The Belarusian sprinter who refused to board a flight home from Japan after allegedly being taken to the airport against her will is "safe" and being protected at a hotel, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) confirmed.

Krystsina Tsimanouskaya, 24, was in Tokyo to contest the women's 200 metres and 4x400m relay events but was told to pack her things after publicly criticising her team's organisation on social media.

She claimed a Belarusian coach entered her for the relay despite her never racing in the event before, which she suggested was a result of members of the team being considered ineligible due to not completing enough doping tests.

The Belarus National Olympic Committee (NOC) said her withdrawal from competition was due to her "emotional, psychological state", but Tsimanouskaya insisted she was being forced to leave Tokyo "without my consent".

The Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation indicated Tsimanouskaya feared for her life upon returning to Minsk. The country is under the authoritarian leadership of president Alexander Lukashenko, whose son Viktor heads the NOC.

Last December, IOC president Thomas Bach banned both men from attending the Games, declaring: "The IOC has come to the conclusion that it appears that the current leadership has not appropriately protected the Belarusian athletes from political discrimination within the NOC, their member federations or the sports movement."

Tsimanouskaya managed to alert police at the airport, and IOC spokesman Mark Adams later said at a news conference: "She assured us and has assured us that she feels safe and secure. She spent the night at an airport hotel in a safe and secure environment.

"The IOC and Tokyo 2020 will continue their conversations with her and the Japanese authorities to determine the next step in the upcoming days."

Tsimanouskaya has already been offered a visa by Poland.

Long jump favourite Juan Miguel Echevarria was left in despair after injury prevented him from chasing the gold won by Miltiadis Tentoglou on countback at Tokyo 2020 on Monday.

Tentoglou said he was lucky to win gold in a shock result over Echevarria with a last-ditch sixth-round leap of 8.41m, beating Echevarria on countback, while Cuba also claimed bronze thanks to Maykel Masso's jump of 8.21m.

Echevarria, who had topped qualifying, had a final chance to beat the mark with his sixth attempt but could not make the jump due to injury, slumping to the floor on his knees in despair, consoled by compatriot Masso.

"It was very, very painful. I couldn't do what I usually do," Echevarria said.

"I have no words to express how I feel because I couldn't achieve what I wanted, what I have been fighting for so many years.

"I am personally not very happy with the result. I have always tried to go further."

The Greek had earlier registered a second-best jump of 8.15m compared to Echevarria's 8.09m to have the countback advantage, with his final attempt putting him ahead.

"Last attempt, I told myself to calm down and do a normal jump. I didn't expect it could be so big," Tentoglou said.

"I consider myself lucky. I was not lucky to jump 8.41m the last attempt but I was lucky to win."

The winning distance of 8.41m was well short of Mike Powell's world record of 8.95m, which has stood since 1991.

Tentoglou backed Echevarria to move on from his Olympic disappointment and one day reach the milestone.

"If someone can do the world record, it's Juan Miguel," he said. "I don't know for me. I need to do the national record first. I am not the national record holder."

Puerto Rico's Jasmine Camacho-Quinn triumphed in the women's 100m hurdles a day after setting a new Olympic record in the semi-finals.

Camacho-Quinn won in 12.37 ahead of USA's Kendra Harrison (12.52) and Jamaica's Megan Tapper (12.55), who had an anxious wait to find out if she had claimed bronze ahead of Nigeria's Tobi Amusan (12.6) in fourth.

The Puerto Rican admitted afterwards she had her sights set on Harrison's world record of 12.2 but clipped a hurdle to thwart her.

 

TEAM USA AVOID BASKETBALL SHOCK

The United States bounced back after trailing to France in the last quarter to record a 93-82 win in the women's basketball.

France had headed the US 72-71 in the fourth quarter, but the gold medal favourites rallied with a 7-0 run to assert their dominance.

A'ja Wilson was huge in the final quarter, finishing with a game-high 22 points, along with seven rebounds and three assists, while Breanna Stewart had 17 points, seven rebounds and seven assists.

Japan booked their quarter-final spot with a 102-83 win over Nigeria, while the US will go through in top spot from Group B ahead of the quarter-finals.

HOCKEYROOS HEARTBREAK, INDIAN JOY

Australia's Hockeyroos had a perfect group phase with five wins from as many games but were stunned by India in the quarter-finals 1-0 in women's hockey.

Gurjit Kaur scored the winner from a 22nd-minute penalty corner to stun the Australians, who have not medalled in women's hockey since Sydney 2000.

Australia also lost in the quarter-finals at Rio 2016 but were far better placed in Tokyo after their exceptional group form.

India have never claimed an Olympic medal in women's hockey, finishing fourth in 1980, and will face world number five Argentina in the semi-finals.

Argentina, who have won medals at four of the past five Olympics, overcame Germany 3-0 aided by two goals late in the first half.

 

INDONESIA WINS FIRST TOKYO GOLD

Indonesia won its first gold medal of Tokyo 2020 as Greysia Polii and Rahayu Apriyani combined to triumph in the women's badminton doubles.

The Indonesian pair defeated China's Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan 2-0, in a triumph that was the country's first in women's doubles, having won all other badminton events.

Kim So-yeong and Kong Hee-yong won the all-South Korean bronze medal match against Lee So-hee and Shin Seung-chan 2-0.

Jamaica’s bold ambitions of chasing a double sprint sweep evaporated in unexpected fashion after 100m bronze medallist Shericka Jackson failed to advance from the heats.

It was, however, the way in which Jackson saw her bid for another individual medal slip away that left onlookers slack-jawed.  Competing in heat 5, the athlete, one of the fastest women in the event this year, seemed well in control of the race early on but began to cruise closer to the line.

The Jamaican was passed by Portugal’s Lorène Bazolo and also Italy’s Dalia Kaddari at the finish.  Kaddari finished third in 23.26, the same time as Jackson but advanced when the times were rounded down further.  With the heat being one of the slower events Jackson was also unable to advance as one of the fastest losers.  Jackson’s heat was won by the Bahamas’ Anthonique Strachan.

There was no such trouble for Jackson’s compatriot, defending Olympic champion Elaine Thompson-Herah who advanced from heat 6 after finishing in third position.  The heat was won by Canada’s Crystal Emmanuel with Great Britain’s Beth Dobbin second.

100m silver medallist Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce also advanced in comfortable fashion after winning heat 2 in 22.22.  Namibia’s Beatrice Masilingi was second in 22.63, with the Netherland’s Dafne Schippers also securing qualification with her third-place finish of 23.13.

The women’s semi-finals will take place on Monday at 5:25 am.

 

Italy enjoyed arguably their greatest night in athletics on Sunday with two gold medals in the men's 100 metres final and the men's high jump at the Tokyo Olympics.

Marcell Jacobs won the first Olympics title in the post-Usain Bolt era, crossing the line in a new European record time of 9.80 seconds ahead of the United States' Fred Kerley and Canada's Andre de Grasse.

The men's 100m, the first at the Games not featuring three-time champion Bolt since 2004, had been difficult to predict and that continued in the semi-finals as USA trials winner Trayvon Bromell, the fastest man in the world this year, failed to qualify with a time of 10.00.

The quickest times were in the third semi-final, won by 60m expert Su Bingtian, who smashed the Asian record with a time of 9.83 to become the first man from the continent to reach the Olympic 100m final since 1932.

After Great Britain's Zharnel Hughes was disqualified for a false start, Su this time could not get the explosive start he needed and it was Jacobs who held his form and speed to cross the line first.

 

His triumph came barely an hour after a memorable high jump competition concluded with joint gold medallists being declared.

Italian Gianmarco Tamberi and double world champion Mutaz Essa Barshim each enjoyed spotless records before three failures at 2.39, a height that would have matched Charles Austin's Olympic record set in 1996.

Rather than contest gold and silver in a jump-off, the two agreed to share first place, celebrating wildly after speaking with the official.

"It's amazing, fantastic, it's a dream. It's incredible. No words," said Jacobs to the BBC before admitting his compatriot's exploits had inspired him.

"I watched him from the blocks and he boosted me really, really hard. I love Gianmarco. It's fantastic."

Tamberi added: "This night is memorable. We made our dream come true and we passed through many difficult times. I don't know what to say.

"We dreamed it so many times and now we did it."

 

Rojas leaps into record books

Yulimar Rojas twice jumped clear of the world record to win the women's triple jump title and secure Venezuela's first gold of the games.

The two-time world champion soared well over the mark of 15.50 set by Ukraine's Inessa Kravets in 1995 with her third jump, although she was beyond the board.

However, with her final attempt, Rojas leapt to a sensational 15.67 to finish 56 centimetres ahead of Patricia Mamona in second and Ana Peleteiro in third, each of whom claimed national records.

"I always said I was born with a talent, with a gift and I was destined to do great things in life," she said. "I think I'm opening doors and not just for myself. I'm opening doors [for people] who want to follow me. I'm so happy here to be talking to you, to write the history of my country."

 

The women's long jump final will be contested on Tuesday, with Serbia's Ivana Spanovic topping the qualifying with a distance of 7.00m.

In the 100m hurdles semi-finals, Jasmine Camacho-Quinn laid down a marker to the rest of the field, romping through in a time of 12.26s to break Sally Person's Olympic record of 12.35s.

In the 3000m steeplechase, favourite Hyvin Kiyeng and reigning world champion Beatrice Chepkoech eased into the final amid punishing earlier temperatures in Tokyo.

 

Warholm and Benjamin surge into final

One of the great modern rivalries in men's athletics will continue on Tuesday after Karsten Warholm and Rai Benjamin eased into the final of the 400m hurdles.

Warholm, who broke the world record in Oslo a month ago, finished seven hundredths of a second ahead of the American in the first semi-final on Sunday.

Alison dos Santos of Brazil qualified with an arena record of 47.31s, just behind Warholm's 47.30s. A field so stacked with talent it was described by former Olympic champion Felix Sanchez as "insane" will make for a gripping final.

The men's heats in the flat 400m were also completed, world record holder Wayde van Niekerk qualifying in 45.25s, some way down on the leading time of 44.82s set by Michael Cherry.

Ferguson Rotich was the fastest in the men's 800m semi-finals, but Nijel Amos, who claimed silver in 2012 behind the great David Rudisha, collided with Isaiah Jewett and will not contest the final.

 

Gold for Gong as Adams completes set

China's Gong Lijiao won the women's shot put final with a personal best of 20.58cm.

Raven Saunders was second and double former champion Valerie Adams, who won silver five years ago, took the bronze to complete her medal collection at this event.

"I've seen Valerie winning gold all the time and I'm very happy for her, but this time it is finally my time," said Gong.

Anita Wlodarczyk, who is bidding to become the first woman to win an individual athletics gold at three consecutive Games, needed just one throw to book her place in the hammer final.

Within the space of nine manic minutes, Tokyo became 2021's latest Azzurri outpost on a momentous and historic night for Italy.

There were scenes of indescribable joy when Gianmarco Tamberi shared gold with Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim after each jumped 2.37 metres in the men's high jump. 

Social media was abuzz when the two agreed not to go ahead with a jump off, instead embracing in a warm hug before letting the moment overcome them. Tamberi, draped in an Italian flag, sunk to the track in sheer ecstasy.

From the position of the press tribune, the scenes were just as joyous as the Italian contingent roared their approval.

It proved a mere prelude for a sensational denouement on a hot, stuffy night at the Tokyo Olympic Stadium - a men's 100m final no one would have predicted prior in the heats.

The fastest man in the world this year, Trayvon Bromell, did not even make the final, narrowly missing out in his semi-final via a photo finish and not clocking a quick enough time to qualify as a fastest loser.

Italy's Lamont Marcell Jacobs booked his spot in European record-breaking fashion thanks to a run of 9.84 seconds. A sensation was brewing.

Even so, that was still only enough for the third quickest time in a third semi-finals of the highest quality – China's Su Bingtian storming home to set the pace at 9.83, finishing ahead of pre-final favourite Ronnie Baker after a photo review. 

For Jacobs to even medal still seemed a long shot, especially considering Italy had never before had a 100m finalist. Simply, there just seemed more obvious candidates to take gold in the Olympics' blue-riband event.

And yet, it is now Azzurri-riband. Jacobs made a flying start and never looked back to clock a new best time of 9.80, with Baker's compatriot Fred Kerley and Andre De Grasse – who takes bronze for the second straight Games – left in his wake.

Tamberi rushed straight over to his countryman in scenes that will have been met with wild celebrations back in Italy, this unexpected gold rush keeping the party going after Roberto Mancini's football team secured glory at Euro 2020.

What made those wild nine minutes even harder to fathom is the fact Italy had not won an athletics medal at an Olympics since 2008. The last time they won two at the same games was in Athens four years prior to that.

As special as this night was for Italy, its meaning stretches far beyond the ebullient Mediterranean nation. This was the start of the post Usain Bolt-era in the 100m at the Olympics. There is no doubt athletics misses its 21st century superstar and the men's race paled in terms of quality compared to the talent-stacked women's cast the night before.

Moreover, these remain the Games that most never wanted. Tokyo 2020 has undoubtedly suffered at times from the lack of crowds and golden moments played out with a distinct lack of atmosphere.

But this was a true reminder of what makes the Olympics so special, what makes billions of people tune in every four years (in non-pandemic times) to watch sports they may not have heard of before. The scenes of unbridled joy, the underdog stories, the sheer emotion of seeing someone's life work result in the greatest possible reward. They are human moments of cinematic grandeur and beauty.

Even before the bellissimo finale, there had been a timely reminder of why we're here at all. Yulimar Rojas, the two-time reigning world champion and silver medallist at Rio 2016, broke the world record with an astonishing leap of 15.67m in the women's triple jump. It was Venezuela's first gold medal since London 2012 and a first ever in athletics. 

The arguments will rumble on beyond next weekend's closing ceremony over whether these Games should have taken place during a deadly pandemic. On Sunday, Rojas, Tamberi and Jacobs offered a pretty good argument as to why they did.

After the high of winning three straight titles, Jamaica did not contest the final of the Olympic men’s 100m for the first time in two decades, as the event culminated on Sunday.

In the end, history was made as the title went to Italy’s Marcell Jacobs, which was the first time that country was winning the title.  At the starter blocks, however, the famous black, green, and gold gear, which has become synonymous with speed, particularly over the last decade, was nowhere to be seen.

The country’s two representatives in the event Yohan Blake and Oblique Seville exited the competition at the semi-final stage.  Seville failed to advance after finishing fourth in semi-final two, with a time of 10.09.  Blake saw his bid come to an end after finishing a disappointing 6th in semi-final 1, with a time of 10.14.  The country’s other entrant Tyquendo Tracey, Jamaica's national champion, pulled out of the competition before the heats after sustaining an injury.

It was a particularly disappointing end for Blake, likely to be in his final Olympics. For several years he was considered the heir apparent to compatriot Usain Bolt, who dominated the event for the last three editions, the first man in history to do so.  Blake has the second-fastest time ever run over the event (9.69) and finished just behind the great sprinter at the 2012 edition of the Games in London.

Since sustaining devastating hamstring injuries in 2013 and 2014, however, Blake has not come close to rediscovering his best form.  At the previous edition of the event in Rio 2016, he finished just outside the medals behind Canada's Andre De Grasse, the USA’s Justin Gatlin, and Bolt.

 

Lamont Marcell Jacobs claimed an historic gold medal in the men's 100 metres final at the Tokyo Olympics on Sunday.

The first Italian man ever to reach the final at the Games, Jacobs won in a time of 9.80 seconds, breaking the European record he set in the semi-final.

Fred Kerley of the United States took silver, with Canada's Andre de Grasse winning bronze just as he did five years ago in Rio de Janeiro.

The three medallists all claimed personal bests as all finishers went under 10 seconds, Nigeria's Enoch Adegoke pulling up injured around the halfway mark.

The first Olympic 100m contest in the post-Usain Bolt era had been difficult to predict and that continued in the semi-finals, as USA trials winner Trayvon Bromell, the fastest man in the world this year heading into Tokyo, failed to qualify with a time of 10.00.

The quickest times were in the third semi-final, won by 60m expert Su Bingtian, who smashed the Asian record with a time of 9.83 to become the first man from the continent to reach the Olympic 100m final since 1932.

He finished just ahead of Ronnie Baker (9.83) and Jacobs, who set a new continental best of 9.84.

After Great Britain's Zharnel Hughes was disqualified for a false start, Su this time could not get the explosive start he needed and he was effectively out of the medals before the last third of the race.

Kerley, who has come down from the 400m to try his hand over the shortest distance, looked strong in lane five but it was Jacobs who turned on the power over the closing metres before running to celebrate with compatriot Gianmarco Tamberi, who claimed joint high jump gold shortly before the race.

 

 

 

Decorated track and field icon Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce called being a part of a Jamaican clean sweep of the medals, for the second time at the Olympics, a blessing.

The two-time Olympic Champion released a statement on Instagram after winning the silver medal behind teammate Elaine Thompson-Herah in the Women’s 100 Metres at the Tokyo Olympics.

“I’m so grateful to be a part of this historic moment. Gracing the podium in a 1-2-3 sweep for Jamaica on two separate occasions is a tremendous blessing,” Fraser-Pryce said.

The trio of Fraser-Pryce, Thompson-Herah, and Shericka Jackson repeated the feat of herself, Sherone Simpson, and Kerron Stewart in Beijing 13 years ago, the only difference being on that occasion Simpson and Stewart shared the silver medal.

After thanking her friends, family, coach, and sponsors, Fraser-Pryce assured her fans that the job is not yet complete.

“I continue to keep my head in the game because there is still work to do.”

The multiple-time World Champion also offered some perspective on what legacy means to her.

“Legacy isn’t just about winning, it’s also about gracefully watching others shine too.”

Fraser-Pryce ended her statement by encouraging her fans to keep their spirits high for the 200 metres.

The heats of the women’s 200 metres begin on Sunday.

 

 

The British Virgin Islands Chantel Malone and Trinidad and Tobago’s Tyra Gittens will represent the Caribbean in the women’s long jump final after finishing 5th and 9th in qualifying on Saturday.

The other regional athletes in competition, Jamaicans Chanice Porter and Tissanna Hickling finished 24th and 25th respectively in qualifying with distances of 6.22 and 6.19.

Elsewhere, Trinidad & Tobago’s Portious Warren could not manage to get among the medals after finishing 10th in the final of the women’s shot put.

Men's 400m 

Nine Caribbean men advanced to the next round of the men’s 400 metres.  Heat 1 of the event saw Grenada’s 2012 Olympic Champion, Kirani James, finish second in 45.09 to advance.

Demish Gaye of Jamaica and Alonzo Russell of the Bahamas also advanced to the semi-finals from heat 1 as two of the six fastest losers, after finishing 4th and 5th in 45.49 and 45.51 respectively.

The third heat also saw three Caribbean men advance to the semi-finals as Jonathan Jones of Barbados, Christopher Taylor of Jamaica and Dwight St. Hillaire of Trinidad & Tobago all made it through.

Jones and Taylor finished second and third with times of 45.04 and 45.20 to advance automatically and St. Hillaire finished fourth in 45.41 to advance as a fastest loser.

Steven Gardiner, the reigning world champion, easily won heat 5 in 45.05 to advance to the semi-finals.

Trinidadian Deon Lendore also advanced from heat 5 after finishing second behind Gardiner in 45.14.

Jamaica’s Nathon Allen was also in heat 5 but failed to advance after finishing fourth in 46.12.

Machel Cedenio, the Trinidadian who narrowly missed out on a medal five years ago in Rio, also advanced to the semi-finals after finishing third in the 6th and final heat in 45.56.

Men's Lomg Jump

Earlier, Tajay Gayle qualified for the final of the men’s long jump, despite picking up an apparent left knee injury.

The Jamaican fouled his first attempt and picked up the injury while jumping 6.72 in his second attempt.  He jumped out to 8.14 in his third, with heavy strapping around his left knee.

Juan Miguel Echevarria of Cuba had the longest jump in qualifying after leaping out to 8.50 in his first attempt.

The men’s long jump final will get underway at 8:20pm today.

Natoya Goule won her semi-final to advance to the final of the women’s 800 metres.

Goule took the lead early and never looked back, running 1:59.57 to get to her first Olympic final.

Jamaica’s Chad Wright, in the meantime, finished ninth in the men’s discus final with a throw of 62.56.

Elsewhere, the Dominican Republic mixed 4x400m team of Andres Feliz, Marileidy Paulino, Anabel Medina, and Alexander Ogando ran 3:10.21 to finish second in the final and secure the silver medal.

Sean Bailey, Stacy Ann-Williams, Tovea Jenkins, and Karayme Bartley ran for Jamaica and finished 7th in 3:14.95.

 

 

Wayde van Niekerk was one of the great stories of Rio 2016, stunning the world with his record time of 43.03 as he won gold in the 400 metres.

The South African was back on the track on Sunday morning in Tokyo, and he has some work to do if he wants to get back to the medal stand five years later.

Van Niekerk finished third in his heat to qualify for the semi-finals, but his time of 45.25 seconds ranked as the 12th-fastest among all competitors.

"I definitely came with a bit of nerves but I think I handled it well," he said. "I took it by my stride, switched off a bit too soon, but still got the job done."

USA's Michael Cherry had the leading time at 44.82, while the top two finishers in Van Niekerk's heat, Colombia's Anthony Zambrano (44.87) and Steven Solomon (44.94) of Australia, were both among the fastest four athletes.

After his heat, Van Niekerk sounded like a man adjusting to his new reality, as he will not sneak up on anyone this time.

"Walking around again, looking at [the] Olympic record and world record and that's my time, it sometimes feels a bit unreal," he said. "But this time around it’s a new championship, new rounds. I have to totally focus on the mission right now."

In the only medal event of the morning at the Olympic Stadium, China's Gong Lijiao took gold in the women's shot put with a throw of 20.58m, with USA's Raven Saunders second at 19.79m.

But Valerie Adams' bronze medal at 19.62m may have been the most impressive achievement, as the 36-year-old medalled in the event for the fourth consecutive Olympics.

After finishing seventh at Athens 2004, Adams won gold in Beijing and London before taking silver in Rio. She is now the only woman in history to medal in the same field event four times. 

WORTHINGTON TAKES BMX FREESTYLE GOLD

Charlotte Worthington won the BMX freestyle park event Sunday, making Great Britain the first nation to take gold in all five Olympic cycling disciplines.

The 25-year-old from Manchester fell on her first run in the final but landed the first-ever 360 backflip in competition on her second to score a 97.50.

Hannah Roberts of the USA took silver with a 96.10 on her first run before falling on her second and Nikita Ducarroz of Switzerland claimed bronze with an 89.20.

“I'm over the moon," Worthington said. "I’m still sitting here waiting to wake up. I’ve been thinking about this day for the past three or four years, just going in and out of thinking I can, or I can’t do it.

"I’m literally waiting to wake up right now. It feels like a dream.”

Australia's Logan Martin took the first men's gold medal in the event, his 93.30 on the first run getting the better of Venezuela's Daniel Dhers (92.05) and Great Britain's Declan Brooks (90.80).

FIRST MEDAL AT LAST FOR FRATUS

Amid more history-making performances for the American men and Australian women on the final day of swimming competition, Brazil's Bruno Fatus achieved some long-awaited personal glory.

The 32-year-old took bronze in the 50m freestyle behind Caeleb Dressel of the USA and Florent Manaudou of France, his first Olympic medal in his third attempt.

A three-time world championships medallist in the 50m free, Fratus finished an agonising 0.02 seconds off the podium at London 2012, then placed sixth in the event four years later in Rio.

On Sunday, he ascended to the podium at last.

"Winning bronze releases a lot of pressure that was on my back," Fratus said. "I’m so pleased to step on the podium with Caeleb and Florent, two of the best swimmers in history.

"Caeleb has all the potential to beat Michael Phelps’ (records) one day, who knows?

"And Florent is a beast, a monster and one of the best in history. I’m proud to be his friend and share an Olympic podium with him."

Dressel won gold in the 4x100m medley too to reach five Olympic titles in Tokyo, while Australian Emma McKeon also did the 50m free and medley relay double to complete a haul of four gold medals and seven medals in all for the Games. She equalled the haul of gymnast Maria Gorokhovskaya at Helsinki in 1952 – the most won by any woman in one Olympics.

IRELAND BOXER WITHDRAWS FROM SEMI-FINAL

Ireland's Aidan Walsh was forced to withdraw from his welterweight semi-final bout against Great Britain's Pat McCormack due to an ankle injury suffered in the quarter-finals.

McCormack moves on to fight for gold against the winner of the other semi between Cuba's Roniel Iglesias and Andrei Zamkovoi of the Russian Olympic Committee.

Walsh will leave Tokyo with a bronze medal and the praise of Ireland's boxing team leader Bernard Dunne.

"What Aidan did this week is an incredible achievement," Dunne said in a statement. "His performance throughout the tournament has been outstanding.

"It is great to see him write his name in the annals of Irish sport. Just over two years ago we selected Aidan for his first major championship, and over the past few months that potential that we had identified has grown and developed into a world-class performance, that reflects greatly on the level of preparation he has put in ahead of these Games."

Walsh's older sister Michaela also fought in Tokyo, falling Monday in the featherweight round of 16.

Lyu Xiaojun became the oldest Olympic champion in weightlifting at the age of 37 to help tighten China's grip on top spot in the Tokyo 2020 medal table at the end of Saturday's action.

That victory for Lu in the 81 kilograms category led to China's fifth weightlifting gold of this year's Games and broke the record previously held by Rudolf Plyukfelder, who was 36 when winning gold at Tokyo 1964. 

China also came out on top in the women's windsurfer – RS:X event after a tense three-way battle which saw Yunxiu Lu edge out Charline Picon and Emma Wilson of France and Great Britain respectively.

Japan remain second in the overall medal standings, despite failing to add to their 17 golds, which allowed the USA to close the gap after a successful day in the pool.

Caeleb Dressel won the 100m butterfly to become only the second man to win that and the 100m freestyle at the same Olympic Games after compatriot Mark Spitz in Munich in 1972.

And Katie Ledecky won the women's 800m freestyle to become the first woman to win six individual Olympic gold medals in swimming.

The Russian Olympic Committee won their solitary gold for the day in fencing, triumphing in the women's sabre team final with a narrow victory over France to remain fourth, while Australia stay fifth thanks to Kaylee McKeown, who won the women's 200m backstroke to add to her 100m backstroke triumph.

Further down the list, Jamaica earned a clean sweep of medals in the women's 100m as Elaine Thompson-Herah pipped compatriots Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson to retain her crown as the world's fastest female.

Other notable gold medals were awarded to Team GB in the triathlon mixed relay and Poland in the 4 x 400m mixed relay, with both of those events being added to the Olympic schedule for the first time in Tokyo.

It was also a day to remember for Sweden as Daniel Stahl took gold in the men's discus, finishing just ahead of training partner Simon Pettersson to complete their nation's first one-two finish in an event at the summer Games since the men's 10,000m race walk at London 1948.

 

Jamaica completed a one-two-three clean sweep in the women's 100m sprint race in Tokyo, with gold medallist Elaine Thompson-Herah setting an Olympic record.

Thompson-Herah defended the title she won in Rio and became the second-fastest woman in history in the process, recording a time of 10.61 seconds.

Reigning world champion and compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce claimed silver, just .02 seconds ahead of Shericka Jackson as Jamaica completed a clean sweep which was celebrated on Twitter by Usain Bolt.

Legendary sprinter Bolt  – an eight-time gold medallist – retired in 2017, and the men's preliminary rounds struggled for big names in his absence.

 

Jamaica will have another chance of a medal in athletics, with 2019 world champion long jumper Tajay Gayle overcoming injury to make Monday's final with a leap of 8.14m.

Sweden sealed a one-two in the men's discus – Daniel Stahl taking gold and Simon Pettersson silver – while Poland won their second Olympic gold medal in a relay event in athletics, their mixed team succeeding in the same city in which their women had tasted victory in 1964.


NO LUCK FOR NOVAK

Djokovic's Golden Slam hopes were ended on Friday, and on Saturday, his medal hopes crumbled.

The world number one lost to Spain's Pablo Carreno Busta, who won 6-4 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 in the bronze medal match in the men's singles.

For Djokovic, it was a defeat which represented the end of his campaign.

He would have had another shot at bronze in the mixed doubles alongside Nina Stojanovic, but withdrew from that match, handing the medal to Ash Barty and John Peers of Australia in the process. 

"The exhaustion, both physical and mental, got to me and it's unfortunate that in the most important matches I just didn't deliver, but I gave it all," said Djokovic, whose attention will now turn to winning the US Open to complete a calendar Grand Slam.

 

BLACK FERNS RIGHT RIO WRONGS

New Zealand's women clinched gold in the rugby sevens on Saturday, overcoming France 26-12.

The Black Ferns cruised to the final in 2016, but slumped to a defeat to rivals Australia. Co-captain Portia Woodman was pictured in tears on the field in Brazil, yet her team made no such mistake this time around.

"Crying underneath the posts was one that I looked back on, but now it's gone," Woodman said. "Not when I look at this," she added, gesturing to the gold medal around her neck.

"Yeah, we've got titles and we've won things, but I want our group to be good people and show the world that you can be a good, genuine person and still have success," Woodman's fellow co-captain Sarah Hirini said. 

"Our programme allowed that. Things like this happen because you're able to be who you are."

In the bronze medal match, Fiji defeated Great Britain 21-12.

"We are totally gutted. We really thought we could come here and get a medal, but we just weren't good enough," conceded Team GB's Hannah Smith. "Fiji really brought it to us today, so fair play to them."

DEBUT BRONZE FOR WILSON, CHINA TAKE WINDSURFING GOLD

There was joy for Britain out on the water, however, as Emma Wilson – an Olympic debutant – won bronze in the women's windsurfing.

Wilson was already guaranteed a medal due to winning four races in the lead up to the final. The 22-year-old missed out on silver as Lu Yunxiu of China kept within a boat's length to claim the gold.

Charline Picon took silver to follow up her win in Rio five years ago.

"It's amazing. I tried so hard in that race - I just kept going and going," said Wilson. "I just want to win, but any medal is amazing. I'm super happy and I just gave it everything I had."

 

CHINESE TAIPEI WIN MAIDEN BADMINTON GOLD

Lee Yang and Wang Chi-Lin took home Chinese Taipei's first badminton gold on Saturday with a victory over Liu Yu Chen and Li Jun Hui of two-time reigning champions China in the men's doubles final.

Their victory brought up the seventh Olympic gold for Chinese Taipei – the previous six having been split across weightlifting (four) and taekwondo (two).

Malaysia claimed their first medal in Tokyo thanks to Wooi Yik Soh and Aaron Chia triumphing in the bronze medal match.

In total, Malaysia have claimed 12 medals in their Olympic history, but are yet to clinch gold in any event.

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce fell just short of winning a third Olympic gold medal in the women's 100m but is proud to have left behind a legacy on the grandest stage as she reiterated her intention to retire next year.

The reigning world champion, seeking to become the first woman to win the same athletics event at three different Games following her success at Beijing 2008 and London 2012, finished marginally behind compatriot Elaine Thompson-Herah.

Jamaica's Fraser-Pryce previously announced she intends to bow out of athletics in 2022 and will push ahead with those plans after adding to those two previous golds and the bronze collected at Rio 2016.

"The Paris Games are some way off, and I did say this would be my last Olympic appearance," said Fraser-Pryce, who missed more than a year of action around the birth of her son in 2017.

"As I said previously, I'm just happy to be competing at my fourth Games, doing it as a mum at 34 when people believe you're at the end of your career. To do what I'm doing now is a gift from God.

"I haven't had my best moment yet. I definitely believe something else is there. This is my final Olympics, but I'm looking forward to the World Championships next year and that will definitely be my final season."

Fraser-Pryce posted the fastest time in qualifying for Saturday's final, which saw six of the eight competitors finish under 11 seconds in what was the quickest women's final of all time.

Thompson-Herah's Olympic record time of 10.61s saw her take a second successive gold in the event and Shericka Jackson completed a Jamaican one-two-three with a personal best of 10.76s.

"I have respect for both of those ladies," Fraser-Pryce said. "Of course I'm disappointed – that was my first reaction. If you're an athlete and didn't run the race you wanted, you still have to be grateful for the opportunity and be happy for those who won.

"If it wasn't for the pandemic I can only imagine what would be happening in Jamaica right now. Just speaking about the legacy that we have back home, all those athletes young and old, they are all inspired by something that happened tonight."

POLAND MAKE HISTORY

The women's 100m race was one of three medal events on Saturday, with Poland earlier pulling off an upset by winning the Games' first ever 4x400m mixed relay.

Poland's team, comprised of Karol Zalewski, Natalia Kaczmarek, Justyna Swiety-Ersetic and Kajetan Duszynski, posted the fastest time in the heats and produced another great display in the final with a winning time of 3:09.87.

It is the second Olympic gold medal Poland have won in a relay event in athletics following their success in the women's 4x400m at the Tokyo Games in 1964.

United States are the world champions and entered the event as favourites, but they had tough time of things in qualifying – initially being disqualified before being reinstated – and finished third with 3:10.22.

Despite being pipped to gold by Poland and silver by the Dominican Republic, USA competitor Kendall Ellis was pleased to simply be on the podium.

"It feels great," she said. "It is so exciting to come here and run the first mixed relay at the Olympic Games, and to come out with a medal feels great. It feels like a win for us."

 

SWEDISH ONE-TWO IN MEN'S DISCUS

Sweden's Daniel Stahl lived up to his reputation of world champion by coming out on top in the men's discus to win gold, while compatriot Simon Pettersson took silver.

Stahl was the strong favourite coming into the event and registered a distance of 68.90m on his second attempt to finish ahead of Pettersson (67.39m) and Lukas Weishaidinger (67.07m) of Austria.

The last time Sweden took gold and silver in an event at a summer Games was in the men's 10,000m walk race at London 1948.

Australia's Matthew Denny sent the discus soaring a personal best 67.02m on his final attempt, but that was not enough for a medal.

"It's amazing. I am very happy," said Stahl, who became the first Swedish athlete to win an Olympic title in athletics since 2004. "There was a lot of hard work and fun on the way. I am extremely proud.

"My training partner [Pettersson] has been working hard. We have had a lot of fun together for many years. I am very proud of my coach too for believing in us and having faith."

POST-BOLT ERA BEGINS IN TOKYO

Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt won three straight men's 100m titles between 2008 and 2016, but he announced his retirement four years ago and the discipline is now wide open.

The preliminary rounds kicked off on Saturday, with the headline act being Dorian Keletela – competing at the Games as part of the Olympic Refugee team – advancing to Sunday's semi-final with a personal best of 10.33s.

In Saturday's other qualifying rounds, Cuba's Juan Miguel Echevarria spearheaded a group of 12 athletes to progress to Monday's final ​in the men's long jump with a leap of 8.50m.

2019 world champion Tajay Gayle, representing Jamaica, had to have a bandage applied to his left knee after struggling in his first two attempts, though he still advanced with a jump of 8.14m.

There were no surprises in the men's 800m heats, with all the favourites still in contention to take the title off David Rudisha, who is not competing at this year's Games due to injury.

Elaine Thompson-Herah insists she did not have any record in mind after her stunning victory in the women's 100 metres final at Tokyo 2020.

The Jamaican defended the title she won at Rio 2016 in sensational fashion, sprinting home in an Olympic-record time of 10.61 seconds to deny Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce becoming the first woman to win the same athletics event at three different Games.

It was the first time Thompson-Herah, who has endured a frustrating time with Achilles injuries since her crowning moment in Rio five years ago, had run below 10.7s.

But the 29-year-old was focused only on winning and believes her benchmark will too eventually be broken.

"Going into the final I didn't have a time in my head, I was just trying to execute the best race and I had the best race tonight because I got the PB," she told a post-race news conference.

"I wasn't looking at any record or any time as I said. But eventually those times will erase, even if it takes four or five years they will [be] erased [by] somebody. 

"Other women are coming up, rising, so to run this Olympic record tonight sends out a message anything is possible."

Fraser-Pryce had been the favourite to win the 100m for a third time in her decorated career but had to settle for silver, while Shericka Jackson completed a Jamaica one, two, three.

Thompson-Herah hailed Fraser-Pryce, who said this will be her final Olympics, as a benchmark in the sport.

"I wasn't checking the stats [of my races against Fraser-Pryce] I wasn't even counting," she added.

"She's a talented and a great athlete of course. She set the barrier for us younger generation coming through. As for a mum, she's soon to walk away from the sport, she's left her mark."

On the race itself, which saw Fraser-Pryce tense up over the last 30m with her rival right on her shoulder, Thompson-Herah confessed she had some nerves at the starting block.

"I've not seen the race as yet, I was super nervous but I had to control it. I knew all eight ladies were nervous," she said.

"We had done everything we could have done there is nothing else I could change. I think I had the best race tonight, I don't know if there is more to come but [I have] a PB and Olympic record so therefore tonight is the best race."

"I think my journey hasn't fully started yet."

For a double Olympic champion to say that may seem strange. But in the case of Elaine Thompson-Herah, who made such a claim in an interview with the Olympic Channel last September, it makes sense.

Five years ago in Rio, Thompson-Herah had toppled the great Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, the two-time defending 100 metres women's champion at that point, who had struggled for form having contended with a painful toe injury.

When she followed up with 200m glory she became the first Jamaican to do the sprint double at the same Games. She was only the second from any nation in history do it.

It was as though a ceremonial torch had been passed from Fraser-Pryce, whose rise to stardom had coincided so beautifully with Usain Bolt's in a glorious era for Jamaican sprinting, to Thompson-Herah.

Only the path in sports is never quite so straightforward, and so it proved for Thompson-Herah. 

Just a year later, while Fraser-Pryce was absent having gone into labour with her first child, she placed fifth in the 100m final at the 2017 World Championships in London and did not even compete in the 200m.

Two years later, in Doha, disappointment struck again. Fraser-Pryce had returned to the top of the 100m food chain to reclaim gold. Thompson-Herah placed outside the medals in fourth. In the 200m, she was forced to pull out prior to the semi-finals with a nagging Achilles injury that had plagued her since 2018.

Those injuries were never used as an excuse. Instead it only fuelled a fire inside to return to the top.

"Disappointments do come, but I have to continue to work hard because no athlete goes into a championship to lose. I didn't go to a championship to lose. It was beyond my control," she said in the aforementioned Olympics Channel interview.

"Because sometimes when you have pain you don't want to share it on social media and share it with everybody. When you have pain, you think you can still do your best. I always tell myself that even if I am having pain, I am going to give my 100 per cent, even if it's not going to be 100 per cent, I know I am going to do my best."

Then, as it did for every athlete whether for better or worse, fate intervened. The coronavirus pandemic forced the postponement of the Games. For some, opportunity was denied. For others, there was a chance to hit the reset button.

Thompson-Herah was frustrated that the chance to defend her titles had been delayed but, having started training late in 2020, the extra time proved a blessing.

It has been a very competitive year in the women's 100m. Eight women had clocked a time under 10.90 seconds this season prior to these Games. Jamaicans Fraser-Pryce, Thompson-Herah and Shericka Jackson, the trio who ultimately occupied the podium in the Japanese capital, had gone below 10.80.

The injury niggles continued to trouble Thompson-Herah and forced her to miss a Diamond League Meeting in Gateshead. It also left her fearing she may not be able to compete at the Jamaican trials in June, where she placed third behind Fraser-Pryce and Jackson.

But just earlier this month she ran a 10.71 in Hungary, her fastest since 2017 and just outside her previous personal best of 10.70.

The confidence was growing and yet the spotlight was largely still on Fraser-Pryce, who was attempting to make history as the first woman to win a single athletics event three times.

But Thompson-Herah has now emulated her great compatriot by going back-to-back in the 100m – something Fraser-Pryce achieved at Beijing in 2008 and London 2012.

What is even more impressive is the way she did it. A final tipped to thrill lived up to its billing at a time when Tokyo 2020 needs its marquee events to deliver the goods.

Fraser-Pryce got off to a flier but from 60m onwards there was only ever winner. A time of 10.61 marks a new Olympic record, and the second fastest ever run in the women's 100m. There could have been no more perfect moment to pull the performance of a lifetime out of the bag.

Her victory in an event dubbed the "Race of the Games" completes an emotional return to the pinnacle. From bursting onto the scene, through the injury troubles, peaking at the right time – all have culminated in Thompson-Herah once more scaling the mountain.

This was the moment her journey began again.

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