Athletics: British trio forced out by injuries and illness

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COLIN JACKSON, Steve Backley and Kelly Holmes have pulled out of tonight's IAAF Golden League meeting in Zurich. The Swiss venue has traditionally attracted Britain's best but, with the World Championships in Seville looming large, Holmes completed a trio of withdrawals yesterday.

Jackson, aiming for a second world title in the 110m hurdles in Seville, has a stomach upset, while Backley has a slight knee injury. Holmes, after two disappointing 1500m performances, has opted to put things right on the training track.

Britain's sprint talents - Dwain Chambers, Jason Gardener and Darren Campbell - have also turned down the opportunity of one final 100m head- to-head with the world record holder Maurice Greene, of the United States. That leaves the Commonwealth champion Julian Golding as the brightest British hope when the action begins in the Letzigrund Stadium tonight.

The Blackheath Harrier has looked very sharp recently, running 20.20sec to win the recent AAA 200m title and clocking 20.23 when winning last Saturday's British Grand Prix at Crystal Palace. Golding will face Ato Boldon, of Trinidad, and Namibia's Frankie Fredericks.

Jamie Baulch runs in the 400m, while Ashia Hansen, this year's world indoor gold medallist in the event, continues her battle to regain full fitness before the World Championships begin.