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Rangers 3 Clyde 0 – Match report

Rangers 3 Clyde 0: Templeton inspires McCoist's men to ninth win in a row

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UPDATED:

18:33 GMT, 26 December 2012

David Templeton stole the show as Rangers secured a comfortable win over Clyde in the Irn-Bru Third Division.

The winger set up Lee Wallace for the opener, before grabbing a lovely goal of his own.

Substitute Dean Shiels then put the gloss on the Glasgow giants' ninth win in a row, as they moved 12 points clear at the top of the table.

Man of the moment: David Templeton (second right) is congratulated by his team mates after scoring the second goal for Rangers

Man of the moment: David Templeton (second right) is congratulated by his team mates after scoring the second goal for Rangers

Match facts

Rangers: Alexander, Hegarty, Perry, Emilson Cribari (Cole 78), Wallace, Little (Shiels 26), Hutton, Macleod, McKay, Templeton (Crawford 83), McCulloch.

Subs not used: Currie, Sandaza.

Goals: Wallace 21, Templeton 38, Shiels 76.

Clyde: Barclay, John Kane, Gray, Lanie, Brown, Fitzharris (Sweeney 71), Hay (Neill 81), Scullion, McColm, Gilfillan (McCluskey 88), Watt.

Subs not used: Rajovic, Oliver.

Booked: Hay, Scullion, Neill.

Attendance: 47,463

Referee: Crawford Allan

Rangers made one change from the side who defeated Elgin City at the weekend, with Ross Perry drafted into the starting line-up and Anestis Argyriou missing out with a knock.

Clyde tried their luck early on when Kevin Watt surged into the box from the left before unleashing a shot that fell well over the crossbar and did little to trouble Neil Alexander.

At the other end, Bully Wee goalkeeper Jamie Barclay was called into action to make a decent save from a thunderous Lee McCulloch strike.

Wallace then slotted into the path of Lewis Macleod, who cut across the face of goal for Andy Little but he connected awkwardly and the chance was lost.

Rangers continued to press for the opener and a McCulloch cut-back found Templeton but his powerful strike from distance was straight at Barclay and easily smothered.
However, the Clyde goalkeeper was unable to prevent the home side from opening the scoring with 21 minutes gone.

Wallace raced on to a Templeton pass before bearing down on goal and slotting between the legs of Barclay and into the back of the net.

Easy does it: Lee Wallace opens the scoring for Rangers

Easy does it: Lee Wallace opens the scoring for Rangers

Rangers manager Ally McCoist was forced to make a change seven minutes later when Little limped out of the action and was replaced by Shiels, who missed the last two games through injury.

Rangers went in search of a second goal and a sequence of neat passes ended with Kyle Hutton's 25-yard effort fizzing inches past the upright.

Hutton had to settle for being the provider instead as the Light Blues doubled their lead in style after 38 minutes.

In the goals: Dean Shiels makes it 3-0 during the second half

In the goals: Dean Shiels makes it 3-0 during the second half

Templeton collected from the midfielder and demonstrated excellent control to skip past his marker before curling past the grasp of Barclay with a superb finish.

McCulloch had the net bulging two minutes later after dinking over the keeper but he was denied a goal of his own by the offside flag.

Rangers continued to dominate after the restart and Barrie McKay set up Hutton for a shot that squeezed past several bodies in the box before Barclay gathered.

All smiles: Rangers manager Ally McCoist enjoys the win

All smiles: Rangers manager Ally McCoist enjoys the win

McKay then teed up a shot for Templeton but he failed to add to his tally with a strike that cannoned off the body of Gavin Brown and out for a corner.

Hopes of a Clyde comeback were shattered when Rangers claimed their third of the day after 76 minutes.

McKay delivered the pass to the feet of Shiels, who turned and dispatched a low drive into the far bottom corner to secure the points.

Rangers 2 Stirling 0: Templeton and Little on target in another Ibrox stroll

Rangers 2 Stirling 0: Templeton and Little on target in another Ibrox stroll

PUBLISHED:

17:18 GMT, 8 December 2012

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UPDATED:

17:18 GMT, 8 December 2012

David Templeton and Andy Little supplied the goals as Rangers avenged their only Irn-Bru Third Division defeat so far this season with a win over Stirling Albion.

Bottom side Binos had claimed a shock win at Forthbank in October but were left empty-handed this time.

Rangers used the match at Ibrox to celebrate their 140th year, having come through one of the most turbulent spells in their history which saw them suffer administration and liquidation before being re-launched in Scottish football's bottom tier.

Competitive: Rangers' Lee Wallace and Stirling's Ross McGeachie tussle

Competitive: Rangers' Lee Wallace and Stirling's Ross McGeachie tussle

Match facts

Rangers: Alexander, Argyriou, Hegarty, McCulloch, Wallace, Templeton (Walsh 88), Hutton, Macleod, McKay, Shiels (Little 77), Kyle (Naismith 68). Subs not used: Scott Gallagher, Cole.

Booked: Kyle, Templeton.

Goals: Templeton 59, Little 90.

Stirling: Peat, McClune, Thom (White 89), Bishop, McAnespie, McCulloch (Davidson 82), McSorley, McGeachie (Flood 77), Ferry, Day, Graham Weir. Subs not used: Filler, Allison.

Sent Off: McSorley (86).

Booked: McCulloch, McSorley, McGeachie, Bishop, McAnespie.

Att: 49,913.

Ref: Mike Tumilty.

Around 40 former players were
welcomed on to the pitch at half-time by pundit Andy Gray, including
members of the 1972 European Cup Winners' Cup winning side and players
from the Nine in a Row era.

There was also a card display and
fireworks for the season-record crowd of 49,913, although visiting fans
refused to join in the festivities and displayed a banner of their own
which read: 'More Like 140 Days'.

Ally McCoist had stressed beforehand
the importance of marking the occasion with three points and ensuring
Rangers remain top of the table.

Templeton and Kyle Hutton both started, with Little on the bench and Ian Black missing through injury.
Sixteen-year old Tom Walsh was named as a substitute for the first time, while Lee Wallace made his 50th appearance for Rangers.

Perhaps it was the celebratory mood
or a desire to avenge that defeat which saw Rangers pile on the pressure
from the first whistle.

After Marc McCulloch went into the
referee's book for a hard challenge on Templeton with seconds on the
clock, Lewis Macleod forced a decent save from Mark Peat at his near
post.

Templeton then lashed inches past the
post from distance, before the winger was again the victim of a poor
tackle which saw Daly McSorley cautioned on this occasion.

Show of support: Rangers fans air their views

Show of support: Rangers fans air their views

There was little respite for Stirling
early on and Macleod's blistering strike was just off target and the
goalkeeper was called into action again to block an angled drive from
Barrie McKay.

The best chance so far came when
Kevin Kyle knocked down into the path of the onrushing Macleod in front
of goal, but he connected awkwardly and the effort bounced over the
crossbar.

Albion duo Ross McGeachie and Jamie
Bishop then collected yellow cards in quick succession – also for fouls
on Templeton, who was making his first start since suffering ankle
ligament damage in mid-September.

Kyle had netted in the last two
outings but was denied by the woodwork just before the break when his
shot smacked off the post as Stirling survived the onslaught to head
into half-time on level terms.

Rangers still looked dangerous after the restart and the breakthrough finally came after 59 minutes.
McKay burst down the left wing and supplied a lovely ball across the face of goal where Templeton was waiting to lash home.

Kal Naismith almost added his name to
the scoresheet when he raced on to a McKay pass and forced a save from
Peat, before fellow substitute Little rippled the side-netting with the
rebound.

There was a tense moment for Rangers when Albion's Josh Flood saw his strike crash off the post.

McSorely was sent packing for a second yellow with five minutes to go, before Gers youngster Walsh was handed his debut.

Little then put the gloss on the win when he slotted home into the bottom corner in the final minute.

Rangers 7 Alloa 0 match report: Dean Shiels, Lee McCulloch, Robbie Crawford and Barrie McKay score

Rangers 7 Alloa 0: McCoist's men rebound from midweek mauling to sting Wasps

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UPDATED:

17:32 GMT, 3 November 2012

Rangers bounced back from their midweek Scottish Communities League Cup exit to Inverness in style with an emphatic 7-0 thrashing of Alloa in the William Hill Scottish Cup.

Dean Shiels, Lee McCulloch and Barrie McKay netted a double each and Robbie Crawford was also on the scoresheet against Paul Hartley's high-flying Irn-Bru Second Division side.

Anestis Argyriou and Fraser Aird were both drafted into the Rangers side for the third round tie, with Lee Wallace ruled out with a dead leg and Kyle Hutton dropped to the bench.

Let the drubbing begin: Dean Shiels fires Rangers a goal to the good at Ibrox

Let the drubbing begin: Dean Shiels fires Rangers a goal to the good at Ibrox

Match facts

Rangers: Alexander, Argyriou (Crawford 54), Perry, Emilson Cribari (Naismith 72), Hegarty, Little, Black, Macleod, Aird (McKay 61), Shiels, McCulloch. Subs not used: Scott Gallagher, Hutton.

Goals: Shiels 2, 21, McCulloch 33, 72, Crawford 73, McKay 82, 89.

Alloa: Bain, Doyle, Gordon, Marr, Meggatt, Simmons (Grehan 55), Ryan McCord, Young, Holmes, Low (Docherty 74), Cawley (Thomson 79). Subs not used: McDowall, Ross McCord.

Sent Off: Doyle (78).

Booked: Gordon.

Att: 25,478.

Ref: Iain Brines.

Shiels, Andy Little and Lewis Macleod were all passed fit to start despite nursing knocks from the clash with Inverness.

Alloa were boosted by the return of skipper Darren Young following a sickness bug but on-loan Aberdeen forward Mitch Megginson was unavailable for the trip to Ibrox.

Rangers knew they needed a positive reaction following the midweek defeat and they enjoyed the best possible start to the game.

An Aird corner broke for Shiels, whose deflected shot found its way through a sea of bodies and into the bottom corner after just two minutes.

Chris Hegarty then surged forward from the left-back position before rifling just over the crossbar from distance.
It was Shiels who doubled the advantage when he grabbed his second of the day after 21 minutes.

McCulloch was the provider with a lovely pass for the Northern Irishman and the offside flag stayed down as Shiels slotted past goalkeeper Scott Bain.

No mistake: Lee McCulloch slots home the fourth

No mistake: Lee McCulloch slots home the fourth

Skipper McCulloch then helped himself to a goal when he unleashed a powerful strike from just inside the box after 33 minutes.

The Gers utility man could have netted again just before the break with a ferocious effort that fizzed just over.

Alloa had failed to trouble the Gers defence in the first half but carved out a couple of decent efforts in quick succession after the break.

A well-struck free-kick from just outside the area from Nicky Low was comfortably gathered by Neil Alexander.

Kevin Cawley then saw his hooked effort curl just past the far post after evading the goalkeeper as the Wasps desperately tried to salvage the tie.

Celebration time: Two-goal Shiels helped Rangers to a convincing win

Celebration time: Two-goal Shiels helped Rangers to a convincing win

There was concern for Rangers 10 minutes into the second half when Argyriou was stretchered off after crumpling to the turf with what appeared to be an ankle problem.

The Greek defender was replaced by youngster Crawford, before Aird made way for the introduction of McKay.

McKay was immediately involved in the action when he teed up the shot for Shiels, who was denied his hat-trick by the post.

The teenager then pounced on the rebound and was denied the sight of the net bulging by the quick reaction of Michael Doyle who cleared off the line.

However, any respite for Alloa was brief as Rangers found the back of the net twice in quick succession.

It's so easy: Barrie McKay hit a late brace to increase Alloa's woe

It's so easy: Barrie McKay hit a late brace to increase Alloa's woe

Shiels squared into the path of McCulloch and all that was required was a simple tap in from the captain after 72 minutes, before Crawford supplied a low finish from a Shiels cut-back a minute later.

There was worse to come for Alloa when Doyle was shown a red card for a challenge on Hegarty after 79 minutes.
McKay then added his name to the scoresheet three minutes later with a superb shot from outside the box, before completing the rout with a well struck drive with a minute to go.

Blackpool 1 Huddersfield 3: Terriers up to second

Blackpool 1 Huddersfield 3: Happy return for Grayson lifts Terriers up to second

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UPDATED:

21:03 GMT, 24 September 2012

Simon Grayson returned to Bloomfield Road to scupper Blackpool's chances of moving top of the npower Championship as his Huddersfield side leapfrogged them with their third successive victory.

The Terriers boss, who spent seven years on the Lancashire coast as a player then later a manager, inflicted Blackpool's first home defeat of the season while moving his current team up to second.

Grayson went back to the home of his former employers for the first time since his departure for Leeds in 2008, and it was clear long before Lee Novak's 13th-minute opener that Ian Holloway's men were in for a difficult evening.

Three and easy: Norwood (left) celebrates his strike

Three and easy: Norwood (left) celebrates his strike

MATCH FACTS

Blackpool: Gilks, Eardley (Dicko 78), Baptiste, Evatt, Crainey, Gomes (M Phillips 64), Osbourne, Ferguson (K Phillips 64), Taylor-Fletcher, Delfouneso, Ince.

Subs not used: Halstead, Sylvestre, Martinez, Broadfoot.

Booked: Crainey.

Goal: Taylor-Fletcher 27.

Huddersfield: Smithies, Hunt, Peter Clarke, Gerrard, Dixon, Clayton, Norwood (Woods 85), Southern (Arfield 90), Ward, Novak, Vaughan (Scannell 80).

Subs not used: Bennett, Wallace, Lee, Robinson.

Booked: Vaughan, Dixon, Norwood.

Goals: Novak 13, Vaughan 45, Norwood 48.

Referee: Tony Bates (Staffordshire)

Attendance: 13,886.

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A direct approach had troubled
centre-back pairing Alex Baptiste and Ian Evatt from the off so it was
no surprise to see Novak profit from a James Vaughan flick-on to break
the deadlock.

The hosts were back on level terms just 14 minutes later, though, when
the relatively subdued Thomas Ince set up ex-Huddersfield forward Gary
Taylor-Fletcher for the equaliser.

However, Grayson's men found themselves back in front again when Oliver
Norwood's inviting free-kick was headed home by Vaughan.

And Norwood
himself gave Huddersfield a two-goal cushion less than three minutes
after the break with another set-piece which eluded everyone before
flying into the far corner.

Blackpool went into the game having dropped just five points from their
opening six encounters but they failed to seize the initiative on a wet
evening as the visitors took a deserved lead.

Adam Clayton and Daniel Ward had already gone close and the hosts failed
to heed the warning as Vaughan headed the ball into Novak's path and he
coolly slotted the ball past goalkeeper Matt Gilks.

False dawn: Taylor-Fletcher had equalised against his former club

False dawn: Taylor-Fletcher had equalised against his former club

Ince has turned in a series of eye-catching performances to underpin
Blackpool's strong start and he was instrumental in the leveller,
bamboozling Anthony Gerrard before sliding the ball across for
Taylor-Fletcher, who just had to prod home.

Stephen Crainey nearly picked out Nathan Delfouneso moments later as the
Seasiders began to grow into the game, but Grayson's men delivered a
killer blow on the stroke of half-time.

A Norwood free-kick from the right was begging to be thumped home and
Vaughan obliged with a header in front of the stranded Gilks.

Holloway's half-time words were still ringing in his players' ears when
former Manchester United midfielder Norwood curled in a third. The set
piece specialist's centre was aimed towards Vaughan, but the ball evaded
him and Gilks was left grasping air as the ball ended up in his net.

That prompted Blackpool to bring on substitutes Matt and Kevin Phillips,
with the former firing just wide, while Delfouneso should have reduced
the deficit when he blazed wide.

It could have turned into a thrashing, though, had the offside flag not twice denied Vaughan from grabbing his second goal.

But Huddersfield had enough to coast to a victory which will have been
particularly sweet for Grayson, whose Leeds side crashed to a 5-0 home
defeat to Blackpool last season.

Lee Wallace signs new Rangers deal until 2017

Wallace commits future to Ibrox as defender signs new five-year deal

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UPDATED:

15:30 GMT, 14 September 2012

Lee Wallace has signed a new five-year deal with Rangers.

The defender put pen to paper on the long-term contract which ties him to the Ibrox club until the summer of 2017.

The 25-year-old was one of a handful of first-team regulars who opted to remain at the club after Rangers were consigned to liquidation in the summer.

New deal: Lee Wallace has committed his future to Ibrox until 2017

New deal: Lee Wallace has committed his future to Ibrox until 2017

Adam Gemili clocks personal best in 200m

Diamond League Race Zone: Gemili clocks personal best in 200m

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UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 26 August 2012

Adam Gemili ran the second fastest 200 metres time for a British junior in history when he clocked a personal best of 20.53sec on Sunday.

/08/26/article-2193978-14B44147000005DC-360_468x299.jpg” width=”468″ height=”299″ alt=”Brit special: Adam Gemili (right) ran a personal best in the 200m” class=”blkBorder” />

Brit special: Adam Gemili (right) ran a personal best in the 200m

What 18-year-old Gemili made of yet another sparkling run was unclear to BBC viewers, with the broadcaster interviewing Tyson Gay, who came second in 20.23sec, after the race.

It was a stellar line-up including Olympic sprint finalists Wallace Spearmon, Churandy Martina and Ryan Bailey but spare a thought for winner Nickel Ashmeade.

The Jamaican wasn’t at London 2012 because he shares the same country as Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake and Warren Weir, the Olympic 1-2-3. Ashmeade won in 20.12sec.

Jet-heeled Jeter gets revenge

Carmelita Jegter must look back at the Olympic 100 metres final and think ‘What if’ after once again defeating the champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. The American veteran came second to her Jamaican rival in London by 0.03sec but beat her in Lausanne last week and again here, recording a meet record of 10.81sec. ‘It’s easy to keep going when you love running. I love to hear that gun click,’ said the 32-year-old, rather ominously.

Fast as lightening: Carmelita Jeter (left) won the 100m in Birmingham

Fast as lightening: Carmelita Jeter (left) won the 100m in Birmingham

Merritt wins again… but isn’t satisfied

Aries Merritt, the Olympic champion, continued his scintillating season’s form to win the 110 metres hurdles in 12.95sec, a meet record. ‘Smooth and silky,’ purred Colin Jackson but Merritt disagreed. ‘I made a lot of technical mistakes,’ he said after beating world champion Jason Richardson by 0.03sec. Britain’s Lawrence Clarke, fourth at London 2012, finished sixth here in 13.52sec.

Adams feels 'robbed'

Valerie Adams won the shot put with a throw of 20.52 metres, then spoke of her anger at being denied a chance to stand on top of the podium at the Olympics. Belarusian Nadezhda Ostapchuk was stripped of gold after testing positive for steroids, promoting Beijing gold medallist Adams to first.

The New Zealander said she had given her silver medal back but not yet got gold and hopes a presentation will be made at the Diamond League meet in Zurich this week or when she returns home.

‘She robbed me of that moment (at the Olympics),’ Adams said. ‘That hurts more than anything. Instead of being upset I should’ve been celebrating. She’s got to live with the consequences for the rest of her life and be known as a cheat.’

Winning throw: New Zealand's Valerie Adams was awarded Olympic gold

Winning throw: New Zealand's Valerie Adams was awarded Olympic gold

I could’ve won a medal if I was fit, insists Meadows

Jenny Meadows was at Sunday’s Birmingham meet sporting a pair of crutches. The 800 metres European indoor champion revealed she has undergone surgery on the long-term achilles injury which effectively ruled her out of the Olympics, but said she would be back next season.

She told how she watched the 800m final, won by Russia’s Mariya Savinova, and said: ‘I definitely thought there was a chance for me on the podium, the bronze was won in 1min 57sec and I have run that time. It’s been a difficult year.’ Britain’s Marilyn Okoro came third in 2min 01.96sec.

Huddersfield 2 Burnley 0: Jordan Rhodes scores again

Huddersfield 2 Burnley 0: Rhodes scores again as Terriers pick up first win of season

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UPDATED:

17:06 GMT, 25 August 2012

Prolific striker Jordan Rhodes maintained his run of scoring in every match he has played in this season as he helped Huddersfield record their first victory since gaining promotion to the npower Championship.

Rhodes scored on his full Scotland debut against Australia earlier in the month and netted a stoppage-time penalty to help the Terriers to their first point of the campaign at home to Nottingham Forest on Tuesday night.

The 22-year-old made it three in three with his fine second-half strike as Huddersfield secured their first home win over cross-Pennine rivals Burnley for 56 years.

On form: Rhodes netted again

On form: Rhodes netted again

MATCH FACTS

Huddersfield: Smithies, Hunt, Peter Clarke, Lynch, Dixon (Gerrard 83), Norwood, Clayton, Southern, Vaughan (Novak 77), Scannell (Ward 23), Rhodes.

Subs Not Used: Bennett, Woods, Arfield, Spencer.

Booked: Clayton.

Goals: Lynch 7,Rhodes 58.

Burnley: Grant, Trippier, Shackell, Mills (Treacy 73), Edgar, Wallace, McCann, Marney, Stanislas (MacDonald 90), Vokes (Duff 64), Austin.

Subs Not Used: Jensen, Bartley, Stock, Mee.

Attendance: 15,483

Referee: David Webb (County Durham).

The opening goal of the game at the
John Smith's Stadium had come in controversial circumstances from Joel
Lynch on seven minutes.

After a fast break from the home side
resulted in them winning a corner, Oliver Norwood sent an inswinging
delivery from the right to the near post and defender Lynch rose highest
to head in his first goal for the club since joining in the summer.

Burnley were left remonstrating with
the officials, however, as they felt that Joseph Mills had cleared the
ball off the line, but the assistant referee said the ball had crossed
it and the goal was awarded.

The Clarets almost fell further behind as Rhodes twice went close with headers for Huddersfield.

Sean Scannell floated a lovely cross
onto the head of Rhodes, but his first effort came back off the
crossbar, before connecting with another Norwood corner 10 minutes later
which goalkeeper Lee Grant kept out with a brilliant point-blank save.

Football League blog

Eddie Howe's men were struggling to
get a foothold in the game against the Championship new boys, although
they did have the ball in the back of the net on the stroke of half-time
only for David Edgar to be ruled offside.

After dominating the first half,
Huddersfield continued to impress after the interval and Keith Southern
was the next to go close as his effort from distance deflected just
wide.

The all-important second goal then
arrived for the hosts on 58 minutes as Rhodes rifled the ball into the
top right-hand corner from 12 yards out to give Grant no chance in the
Burnley goal.

The visitors twice went close to
pulling a goal back as first Kieran Trippier's inviting cross was headed
on to the roof of the net by striker Charlie Austin and then Ross
Wallace curled a free-kick just over the crossbar.

Yohan Blake overshadows Usain Bolt in Diamond League in Lausanne

Blake sends message to Bolt with third-fastest 100m time in history in Lausanne

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UPDATED:

21:26 GMT, 23 August 2012

Yohan Blake ran his quickest 100 metres in Lausanne to go level with American Tyson Gay as the second fastest man of all time.

Blake's time of 9.69sec in the Diamond League meeting in Lausanne matched Gay’s time from 2009 and is bettered only by his training partner Usain Bolt.

Gay was second in 9.83sec but there was a metre and a half between him and the Jamaican.

The Beast: Jamaica's Yohan Blake celebrates after winning the men's 100m race in Lausanne

The Beast: Jamaica's Yohan Blake celebrates after winning the men's 100m race in Lausanne

Can't catch me: Blake (right) beats American Tyson Gay (left) to the finishing line

Can't catch me: Blake (right) beats American Tyson Gay (left) to the finishing line

Blake will not be in Birmingham to compete at the Diamond League meeting on Sunday after being 'insulted' with an offer of only $40,000 to race.

He will have earned more than three times as much for Thursday night's fastest ever 100m in the Pontaise Olympic Stadium.

Blake bowed his head on his victory lap to his friend Bolt, who had been watching with other sprinters preparing for the subsequent 200m. Bolt won that at a canter in 19.58.

Strike a pose: Blake joins his pal Usain Bolt to celebrate their victories in the Diamond League

Strike a pose: Blake joins his pal Usain Bolt to celebrate their victories in the Diamond League

At a canter: Bolt crosses the finishing line to win the 200m in front of Jason Young and Nickel Ashmeade

At a canter: Bolt crosses the finishing line to win the 200m in front of Jason Young and Nickel Ashmeade

Round the bend: Bolt is flanked by Warren Weir (left) and Wallace Spearman on his way to victory

Round the bend: Bolt is flanked by Warren Weir (left) and Wallace Spearman on his way to victory

Bolt declines to compete in Britain outside of the Olympics because tax laws would cost him more than he would be paid. Blake will also stay away because he is not paid enough.

The outstanding British performer was Olympic high jump bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz, who equalled Steve Smith’s British record of 2.37 metres to finish third behind Barshim Ahmed, who jumped 2.39m, and Olympic champion Ivan Ukhov, who had fewer failures in clearing 2.37m.

Lawrence Okoye may have taken a step closer to deciding not to abandon athletics for rugby union when he was runner-up to world No 2 Gerd Kanter with a throw of 65.27m, the sixth competition this year in which he has exceeded the world-class distance of 65m.

Too quick: Ryan Bailey, Nesta Carter and Jaysuma Saidy Ndure can't keep pace with Blake

Too quick: Ryan Bailey, Nesta Carter and Jaysuma Saidy Ndure can't keep pace with Blake

Centre of attention: Olympic 100m silver medallist Blake was top dog in the absence of Usain Bolt

Centre of attention: Olympic 100m silver medallist Blake was top dog in the absence of Usain Bolt

Another fine British performance came
from Perri Shakes-Drayton, who missed the Olympic 400m hurdles final due
to hamstring trouble before the semi-final.

She
was third in 53.83sec behind Jamaicans Kaliese Spencer and Melaine
Walker. Pole vaulter Steve Lewis produced the second highest clearance
of his career, 5.80, when he took third place.

London 2012 Olympics: Usain Bolt needs rope trick

Rules leave Bolt in need of a rope trick… but he still eases through in 200m

PUBLISHED:

21:45 GMT, 7 August 2012

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UPDATED:

21:45 GMT, 7 August 2012

Olympics 2012

After easing through his 200 metres heat, Usain Bolt seemed more concerned with beating London 2012’s ‘weird rules’ than defeating compatriot Yohan Blake.

The 100m champion had his skipping rope confiscated once again but insisted he will try to smuggle it in on Wednesday night so he can warm up properly for his 200m semi-final.

Cruise control: Usain Bolt barely broke sweat as he eased through in the 200m heats

Cruise control: Usain Bolt barely broke sweat as he eased through in the 200m heats

'It's weird, some of the rules,' said the Jamaican. 'I had my skipping rope in my bag and they said I can’t bring it in. Next time I am going to stick it under my bag, at the bottom or something.'

Bolt's skipping rope was his only real worry as he jogged through his first-round race in his ‘favourite event’ in 20.39sec. Blake, the 100m silver medallist, was just as impressive during his 20.38 run in what he calls his ‘better event’.

The likes of Frenchman Christophe Lemaitre and the USA’s Wallace Spearmon are, you feel, battling it out only for bronze.

See you there: Yohan Blake was equally impressive in his hear, striding out to win comfortably

See you there: Yohan Blake was equally impressive in his hear, striding out to win comfortably

Great Britain’s Christian Malcolm, competing at his fourth Olympics aged 33, joined them after running 20.59 for second place. But James Ellington could only finish sixth in his heat in 21.23, his slowest time this season.

Ellington, so desperate to compete here that he auctioned himself on eBay to raise sponsorship cash, said: ‘I’ve jogged faster than that. I’m baffled — there is no explanation for it.’

Dwain Chambers says clash Usain Bolt will help him

A clash with Bolt can only help my own times, says Chambers

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UPDATED:

21:02 GMT, 23 May 2012

Dwain Chambers believes his 100 metres showdown with Usain Bolt on Friday can kickstart a dramatic improvement in his times two months out from the Olympics.

The 34-year-old takes on the world's fastest man for the first time in an individual race outside of a major championship when they meet at the Golden Spike meeting in Ostrava.

All smiles: Dwain Chambers jokes with Wallace Spearmon after the 150m event at the Great CityGames in Manchester on Sunday

All smiles: Dwain Chambers jokes with Wallace Spearmon after the 150m event at the Great CityGames in Manchester on Sunday

The Jamaican leads the rankings this year with 9.82 seconds, while Chambers' only outing over the distance so far resulted in a pedestrian clocking of 10.52secs.

That came in Puerto Rico earlier this month in his first race since the court ruling which declared the former drug cheat eligible to compete for Great Britain at London 2012 – although he clocked a 100m split of 10.26s in a straight 150m race in Manchester last Sunday.

He will expect to go quicker against the Olympic champion and world record holder in the Czech Republic and is relishing the chance to test himself at a high-profile grand prix meeting after so long in the wilderness.

'No matter what happens, whenever you get a chance to race against Usain you can only get the best out of yourself,' Chambers said.

'He's in 9.82 form and he's probably going to get faster and faster so I've just got to do my best to keep close to him.'

The main attraction: Usain Bolt in Ostrava on Wednesday

The main attraction: Usain Bolt in Ostrava on Wednesday

Chambers, who served a two-year suspension after testing positive for a banned steroid in 2003 and was subsequently snubbed for years by the major meetings, admitted a sub-10 time 'would be nice'.

The Olympic 'A' qualifying standard of 10.18 is his first target, though, and he feels racing athletes of the calibre of Bolt will be crucial to his preparation for the summer showpiece.

'It's going to make a massive difference because compared to the level of competition I've been running against for the last few years, the quality is higher,' the Londoner said.

'In order to beat the best you've got to compete against the best in the world and those opportunities weren't available to me.

'Now that they are, I've automatically got to get myself into a different mindset.

'I'm going to be going up against runners who are effectively sub-9.8 runners and I haven't been in that calibre for a long time.'

The truth is Chambers has never been in that calibre, with his personal best 9.97 set way back in 1999.

Dwain Chambers

Dwain Chambers

The tales of a career: Chambers at the 2001 World Championships in Edmonton (left) and running in Birmingham back in 2008

But he added: 'I have all the capabilities, I just need to get my mind sharper and my movements quicker. All these factors change. The intensity increases, the pressure increases and your expectations increase as well.

'I haven't had many chances to run against the fastest guys in the world. I have one now and I'm just looking forward to that.

'I'm still on a kind of rollercoaster and trying to find my feet and get myself prepared for competitions that I never expected to be in.'

Chambers will also be up against Jamaican Lerone Clarke and and American Darvis Patton, whose best this year are 9.99 and 10.04 respectively, as well as last year's World Championship bronze medallist Kim Collins.

Chambers prepared for the summer season by training in Jamaica alongside former world record holder Asafa Powell and was in the Caribbean when the ruling overturning the British Olympic Association's lifetime ban was announced.

He returned to Britain ahead of his 150m run at the Powerade Great CityGames, where he got a warm reception on his first paid appearance on home soil in six years.

Chambers will also run as part of a Great Britain 4x100m relay team at the Rome Diamond League meeting next Thursday after for so long being left out of the relay picture because of his Olympic ban.