Australian triathlete Hauser wins bronze

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Matt Hauser has won Australia's first medal of the Birmingham Commonwealth Games and given his sport a sorely-needed boost with bronze in the triathlon.

The 24-year-old Queenslander just failed to run down New Zealander Hayden Wilde at the finish as England's Alex Yee won the gold medal.

The women's race was a procession for Bermuda great Flora Duffy, who won her second-straight Commonwealth gold medal a year after dominating the Olympics race.

In her Games debut, Australian Sophie Linn, 27, ran through the field for an impressive fifth place.

Wilde, the world No.1, had a 10-second penalty immediately before the finish for undoing his helmet a split-second too early in the cycle-run transition.

But he had enough of a lead to hold off Hauser.

Wilde is protesting the penalty and hopes there will be dual gold medals for Yee and himself, but a verdict could take 30 days.

"My coach was yelling out, 'Hayden has got a penalty' and I was like, 'I'm just trying to hang on to third here mate, crikey'," said Hauser.

"I could see him waiting (in the penalty area) and I did all I can, I emptied the tank.

"It is a great honour to kick the Games off for Australia and let's hope we can keep going through strong."

Yee won the 750m swim, 20km cycle and 5km run triathlon at Sutton Park, north of Birmingham, in 50 minutes 34 seconds.

Wilde was 13 seconds off the pace and Hauser was a further three seconds back, while Australian Gold Coast silver medallist Jake Birtwhistle was fourth.

Yee called Wilde's penalty "rubbish" and the New Zealander tapped him on the shoulder when he was passed late in the run.

Wilde was told of his penalty midway through the run and NZ argue he would have raced differently without it.

NZ officials also insist Wilde did nothing wrong in the transition.

"I don't want to take away that medal - he absolutely deserves it," Wilde said.

"It's happened before, that there's been a double gold medal, so we'll see."

Hauser won gold as a member of the mixed triathlon relay team at the Gold Coast Games and Australia will be a medal favourite in the event again on Sunday.

Hauser's bronze and Linn's fifth also mark a timely boost for the sport after the disaster of the Tokyo Olympics last year, where Australia were uncompetitive.

Yee won silver and Wilde took bronze in Tokyo, but the Australians were well off the pace.

"It's one occasion that I'm happy to book some extra luggage on the way home - it's a great confidence booster," Hauser said of his bronze.

In his Games debut, Australian Brandon Copeland finished 22nd.

Duffy won the women's race by 41 seconds, crossing the line in 55 minutes 25 seconds, as Georgia Taylor-Brown of England won silver and Scot Beth Potter took third.

Linn finished 1:43 behind Duffy as Charlotte McShane was 11th and fellow Australian Natalie Van Coevorden was 14th..

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