Latest Athletics News (Week 2 February 2018)

Highlights of Opening Ceremony of Winter Olympics 2018

The Winter Olympics 2018 is taking place at Pyeongchang, South Korea from 9th to 25th February. The opening ceremony was a grand one, colour and culture bringing together athletes from around the world. A notable event during the opening ceremony was that the athletes from North and South Korea arrived under the same flag during the parade. Olymoic president Thomas Bach mentioned,” We are stronger than all forces that divide us”, indicating the on-going tension in the Korean peninsula. Chung Gum Hwang, North Korean ice hockey player and Won Yun-jong, bobsledder from South Korea bore the Korean flag together while Lizzy Yarnold, skeleton racer carried the flag of Great Britain. Since Russia is banned from the Winter Olympics and the forthcoming Paralympics, the independent Russian athletes who met the anti-doping criteria, united under the neutral Olympic flag.  The International Olympic Committee showed great hospitality to the 35,000 spectators by providing them with seat warmers, hats and gloves in -6 degree Celsius cold.

Jarrod Bannister dies unexpectedly at age 33

The world was shocked by the sudden passing of champion javelin thrower, Jarrod Bannister. The 33-year-old, who was the gold-medallist at the Commonwealth Games 2010 in Delhi, had been staying with his girlfriend and training in Holland. Though his sudden demise has left everybody stunned, Fairfax media has confirmed that there are no suspicious events regarding his death. Darren Gocher, CEO ofAthletics Australia, paid tribute to Bannister and mentioned that his mark of 89.02 metres, set in Brisbane in2008, is the current Australian record in javelin throw. Bannister also represented Australia in Melbourne Commonwealth Games in 2006 and 2011 IAAF World Championships, held in Daegu, South Korea. The record holder was banned in 2013 for 20 months for having missed three drug tests. The ban had a devastating effect on Bannister, but in recent months, the athlete was intending to make a comeback by strenuous training.  Athletics Australia will soon be honouring Jarrod Bannister’s career.

FEU and UST defend their titles at the UAAP

The Far Eastern University(FEU) and University of Santo Tomas (UST) were seen to retain their respective leads in the men’s and women’s division in the 80th season of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) tournament. The tournament was held on Sunday at the Philsports track oval. The Lady Tracksuiters from UST won their title in women’s division for the fourth straight year while the FEU Tamaraws won the men’s division title for the eighth year. Trackster Clinton Bautista, winner of six golds, four silvers and the MVP title, owns the league’s record for the 110 metres hurdles in time 13.31 seconds. Louielyn Pamatian won her second MVP title for UST.