Sports

Commonwealth Games 2022 live, swimming schedule, results, medal tally day 1

Athletes from Team Australia enter the opening ceremony.
Athletes from Team Australia enter the opening ceremony.

The opening day of competition at the Commonwealth Games promises to be huge, with some of Australia’s top medal hopes in action.

From the pool to the cricket field, the Aussie team will be out to make an early impression in Birmingham.

Follow all the major talking points, latest news and results from our expert team in Birmingham via our live blog.

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CONDOM WARNING FOR COMM GAMES ATHLETES

Stock up on sun cream, hats and condoms — and be aware of monkeypox at the Birmingham 2022.

That’s the advice from the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to the tens of thousands of visitors attending the Commonwealth Games.

The UKHSA is warning of possible infections spreading in the city, as well as sexually transmitted diseases and the effects of hot weather combined with excessive boozing.

OPENING CEREMONY RECAP: ENGLAND’S MESSAGE OF INCLUSION

With the weather set to be sunny and hot over the course of the Games, Caryn Cox, health protection consultant with UKHSA West Midlands, is advising people to stay hydrated and practice safe sex.

A medical health worker prepares a dose of the Monkeypox vaccine.
A medical health worker prepares a dose of the Monkeypox vaccine.
A skin lesion caused by the monkeypox virus.
A skin lesion caused by the monkeypox virus.

“The Met Office is forecasting a sizzling few weeks during the Games, so we all need to slap on the sun cream, a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, seek shade at the hottest times of the day (11am to 3pm) and stay hydrated.

“Having so many people coming together to watch the Games and enjoy the celebratory events taking place across the region, there is a greater risk of spreading infections, whether it’s a stomach bug that can spread by poor hand hygiene or infections including COVID-19.

“In both instances, it’s best to stay at home if you’re ill. Also, it’s advisable that you’re up to date with your routine vaccinations, like MMR, MenACWY and COVID-19 before mixing with lots of people.

“With a party atmosphere and lots of people visiting the region, it’s really important to practise safe sex, to prevent possible spread of sexually transmitted infections. So, remember to use condoms, and if you’ve had unprotected sex, get tested for STIs.

“While monkeypox isn’t an STI, it can be transmitted through close physical contact, so look out for any symptoms and contact a sexual health clinic if you suspect you may have that or any sexually transmitted infection.”

WHAT’S ON? SEE THE FULL COMM GAMES SCHEDULE HERE

HOST NATION’S WARNING FOR AUSSIES

Game on, England.

There may be 72 countries in Birmingham for the Commonwealth Games — but it’s the rivalry between the two big name countries that is the main event.

England fired the first shot this week when its Chef de Mission Mark England said the number one priority was to finish ahead of Australia on the medal tally.

But with the Australians forecasting more than 80 medals in the pool alone, that isn’t going to be an easy task.

At the last Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast in 2018, host nation Australia won the Ashes battle with 198 medals, including 80 golds, compared to England’s 136 gongs, of which 45 were gold.

England is planning to upstage Australia and make a big impression on home soil.
England is planning to upstage Australia and make a big impression on home soil.

“Our aspiration is to top the medal table,” said Mark England, the aptly named chef de mission of Team England. ‘That is what we are here for.

“It will be a pretty good arm wrestle with Australia. Everyone wants to come to the host nation and do the best they can against them.

“But we have 429 athletes and 500 support staff who absolutely want to top the medal table — and we have a nation that wants to do that as well. We are going to give it everything.

“I can’t say where we will be in two weeks’ time because sport is not predictable.

“But everything we could have possibly done to support the athletes is in play.”

In England’s squad, there are more women than men — 226 to 203 — for the first time and there are 67 para athletes.”

Birmingham 2022 is the biggest multi-sport event in this country since London 2012.

Australia’s Chef de Mission Petria Thomas says the team was determined to finish at number one.

“I think, you know, we’ve made no secret of the fact that we’d love to finish on top of the medal tall,” she said.

“We had a very strong Commonwealth Games at home on the Gold Coast but we’re away from home and it’s always harder when you’re away. And we’re also on English home soil.

“So we’re well aware that it will be a fight but I think it the athletes will compete with such spirit they’ll fight every result.

“Hopefully we can give it a good crack and take that number one spot again.”

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