London, Aug 6
India’s MC Mary Kom valiantly marched forward to the semifinal of the Women’s Fly (51kg) boxing event at the London Olympics, assuring a medal for the country in the game of punches here today.
The 29-year-old Indian, mother of two kids, out-punched Maroua Rahali of Tunisia 15-6 in the quarterfinal at the ExCel arena. Her opponent was inches taller, 5 years younger but Mary Kom had loads of experience behind her. She started off slowly, gauging her opponent and then slowly dominated the proceedings. By the end, the Indian was in complete charge. In the first round, the Tunisian kept jabbing and the Indian kept pushing through. It was a very close round. Mary Kom kept her distance, trying to gauge the level of her opponent. But she managed to hit the important punches. Round two was slightly more aggressive. Some superb tactical display by the experienced Indian boxer helped her to take the overall lead of 5-3 in that round. In the third round, the crowd got to see the better of Mary Kom as she thumped back-to-back punches at her opponent who was taken by surprise. She took 11-4 overall lead over her opponent in that round. Mary Kom then won the fourth round 4-2 to storm into the semifinal.
Gowda qualifies for discus final
India’s Vikas Gowda has qualified for the men’s discus throw final at the London Olympics here today. The six-feet-nine-inch tall Indian threw 65.20 metres in his second attempt to make the cut. The automatic qualification standard for the discus final was set at 65m. Ehsan Hadadi of Iran was just behind Gowda with a throw of 65.19m. The finals will be held tomorrow at 07:45 pm local time.
Slingsby wins men’s Laser gold
Four times world champion Tom Slingsby won Olympic sailing men’s Laser gold today, banishing the demons of his failure in Beijing in 2008 and succeeding after 12 years of preparation. The Australian raced calmly to victory in the medal race on the Nothe course, comfortably leaving his nearest rival Pavlos Kontides of Cyprus well behind. Kontides took silver and the honour of winning his country’s first ever medal at the Olympics after 25 years as an independent sporting nation. Rasmus Myrgren fought off the Croation challenge of Tonci Stipanovic to win bronze and a second sailing medal for Sweden following their gold in the Star class on Sunday.
Brazil’s Zanetti crowned lord of the rings
Arthur Nabarrete Zanetti flexed his bulging biceps to upset 2008 champion Chen Yibing and become the first Brazilian to win an Olympic gymnastics gold medal with victory in the rings final today. The 22-year-old gymnast, the last competitor to mount the rings, edged out Chen by 0.1 of a point with a score of 15.900 to win the strongman event. Italy’s Matteo Morandi won the bronze. World and Olympic champion Chen had been expected to retain his crown and seemed to have the gold in his pocket after a strong performance and solid landing. But Nabarrete Zanetti produced an inspired display to snatch the title away from one of the greatest rings specialists. Bulgaria’s 39-year-old Jordan Jovtchev, a bronze medallist in 2000 and silver in 2004, bowed of his sixth and final Olympics by finishing seventh.
US judoka expelled from Games for eating marijuana
American judo player Nicholas Delpopolo has been expelled from the Olympic Games after testing positive for marijuana. Delpopolo, who had finished seventh in the 73kg judo event, accepted his expulsion, but said that the positive test had been caused by inadvertently eating food that he did not realise had been baked with the recreational drug. The athlete had eaten the food before leaving for the London Games, the International Olympic Committee’s report said. In accepting his fate, Delpopolo apologised to his national Olympic committee, his teammates and his fans and indicated that he was embarrassed by the mistake.
Makhloufi thrown out for not trying
Algerian 1,500 metres medal contender Taoufik Makhloufi has been thrown out of the London Olympics for not trying in his 800 heat, the International Association of Athletics Federations said today. Makhloufi, who won his 1,500 semi-final in three minutes 42.24 seconds, had been forced to run in the two lap race after his team failed to withdraw him from it by Sunday’s deadline, an IAAF spokeswoman said. The 24-year-old lined up at the start of heat five at the Olympic stadium on Monday but was already well behind the field at the start of the back straight before stopping running completely another 100 metres into the race and wandering back across the infield past the pole vault area.
China win gold in women’s radial
China’s Xu Lijia won gold in the women’s Laser Radial race at the London Olympics today, leading from the front in a four-nation head to head. The world champion silver medallist and 2008 bronze medal holder overcame a penalty turn to win the three lap race comfortably. “I give it my best for Weymouth, the whole world and also for my country China”, Xu told the BBC. Marit Bouwmeester of the Netherlands won silver and Belgium’s Evi Van Acker bronze in a fast race on the Nothe course in front of thousands of spectators. Ireland’s Annalise Murphy lost the battle for a medal, finishing fourth.
Kiwis in first semis as Germany go out
New Zealand’s women booked their first ever ticket to the Olympic hockey semi-finals today, knocking out Athens champions Germany with a goalless draw. In the other pool, Britain can progress to the last four with a draw in their final preliminary match against favourites the Netherlands (2330 IST). However, if China beat Japan by five goals or more at 1345, Britain will need a victory over the Netherlands, who are already through to the next round. Germany only had an outside chance of going through to the semi-finals, having already lost to Australia and Argentina.
Bryan twins target Rio gold
Age will be no barrier to another shot at Olympic tennis gold in four years time, London men’s doubles champions Bob and Mike Bryan said today. The 34-year-old American twins, the world’s best doubles pair for most of the last decade, beat Frenchmen Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Michael Llodra on Saturday to complete the so-called “golden slam” having already won 11 tennis majors together.
Serbia let Hungary into quarters
European championship runners-up Serbia blew a two-goal lead with 16 minutes remaining to let Hungary through their grasp and into the quarter-finals of the men’s Olympic handball tournament today. Four-times bronze medal match losers Hungary set up a last-eight clash with Beijing 2008 runners-up Iceland, the Group A pacesetters who have won all four matches so far including a replay of the gold-medal game four years ago against France.
Iran’s man-mountain ‘Salimi’ lifts for gold
The vast Olympic training room at London’s ExCel arena feels instantly smaller the moment Iran’s 22 year-old super heavyweight weightlifting prodigy Behdad Salimikordasiabi walks in. Not just because he stands 6 feet and (198 cm) tall in a sport dominated by the short and squat, but because ‘Salimi’ also walks with the confidence of a man ready to win the title of the strongest man at the London Olympics tomorrow.
Jamaicans celebrate ‘sheer brilliance’ as Bolt sprints to gold
Hundreds of Jamaicans who braved the wind and heavy rain to watch outdoor screenings of the Olympic 100 meters final on Sunday, erupted in wild celebration, blowing horns, banging pots and pans and waving flags, as their star sprinter Usain ‘Lightning’ Bolt retained his title. ‘Usain Bolt is the real McCoy,’ said one spectator, Alex Banbury, who watched the race on a giant video screen. ‘I knew all along that he would (win) the race, because he is a big occasion athlete.’ Bolt’s victory, in a new Olympic record time, gave the Caribbean nation of less than 3 million people an extra reason to celebrate on the eve of its 50th anniversary of independence from Britain on Monday.
Kazakh Rypakova wins triple jump gold
Kazakhstan’s Olga Rypakova produced a season’s best leap to take gold in the women’s triple jump final at the London Olympics.
The 27-year-old former heptathlete and long jumper produced a mark of 14.98 metres to see off Caterine Ibarguen of Colombia and Ukraine’s world and double European champion Olha Saladuha who took silver and bronze respectively yesterday.
Rypakova, who won silver at last year’s world championships, set the winning mark with her third attempt, finishing the night 18 centimetres clear of Ibarguen.
Rypakova’s previous season’s best was 14.84.