In­tro­duc­tion to the Gold Coast

SOAK UP OUR STATS OVER 30 PAGES OF EVENT-BY-EVENT PREVIEWS

Athletics Weekly - - News - WORDS: JA­SON HEN­DER­SON, JES­SICA WHIT­TING­TON, STEVE SMYTHE, PAUL HAL­FORD & EUAN CRUM­LEY PIC­TURES: MARK SHEAR­MAN JH

THE Com­mon­wealth Games re­turns to Aus­tralia for the fifth time this month with the 21st Games held on the Gold Coast. An event rich in his­tory and tra­di­tion, it was first staged in Canada in 1930 – un­der the orig­i­nal name of the Bri­tish Em­pire Games – and has since es­tab­lished it­self as one of the world’s big­gest sport­ing events.

Along with the Euro­pean Cham­pi­onships in Ber­lin in Au­gust, it is the high­light of the year for Bri­tish ath­letes who, of course, com­pete un­der their in­di­vid­ual na­tion flags of Eng­land, Scot­land, Wales and North­ern Ire­land at the Games, while there are also teams from Guernsey, Isle of Man and Jer­sey. Many clas­sic mo­ments have been staged at the Com­mon­wealth Games over the years. At the last Games alone in Glas­gow we saw ath­letes such as Va­lerie Adams, Sally Pear­son, Greg Ruther­ford, Ki­rani James, Usain Bolt and David Rud­isha.

In­deed, such is the stan­dard in some events, Rud­isha was beaten by Ni­jel Amos in the 800m and on the Gold Coast in the com­ing days there will be sim­i­lar cut-throat com­pe­ti­tion as ath­letes bat­tle for medals.

Take the women’s 200m, for ex­am­ple, where Olympic 100m and 200m cham­pion Elaine Thomp­son of Ja­maica is poised to go head to head with Olympic 400m win­ner Shau­nae Miller-Uibo of Ba­hamas and Eng­land’s speed queen Dina Asher-Smith. It is a mouth-wa­ter­ing en­counter and is just one of the many clashes we will see on the Gold Coast.

I hope you en­joy our previews over the fol­low­ing pages and that it pro­vides an ideal guide as you set­tle back to watch the ac­tion. Then, in our next two mag­a­zine is­sues and on­line, we will be pub­lish­ing our un­ri­valled cov­er­age of the Games it­self.

Car­rara Sta­dium: Queens­land venue set to stage big event

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