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Nottinghamshire's Olympic champions defend lottery funding

Nottinghamshire's Olympic canoeing champions Tim Baillie and Etienne Stott have defended the way lottery funding is targeted at sports with the best chance of medal success.

The pair, who won gold in the canoe slalom at London 2012, were speaking at the Nottinghamshire School Games at the University of Nottingham.

Earlier this month, UK Sport announced it was withdrawing lottery funding for British basketball, synchronised swimming, water polo and weightlifting.

It based its decisions on which sports have the best medal prospects for 2016 and 2020.

British Basketball was stripped of its entire £8.5m funding and will appeal the decision next month.

Baillie and Stott say UK Sport's remit is to achieve success at the elite level and it has to make difficult decisions with a limited pot of money. Stott also added that questions could be asked by the public if funding was directed towards sports which don't bring success.

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Olympic canoeist Tim Baillie retires

Tim Baillie and his Olympic Gold medal from London 2012... Credit: PA

Tim Baillie, Olympic canoeing Gold medalist, has retired at the age of 34.

The Aberdeen-born athlete lived and trained in Nottingham before winning Gold in the London 2012 Olympic canoe slalom, alongside teammate Etienne Stott.

Stott said:

"It's sad because it's the end of a chapter, but I respect Tim's decision and it is the right thing for Tim. He has helped me so much. He has made a huge contribution to the sport and to me as an athlete."

Elise Christie named Notts' Sportsperson of the year

Elise Christie, a short-track skater for Britain, has been named Nottinghamshire's Sportsperson of the year.

The 23 year-old Scotland-born skater was honoured at the 22nd annual Nottinghamshire Sports Awards last night (21 January).

Elise Christie after her victory of the Short Track European championship in Dresden, Germany, 19 January 2014 Credit: PA

Elsie remains a hopeful medal-winner at the forthcoming Winter Olympics in Sochi after winning bronze over 1,000m at the European championship in Dresden, Germany earlier this year.

Elise Christie Credit: PA

Paralympic swimmer Oliver Hynd MBE was also awarded at the event, winning Disabled Sportsperson of the Year.

Ollie was supported by both Mansfield District Council and Nottinghamshire County Council, and went on to win a Gold, Silver and Bronze medal at the 2013 Paralympic games.

Paralympic swimmer Oliver Hynd after receiving his Member of the British Empire (MBE) Credit: PA

Ollie said:

"These awards are judged by people involved in sport across the county and I was delighted to be able to attend. 2013 was another successful year for me and I am now looking at concentrating on the Commonwealth Games."

Other winners at the 22nd annual Nottinghamshire Sports Awards were:

Team of the Year - Nottingham Panthers

Junior Sportsperson of the Year - Ellie Downie (Ashfield district)

Sporting School of the Year – Rushcliffe School

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Moorcroft: 'Volunteers are required in sports clubs'

A lack of volunteers could hamper future attempts to make the most of the Olympic legacy. That is according to Former Head of UK Athletics, David Moorcroft.

Speaking from the office of 'Join In', an organisation that aims to encourage participation in sport, the former 5000m world record holder who is from Coventry told ITV News Central of his concerns ahead of the first anniversary of the London Games.

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