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Records and tears
(China Daily)
Updated: 2008-08-23 10:29


Dinara Gimatova of Azerbaijan performs with the ribbon during the individual all-around qualification of the rhythmic gymnastics competition yesterday. REUTERS

With only two days of Olympic action left, Usain Bolt helped smash another world record, the US made a couple of surprise breakthroughs, Belarus scored a first gold and a Chinese boxer came through the semifinals virtually untouched.

China made a clean sweep of the women's table tennis events. Dominant in the sport this is the second time it has swept all the medals. In an all-China final, Wang Nan beat Deng Yaping to keep her singles title (Page 3).

Jamaica's men were, by far, the fastest on the 4x100m relay yesterday, setting a new world record. Nesta Carter, Michael Frater, Bolt and Asafa Powell made the run in 37.10sec.

Jamaica's women, also highly touted, fumbled. A technical error on passing the baton eliminated them from the 4x100m race that was then won by Russia (Page 4).

An American won the decathlon for the first time in 12 years when Bryan Clay took the 10-discipline event yesterday.

Clay took the lead during the first of two days of back-to-back competition and never looked back.

Andrei Krauchanka of Belarus won silver and Leonel Suarez of Cuba took the gold (Page 5).

Italian Alex Shwazer broke a two-decade-old Olympic record in the 50km walk yesterday morning.

The 23-year-old finished in 3:37:09, shattering by more than 80 seconds the mark set in 1988 by Soviet Union walker Vyacheslav Ivanenko.

The silver went to Australia's Jared Tallent and Russian Denis Nizhegorodov took bronze (Page 6).

Brazil took its first ever gold in track and field, a massive triple jump by Maurren Maggi.

She came. She won. She left. Anne-Caroline Chausson, of France, came out of retirement just to take the gold in the Beijing Olympics in the women's BMX competition.

The final race was a crash-filled event that showed the extreme edge of the sport (Page 8).

Among the men, Latvian champion Maris Strombergs took the gold. He swept to the front at the start of the win-ner-take-all final and never lost control (Page 9).

The men's beach volleyball title went to the US duo of Philip Dalhausser and Todd Rogers, who took the 2007 worlds.

The American's beat Brazil's Marcio Araujo and Fabio Magalhaes in a tense and tight final (Page 11).

There was plenty of action at the Shunyi Olympic Rowing-Cannoeing Park with six gold medals up for grabs and plenty of firsts.

Germany took two golds. A British doctor, who came out of semi-retirement two years ago won the men's single 1,000m kayak event. Hungary scored its first medal of the Games and Belarus, formerly without any Olympic golds, earned two in a single day (Pages 12-13).

Boxers fought for 22 bronze medals yesterday but it was a difficult day in the ring, one dogged by disputes.

Perhaps the most memorable was the fit by Frencham Alexis Vastine, who was hit with a two-point, fight-deciding pen-alty with 19 sec left on the clock. He collapsed into tears after the buzzer, stepped out of the ring and stretched out on the floor. The French team did not protest the penalty (Page 14).

China's greatest boxing hope, Zou Shiming rammed through Irishman Paddy Barnes to score a spot in the 48kg final. The fight wasn't even close.

The US will not be in the baseball final after losing 10-2 to Cuba. Cuba will play South Korea, which trounced Japan 6-2 in the semis yesterday (Page 15).

The US men's volleyball team made it through the semifinals ensuring a medal for the first time since 1992. They will play Brazil.

The US closed off the night on the basketball court trouncing Argentina and securing a spot in the final. It will play Spain, which beat Lithuania, for the gold today (Page 16).

China Daily/Agencies

(China Daily 08/23/2008 page2)