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Shenzhen 2011 - Vernon Feature
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Triumph at the track with gold and two bronze 21/08/2011

The final day at the track brought home three medals for BUCS Great Britain team at the 2011 World University Games. Andrew Vernon’s (St Mary's University College) gold in the 5000m, women’s 4x400m bronze and Julian Reid’s bronze in the men’s long jump.

The final day at the track brought home three medals for BUCS Great Britain team at the 2011 World University Games. Andrew Vernon’s (St Mary's University College) gold in the 5000m, women’s 4x400m bronze and Julian Reid’s bronze in the men’s long jump.

Vernon took the lead midway for a couple of laps before falling back into the pack. An outstanding burst of speed on the last 400m continued all the way to the finish line securing gold for Great Britain in 14:00.06.

“If it was slow I was going to hit the front with five laps to go which I kind of did. I started to pick up a bit of a stitch, so I thought I have to hold back, I can’t let this get any worse.  I did a lap, managed to control it and then went for it with a lap to go. I’m ecstatic with winning. I came here for gold and I can’t go away with anything better than that.”

Shenzhen 2011 - Women's 4x400mTeam GBR women’s 4x400m relay team made up of Kelly Massey (Manchester Metropolitan University), Charlotte Best (Loughborough College), Meghan Beesley (Loughborough University) and Emily Diamond (Loughborough University) began the evening’s medal haul running a time of 3:33.09 for the bronze.

“It’s fantastic, we’re the first team on the track to get a medal. We’re thrilled because we’re not the standard team, individually we do 200m, 400 hurdles, 400m and 800m. The third place is always up for grabs, I seem to win bronze everywhere I go now. I’m getting good at bronze,” said Beesley.
“We were studying it today and felt we had an outside chance to medal, so it’s amazing,” said Best.

Shenzhen 2011 - Julian ReidReid took bronze on his last jump of the meet with 7.96m, gold claimed by China’s Su Xiongfeng clearing 8.17m. “I wanted gold, but I’m happy with a medal. Hopefully this is just a stepping stone to the future,” said Reid.

The women’s 4x100m team made up of Amy Harris, Margaret Adeoye (University of Surrey), Diamond and Ashleigh Nelson (Middlesex University) came tantalisingly close to a medal finishing fourth in a time of 44.01 seconds.

Stacey Smith ran in the 1500m final placing eighth in a time of 4:10.34. The last race of the evening was the men’s 4x400m in which Niall Flannery (Loughborough University), Gianni Frankis (Middlesex University), Rion Pierre (Brunel University) and Joe Thomas (University of Wales Institute, Cardiff) came home in fifth.

In the women’s singles badminton Linda Sloan (Open University) and Liu Fang Hua (CHN) took to the centre court for their quarter-final. Sloan took an early lead in the first game before Liu began to close the gap ending the first game 21-19. The second game produced some long rallies and after twenty two minutes Shi closed the match 2:0.

“I’m happier than yesterday because I played better, but I was up against a better opponent. When you meet an Asian player, you’ve got to be at your best. You can’t play at half pace, but to keep up that pace for two or three games is really tough,” said Sloan. 

Across on court number three Sarah Milne (Leeds Metropolitan) played Shi Xiaoqian (CHN) in her quarter-final match taking the first game all the way to 26-24. Shi left little room for error in the second game winning 21-6. The Chinese victories end Great Britain’s campaign at the badminton. 
At shooting Ken Gerald Parr (Goldsmiths, University of London) finished the 50m rifle 3 positions elimination in 9th and proceeds through to Monday’s qualification. 

In taekwondo (kyorugi) Lutalo Massop-Muhammad breezed through his first -80kg fight against Anwar Al Aisari (OMA) as he won by withdrawal 7:0. In the final sixteen, Massop-Muhammad faced China’s Ta La. The score lay at 2:2 after the third round, before China appealed that Massop-Muhammad’s offensive kick had come after the break. The referee’s decision ended the contest in a questionable 3-0 defeat for Great Britain.

Women’s basketball played in their final game of the tournament against Slovakia. Team GBR led 16:12 after the first quarter, but Slovakia built momentum and was up two points by half time. The final 69-56 defeat places Great Britain in overall 14th position.

“We are a little bit disappointed to finish at the lower end, but it was great for the women to play against Brazil and USA in our group. It was frustrating to lose against Slovakia today as we already beat them earlier in the competition, but I think it’s really useful for the younger generation of British basketball to be exposed to this level of competition,” said head coach Damian Jennings.    

Women’s football drew against Chinese Taipei 1-1 in their final match of the Games with Great Britain’s goal scored by Victoria Greenwell (Northumbria University). Team GBR had the same result against the team in the group stage and now end the competition in best possible ninth position after playing three placement matches.  

For more information about Team GBR's involvement in the World University Games go to www.bucs.org.uk/shenzhen.
 

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