Swimming legend puts Olympic medals up for sale

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You there. You will likely never win an Olympic gold medal. Because very few are awarded each year, and to earn the ones that are, you’re probably forced to go up against the likes of Michael Phelps.

But, good news: You, yes you, can purchase your very own 1952 Helsinki gold medal for the low “Buy It Now” eBay price of $25,000. And shipping is free.

Swimming legend Ford Konno is putting a couple of his own medals up for sale, due to the fact that he’s 79 and he’s now ready to pass them on.

Konno, a hall of famer out of Honolulu who once owned two world records, took home gold in the 1500m in Helsinki while shattering the Olympic record by 42 seconds. He won another gold for the 4x200m free relay, earned silver in the 400m free, and added a relay silver in Melbourne.

All are available, and you might even get a discount if you buy two.

Also available for purchase: Konno’s 12 National AAU, 6 NCAA medals, 4 Big Ten medals, 14 medals won while competing in Japan, and 9 others, none of which he earned for participation, kids.

The seller, listed only as dankyboy from Honolulu, is also asking if whomever is willing to put up the cash for Mr. Konno’s medals might also be willing to donate them to the Japanese-American wing of the Smithsonian. So who’s got $25,000 to spare?

U.S., Great Britain to hold track and field dual meet

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The U.S. and Great Britain go head-to-head in a track and field meet on July 21 at the London Olympic Stadium.

“The Meet” will include nine running, jumping, hurdles and relay events and last two hours. Specific events and athletes will be announced early next year.

The U.S. topped the overall medal standings at every Olympics and world outdoor championships since 2004.

Great Britain is one of three countries to earn at least five medals at every Olympics and worlds since 2007, joining the U.S. and Kenya.

British athletes made six podiums at the just-completed worlds at the London Olympic Stadium, including in all four relays. The other two medals came from Mo Farah, who is moving to road racing and marathons after this season.

“The Meet” is similar to swimming’s “Duel in the Pool,” a biennial head-to-head competition between the U.S. and rival Australia from 2003 through 2007 and between the U.S. and Europe between 2009 and 2015.

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Maria Sharapova gets U.S. Open wild card

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NEW YORK (AP) — Maria Sharapova was granted a wild-card invitation for the U.S. Open’s main draw on Tuesday and will take part in a Grand Slam event for the first time in more than 1 ½ years.

Sharapova is among eight women given entry into the 128-player field by the U.S. Tennis Association — and by far the most noteworthy.

The former No. 1-ranked player and owner of five major titles, including the 2006 U.S. Open, has not entered a major tournament since the Australian Open in January 2016, when she tested positive for the newly banned drug meldonium.

That led to a 15-month doping ban, which expired in April. She returned to the tour, but her ranking — currently 148th — was too low to allow entry into major tournaments, and the French Open denied her a wild card. Sharapova planned to try to qualify for Wimbledon, but the 30-year-old Russian wound up skipping the grass-court portion of the season because of an injured left thigh.

Sharapova has been participating in tournaments via wild-card invitations, beginning in April on red clay at Stuttgart, Germany. She’s only played nine matches this season.

Sharapova was 19 when she won her U.S. Open trophy. Two years before, at 17, Sharapova won her first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon. She has since completed a career Grand Slam and become one of the most recognizable — and marketable — athletes in the world.

The U.S. Open starts in Flushing Meadows on Aug. 28.

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