Alia goes for gold

National swimming star, Alia Atkinson, should pocket Jamaica's first medal at Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia today after an impressive performance in her semi-final.

Atkinson has the fastest time, 30.53 seconds, going into the women's 50m breaststroke final scheduled for 4:41 a.m. (Jamaica time).

Atkinson, who won a silver medal in the event at the last Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, could also lower her own Commonwealth Games record of 30.17 she did in the preliminary round of the Glasgow Games.

Although Atkinson seems the clear favourite, president of the Aquatic Sports Association of Jamaica, Martin Lyn, is not prepared to count his chickens before they are hatched.

"I am not ready to say that she will win yet, the last time I thought so and she didn't," Lyn said making reference to Atkinson's second place finish at the last Games.

"We are looking forward to a great swim though. She has been training well and her confidence is high."

The 29 year old will be swimming out of lane four and should get strong competition from Australia's Georgia Bohl in lane three, who qualified in a time of 30.92. Sarah Vassey of England, who will be swimming out of lane 5 could also pose some challenge for the Jamaican.

"This year she has been doing very well. A matter of fact she has exceeded our expectations. She has done well on the short circuit course and we really expect great things from her but I don't want to say anything until the time comes because in Glasgow we really expected great things in the final and for some reason it just didn't happen," Lyn elaborated.

In badminton, the Jamaican mixed team will be looking to get on winning terms against Zambia after losing heavily to Singapore and Mauritius in their first two matches.

Lewis Walters will be seeking to continue his progression in squash when he takes on Australia's Cameron Pilley in the round of 16. Walters won his first two matches 3-1 and 3-0.

Squash player of the year, Chris Binnie, will also look to advance to the quarter-finals when he takes on Joel Makin of Wales in the round of 16.

CWG Schedule 

6:09 p.m:

Artistic gymnastics - Reiss Beckford

8:30 p.m:

Basketball - Jamaica vs New Zealand

8:33 p.m:

50m butterfly heats - Alia Atkinson


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