Australia smash team pursuit world record as England take silver

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Gold Coast: Australia smashed world records in swimming and cycling on day one of the Commonwealth Games as they rebounded quickly from hurdler Sally Pearson's shock pull-out on Thursday.

Gold Coast: Australian boxer Taylah Robertson has become the first medallist of the 21st Commonwealth Games without even stepping into the ring after she got a bye straight into the 51kg category women's semi-finals.

England were able to put their rivals under pressure for the first 1500m but Australia eventually won by five and a half seconds, breaking the world record set by Great Britain at the Rio Olympics in the process. "When we set the world record (at Rio) it was a really quick time and we weren't expecting to get near it tonight".

"Everyone knows how much of a competitor I am and how much I love running for my country and my team-mates". It was one of three gold medals for Australia at the Anna Meares Velodrome in Brisbane on the opening night of track cycling competition.

"This is the stuff of dreams and to have that a reality is something that I will never take for granted ever again", she said.

"Just swimming in front of the home crowd is unreal", Horton said. Canada's Taylor Ruck upset the fancied Australians Ariarne Titmus and defending champion Emma McKeon to win the 200m freestyle gold.

"I want the gold medal and I am not going into the ring here to win bronze, said Robertson".

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Meanwhile, the Thalys trains that run from Paris to Belgium and the Netherlands were running without any disruptions. Under the government's plan, new hires at the debt-ridden SNCF would no longer have right to these benefits.

In the men's race, Olympic gold and silver medallists Alistair and Jonny Brownlee of England trailed home 10th and seventh as the 2016 bronze-winner Henri Schoeman accelerated away for gold.

But a night of medals were kicked off by Australia's talent-stacked women's team pursuit.

Chad le Clos of South Africa, now the gold-medal favorite in the race with Proud out, was the fastest semifinalist to quality for Friday's final.

Australia had held a virtual mortgage on the Commonwealth title from 1970 until 2002, winning eight of the nine golds before Scotland's David Carry (2006) and Canada's Ryan Cochrane (2010, 2014) broke their stranglehold.

Thomas Hamer also won the men's S14 200m freestyle in world record time, while compatriot Eleanor Robinson won the women's S7 50m butterfly in the para-swimming events to ensure England finished the day top of the table.

"I've raced against Hannah in every meet and I've been second every time", Willmott said.

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