Richards-Ross earns 400 goldLONDON (AP) — Oscar Pistorius was last in his 400-meter semifinal a day after the double-amputee made his Olympic debut. The South African finished in 46.54 seconds, way slower than his career best of 45.07 and nearly 2 seconds slower than the winner of his heat, world champion Kirani James of Grenada.
By: Associated Press, The Jamestown Sun
LONDON (AP) — Oscar Pistorius was last in his 400-meter semifinal a day after the double-amputee made his Olympic debut. The South African finished in 46.54 seconds, way slower than his career best of 45.07 and nearly 2 seconds slower than the winner of his heat, world champion Kirani James of Grenada.
James immediately walked over to Pistorius after the race and asked to trade name bibs, to keep as a souvenir. The pair shook hands and hugged.
“He’s an inspiration for all of us. What he does ... takes a lot of courage, just a lot of confidence,” James said. “He’s very special to our sport.”
The champions included American Sanya Richards-Ross (women’s 400 meters), Ethiopia’s Tiki Gelana (women’s marathon), Kazakhstan’s Olga Rypakova (women’s triple jump), Hungary’s Krisztian Pars (men’s hammer throw) and Kenya’s Ezekiel Kemboi (men’s 3,000-meter steeplechase).
“This has just been the experience of a lifetime,” said Richard-Ross, who cried after a disappointing third-place finish in Beijing. “I’ve dreamt about this moment for 20 years.”
Britain picked up two more gold medals after winning six events during a banner Saturday.
Andy Murray cruised past Roger Federer 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 in the men’s singles final at Wimbledon, then added a silver medal in mixed doubles. Ben Ainslie earned another gold in the Finn class to become the most successful sailor in Olympic history.
Murray avenged a loss to Federer in last month’s Wimbledon final while becoming the first British man to win the gold in singles since Josiah Ritchie in 1908.
“I’ve had a lot of tough losses in my career,” he said. “This is the best way to come back from the Wimbledon final. I’ll never forget it.”
McKayla Maroney was all set to add the vault title to her team gymnastics gold with the U.S. when she made a costly mistake. She appeared to land her second vault on the backs of her heels. Her feet slid out from under her, and she plopped on the mat, a look of shock crossing her face.
“I really didn’t deserve to win a gold medal if I fall on my butt,” Maroney said. “I was still happy with a silver, but it’s still just sad.”
Sandra Izbasa of Romania won the gold, and Russia’s Maria Paseka took the bronze.
Serena Williams added another Olympic title when she teamed with sister Venus to beat Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-4 in the women’s doubles final.
Serena also won the women’s singles tournament and is tennis’ first double gold medalist at an Olympics since Venus won singles and doubles at the 2000 Sydney Games. The sisters also won the doubles gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Third-seeded Maria Kirilenko and Nadia Petrova of Russia took the bronze by beating the top-seeded U.S. pair of Liezel Huber and Lisa Raymond 4-6, 6-4, 6-1.
Diana Taurasi had 22 points and the U.S. women matched their Olympic scoring record in a 114-66 rout of China.
The Americans’ 38th consecutive victory in Olympic play gave them the top seed in the group for the quarterfinals. The U.S. will meet Canada on Tuesday.
Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor beat Italy in straight sets in the quarterfinals to remain on track for a third consecutive Olympic gold medal.
The Americans earned a berth in the semifinals against Beijing bronze medalists Xue Chen and Zhang Xi. The Chinese team has beaten the two-time defending Olympic champions the last three times they’ve met.
The No. 2 U.S. women’s team of Jennifer Kessy and April Ross also advanced, beating the Czech Republic 25-23, 21-18. The Americans next play reigning world champions Juliana and Larissa of Brazil.
The undefeated U.S. women’s team lost captain and three-time Olympian Lindsey Berg to a left ankle injury during a straight-set victory over Turkey.
The Americans breezed through the second set and took a 9-5 lead in the third before Berg limped off the court. The setter removed her shoe, and a trainer wrapped the ankle in ice.
The United States will face Australia in a matchup of gold-medal contenders in the semifinals of the women’s tournament.
The Americans beat European champion Italy 9-6 to reach the last four, and Australia moved on with a dramatic 20-18 win over China.
China’s Wu Minxia won the women’s 3-meter springboard for her first individual gold and record-tying sixth career medal.
Wu led all but one round of the five-dive final, totaling 414.00 points. She tied retired countrywoman Guo Jingjing with six medals. Wu and partner He Zi also won the 3-meter synchronized title in London.
Lasse Norman Hansen of Denmark won the gold medal in the men’s omnium following a crash in one of the six races of the event.
Hansen hit the wooden boards in a curve after connecting with the rear wheel of Briton Edward Clancy in the scratch race but was uninjured and got back on the track.
Lin Dan led the way as China swept all five badminton gold medals at the Olympics, defending his title by beating Malaysian rival Lee Chong Wei 15-21, 21-10, 21-19 in men’s singles.
When Chong Wei’s final shot landed long, Lin sprinted around Wembley Arena until he was tackled by his coaches.
Saudi Arabia leads the standings at the equestrian team show jumping competition after a first day dominated by a veterinarian’s decision to disqualify a Canadian horse.
The Saudis had just one penalty point and were followed closely by the Netherlands, Britain, Sweden and Switzerland, all with four penalty points and tied for second.
WRESTLING - GRECO-ROMAN
Hamid Soryan is the first Iranian to win a gold medal in Greco-Roman wrestling, taking the men’s 55-kilogram division.
The five-time world champion beat Rovshan Bayramov of Azerbaijan 2-0, 1-0 in the final. Peter Modos of Hungary and Mingiyan Semenov of Russia won bronze medals.
ELSEWHERE IN LONDON
Fredrik Loof and Max Salminen of Sweden upset defending champions Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson of Britain to win the venerable Star class in the sailing regatta. ... Italy topped Japan in men’s team foil for its third fencing title of the games. Germany took bronze with a 45-27 win over the United States. ... Defending champion Jin Jong-oh of South Korea won his second gold medal in London, overtaking countryman Choi Young-rae by 0.5 point on his last shot in the 50-meter pistol final. Jin also won the 10-meter air pistol event July 28. ... The weightlifting gold medal in the women’s super heavyweight class went to China’s Zhou Lulu, who won a terrific duel with Russia’s Tatiana Kashirina. Americans Sarah Robles and Holley Mangold were seventh and 10th, respectively. ... Natalia Ishchenko and Svetlana Romashina of Russia had the leading score in the synchronized swimming duet technical routine. ... China, Germany, South Korea and Hong Kong reached the men’s team table tennis semifinals.