Review of the week: 10-16 August 2015
Canada loves to finish second. Following its performance at the Pan American Games in Toronto, where it was behind only the United States in the medal table, it repeated the feat at the Parapan American Games, with stars including Brent Lakatos (above).
However, this time, Brazil was on top, with more than twice as many gold medals as the hosts. It looks in good shape for the Paralympics next year, a sign that home advantage applies even when not yet at home, because of the investment in sport which results.
German dressage riders were at home for the European Equestrian Championships in Aachen but were less keen to finish anywhere but first. Unfortunately for them, they came third to the Netherlands in the team event while Kristina Broering-Sprehe twice finished second to Charlotte Dujardin of Great Britain in the individual competitions.
Australia took full advantage of the Netball World Cup being in Sydney, by claiming its third title in a row, and it also had a great week on foreign soil as golfer Jason Day won the US PGA Championship. It helped to make up for some recent grim sporting results.
In Jakarta, the Indonesian pair of Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan regained the men’s doubles crown after missing the event last year through injury. But the big story was in women’s singles where Saina Nehwal became the first Indian to reach any final, and China failed to make the last four for the first time in more than thirty years.
Carolina Marin (above) defended her title but it was only the second medal for Spain in history, a result so unfamiliar that the organisers played the wrong national anthem.
There were amateur boxing championships for women in Asia and for men in Europe. In Walanchubu, China, the hosts took six of the ten gold medals on offer but Thailand also did well, with two golds. In Samokov, Bulgaria, the most successful nations were Russia, with four champions, and Ireland with two. Great Britain reached five finals.
But only one of the British boxers won his final, with the most surprising defeat being for the aptly named Muhammad Ali. He lost to the local favourite, Daniel Asenov, in a controversial judging decision, one which reflects home advantage of a different kind.
Next week: Show jumping, canoe sprint, and Bolt and Gatlin race over 100m in Beijing