Jonathan eyes Olympic berth with victory at Abu Dhabi Triathlon - GulfToday

Jonathan eyes Olympic berth with victory at Abu Dhabi Triathlon

Jonathan eyes Olympic berth with victory at Abu Dhabi Triathlon

Jonathan Brownlee is confirmed to race in Abu Dhabi Triathlon.

The ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi will display the highest standard of elite athlete field in the history of the race for this year’s 2020 edition.

The full world’s top 10 male triathletes will compete in Abu Dhabi this year, whilst nine of the world’s top female triathletes will be heading to Yas Island for March 5-7.

Overall, 180 elite triathletes and para-triathletes will be facing off for a highly contested series, ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Double Olympic medallist Jonathan Brownlee will be diving into the course on Yas Island for this year’s race, looking for key qualification points to fulfill his Olympic aspirations. His brother, Alistair, who recently announced he has his sights set on a third Olympic gold medal, is currently on the waiting list proving just how competitive this field is.

All of the previous Abu Dhabi men’s champions - Javier Gomez, Henri Schoeman, and the three-time winner, Mario Mola - will be returning to the capital, alongside the reigning world champion, Vincent Luis. The triathlon will also welcome young talent, such as Alex Yee, who came second in Abu Dhabi last year, at the age of 21, offering fresh challenges for established and emerging triathletes in this year’s field.

Speaking of his upcoming participation in the ITU World Triathlon Abu Dhabi, three-time Abu Dhabi champion and three-time World Champion, Mario Mola commented: “This is a big year for us all.

“I’m excited to get back on the blue carpet and see how competitive I am ahead of the Games this summer.

“I’ve always loved racing on the biggest stages, and Abu Dhabi is a particular favourite of mine, having won here three times. Winning again for a fourth time would be such an amazing way to start my 2020 season.”

Nine of the world’s top ten female triathletes will be participating in the 2020 Women’s Field, demonstrating the level of talent taking part this coming March.

Katie Zaferes, the reigning world champion and Abu Dhabi defending champion, will lead the pack, alongside four of the five previous Abu Dhabi winners: Rachel Klamer, Andrea Hewitt and Jodie Stimpson.

Triathlon legend, Flora Duffy, will make her return to the water at Yas Island, after an injury filled 2018 and 2019. She will be joined by the bronze and silver winners of the 2016 Olympic Podium, Nicola Spirig and Vicky Holland, showcasing the level of competition to be found this year in Abu Dhabi.

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Zimbabwe trounce Afghanistan to win AD Test

A century from skipper Sean Williams coupled with destructive pace bowling from Blessing Muzarabani and Victor Nyauchi led Zimbabwe to a rapid 10-wicket win over Afghanistan in the first Test in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday. Williams hit 105 to guide


That left Zimbabwe to score 17 runs which they got without any loss to end the match inside two days.

Afghanistan were bowled out for 131 in their first innings.

Lanky pacer Muzarabani finished with 2-14 -- six wickets in the match -- while his new ball partner Nyauchi took 3-30, also getting six in the match.

Afghanistan were facing an innings defeat at 81-7 but opener Ibrahim Zadran fought hard during his 76 -- his second half century -- and added 48 for the eighth wicket with Amir Hamza who remained 21 not out.

Zadran batted for three hours and hit ten boundaries.

This becomes Afghanistan’s third defeat in five Tests since gaining status to play the five-day format in 2017.

The writing was very much on the wall when Nyauchi had Abdul Malik in the second over for a duck for batsman’s pair on debut.

Nyauchi then had Rahmat Shah (zero) and Hashmatullah Shahidi (four) while Muzarabani had Munir Ahmad (one) and rival skipper Asghar Afghan (14) to leave Zimbabwe rocking at 47-6.

Nyuaci’s previous best of 3-69 was on his debut against Sri Lanka at Harare last year.

Earlier, resuming at 133-5, Zimbabwe added 117 more runs to gain crucial lead.

Williams, who resumed on 54 lost his overnight partner Ryan Burl for eight but then found an able partner in Regis Chakabva (44) as the duo added 75 for the seventh wicket.

Williams completed his third Test century, and second in successive Tests, soon after lunch with a single to square leg.

But he fell while flicking spinner Amir Hamza straight to mid-wicket.

Williams had 10 boundaries while Chakabva smashed a six and six boundaries.

Left-arm spinner Hamza finished with career-best figures of 6-75 -- his second five-for in Tests after his 5-74 against West Indies at Lucknow in 2019. The second Test starts on March 10, also in Abu Dhabi.

Scoreboard

Afghanistan first innings 131

Zimbabwe 1st innings (overnight 133-5)

S Williams c Hashmatullah b Hamza 105

R Burl lbw b Zadran 8

R Chakabva c Malik b Zahir 44

D Tiripano c Zadran b Zahir 4

B Muzarabani not out 12

V Nyauchi b Hamza 0

Total: (overs 72; all out) 250

Bowling: Ahmadzai 17.1-2-48-1 (1w), Hamza 25-3-75-6, Zahir 19-0-81-2, Wasi 8.5-0-23-0 (1nb), Zadran 2-0-13-1,

Afghanistan 2nd innings

I Zadran c Chakabva b Tiripano 76

A Malik c Chakabva b Nyauchi 0

M Ahmad lbw b Muzarabani 1

R Shah lbw b Nyauchi 0

H Shahidi c Madhevere b Nyauchi 4

A Afghan b Muzarabani 14

A Wasi b Burl 9

A Hamza not out 21

Y Ahmadzai c Williams b Tiripano 0

Z Khan c Nyauchi b Tiripano 0

Total: (overs 45.3; all out) 135

Bowling: Muzarabani 8-4-14-2, Nyauchi 7-1-30-3 (5w), Williams 6-0-28-1, Tripinao 9.3-2-23-3, Burl 7-0-13-1, Raza 4-0-16-0, Madhevere 4-1-6-0

Zimbabwe 2nd innings

P Masvaure not out 5

K Kasuza not out 11

TOTAL (overs 3.2, for no loss) 17

Bowling: Hamza 2-0-11-0, Ahmadzai 1.2-0-5-0

Result: Zimbabwe win by ten wickets

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