Tokyo Olympics LIVE: Sunisa Lee wins all-around final for Team USA as Simone Biles watches on

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Tokyo Olympics LIVE: Sunisa Lee wins all-around final for Team USA as Simone Biles watches on

Day six of Tokyo 2020 saw Great Britain claim two medals in a matter of minutes in canoe slalom and shooting.

Mallory Franklin became only the second British woman to win a medal in Olympic canoe slalom by taking silver in the C1 class with Matt Coward-Holley claiming bronze for Great Britain in the men’s trap shooting.

Sunisa Lee

In less positive news, Great Britain experienced an upset in rowing by taking fourth place in the women’s pair. New Zealand won its first gold medal for the Olympics in the race, which took place early Thursday morning.

Elsewhere, three athletes have tested positive for Covid in the past 24 hours, officials said, including two pole vaulters. The entire Australian athletics team were forced into isolation as a precaution, on the eve of the athletics programme beginning, but have since been given the all-clear.

Golf has returned to the Olympics for the second time since 1904 with the golfers teeing off in the early morning for the first round of the event. Brit Justin Rose won gold in the men’s competition during the 2016 Rio Olympics, but it is Paul Casey and Tommy Fleetwood in action for Team GB this time around.

All of this comes with the Olympics still reeling over Simone Biles deciding to withdraw from the women’s all-around gymnastic final, but she was on hand to support her Team USA teammates from the stands.

Reference: Independent: Jamie Braidwood

X-Factor ‘axed’ by ITV after 17 years

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X-Factor ‘axed’ by ITV after 17 years

ITV has said there are “no current plans” to air another series of The X Factor — the talent show that launched the careers of chart-topping artists including One Direction, Little Mix, Olly Murs and Leona Lewis.

The statement came following reports in The Sun that creator Simon Cowell has axed the television music competition programme after 17 years.

The paper, which broke the story, said the programme was being shelved for at least five years and quoted a source as saying The X Factor was “unlikely” to make a comeback.

The programme last aired in 2018 when Dalton Harris was crowned the winner.

An ITV spokesman said in a statement: “There are no current plans for the next series of The X Factor at this stage.”

The programme first aired in 2004 and spawned spin-off shows X Factor: Celebrity and X Factor: The Band in 2019.

It was revealed in February last year that Cowell was “resting” the programme for 2020. 

Reference: Independent: Tom Batchelo

Kelly Clarkson ordered to pay $200,000 a month to ex Brandon Blackstock

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Kelly Clarkson ordered to pay $200,000 a month to ex Brandon Blackstock

Kelly Clarkson has been ordered to pay almost $200,000 a month in spousal and child support to her estranged husband Brandon Blackstock.

The 39-year-old singer was told by a Los Angeles County Court judge to pay the whopping sum to her former spouse each month following their split last year, which will cover his spousal support payment as well as child support for their two children – River, six, and Remington, four.

According to legal documents obtained by The Blast on Tuesday (27.07.21), Kelly’s monthly income has been valued at an astounding $1,583,617, which formed the basis of the judge’s decision regarding payments to Brandon.

The ‘Kelly Clarkson Show’ host is required to pay Brandon $150,000 per month in spousal support, as well as a further $45,000 in child support.

The documents state: “[Kelly will also] pay child support to [Brandon] for the benefit of the minor children, River Rose Blackstock, born June 12, 2014, and Remington Alexander Blackstock, born April 12, 2016, in the amount of $45,601 per month.”

In total, Kelly is ordered to pay her ex-husband $195,601 a month in support.

Kelly Clarkson

The documents also reveal Brandon has decided to leave his career as a manager in the entertainment business and is deciding to pursue work as a rancher.

Brandon, 44, “made a very deliberate choice to change his life and become a rancher full-time”, and his career aspirations include sponsoring rodeos and working the ranch.

Meanwhile, Kelly filed court documents earlier this month to ask a judge to declare her legally single following her split from Brandon.

The 39-year-old singer recently said she "can't even imagine" getting married again, because the pain of her current split is still too fresh.

Speaking to Gwyneth Paltrow – who is now married to Brad Falchuk after previously tying the knot with Chris Martin – she said: "You've been married for two years.

"Coming from someone who's literally amidst a divorce, I can't even imagine doing it again. So that's amazing that you found love, and you found the space and the vulnerability - that level to say yes, and do it again. Was that hard for you?"

The 'Breakaway' singer she is enjoying being single at the moment and having the time and space to get to know herself again.

She replied: "I'm actually in that place where I think a lot of people, I've heard, that go through divorce, it's almost like you start dating yourself again, like you actually make time for you again, and I love dating me. I'm actually not looking for it." 

Reference: Bang Showbiz 

Second shareholder comes out against Morrisons takeover

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Second shareholder comes out against Morrisons takeover

The US private equity firm seeking to take over Morrisons was fighting a rearguard action after a second shareholder came out against its £9.5bn bid. 

Fortress is scrambling to get back on the front foot after top ten investor JO Hambro said that its 254p a share offer was too low. The intervention came a day after Morrsions' biggest shareholder Silchester said it was opposed to the deal.

Bosses at Fortress have now signed up Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC to join their takeover consortium and the firm is on the brink of agreeing a similar deal with rival buyout titan Apollo Global Management, in a move likely to fuel speculation that it will increase its offer.

City sources said that talks between Apollo and the Fortress-led group are in their final stages, but cautioned final terms were still being agreed and a partnership could fall through.

It is understood that GIC and Apollo both held preliminary discussions with rival private equity firm Clayton Dubilier & Rice (CD&R), which lodged a rival £5.5bn bid for Morrisons in June before it was rebuffed by the board.  

CD&R, which is understood to be lining up former Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy to become Morrisons chairman, is now in talks with lenders for a counterbid. The firm has until Aug 9 to make its intentions clear under City takeover rules.

Fortress is already backed by a Canadian pension fund and the real estate arm of US oil billionaire Charles Koch, with debt underwritten by HSBC and the Royal Bank of Canada.

a sign on the side of a building: Morrisons 

Its swoop for Morrisons has won the support of the supermarket's board. But the takeover was thrown into doubt this week when Silchester, which has a 15pc stake in Morrisons, described it as disadvantageous for existing investors. It added: "There is little in the recommended offer that could not be achieved by Morrison as a listed company."

JO Hambro said: "We reiterate our view that any offer for the group approaching 270p-a-share merits engagement and consideration. With the share price as high as 269p in the last week, we believe the market shares this sentiment."

They added that the Fortress deal "falls short of this level". 

The interventions could force Softbank-backed Fortress to raise its offer. The deal must be supported by 75pc of shareholders in a meeting on August 16 to go ahead. 

GIC, which already has a 0.2pc stake in Morrisons, would provide £100m of fresh funding, giving Fortress more firepower to potentially increase its bid. It will provide the cash through via investment vehicle Cambourne. 

The Singaporean fund has already ploughed money in UK property through tie-ups with British Land, including its previous ownership of 5 Broadgate in London. 

One industry source said that GIC is "probably seeing the potential value extraction" in Morrisons' property empire, exacerbating concerns about a possible sale and leaseback deal.  

Morrisons owns 87pc of the freeholds for its sites. It has been speculated that Fortress could seek to sell these off to raise cash, although the private equity firm has insisted it has no intention of making any major changes.

Silchester, which is run by a group of former investment bankers, said that in particular the grocer can extract value from its property portfolio without going private.

It said that Morrisons' site in Camden showed there is an alternative way to benefit from its property wealth. The supermarket sold this land to housebuilder Berkeley last year for £85m, and it has planning permission for about 450 homes and 100,000 sq ft of offices. 

Shares in Morrisons closed flat at 266p, valuing the company at £6.45bn.  

Reference: The Telegraph: Oliver Gill, Laura Onita  

Tokyo 2020: Chinese diplomats furious over ‘shameless’ photo of weightlifting gold medalist

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Tokyo 2020: Chinese diplomats furious over ‘shameless’ photo of weightlifting gold medalist

Chinese diplomats were left furious after a photo was published of gold-medal winning weightlifter Zhihui Hou.

The embassy blasted Reuters as “ugly” and labelled the photo of Hou competing on her way to gold in the women’s 49-kg weightlifting as “shameless”.

A statement from the Chinese embassy of Sri Lanka read: “Among all the photos of the game, Reuters has chosen this one, which only shows how ugly they are.

a man holding a frisbee: China’s Hou Zhihui competes in the women’s 49kg weightlifting competition - AFP

“Don’t put politics and ideologies above sports, and call yourself an unbiased media organisation. Shameless. Respect the spirit of Olympics.”

The photo in question is an action shot of Hou lifting, while displaying a strained expression on her face.

Hou posted an Olympic record and a total of 210kg to take gold.

a man wearing a suit and tie talking on a cell phone: China’s Hou Zhihui stands on the podium after winning gold (AFP)

India’s Mirabai Chanu, who lifted 202kg, bagged silver at the Tokyo International Forum, while Indonesia’s Windy Cantika Aisah took bronze after putting up 194kg.

“I felt very happy when I finally made it,” said Hou said.

“In one second all the stress disappeared. I prepared for five years so it means a lot to me.” 

Reference: Independent: Jack Rathborn 

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