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Olympics-Australia sport gets A$257 million funding boost ahead of Paris 2024

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Australia started ramping up its preparations for hosting the 2032 Olympics and Paralympics on Wednesday with the announcement of an additional A$257 million ($184 million) in funding for athletes ahead of the 2024 Paris Summer Games.

In an unprecedented move, the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) has committed to funding for an entire four-year Olympic cycle, allowing sports to plan ahead rather than wait for annual allocations.

The funds are in addition to A$14.6m a year in individual grants and an annual government allocation of A$82.2m and would be targeted at specific sports, the AIS said in a statement

“This funding commitment is made possible because of the belief and confidence the Australian government … has in Australian sport,” AIS chief executive Peter Conde said.

“The Tokyo Olympic Games and Paralympic Games inspired us all and we have worked with government to secure longer-term funding to forward plan and continue building on that success.”

Women’s rugby sevens, rowing, surfing, skateboarding and para canoeing are among the sports that will be targeted with extra funding as Australia looks to build towards the 2032 Summer Games in Brisbane.

Host nations traditionally invest heavily in elite sport in the years before hosting the Games to ensure a strong showing on home soil.

Australia has been one of the losers in an increasingly competitive, and expensive, international contest for Olympic medals over the last two decades.

The host nation were fourth on the medals table at the 2000 Sydney Olympics but had dropped to 10th by the 2016 Rio Games. A strong showing in the swimming pool helped them to sixth in Tokyo earlier this year.

“We are in the midst of an exciting time for Australian sport,” said Josephine Sukkar, the chair of the Australian Sports Commission.

“Paris is now only two and half years away, and our commitment to longer term success, the green and gold runway to Brisbane 2032, is also front of mind.”

($1 = 1.3992 Australian dollars)

 

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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Canadiens' Allen to miss eight weeks with lower-body injury – TSN

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Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jake Allen will miss eight weeks with a lower-body injury, the team announced early Friday morning.

Allen, 31, sustained the injury during the second period of a 5-1 loss to the Boston Bruins on Jan. 12.

The 6-foot-2 goaltender has been the primary goaltender for the Canadiens this season with Carey Price unavailable due to his knee injury.

The Fredericton, N.B., native has a 5-16-2 record with a .901 save percentage and 3.15 goals-against average.

Allen has a 164-122-33 record with a .911 save percentage and 2.56 GAA in his career.

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Canada's Shapovalov wins, reigning champ Osaka crashes out at Australian Open – CBC Sports

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Canada’s Denis Shapovalov will face a tough test in the fourth-round after his win at the Australian Open on Friday. Meanwhile, defending champion Naomi Osaka didn’t make it to a much-anticipated contest against top-ranked Ash Barty.

The 14th-seeded Shapovalov, from Richmond Hill, Ont., beat No. 23 Reilly Opelka 7-6 (4), 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Friday.

That sets up a match against Olympic gold medallist Alexander Zverev, who had a 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 win over Radu Albot, a 124th-ranked qualifier from Moldova.

Shapovalov has won two of his previous six meetings with Zverev.

WATCH | Shapovalov defeats Opelka in Melbourne:

Shapovalov beats Opelka in 3rd round at Australian Open

8 hours ago

Duration 2:25

Denis Shapovalov of Richmond Hill, Ont., defeats American Reilly Opelka 7-6(4), 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 and advances to the fourth round of the Australian Open for the first time in his career. 2:25

Four-time champion Osaka was ousted by Amanda Anisimova, a 20-year-old American ranked 60th in the world, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (5).

“I knew I had to be playing sharp if I wanted to give myself a chance,” said Anisimova, who took out Olympic champion Belinda Bencic in the second round and then accounted for the 2021 Australian Open champion.

After losing the first set, Anisimova knew she needed to get more aggressive or she would be out of the tournament.

It worked.

Anisimova saved two match points in the third set, serving to stay in the match, and ended it with an ace. She hit 46 winners to Osaka’s 21.

It’s the fourth time Osaka has been unable to defend a major title, and the 11th time in a Grand Slam she has been knocked out in the third round, including last year’s U.S. Open.

Barty continues to roll at home

After winning the title last year — her second at Melbourne Park in three years — Osaka withdrew from the French Open in the second round and skipped Wimbledon as she took a break for her mental health. After an early loss at the U.S. Open, she took an extended layoff to reset and arrived at the year’s first major with a seeding of No. 13.

Barty advanced with a 6-2, 6-3 win over 30th-seeded Camila Giorgi on Rod Laver Arena, the match starting later and finishing earlier than the Osaka-Anisimova contest on the adjoining Margaret Court Arena.

Barty has only conceded eight games and spent less than three hours on court in the first three rounds at Melbourne Park. The Wimbledon champion and 2019 French Open winner is aiming to be the first Australian woman to win her home championship since 1978.

Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka’s overpowered 15th-seeded Elina Svitolina 6-0, 6-2 to reach the fourth round at Melbourne Park for the first time since 2016.

Before she had a chance to analyze both players she might meet next, a question was posed to her son about the two-time Australian Open champion’s third-round performance.

Five-year-old Leo, wearing his sunglasses in the news conference room and sitting on his mother’s knee, responded succinctly: “Awesome!”

Azarenka thanked her son, then listed the positive points from her perspective. Those included: “The amount of aggressivity I could bring point after point, applying a lot of pressure, the consistency. Taking control of my end of the court.”

She will next play French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova, who rallied from a set and a break down against 26th-seeded Jelena Ostapenko to win 2-6, 6-4, 6-4.

Since a quarter-final run in Australia in 2016, Azarenka lost first-round matches last year and in 2019, and missed the hard-court tournament in 2017, 2018 and 2020.

The 32-year-old former No. 1 from Belarus is feeling comfortable right now, fulfilling the dual roles of player and mother in Melbourne.

“I always feel privileged that I’m able to have him here,” Azarenka said. “These kind of moments are really priceless for me. To be able for me to share that with my son is pretty incredible.”

Fourth-round pairings that were set up Friday include fifth-seeded Maria Sakkari against 21st-seeded Jessica Pegula and No. 8 Paula Badosa against Madison Keys, who held off Wang Qiang 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (2) on Friday.

Nadal cruises to victory

Rafael Nadal wrapped up the Day 5 program on Rod Laver Arena by beating Olympic silver medalist Karen Khachanov 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 and continuing his bid for a men’s record 21st Grand Slam title.

Wimbledon runner-up Matteo Berrettini fended off 18-year-old Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz 6-2, 7-6 (3), 4-6, 2-6, 7-6 (5).

Miomir Kecmanovic continued to make the most of the absence of fellow Serbian Novak Djokovic, reaching the fourth round at a major for the first time with a 6-4, 6-7 (8), 6-2, 7-5 win over 25th-seeded Lorenzo Sonego.

He will next play 17th-seeded Gael Monfils, who beat No. 16 Cristian Garin 7-6 (4), 6-1, 6-3.

Kecmanovic had been drawn to play the top-ranked Djokovic, a nine-time Australian Open champion, in the first round. But Djokovic was deported on the eve of the tournament for failing to meet Australia’s strict COVID-19 regulations.

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How will Jim Rutherford make his mark on the Canucks roster? – Sportsnet.ca

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End of the measuring stick road trip

January 18 2022

Jamie Dodd and Thomas Drance look ahead to tonight’s matchup with the Nashville Predators and discuss which Canucks need to step up for the team to secure a win. Later, Thomas and Jamie speculate on whether or not a guy like J.T. Miller should be traded and map out Vancouver’s issues through the roster.The views and opinions expressed in this podcast are those of the hosts and guests and do not necessarily reflect the position of Rogers Media Inc. or any affiliate.

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