final on Friday evening.

*Congrats. God bless.


By Sportsbeat | Eurosport

..Miley finished fifth in her signature 400m medley event, in which she won silver at last year's World Championships, and advanced through the heats of the shorter distance in 2:12.27.

Chinese teenage sensation Ye Shiwen, who carved five seconds off her personal best to win the 400m medley in a world record, was the fastest qualifier while Miley was tenth quickest and British team-mate Sophie Allen, in her only Games swim, 21st.

"I'm happy with how that went, I'm just looking at this in stages and the semi was the first target," said Miley, after clocking 2:12.27.

"It's not my main event, I just feel more relaxed and happy now."

Allen, who won silver at the recent European Championships, admitted she was gutted with her display - and blamed her sluggish time and early exit on her equally early start.

"My aim was to make the final and I've not even made the semi - I'm totally gutted," she said, after touching home in 2:14.72.

"It's on par with my fastest ever heats swim, I always struggle to get into gear in the mornings but that can't be an excuse."

Three-time Olympian Caitlin McClatchey was seventh fastest into the 200m freestyle semi-finals but young team-mate Rebecca Turner didn't progress.

Turner swam a massive 1:57.68 personal best at the Olympic trials earlier this year but couldn't replicate that form on her return to the same pool.

She clocked 1:58.98 to finish 17th fastest, an agonising two hundredths outside a place in the top 16 and another swim.

"It was not my best race but I've got to keep looking forward," said Turner, who will now focus on the 4x200m freestyle relay.

"I don't think it went wrong particularly, it just wasn't really my day.

"We've all been training so hard and preparation couldn't be better, so that makes it more disappointing."

Joe Roebuck also missed out on progressing to the the semi-finals - again by the narrowest margin, just two hundredths of a second.

He clocked 1:56.99 in the 200m butterfly heats to rank 17th overall while Roberto Pavoni was 20th fastest in 1:57.55.

Both their times were over a second slower than they swam to book their Olympic places earlier this year.

"I'm very disappointed with my time. I wanted to go quicker, I wanted to get in that pool and swim a personal best at the Olympics and I thought I was in the shape to do that," said Roebuck.



Réalisé par Anne Le Ny

Avec Vanessa Paradis, Samuel Le Bihan, Jonathan Zaccaï

Synopsis et détails
Odile est une jeune femme indépendante et rationnelle à l'existence bien réglée. Pourtant, alors qu'elle prend possession de la maison de sa tante dont elle vient d'hériter en Bretagne, la réalité, petit à petit, commence à lui échapper… Est-ce l'endroit qui est hanté ? La mémoire d'Odile qui, en se réveillant, lui joue des tours ? Ou bien Loïc, son prétendu "ami d'enfance retrouvé", qui l'entraîne vers d'étranges chemins ? Dans les brouillards de cette Cornouaille mystérieuse, rien ne se passe comme Odile l'attendait...


Misty May-Treanor

London, Great Britain, July 30, 2012 – Monday is a very special day in London, not just because it is Day 3 of the beach volleyball competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games in the purpose-built, sold-out 15,000-seat stadium on the grounds of the iconic Horse Guards Parade as the majestic venue also includes a portion of adjacent St. James Park in historic central London.

It’s happy birthday time during this Olympic Games for six athletes competing in the beach volleyball competition in central London including one very special one today.

If this sport bestowed royalty, among the first to receive the blessing would certainly be the USA’s legendary three-time Olympian, two-time gold medalist Misty May-Treanor.

Misty May-Treanor, the legendary soft-spoken, amazingly-gifted American player who is this sport’s version of supreme royalty, is having a birthday party in her honor tonight being thrown by the mostly British crowd that continues to fill this magnificent arena for each session of the competition. The joyous crowd has graciously and joyously embraced all the athletes in this amazing athletic competition, being held in what this sport would easily call the Buckingham Palace of beach volleyball.

Misty May-Treanor turns 35 years young Monday, but when she and her six feet of sunshine two-time Olympic gold medalist partner Kerri Walsh artistically work the sand tonight at 11 p.m. against Czech Republic’s Kristyna Kolocova/Marketa Slukova, the world will be able to watch ever so close on a very public, private moment of May-Treanor’s birthday celebration.

When May-Treanor leaves the center court for the final time after these Olympic Games she will have left the sport in a much better place than it was before she graduated as an All-American indoor player from Southern California’s Cal State University-Long Beach where she was part of the 1998 NCAA Championship team and was awarded the NCAA Championship Co-MVP.

In all of her on court accomplishments, both domestically in the USA and internationally with the FIVB, May has also been forced to sit out nearly two years with career-threatening injuries that she has obviously overcome.

For a brief recap of your FIVB international career, including three world championships and two Olympic gold medals, May-Treanor individually is competing in her 98th all-time FIVB international event here in London having earned an amazing 74 final four appearances, winning 42 gold medals, 18 silver, eight bronze and six fourth place finishes in her illustrious individual career.

For the record, May-Treanor has won a gold medal on her birthday once when she and Walsh won their match in 2005 in an FIVB Grand Slam event in Paris.

In the epilogue, it truly isn’t for either May-Treanor nor her teammate Walsh about winning and losing, it’s about how they played the game and no one has played it any better than Misty May-Treanor.

Truly she epitomizes the slogan of these Olympic Games as she has inspired a generation...

Not only is this May-Treanor’s birthday, it is her final hours upon this eternal Olympic stage. As they might say here tonight as she holds court in this palace in Horse Guards Parade, in a most jolly-old-England way....
Happy Birthday, your highness--Lady Misty, princess of the court.


Janis Smedins, Latvia

Tomorrow is your birthday.

Happy Birthday.

God bless.

Jennifer Kessy

Tomorrow is your birthday.

Happy Birthday.

God bless.

Misty May-Treanor

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Shania Twain

Shania Twain is preparing for the Dec. 1 premiere of her Las Vegas residency at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Shania: Still The One is expected to offer dramatic visuals, high fashion and a few surprises. The superstar is acting as Show Creator and Executive Producer and she teamed with a top-tier creative group to bring her extravaganza to life. The series is produced by AEG Live.

Show Director Raj Kapoor specializes in productions with cutting edge choreography, styling, design, staging, and special effects. He has worked with Carrie Underwood, Michael Jackson, Eminem, Usher, Rihanna, Maroon 5, Katy Perry, Paul McCartney, Britney Spears and countless others.

Other renowned individuals contributing to the show are production designer Michael Cotten, costumier Marc Bouwer and lighting designer Peter Morse.

“My first step in creating the show was writing out the song list, building my ideas from there,” said Twain. “I wanted to keep the hits at the heart of it all while weaving elements of surprise throughout the experience. My vision is to bring the atmosphere of each song alive through multi- dimension sensory and share the journey of my life and career with the audience from a unique perspective. The Colosseum theatre is heaven for an artist and the opportunity to collaborate with such a brilliant team is making my dream show a reality.”

Twain has announced 14 new performances, listed below, which will go on sale Fri., June 8 at 10 a.m.
March 2013: 19, 20, 23, 24, 26, 27, 29, 30
April 2013: 2, 3, 5, 6, 9, 10

Details at www.shaniainvegas.com.

source:shaniafans.com/posted by cbspock

Shania Twain by Robin Leach posted May 31, 2012

In just 24 hours, we start the six-month countdown to country and crossover queen Shania Twain’s first performance of her new residency show “Still the One” at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace, and the Canadian superstar was here the past week continuing her planning. Shania’s two-year contract to share the stage with Celine Dion, Sir Elton John and Rod Stewart starts Dec. 1.

Officials at Caesars and AEG producers confirmed that Shania had a week of meetings, including several at length with her director. Vegas DeLuxe has learned that Raj Kapoor, who directed the Jonas Brothers and Demi Lovato world tour and for five years produced and directed the “American Idols: Live” touring shows, will helm Shania’s show.

In addition to being a video director for stars from Michael Jackson to Toni Braxton, Raj also produced and directed the “Dancing With the Stars” and “So You Think You Can Dance” tours. He was listed as a creative consultant and a screen producer for the 54th Grammy Awards and has produced the performances on the first two seasons of “The Voice.”

I was reliably told that the direction of the show and its content are well along and moving smoothly in this development stage, although nothing as yet is set in stone. However, Shania will now start the set list from her home in the Bahamas and plans to return here in October for rehearsals off Strip and then onstage in November.

“She will perform all of her biggest hits and prove her accomplishments as an amazing singer and songwriter. It’s going to be a phenomenal show,” I was told.

Shania talked with me exclusively about the strength of her voice and her game plan for the new Caesars show in a two-part interview posted last June 13 (“A happy Shania Twain: ‘My voice is stronger today than ever’ ”) and 14 (“Shania Twain exclusive, Part 2: Her game plan for Caesars Palace show”).

While in Las Vegas, Shania was spotted at Wolfgang Puck’s Spago in The Forum Shops at Caesars and after daylong meetings watched Cirque du Soleil’s “Zumanity” in New York-New York.

She also filmed a segment that will be edited into the current Caesars Palace bellman commercials, for which she checked into the resort on a white horse as Louis Vuitton suitcases were piled high on the luggage cart. Cameras rolled at the main hotel lobby and near the outdoor patio of Michel Richard’s Central.

Shania also posed for photographer Denise Truscello for new portraits and promotional photographs for her show, and we’ll post them here at VegasDeLuxe.com as soon as they are available.

Hailed as the first lady of country music, Shania was ranked the world’s bestselling female country artist of all time -- until she lost her voice. “It’s the biggest challenge of my whole journey,” said Shania as she explained how she had to regain it to return to singing with Lionel Richie.

It resulted in the video of their remake of “Endless Love” filmed at her Bahamas home for Lionel’s latest work, “Tuskegee,” an album of duets.

You can absolutely bank on Lionel -- and other celebrities -- being in the front row at the Colosseum when Shania takes the stage six months from now.


Medal Table

1. China------------- 6----4----2---12
2. United States------3----5----3---11
3. Italy--------------2----3----2----7
4. South Korea-------- 2-- 1----2----5
5. France--------------2----1---1----4
6. North Korea---------2----0---1----3
7. Kazakhstan----------2----0---0----2
8. Australia-----------1----1---1----3
8. Brazil--------------1----1---1----3
8. Hungary-------------1----1---1----3
11. Netherlands--------1----1----0---2
12. Russia--------------1----0 ---3--4
13. Georgia-------------1----0----0---1
13. South Africa--------1--- 0----0---1
15. Japan---------------0-----2---3---5
16. Great Britain-------0------1---1--2
17. Taiwan--------------0------1---0--1
17. Colombia------------0------1---0---1
17. Cuba--------------- 0------1---0---1
17. Poland--------------0------1---0---1
17. Romania------------ 0------1---0---1
22. Azerbaijan----------0------0---1---1
22. Belgium-------------0------0----1--1
22. Canada------------- 0------0----1--1
22. Norway--------------0-------0---1--1
22. Moldova-------------0 ------0---1--1
22. Serbia------------- 0-------0---1--1
22. Slovakia------------0-------0---1--1
22. Slovenia------------0-------0---1--1
22. Ukraine-------------0-------0---1--1
22. Uzbekistan----------0-------0---1--1


Team GB by Sportsbeat | Eurosport

..Great Britain were always facing a challenge in their first Olympic appearance since London last staged the Games in 1948 and lost 95-75 in a game that was never close.

On paper Great Britain should lose every match here, they are ranked 49th in the world and they face opponents all positioned inside the top 13.

In addition they have won just two of their 12 warm-up games as injuries and absences have given coach Chris Finch repeated headaches.

Russia, world number 11, are one the 'weaker' teams they play but they outclassed the hosts with Andrei Kirilenko the star as he celebrated his return to the NBA by putting Finch's hosts to the sword with 35 points.

Kirilenko, the number one player in Europe this season, has just inked a $20 million contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves and he dominated Finch's team in a brilliant all-around performance, contributing 35 points

However, Freeland had no excuses - insisting that despite the crackling atmosphere, it was results that mattered.

"But if we can just minimise the turnovers and the little mistakes and errors then we will be able to put together a more complete game," said Freeland, who has just signed for NBA side Portland Trail Blazers.

"If you turn the ball over at the top of the three point line then how are you going to get back? That killed us.

"But overall it was a great feeling walking out there in front of our fans that were behind us the whole time.

"The more they stay behind us the more they will give us the strength to keep going in this tournament and improve like we know we can."

Chicago Bulls All-Star Luol Deng and Pops Mensah-Bonsu lead the way for Team GB with 26 and 22 points respectively but the gulf between the sides was clear.

And it won't get any easier for Great Britain next game will see them take on world number 13 side Brazil on Tuesday afternoon.

"I think that sometimes we try and do things we can’t do," he said.

"We can’t do something flash – that is not in our capabilities. They are all fixable problems though and it is far from a crisis."


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Montenegro 31 Great Britain 19

Great Britain women's handball team put in a sterling display in their first-ever match in the Olympic Games, but it still ended in a 31-19 defeat to Montenegro in Group A of the preliminary stages at the Copper Box tonight.

Only formed six years ago after London was awarded the Games, they were always going to be up against it playing a team tipped to be in with a medal shout, but just being here is a fitting reward for the sacrifices the players have made in chase of their Olympic dream.

Indeed, one has lived apart from her husband, some left their jobs and others sold houses to be part of Team GB, but they showed that they are not out of place on the main stage, competing well with the eastern European powerhouses for much of the match.

While the scoreline shows a heavy defeat, there were plenty of positives to take as right-back Marie Gerbron netted six goals, left-back Kathryn Fudge chipped in with four and they created plenty of other chances against a stern defence, knowing their opportunity to register wins will come later in the competition.

Having lost twice to Montenegro twice in the last 10 months, there could have been some trepidation in the Team GB side, but they showed no fear in the opening exchanges as two Fudge goals kept them on Montenegro's tail while Gerbron thundered in a seven-metre shot.

But a combination of some powerful Montenegrin attacking and wastefulness in front of goal from the hosts meant the eastern European side built a healthy lead, that even midway through the first half, was always going to be too much for Team GB to claw back.

While the visitors continued to boss proceedings, Team GB were not being steam-rollered and heading into the final third of first half, they matched Montenegro for efforts on goal, but were operating at a far lower conversion rate.

The partisan home crowd were still given plenty to cheer about, though, as Fudge continued to impress while skipper Lynn McCafferty netted three times in quick succession to leave it 18-12 at the half-time break.

It was the same story at the start of the second half, with goalkeeper Jane Mayes proving her worth by making a string of fine saves and Lyn Byl twice sending a jam-packed Copper Box to its feet.

But Montenegro, inspired by the 6ft 1in Katarina Bulatovic's five goals, were just too prolific in attack and they always managed to keep Team GB at a safe distance, extending their lead as the game went on.

Dragan Adzic's side ran riot in the final 10 minutes, firing in a number of unanswered goals to perhaps just take the shine off Team GB's first 40-minute performance.

However, the hosts will be better for the experience and they now turn their attention to another European big gun, Russia, who they meet on Monday.


Mr. John Pleshette, Indiana Evans, Sharon Oliphant, Taylor Schilling, Roxanne Hart, Maria Grazia Cucinotta, Benedita Pereira and Rebecca Staab

Belated Happy Birthday guys. God bless.

Martina McBride, Lana Kinnear and Mr. Enzo G. Castellari

Happy Birthday guys. God bless.

Jean-Hugues Anglade

Happy Birthday. God bless.

Måns Mårlind, Mr. Mike Hodges, Dean Haglund, Jeannetta Arnette and Wendy Hughes

Happy Birthday guys. God bless.

Poland's Sylwia Bogacka

Poland's Sylwia Bogacka shoots during qualifiers for the women's 10-meter air rifle event.


U.S. rowers Sarah Zelenka, left, and Sara Hendershot


Anastasia Vasina from Russia

Beach Volleyball


Lenka Hajeckova of the Czech Republic

Beach Volleyball


Dana Vollmer by Swimming World

LONDON, England, July 28. DANA Vollmer decided to kick it up a notch in prelims of the women's 100-meter butterfly at the 2012 London Olympics.

Vollmer, who already held the American record with a 56.42 from the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials, a time which also stood as the textile best, put on the afterburners in prelims with a scorching time of 56.25. That swim not only bested her American and textile best time, it also wiped out the Olympic record of 56.61 set by Inge de Bruijn of The Netherlands at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Vollmer's effort is the fourth fastest off all time, with her still standing as the fourth performer behind Sarah Sjostrom (56.06), Liu Zige (56.07) and Jessicah Schipper (56.23). Vollmer is in line to become the first American to win the event since Amy van Dyken claimed the title in 1996 with the closest finals swim in the Olympic event's history. Van Dyken clipped China's Liu Limin, 59.13 to 59.14, at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

"I felt really good," Vollmer said after her race. "I like to push myself in the prelims and see where I'm going in my body. I did feel like I was kind of pacing myself and building up to get faster. Walking in I just had to remind myself that I love racing and the 100m fly is my favorite event. I feel so much better. I'm a completely different person to what I was four years ago."

China's Lu Ying raced to second in 57.17 to move to 15th all time in the event's history. She will be attempting to win China's first gold medal in the event since Qian Hong topped the 1992 race with a 58.62.

"I am doing good as normally in training I swim around 58ish, so this morning's swim (57.17sec) was not at my standard level," Lu said. "I feel good about it."

Australia's Alicia Coutts (57.36), Sweden's Sjostrom (57.45) and Denmark's Jeanette Ottesen Gray (57.64) qualified third through fifth. Australia is riding a two-Games win streak in the event with Petria Thomas and Libby Trickett claiming the last two gold medals. Sjostrom, meanwhile, did enough to advance, but will be looking to better her world record of 56.06 set during the techsuit era. Denmark has never medaled in this event.

China's Jiao Liuyang (57.71), USA's Claire Donahue (58.06) and Great Britain's Fran Halsall (58.23) rounded out the top eight.

Great Britain's Ellen Gandy (58.25), The Netherlands' Inge Dekker (58.30), Singapore's Li Tao (58.34), Italy's Ilaria Bianchi (58.42), Belarus' Aliaksandra Herasimenia (58.50), Sweden's Martina Granstrom (58.70), Japan's Yuka Kato (58.72) and Greece's Kristel Vourna (58.73) also made the semifinal rounds.

Defending bronze medalist Jessica Schipper missed semis completely with a 24th-place 59.17. With 2008 gold medalist Trickett not swimming the event, and 2008 silver medalist Christine Magnuson missing the team this year, a new podium is guaranteed.


Allison Mack, Stephen Dorff, Josh Radnor, Wil Wheaton, Genesis Rodriguez, Rachel Miner, Leslie Easterbrook and Alexandra Paul

Happy Birthday guys. God bless.

Mr. David Warner

Happy Birthday Mr. Warner. God bless.

Australia wins gold in 400 free relay

The Associated Press

LONDON -- Australia has won gold in the women's 400-meter freestyle relay, setting an Olympic record of 3 minutes, 33.15 seconds Saturday night.

The United States team got off to a blistering start with Missy Franklin swimming leadoff under world-record pace, but the Australians rallied behind Brittany Elmslie on the third leg. Melanie Schlanger held on at the end, with Ranomi Kromowidjojo closing fast to give the Netherlands a silver in 3:33.79.

The other members of the winning team were Alicia Coutts and Cate Campbell.

The Americans slipped to the bronze in 3:34.24, but that was still good enough to give Natalie Coughlin the 12th medal of her career, tying Dara Torres and Jenny Thompson as the most decorated U.S. female Olympian. Coughlin swam in the morning prelims, but wasn't used in the evening; everyone who swims on a relay gets a medal.


Australian swimmer Leisel Jones by Reuters | Eurosport

The Olympic 100 metres breaststroke champion and first Australian woman to swim at four Games said she had been fired up by the reaction to comments in the media about her fitness before London.

"It's the best thing that could ever happen to me," she told reporters after finishing second in her heat with the overall fifth fastest time.

"I couldn't ask for anything more. I'm one of those people who if you put me under pressure, I'll show you what I can do. I did one of my best sessions ever after I read the comments," added the 2000 silver and 2004 bronze medallist.

"I've had nothing but support," the 26-year-old said of the reaction from the public and her team mates to media reports in Australia suggesting that she was overweight and only in London for a holiday.

"I think that has probably touched me the most," she said.

"I have never had so much support in my life. So thanks to the journalist who decided to write not so nice comments about me because you have never made me feel so loved in my life."

Seven times world champion Jones has won three gold medals in her Olympic career and eight medals in total.

Australia's Chef de Mission Nick Green slammed the media comments as 'disgraceful' last week and said she deserved a lot more respect.

Jones is trying to reclaim her crown as the world's best woman breastroker from American Rebecca Soni, the 2008 silver medallist who won gold at last year's world championships in Shanghai ahead of the Australian.


Medal Table

1. China------------- 5------- 0--- 2------ 7
2. Italy-------------- 2 -------2 ---1 -----5
3. United States-------1 -------2--- 2----- 5
4. Brazil-------------- 1------ 1---- 1---- 3
4. South Korea--------- 1-------1 ----1 ----3
6. Australia ------------1------ 0---- 0--- 1
6. Kazakhstan----------- 1------ 0-----0----1
6. Russia--------------- 1 ------0---- 0--- 1
9. Japan---------------- 0------ 2---- 1--- 3
10. Colombia------------ 0------ 1---- 0--- 1
10. France-------------- 0------ 1---- 0--- 1
10. Netherlands--------- 0------ 1-----0----1
10. Poland-------------- 0------ 1-----0----1
10. Romania---------------0------1------0---1
15. Belgium-------------- 0------0------1-- 1
15. North Korea-----------0------0------1---1
15. Hungary-------------- 0-------0-----1---1
15. Norway----------------0-------0-----1---1
15. Serbia--------------- 0------ 0---- 1 --1
15. Ukraine-------------- 0-------0 ----1---1
15. Uzbekistan -----------0------ 0-----1---1


Rebecca Adlington reacts


Rebecca Adlington, Federica Pellegrini, Camille Muffatt and Allison Schmitt

by Reuters | Eurosport

The crowd at London's Aquatic Centre roared with delight when the defending champion won her heat in a time of four minutes and 05.75 seconds.

But the cheers soon turned to anxiety as the swimmers in the following two seeded heats began posting faster times. Then there was relief when Adlington made it through to the final as the eighth and slowest qualifier.

"It felt faster," Adlington said. "You just don't know being in the first (seeded) heat. I had no option, I just had to go for it."

Italy's Federica Pellegrini, the reigning world champion and world record holder, also flirted with danger but finished seventh overall.

"The race is tonight. It's not as if I've had great results in the morning this year. Now we'll see this evening," she said.

France's Camille Muffatt set the fastest time of 4:03.29, just ahead of American Allison Schmitt, who trains in Baltimore with Michael Phelps, who bombed out in the 400m individual medley on Saturday.

"I am excited to have a lane for tonight. It's a fast meet all around," Schmitt said.


Sir Steve Redgrave


Sir Steve Redgrave by Eurosport | London Spy

Sir Steve Redgrave has said he was disappointed not to have been asked to light the Olympic flame at the opening ceremony.

Former rower Redgrave, who won gold medals at five consecutive Games from 1984-2000, was widely tipped as the favourite to do so ahead of Friday night's extravaganza.

Organisers had kept the identity of the final person to carry the torch and light the cauldron secret. That led to speculation that Redgrave or gold medal-winning decathlete Daley Thompson - the favoured choice of LOCOG chairman Lord Coe - would have the honour.

Redgrave carried the torch into the Olympic Stadium, but then handed it over to seven young athletes, chosen by Olympic legends including himself and Thompson. They then had the ultimate honour.

And Redgrave has admitted that his competitive ego meant he was disappointed not to have been allowed to finish the job alone.

Writing in the Sunday Telegraph, he said: "Of course looking back I must admit that when I was told it would not be me lighting the flame at the Opening Ceremony, I was a little disappointed.

"It was not a question of arrogance. It was about the expectation of everybody I knew, who kept saying that it had to be me when I knew deep down that it was not going to happen.

"As an extremely competitive individual with an ego, there is a part of me that would love to have lit the flame."

He added that he had been informed of the plan two and a half weeks before the ceremony, which was widely acclaimed as a masterpiece planned and executed by film director Danny Boyle.


By Eurosport | London Spy

Furious Indian officials are demanding answers from organisers about the apparent lack of security after a woman gatecrashed India's athletes' parade at the Olympic opening ceremony.

A woman in red and blue walked close to flag-bearing wrestler Sushil Kumar on Friday, in complete contrast to female members of the contingent who were wearing yellow saris and blue blazers.

The woman's identity was originally a mystery, but subsequent investigation has revealed that she was one of the thousands-strong volunteer cast who had managed to stay in the stadium and join the Indian athletes.

"How did they allow her in? It was a security lapse," Indian Olympic Association vice president Tarlochan Singh said.

"She walked along in the front line. Her dress was totally different. She was not wearing an identity card. This should have been noticed at an earlier stage but nobody bothered."

Brigadier P K Muralidharan Raja, the acting chef de mission of the contingent, was equally furious.

"The Indian contingent was shown for hardly 10 seconds in the TV coverage and the entire focus sadly was on this lady, instead of the athletes," he said.

The extravagant opening ceremony, hailed around the world as a huge success, was watched by a packed 60,000 crowd in the Olympic stadium.

London Games organisers said they were looking into the possible security breach. India websites said the mystery woman was a postgraduate student from Bangalore.

Security concerns dogged the run up to the Games with the British government having to draft in thousands of troops to help guard Olympic venues after private contractor G4S said it could not supply the staff required.

"This was bizarre. We will ask for an apology," Raja told the Times of India.

"The Indian contingent was shown for just 10 seconds and to think this lady hogged all the limelight."

Indian media reported that the woman was a postgraduate student from Bangalore, and while Games chief Sebastian Coe confirmed that she had been identified he did not give her identity.

"She made it into the opening ceremony. She obviously should not have been there," Coe said.

"I can now confirm that she was a cast member. She was slightly over excited."


Actor Geoffrey Hughes We Salute You


Actor Geoffrey Hughes We Salute You

Coronation Street and Keeping up Appearances actor Geoffrey Hughes has died aged 68, his agent said.

The star, famed for his role as Coronation Street binman Eddie Yates, died last night "peacefully in his sleep" after a "long courageous battle" with prostate cancer, according to his family.

Hughes also played Twiggy in TV comedy The Royle Family and Onslow in Keeping Up Appearances.

Hughes, known to millions as binman Eddie in the soap during the 1970s and 1980s, was rushed to hospital for intense radiotherapy in 2010 after collapsing at his Isle of Wight home.

The actor had thought he had beaten prostate cancer the previous year, but the star and his wife Sue were given the news the disease had returned.

Hughes, who publicly supported cancer charities, first appeared in 1960s classics such as Z-Cars and The Likely Lads and was the voice of Paul McCartney in the Beatles film The Yellow Submarine.

Other roles included Vernon in Heartbeat and Uncle Keith in teen drama Skins.

Hughes also guest-starred in episodes of Doctor Who, Casualty, Boon and The Upper Hand and left Coronation Street in 1984.

In 2009 he was appointed Deputy Lord Lieutenant for the Isle of Wight, making him "the official link between the island and royalty at formal engagements".

A Coronation Street spokeswoman today said: "We are very sad to hear of the death of Geoffrey Hughes.

"He created a legendary and iconic character in Eddie Yates who will always be part of Coronation Street.

"Everyone connected with the programme send our sincerest condolences to his family."

Tributes poured in for the actor as word spread of his death.

Long-serving Coronation Street star William Roache, who plays Ken Barlow in the soap, said: "I am so sorry to hear about Geoffrey. He was a warm, lovable actor, with great comedy timing.

"He will be greatly missed, one of the Street's memorable characters."

Anne Kirkbride, who plays Deirdre Barlow, tweeted: "The rainbow must have been for him. RIP Geoff. Really sad xx" while Sally Lindsay, who played barmaid Shelley Unwin in Corrie, wrote: "just found out £Geoff Hughes has died 1st telly job was playing Twiggys girlfriend in The Royle Family, and he was so kind RIP lovely man x"

Charlie Condou, who plays Marcus Dent in the soap wrote: "The wonderful Geoffrey Hughes (Eddie Yates) has lost his battle with cancer. RIP and thanks for all the laughs x".

Gavin and Stacey star Mathew Horne also paid tribute to Hughes, tweeting: "Sad to hear of Geoffrey Hughes passing. Onslow was the original LAD."

Helen Worth, who plays Gail McIntyre in Coronation Street, said: "Geoff was a very dear friend for many years, and I'm very sad to hear the news of his passing.

"He was a master of gentle comedy and brought pleasure to so many people. He will be sadly missed."



JO/Voile: la France veut doubler la mise et ramener 6 médailles Par AFP

La France ambitionne de remporter six médailles lors des épreuves de voile des JO-2012, un objectif ambitieux jamais atteint dans le passé et deux fois supérieur au meilleur résultat obtenu jusqu'ici.

De Qingdao (Chine), où avaient lieu les épreuves de voile des JO-2008, les Tricolores avaient ramené trois médailles: une d'argent pour Julien Bontemps (planche à voile RS:X) et deux de bronze pour Guillaume Florent (Finn) et Nicolas Charbonnier/Olivier Bausset (470). C'était, quantitativement, la meilleure moisson des Français.

Sur le plan d'eau de Weymouth/Portland (sud de l'Angleterre), où les régates commencent dimanche, le directeur technique national Philippe Gouard veut doubler la mise. Tout en restant lucide, échaudé notamment par l'échec des championnats du monde ISAF (Fédération internationale de voile) de décembre 2011, d'où la France n'avait ramené qu'une modeste médaille de bronze.

"Aucune nation ne domine vraiment et il y a un nivellement technique dans le monde, affirme-t-il. On a 6 ou 7 athlètes ou équipages au top niveau, mais pas forcément d'exception". Il rappelle que la France est revenue bredouille des JO d'Atlanta (1996), de Sydney (2000) et qu'aux Jeux, "il faut des sportifs hors du commun, pas seulement bons".

La France est présente cette année dans les dix séries olympiques (six chez les hommes, quatre chez les femmes), comme lors des deux précédents JO.

Selon Gouard, trois personnalités se détachent parmi les 17 athlètes sélectionnés: Stéphane Christidis, équipier de Manu Dyen en 49er (4e du Mondial 2012) et porte-drapeau des "voileux", Julien Bontemps, champion du monde 2012 de planche à voile, et Xavier Rohart, barreur du Star tricolore, médaille de bronze à Athènes et doyen (44 ans) de la délégation française.

Outre ces trois "locomotives", les chances françaises reposent principalement sur le 470 masculin (Pierre Leboucher/Vincent Garos) et féminin (Camille Lecointre/Mathilde Géron) -les deux équipages sont vice-champions du monde 2012-, le Finn (Jonathan Lobert) et le match race féminin (Claire Leroy/Marie Riou/Elodie Bertrand, avec Claire Pruvot comme remplaçante).

Même si l'on ne peut prévoir exactement la météo des Jeux aussi longtemps à l'avance, Gouard souligne que les statistiques montrent qu'il y a du vent en été. "Le plan d'eau, prévient-il, correspond assez bien aux gabarits britanniques, australiens (4 médailles d'or à la Sail for Gold 2012, début juin) et néo-zélandais".


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Spain delegation

source:Jae C. Hong AP/yahoo.com

Greece delegation

source:yahoo.com/Matt Dunham AP

Croatia's delegation

source:yahoo.com/Mark Humphrey AP

Russian delegation

Maria Sharapova carries their flag during the Opening Ceremony.

source:yahoo.com/Julio Cortez AP

Bulgaria's Team

source:yahoo.com/Matt Slocum AP

The Turkish team


Medal Standing

1------China------1 gold----0-----------1 bronze--------2
2-------Poland----0---------1 silver----0---------------1
3-------Belgium---0---------0---------- 1 bronze--------1


Farmers from the British countryside depicted during the Opening Ceremony


Duke and Duchess of Cambridge


Lord Voldemort


People celebrate the Opening Ceremony at Hyde Park


Emeli Sande sings 'Abide With Me'



Incredible atmosphere on Opening Ceremony


Australian athletes

Members of the Australia team parade into the stadium during the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games on 27 July. Australia has competed at every Olympic Games of the modern era, although in 1908 and 1912, they took part as Australasia alongside New Zealand. Each team is led into the Stadium by a placard bearer wearing a dress which includes a photograph of Londoners who auditioned for the Ceremony. The front of the dress shows their faces and the back their backs.


Performers pay tribute to British music

Performers pay tribute to British music, parading David Bowie masks as part of their spectacular dance sequence during the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games on 27 July.


Duke and Duchess of Cambridge


Team Canada


The Opening Ceremony begins


Argentinian athletes


The German Olympic team

Natascha Keller of the German Olympic hockey team carries her country's flag during the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium on 27 July. Germany is represented by 399 athletes at the Games.


British actor Rowan Atkinson


The Brazilian team


The Queen and Mr. Jacques Rogge

The Queen and Mr. Jacques Rogge, President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), attend the Opening Ceremony. Rogge competed as a yachtsman over three Olympics - 1968, 1972 and 1976. This is his final Games as President of the IOC, a position he's held since 2001.


Sir Steve Redgrave


The Colombian delegation


The India Olympic Team


The Olympic Rings are projected on the House


The Belgian team


Austrian Olympic team


Team Japan


Team France


Team GB


The South African Olympic team


The Danish team


The USA Olympic team enters the stadium


The Italian Olympic team enters the stadium