Sport Russian pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva says she was misunderstood in her previous comments condemning homosexuality

Pole vault champion's anti-homosexual quotes have put the country into the spotlight further that she will have thought

Dobriskey breaks new ground

Last Sunday in Berlin it was a silver medal lining for Lisa Dobriskey. Last night in Zurich it was the race of the Kentish woman's life. Well, the fastest 1,500m of her life. Just as in the World Championship final in the Olympiastadion five days previously, Dobriskey crossed the line third at the end of the metric mile in the Weltklasse meeting at the Letzigrund Stadion.

South Africa versus the world: The Caster Semenya affair

She has become a heroine in her homeland – and a political pawn for the ANC

Family hit back over Semenya 'gender verification'

After watching their daughter take the gold medal for South Africa in the World Championships 800 metres, Caster Semenya’s family should have spent today basking in the reflected glory of their offspring.

Semenya 'humiliated' by gender test

The gender controversy surrounding South Africa's teenage 800 metres word champion Caster Semenya has been humiliating for her, the country's athletics chief said today.

Meadows has a field day with scalp of female Bolt

Britain's Pocket Rocket into her stride and ready for blast-off

IAAF plans to raise gold standard for elite league jackpot

The elite Golden League series could be doubled to 12 meetings next year, taking the lucrative athletics circuit outside Europe with the creation of events in the United States, the Middle East and China.

The athlete: Lisa Dobriskey

For Lisa Dobriskey the Beijing Olympics might have been one of those breaking points which so regularly invite a young athlete to step back from the challenge that has consumed so much of their lives. She had had the opportunity to reach out for the kind of achievement that made Kelly Holmes a Dame and Rebecca Adlington the instant darling of the British sports public.

Jelimo is one in a million

Kenyan teenage sensation scoops $1m jackpot after Vlasic hits trouble in the high jump

Yelena's solo performance scales new heights

Yelena Isinbayeva, never exactly shy of the spotlight, lived out a dream of an experience here today - first retaining her Olympic pole vault title and then, as the only athlete left operating inside a full, steamy Bird's Nest stadium, improving her own world record to 5.05 metres. No wonder she recalled her gymnastic past by performing a crowd-pleasing backflip on the landing mat.

Star of pool is all-time great

Arise Dame Rebecca Adlington. The cry is sure to come soon, and loud, from the British public, as the bookmakers already make the East Midlands teen-ager favourite for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award.

Baddeley is a chip off the old block

Four years after being fitted with a diagnostic device for a heart flutter, middle-distance man looks to follow in the footsteps of legends

Dame Kelly Holmes: Heart of gold

After her triumphs of Olympics past, Dame Kelly Holmes is helping a new generation of athletes reach the top, she tells Mike Rowbottom

The 5-minute Interview: Dame Kelly Holmes, Athlete

'I'd like the country to feel more united'

A brief encounter, then a rapid exit

Pamela Jelimo stunned Europe on her debut last weekend but Kenyans have snatched her back. By Simon Turnbull

Forgotten woman Mersh ready to hit the high notes again

There were no fanfares when Jo Mersh packed her bags and left her Birmingham home on Wednesday to spend three weeks in Switzerland preparing for her summer challenge for Olympic selection. "People have sort of written me off," she said. "I'm sort of forgotten."

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Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there