Burrito blamed for ban
Shelby Houlihan, the US record holder in the 1,500m and 5,000m, said that she has been banned for four years. Houlihan’s announcement on her Instagram account on Monday arrived days before the start of US Olympic track and field trials in Eugene, Oregon, for the Tokyo Games. The 28-year-old said she was notified that a test sample returned a finding for the anabolic steroid nandrolone. She said she has since learned it has “long been understood by WADA [World Anti-Doping Agency] that eating pork can lead to a false positive for nandrolone... Pig organ meat [offal] has the highest levels of nandrolone.” “We concluded that the most likely explanation was a burrito purchased and consumed approximately 10 hours before that drug test from an authentic Mexican food truck that serves pig offal,” Houlihan wrote. “I did everything I could to prove my innocence.” She said she passed a polygraph and had a hair sample analyzed, but was told on Friday last week that the Court of Arbitration for Sport, “did not accept my explanation.”
Markis Kido dies at 36
Indonesian doubles badminton champion Markis Kido has died at the age of 36 after collapsing during a casual match, the Indonesian Badminton Association said. Kido, who won gold in the men’s doubles at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, passed out while playing in Jakarta on Monday evening, and was later pronounced dead at a hospital, the association said. Kido’s longtime doubles partner Hendra Setiawan described him as an “amazing and very talented player.” In an online tribute, Setiawan wrote: “Thank you so much for being a great partner in victory and defeat.” The cause of Kido’s death was not made public, but he had high blood pressure, the association said in a statement, citing his mother, Zul Asteria. “He seems to have given his life for badminton,” she was quoted as saying.
Wimbledon crowds to return
This year’s Wimbledon men’s and women’s singles finals would be played with full crowds in attendance on Centre Court, the All England Club said on Monday. They would be the first outdoor sporting events in the UK to have capacity crowds since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last year. “We are pleased to have worked closely with the government, public health bodies, and our local authority in Merton, to confirm that ... the Championships 2021 will begin on Monday 28 June with 50 per cent capacity across the Grounds, building to full capacity crowds of 15,000 on Centre Court for the Finals weekend,” the All England Club wrote.
Federer wins tune-up match
Roger Federer eased into the second round of the ATP grass court tournament in Halle on Monday with a straight-sets win over qualifier Ilya Ivashka. Federer, who turns 40 in August, had few problems in his first match this season on grass to seal a 7-6 (7/4), 7-5 first-round win over Belarusian Ivashka, ranked 90th in the world. “There is room for improvement, but I am happy with my first game here on grass. I feel good,” said Federer, who is bidding to win the Halle tournament for the 11th time. The Swiss is using Halle to tune up for his bid to win a ninth title at Wimbledon.
TWO AND TWO: Lin Chen-hao of Taiwan finished seventh in the women’s U-48kg category, winning two bouts before losses the quarter-finals and a repechage match Naohisa Takato yesterday won Japan’s first gold medal at their home Olympics, beating Taiwan’s Yang Yung-wei in the men’s under-60kg judo final. Yang’s second-place finish is Taiwan’s first medal in Tokyo and the nation’s first-ever medal in an Olympics judo competition. Kosovo’s Distria Krasniqi beat Japan’s Funa Tonaki in the women’s under-48kg final less than an hour before Takato made sure that his team would not have a double heartbreak on the opening day of competition in its beloved homegrown martial art. Takato won his final three bouts in sudden-death golden score, but he took the final a bit anticlimactically after Yang committed
Four key men’s doubles pairings — dubbed by the Badminton World Federation (BWF) as “the group of death” — are to take over two courts side-by-side today just after midday in Tokyo, in matches that already have the badminton world abuzz. What is formally known as Group A pits pairings from Taiwan, Indonesia, India and Britain against one another — the former three ranked in the top 10. Taiwanese pairing Lee Yang and Wang Chi-lin are set to challenge Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty of India, while world No. 1 duo Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo of Indonesia are to
After complaining about flying economy class to the Olympic Games, Taiwanese badminton player Tai Tzu-ying appeared satisfied with her hotel room in Tokyo, praising its proximity to the badminton venue. “It saves commuting time and allows more time to rest,” the 27-year-old Tai wrote on Instagram yesterday morning. “It’s very good.” The Athletes’ Village is about 50 minutes by car from the badminton venue, but the hotel is only a 10-minute drive, she said. “It’ll give me more time to rest and prepare, whether before or after a match,” Tai added. Taiwan’s badminton team is staying at the Marroad Inn Tokyo in Chofu City,
KEEP ’EM COMING: In her first Olympic appearance, Lo set a high bar, fighting her way to the final bouts, and earning Taiwan its second medal after Yang Yung-wei’s silver Taiwan’s Lo Chia-ling yesterday clinched the nation’s second medal at the Tokyo Olympics, grabbing a bronze medal in taekwondo in the women’s 57kg class. Nineteen-year-old Lo beat Nigeria’s Tekiath Ben Yessouf 10-6 at Tokyo’s Makuhari Messe convention center. Lo, who is making her first appearance in the Olympic Games, worked her way to the bronze medal contest with an early 20-18 win against South Korea’s Lee Ah-reum in the round of 16, before dropping Canada’s Skylar Park 18-7 in the quarter-final. It was Anastasija Zolotic of the US who denied the former World Taekwondo Junior Championship gold medalist a chance to fight for