Sport Shorts: The Eternal City Welcomes the World

Rome Goes Aquatic: The Eternal City is set to host the 13th FINA World Aquatic Championships from July 17 to Aug. 2. Complete with a “Roma09 Village” the massive competition includes the world’s best in swimming, open-water swimming, synchronized swimming, diving and water polo. It totals 2,800 athletes from 200 nations. The United States will be the favourite in swimming, led by Michael Phelps who set five world records at the 2007 World Championships. But many Canadian swimmers can challenge for medals in Rome. Montreal hosted this event four years ago.

Rice Wins US Open Crown: Two-time Olympic badminton player Anna Rice has claimed her first ever US Open final. The North Vancouver native, who finished ninth at Beijing 2008, defeated American Mona Susanto 21-17, 21-9 for the victory. Meanwhile, Canadian doubles pair Huang Ruiling-Jiang Xuelian won the women’s doubles title at the international tournament that ran July 6 to 12 in Orange County, California.

Battling Honduras in Philly: This Saturday, Canada squares off against Honduras in the quarter-finals of the CONCACAF Gold Cup men’s soccer tournament. Canada finished first in Group A courtesy of two wins and a draw. The match, which takes place at 5 p.m. EST in Philadelphia, will be broadcast live on Sportsnet. If Canada wins, they move to the semifinal in Chicago and perhaps to New York for the July 26 final.

Paddling Against Each Other: This weekend at the Olympic Basin in Montreal, Canada’s top canoe-kayak athletes will compete for spots on the World Championship team. That event will take place about 800 km away as the crow flies on Lake Banook in Dartmouth, N.S. beginning Aug. 12.

London Calling: As all eyes in this country are on Vancouver, organizers of the London 2012 Olympic Games have announced the external structure of its Olympic stadium is now complete. The 80,000-seat stadium will host athletics events and the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.