Winter Olympics: Tomorrow in Beijing - China's capital hosts opening ceremony, and figure skating begins

By Sports Desk February 03, 2022 513

The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic Games officially begin on Friday.

Beijing’s National Stadium - aka, the Bird's Nest - will host the opening ceremony at 20:00 local time (12:00 GMT) 14 years after it did so for the 2008 Summer Games.

President Xi Jinping will be in attendance to officially open the Games, and the ceremony will be directed by celebrated Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou, who has promised a simpler show than the one he directed in 2008, with an apparently unprecedented method of lighting the Olympic flame.

Away from the pyrotechnics, the flag bearing and the flame lighting, Stats Perform gives you a rundown of what other events take place in Beijing on Friday.

Alpine skiing

The second men's downhill training run takes place on Friday at Yanqing National Alpine Skiing Centre.

The field includes highly-fancied Swiss star Marco Odermatt as well as one of his closest contenders, Norway's Aleksander Aamodt Kilde.

Curling

This will actually be the third day of the mixed doubles competition, with Italy (2-0) the only team to have not yet lost, though they have only played twice while eight of the other nine teams have played three matches. The Italians play Norway (1-2) in the morning session and Czech Republic (2-1) in the afternoon.

Hosts China (2-1) face Canada (1-1) in the afternoon session, after the Canadians take on Switzerland (2-1).

Australia (0-3) are the only team yet to record a win but will have two opportunities to do so on Friday. They play Sweden (2-1) in the morning followed by Great Britain (2-1) in the afternoon, when Sweden also face the United States (1-2).

Figure skating

The team event begins on Friday, with the men's single short programme followed by the ice dance rhythm dance and the pairs short programme.

The United States, Russian Olympic Committee and Japan are expected to perform well, though Japanese superstar Hanyu Yuzuru is saving himself for the men's singles competition, with Uno Shoma listed instead for the short programme.

Ice hockey

Two more games in the women's preliminary round take place as hosts China face Denmark while Russian Olympic Committee take on Switzerland.

Both China and Switzerland will be hoping to fare better than they did on Thursday, with the former losing 3-1 to Czech Republic while the latter were thrashed 12-1 by Canada.

Luge

It is also the third day of the luge, with the fifth and sixth men's training runs scheduled for Friday.

The German and Austrian athletes have so far dominated in Group A while the slightly more open Group B has seen Italy's representatives mostly impress, though Latvia's Kristers Aparjods has also been among the frontrunners.

Ski jumping

Day two of the men's and women's normal hill training takes place at the Zhangjiakou National Ski Jumping Centre.

Thursday saw Japan's Sara Takanashi rank first in two of the three women's rounds, while in the men's event there was little consistency to be found anywhere, though Norway's Daniel Huber registered the longest jump of 106 metres across the three rounds.

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Last modified on Thursday, 03 February 2022 14:19
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