London 2012 Olympic double act Jonny and Alistair Brownlee are back in action today in the Ro 2016 triathlon.
They aren’t the only Brits hoping to defend their Olympic titles: gold medalist Jade Jones is set to compete in the women’s -57kg taekwondo, well while diver Tonia Couch is hoping to score her first Olympic medal at the women’s 10m platform.
Jonny and Alistair Brownlee are as tough as they come — and they’re the big favourites in the triathlon, especially now that their Spanish rival Javier Gómez has had to pull out. Whatever their position in the race, they give 100 per cent every time. Alistair absolutely smashes himself, and Jonny’s not far behind him — they always make races more interesting because they’re very tactically smart, and people really respect them. They’ve been criticised because they train so hard, especially Alistair, because he’s quite nuts and perhaps overtrains and jeopardises races with various injuries, but I believe that if you want to be the greatest in the world, you have to take risks. Those risks certainly pay off for him. Annie Emmerson
Athletics: Men’s 400m Hurdles Final
There are so many stories of Olympic triumph against the odds that it’s easy to forget the agonising disappointments. The USA’s 400m hurdler Johnny Dutch had the fastest time in the world in 2016. He should have strolled to Rio, but on the final hurdle of the final race of the final US trial, he clipped the barrier and went tumbling. Afterwards, Dutch made clear his feelings: “I don’t have a contract. I have no job. I don’t know if I can do this any more.” His departure leaves Kerron Clement of the USA as the fastest man this year. But with ten hurdles to overcome over a circuit of the track, success and failure are just a stride apart. James Gill
Diving: Women’s 10m Platform
There are always a few twists and turns in the 10m and GB’s Tonia Couch has a great chance of a medal this year. Diving is a sport you can pick up as you go along. With the scoring, just remember that when the seven judges’ marks come up after the dive, the top two marks and the lowest two marks are removed. The only marks that count are the three in the middle. For the final score, they are multiplied by the degree of difficulty — the highest is usually 3.9 — which measures how technically complicated the dive is. It’s good to have a high degree of difficulty, but it’s worth a lot more if the dive itself is performed well. Bob Ballard
Taekwondo is a mental and technical duel. It involves spinning, feinting and kicking — it’s like a physical game of chess, or cat and mouse. You have to be strong and explosive, fast and powerful to get your points so it certainly attracts athletes with plenty of personality. London 2012 gold medal-winner Jade Jones is the one to watch. It’s all about where you hit or kick your opponent — there’s one point for a basic body blow, three points for a forward kick to the head or reverse kick to the torso, four points for a spinning kick to the head. Jade is known as the Headhunter — you can guess why. Karthi Gnanasegaram
Athletics: Men’s 200m Final
By the time sprinters reach the 200m finishing line, they’re almost running on empty. It’s a different challenge compared with the 100m. Mentally, you need to be ready for that last 50m, when the lactic acid’s building. Usain Bolt and Justin Gatlin will once again be up against each other. If Gatlin is going to have any chance, he’ll need to come off the bend in the lead. Even then, he’ll have to keep pace with Bolt’s long strides up the straight. Britain’s Adam Gemili has a chance of making the final, as he nearly did in 2012. He won the trials by a whisker, but he’s finding his form. Darren Campbell
Star to Watch: Kim Kuk-hyang
Diving: Women’s 10m Platform 8pm BBC1
North Korea’s Kim Kuk-hyang made history last year at the world championships when she won her country’s first diving gold medal. In floods of tears at the final ceremony, the 16-year-old said, “It gives me great pleasure to meet the expectations of my government and our Great Leader.”
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