The Tokyo Olympics are now in full swing and there are another 22 gold medal events to come on an action-packed Tuesday at the Games.

Plenty of focus will be on the Tokyo Aquatics Centre once again, where four medals are on the line, while the women's triathlon will also take centre stage.

Simone Biles, Naomi Osaka and Katie Ledecky are just some of the superstar names that will be in action on the fourth full day of the 2020 Games.

Stats Perform picks out of some of the standout action to look out for.

 

CAN BILES PUT BLUNDERS BEHIND HER?

Biles struggled to find top gear in her Games entrance on Sunday, albeit making it through to each of her finals, and there is no room for any slip-ups in the women's team final.

The Russian Olympic Committee finished above the United States at a major event for the first time since 2010 in qualifying, setting up an intriguing battle in the final.

The pressure is on Suni Lee, Jordan Chiles, Grace McCallum and indeed Biles, the latter of whom is aiming to add to the four golds won in Rio five years ago.

 


USA-JAPAN MEET IN SOFTBALL FINAL

Team USA's women's softball team recovered from behind to beat Japan 2-1 in their final round-robin game and finish top of the standings.

Japan finished second and the two sides are therefore set to face off in a huge gold medal match at Yokohama Baseball Stadium.

Mexico and Canada meet in the bronze medal contest earlier on Tuesday in a tasty warm-up match for the main event.


LEDECKY AND TITMUS RESUME RIVALRY

After winning four golds in Rio five years ago, Ledecky had the chance to add four more to her collection in Tokyo.

She fell short in the first of those events, however, with Australia's Ariarne Titmus taking gold in Monday's gripping 400m freestyle final.

While a medal is not on the line on Tuesday, Ledecky will be eager to lay down a faster time than her rival in the 200m freestyle heats ahead of Wednesday's showpiece.

 

OSAKA GOES AGAIN

Face of the Games Okaka followed up lighting the Olympic cauldron on Friday with victories over Zheng Saisai and Viktorija Golubic in her first two matches in the tournament.

The four-time grand slam winner has a quick turnaround in matches as world number 41 Marketa Vondrousova awaits in the third round on Tuesday.

Fellow home favourite Kei Nishikori is also in action in the men's event, with Marcos Giron standing between him and the last 16.

WOMEN'S TRIATHLON TOUGH TO CALL

There was drama before the men's triathlon had even officially got underway on Monday, with an inflatable boat carrying photographers causing a false start.

Norway's Kristian Blummenfelt won the competition and now it is over to the women, with 54 athletes in contention to claim gold.

The field is wide open this time around, though the likes of Katie Zaferes and Georgia Taylor-Brown, of Team USA and Great Britain respectively, will have their eyes on the top prize.

 

Another superb day for Japan saw the host nation surge to the top of the medal table at the Tokyo Olympic Games on Monday.

Japan now have eight golds after winning Olympic titles in three different sports, the most unexpected of which came in table tennis.

The mixed doubles team of Jun Mizutani and Mima Ito came from two games down to eventually prevail after seven games against China's Xu Xin and Liu Shiwen.

China won all four table tennis titles at Rio 2016 and had been expected to dominate again, only to come unstuck as Japan won the first gold in this new event.

Further joy for Japan came as 13-year-old Momiji Nishiya triumphed in the women's street skateboarding while Shohei Ono was victorious in the men's 73kg category in judo.

Second behind Japan are the United States, who took two shooting golds on day three as well as the men's 4x100m freestyle title in the pool.

China did not add to their tally of six gold medals, one fewer than the USA, having come up short in another event where they had a team of heavy favourites.

Cao Yuan and Chen Aisen were edged out in the men's 10m synchronised platform, with British divers Tom Daley and Matty Lee winning gold.

That was one of three golds for Great Britain, who moved up to fifth in the medal table thanks also to Adam Peaty retaining his 100m breaststroke title and Tom Pidcock dominating in the men's cross-country mountain bike race.

The Russian Olympic Committee sits fourth after adding three golds, the headliner being victory in the men's artistic gymnastics team all-around final. 

Meanwhile, Hidilyn Diaz made history for the Philippines, become the country's first Olympic gold medallist by prevailing in the women's 55kg weightlifting.

 

The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) won artistic gymnastics men's team gold and 13-year-old Momiji Nishiya spoke of her desire to become a global icon after making history in Tokyo.

Denis Abliazin, David Belyavskiy, Artur Dalaloyan and Nikiti Nagornyy became the first European winners of the Olympic men's team event since 1996 on a tense Monday evening at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre.

Nagornyy went into the final routine on the floor knowing he had to make up for lower scores from Abliazin and Dalaloyan.

He stepped up under huge pressure, ensuring the ROC (262.500) edged out Japan (262.397) as China (261.894) had to settle for bronze.

Dalaloyan tore his Achilles in mid-April, yet he made an incredible recovery to take his place on the top step of the podium.

He said: "After an injury like this, I appreciate the work I did even more. And now I know all of the work I did wasn't for nothing. This medal is absolutely priceless.

"When I came to Tokyo, I still couldn't do the vault or the floor exercise. On the third or fourth day I was able to perform a little bit."

Asked about watching Nagornyy on the floor with gold on the line, he added: "The nervousness was unreal. We prepared for everything, especially the floor exercise.

"Before the floor exercise, we were deciding if Nikita would do the easy routine or hard one; we decided to go with the easy and stable routine because we knew what score we needed. We knew we had enough and he would be absolutely clean."

NISHIYA WANTS WORLDWIDE FAME

The first Olympic gold medal in the women's skateboarding went the way of Japanese teenager Nishiya in the street event.

Nishiya, at the age of 13 years and 330 days, became the second-youngest Olympic gold medallist after American diver Marjorie Gestring took the top prize in the 1936 Games (13y 268d).

Her triumph completes a clean sweep for the host nation in the street event of the skateboarding – a sport introduced for these Games – after Yuto Horigome's success in the men's competition at Ariake Urban Sports Park on Sunday.

Nishiya kept her nerve after Rayssa Leal of Brazil failed to land her final jump – she would have been the youngest ever individual Olympic champion.

Having missed the landing with her first two tricks, Nishiya registered a score of 15.26 after nailing her final three attempts, bettering Leal's 14.64. Nishiya had only just got a gold medal around her neck when she spoke of her plan to secure another.

"I want to be the famous one who everyone in the world knows. I want to win at Paris 2024, too," she said.

PERSISTENCE PAYS OFF FOR DALEY AS GB THRIVE

British diver Tom Daley won his first Olympic gold medal in his fourth Games, teaming up Matty Lee to take the synchronised 10m platform title.

The tears flowed for Daley, 27, on the podium after he and Lee ended a China dominance of this event that stretched back to the Sydney 2000 Games.

Two-time bronze medallist Daley and Lee finished with a score of 471.81, just 1.23 points ahead of silver medallists Cao Yuan and Aisen Chen at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, where ROC's Aleksandr Bondar and Viktor Minibaev took bronze.

Daley said: "To finally have this gold medal... I’ve been diving for 20 years, it’s my fourth Olympic Games. Lots of people would have counted me out, being the older person, but I'm in the best shape physically.

"I still can't honestly believe what is happening. That moment, being about to be announced as Olympic champions, I was gone. I was blubbering."

It was also a dream day for Tom Pidcock, who became the first Brit to win an Olympic medal of any kind in mountain biking and made it a gold.

There was no surprise when Adam Peaty became the first British swimmer to defend an Olympic swimming title in the 100 metres breaststroke, while Lauren Williams (taekwondo) and Alex Yee (triathlon) won silver medals.

 

DIAZ LIFTS HERSELF INTO THE RECORD BOOKS

Hidilyn Diaz put her name in the record books by becoming the first athlete from the Philippines to win an Olympic gold medal.

Diaz took the 55-kilogram weightlifting title on a historic day at the Tokyo International Forum,

She did so in style, finishing with an Olympic record total lift of 224kg, overtaking world record holder Qiuyun Liao of China with her final lift in the clean and jerk.

Zulfiya Chinshanlo took bronze for Kazakhstan.

The third full day of the Tokyo Olympics sees 21 gold medals up for grabs during a packed programme.

Plenty of eyes will be on the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, where four swimming golds will be on the line, while the first women's skateboarding champion will be crowned.

The rugby sevens event gets under way and the men's triathlon will also take place.

Stats Perform picks out some of the standout action.

 

LEDECKY STEPS UP GOLD QUEST

After winning four golds in Rio five years ago, Katie Ledecky has the chance to add four more to her collection in Tokyo, starting with the women's 400m freestyle.

The United States competitor set a world record time in the event in 2016, but she will face a big challenge from Australia's Ariarne Titmus this time.

Titmus was marginally faster than Ledecky in the heats, though whether that edge will count for anything on the day remains to be seen.


WILL IT BE ANOTHER PEATY BLINDER?

Great Britain's Adam Peaty is nothing short of a phenomenon in the world of swimming and will be looking to retain his 100m breaststroke title.

Peaty qualified for the final in a dominant manner, his time of 57.56s just two hundredths of a second off his own world record pace.

Arno Kamminga of the Netherlands is expected to be Peaty's biggest threat, having produced a personal best of 57.80s in the previous heat.


MORE SEVENS HEAVEN FOR FIJI?

Fiji's triumph in the men's rugby sevens was one of the more remarkable stories of the Rio Games and the islanders will now be out to retain their title in Tokyo over the coming weeks.

They begin their group campaign on Monday with games against tournament hosts Japan and then Canada later in the day.


MEN'S TRIATHLON WIDE OPEN

The men's triathlon is a tough one to call, with back-to-back champion Alistair Brownlee not taking part in this year's event.

The likes of Alex Yee, Kristian Blummenfelt, Morgan Pearson and Tyler Mislawchuk are among those to watch in one the standout events at any Games.


BILES SURVIVES, NOW MEN MUST THRIVE

After Simone Biles struggled to find top gear in her Games entrance on Sunday, albeit making it through to each of her finals, Monday's gymnastics event is the men's team final.

Japan are the defending champions and led the way in qualifying, but they are expected to face stiff competition from China and the Russian Olympic Committee team. Watch out for Russian maestro Nikita Nagornyy and Japan's Daiki Hashimoto among a star-studded cast.


OSAKA BACK IN ACTION

It is proving to be a busy Games for Naomi Osaka, who followed lighting the Olympic cauldron on Friday with a first-round tennis win on Sunday.

Japan's four-time grand slam winner is back on court on Monday, looking to inch closer to the women's singles final. Awaiting her is Swiss world number 50 Viktorija Golubic, and it will be their first match encounter. Men's title hopefuls Novak Djokovic and Daniil Medvedev are among those also due in action.


WOMEN'S SKATEBOARDING MAKES ITS DEBUT

Japan's Yuto Horigome made history on Sunday by winning the first Olympic gold in men's skateboarding. On Monday, it is the turn of the women.

Among those competing in the event are Kokona Hiraki of Japan and Team GB's Sky Brown, who are aged 12 and 13 respectively.

After plenty of falls and drama in the men's equivalent, expect more of the same in this inaugural event. 

United States men's basketball coach Gregg Popovich insists his side's defeat to France in their first outing at Tokyo 2020 should not be considered a surprise result.

Team USA have won gold in the last three Games, but they saw a 25-game winning streak in the tournament come to an end on Sunday against an inspired France side.

Les Blues, who also beat a much-fancied USA in the World Cup quarter-finals in 2019, are ranked seventh in the FIBA rankings but proved too strong for the world's top team with an 83-76 win at the Saitama Super Arena.

Despite his side's long unbeaten run in the competition coming to an end, Popovich – taking charge at his first Games – was quick to put the loss into some perspective.

"People shouldn't be surprised that we lost to the French team or the Australian team or the Spanish team or the Lithuanian team," he told reporters. 

"It doesn't matter who it is – the gap in talent shrinks every year, as there are more and more great players all over the world. 

"And you need to give the French team credit for playing well. They were more consistent than we were at both ends of the court. It's as simple as that."

 

STARS ALIGN FOR HISTORY-MAKING ZOLOTIC

Sunday was a positive day on the whole for Team USA – especially compared to Saturday, when they failed to win a medal on the opening day of a Games for the first time since Munich 1972 – as they picked up four gold, two silver and four bronze.

That haul includes a maiden gold in the women's taekwondo thanks to teenager Anastasija Zolotic, who beat Tatiana Minina of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) in the final of the -57kg weight category event. 

"My eight-year-old self was running around the schoolyard saying I was going to be Olympic champion but she could never have imagined what this moment is like," Zolotic said. 

"It's unbelievable. It really hasn't sunk in yet. I can't believe it. I'm in a bit of shock. I'm just trying to wrap my head around it. It feels wonderful. I came here confident and ready to take the gold. The stars were aligned."

Zolotic's win came on the back of two-time Olympic champion Jade Jones suffering a shock elimination to Refugee Olympic Team member Kimia Alizadeh in the last 16, denying the Team GB athlete a shot of winning a historic third gold.

 

BILES BOUNCES BACK, CHUSOVITINA WAVES GOODBYE

A lot of focus has been on Simone Biles heading into the Games, though she had a rare off day as the USA finished behind ROC in the women's gymnastics qualifying.

Biles, who won four golds and a bronze in Rio, was penalised on both floor and vault but still scored a respectable 14.166 to book a spot in the final.

While Biles still has time on her side, both in Tokyo and in the long term, the 2020 Games will be the last for Uzbekistan's Oksana Chusovitina, who bowed out on Sunday after a record-setting eighth appearance at the Olympics.

Chusovitina, at the age of 46, just missed out on qualifying for the vault event and was given a standing ovation by the small number of people inside the arena.

To put Chusovitina's remarkable run of appearances into perspective, she made her debut at the Games in 1992, some five years before Biles was born.

"It was really nice. I cried tears of happiness because so many people have supported me for a long time," she said. "I didn't look at the results, but I feel very proud and happy. I'm saying goodbye to sports. It's kind of mixed feelings.

"I'm alive, I'm happy, I'm here without any injuries, and I can stand on my own."

KEEPING IT IN THE FAMILY

Japanese pair Uta and Hifumi Abe made Olympic history as they became the first siblings to win gold medals on the same day of a Games in an individual sport, both enjoying success in judo on day two in Tokyo.

Uta won the women’s 52kg competition, defeating France's Amandine Buchard. A closely contested bout went to a golden score, with Abe crucially claiming ippon to settle the final in her favour.

The two-time world champion cried tears of joy in the aftermath, admitting: "I don't know, maybe it may not have been appropriate but I couldn't hold myself back."

Older brother Hifumi made it a family double, overcoming Vazha Margvelashvili of Georgia to triumph in the men's 66kg final.

"This has turned out to be the greatest day ever," he said. "I don't think we, as brother and sister, could shine any brighter on this stage known as the Tokyo Olympics. I'm so happy."

 

Simone Biles mixed brilliance with an unfamiliar touch of the erratic as she launched into Tokyo 2020 action, just about keeping alive the prospect of beating her Rio haul of four gold medals.

The American gymnastics great headed the all-around individual standings, just ahead of the impressive Brazilian Rebeca Andrade, with USA team-mate Sunisa Lee in third.

She remains in the hunt in six events, but it was far from a dominant Biles at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre, and the United States team as a whole had an unusually mediocre day. The Russian Olympic Committee gymnasts finished above them in the team standings for the first time since 2010 at a major event.

Russia's score of 171.629 suggested they can post a major challenge in the final to the usually dominant United States (170.562), although Biles and her team-mates will want to prove themselves once again.

Since 2011, the USA have won team gold at all five World Championships and both Olympic Games, in London and Rio.

Biles' landings were not near as sure-footed as they have so typically been, and in her floor exercise she misjudged a tumbling pass to such an extent she stepped back all the way off the raised floor.

 

Tom Forster, high performance co-ordinator for the USA, was taken aback by Biles' mistakes.

He said: "That was a surprise. She's been incredibly consistent and I'm sure she feels bad, but I'm super proud of the way she trained.

"She's been a great leader for us. Sometimes, just like in other sports, great athletes drop the ball in the end zone or a quarterback throws an interception. It happens. Those steps are mental errors."

At one point it appeared Biles might miss out on the eight-woman final of the uneven bars, but she squeezed in, benefiting from the rule that allows only two athletes from each nation in the final. Biles finished 10th in qualifying, but four Russian competitors were ahead of her, with two of those unable to advance.

It means she remains in the hunt for titles in all six of her events, including the team competition, for which Forster will look to ensure Biles and her team-mates are thoroughly prepared.

"Staying in bounds would help. Simone took three big steps on her beam dismount. I've never seen her do that before," Forster said.

The challenge of the Russian team could lift the Americans, or it could point to a changing of the guard at the top of women's gymnastics.

Forster is only looking to the former, saying: "This might be a great awakening for us, and we'll take advantage of it."

While 24-year-old Biles battles to recover peak form in time for Tuesday's team final, Olympic veteran Oksana Chusovitina has reached the end of the road in her Games career.

Competing at her eighth Olympics, the 46-year-old took part in the vault but failed to qualify for the final.

Chusovitina, who has previously competed for the Soviet Union and Germany and made her Games debut in 1992, was back representing her native Uzbekistan in Tokyo and received an ovation from her rivals after producing two valiant vaults.

"It was really nice. I cried tears of happiness because so many people have supported me for a long time," she said of the recognition.

"I feel very proud and happy. I'm saying goodbye to sports. It's kind of mixed feelings. I'm alive, I'm happy, I'm here without any injuries, and I can stand on my own."

Kohei Uchimura offered a reminder of the skillset that has brought him three Olympic gold medals before the unimaginable happened, delivering a major jolt to hosts Japan.

The veteran national sporting hero only entered the horizontal bar event at Tokyo 2020 and hoped to sign off his Games career with a golden flourish.

But on the first full day of competition at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre, Uchimura lost his grip after a mesmerising start to his routine, and fell down onto the crash mat.

His hopes not only of gold, but of a medal of any colour, were over. Uchimura was also certain to miss out on the final, and must have known that as he climbed back onto the bar, performing and dismounting flawlessly second time around.

Uchimura won all-around gold at London 2012 and Rio 2016, also taking team gold in Brazil five years ago. He also won two silver medals both in Beijing and London.

This time, his score of 13.866 put Uchimura way out of contention, and the 32-year-old accepted his fate.

"I couldn't perform what I have practised," he said. "That's how I simply think. In the last three Olympic Games I could perform what I practised. But I couldn't do that at these Olympics.

"I hit my peak already. It has been so tough to get selected as a national team member. That itself was already really tough. So maybe that's why."

Asked whether that would be his swansong, Uchimura asked for time to consider his future. Retirement is certainly an option.

"Let me think about it when I go back to the accommodation," he said. "But I have experienced the bottom of the bottom when I wasn't doing well. So I am not as disappointed as I expected."

Uchimura's exit was a blow to the Japan team, but there may be many highs still to come in the gymnastics arena.

That was Uchimura's view, after he took time to observe and was struck by the reality that Japanese gymnastics is moving into a new era, beyond his time as talisman.

"They are a really strong team," he said. "After I finished the horizontal bar and came back to the arena to watch, I saw them sorting out their problems on their own. I felt I wasn't needed anymore."

Japanese gymnastics great Kohei Uchimura dramatically tumbled out of Tokyo 2020 when he fell during qualifying for the horizontal bar final.

The home hope was bidding to add to his three Olympic gold medals but lost his grip during an elaborate part of his routine and slumped to the crash mat.

It meant his chances were over, despite Uchimura being able to get back on the apparatus, and the outcome left hosts Japan stunned. A sporting hero in his homeland, news of Uchimura's exit was instantly a top national news story.

Uchimura won all-around gold at London 2012 and Rio 2016, also taking team gold in Brazil five years ago, but his only event for the Tokyo Games was the horizontal bar.

His score of 13.866 put Uchimura well down on the scoreboard, in a lowly 18th place during the qualifying session, with only the top eight going through to the final.

The 32-year-old Uchimura has won seven Olympic medals in all, picking up four silvers to go with his gold haul, claiming two of those at Beijing in 2008 and two four years later in London.

Nina Christen of Switzerland finished 16th in the 10-metre air rifle at the Rio Olympics, but she became a footnote to history five years later as the first athlete to secure a medal at Tokyo 2020.

The 27-year-old locked up the bronze medal several minutes before China's Yang Qian beat Anastasiia Galashina of the Russian Olympic Committee to take gold in the first medal event of the Games.

As soon as she was eliminated from contention for the final two, Christen flashed a smile and waved, knowing she had at least won a spot on the podium this time – no small feat on this stage.

After the first medal ceremony of the Tokyo Games, she spoke about the pressure as the competition entered the final rounds.

"You just try to not reach your head out for the medal before you have the medal," Christen said. "That is the worst thing you could do. Having in your mind, 'Oh I could win a medal, or I could be eighth which would be a failure'.

"So you just try not to think about both of them, you just try and think about what your job is like breathing, holding, aiming, balance, triggering, and then follow through.

"It helps to not think about what is behind you and obviously there are a lot of cameras and a lot of people. And it would be even more if COVID would not have hit. So yeah that is the thing you have to do, otherwise you would just crack."

 

Sixth seed Swiatek rolls in tennis opener

Two seeded players enjoyed easy victories in the women's singles draw as play began at the Ariake Tennis Park.

Sixth-seeded Iga Swiatek of Poland, the 2020 French Open champion, cruised past Germany's Mona Barthel 6-2 6-2 to open her first Olympics.

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, the 11th seed representing the Russian Olympic Committee, had an even easier time in a 6-0 6-1 rout of Italy's Sara Errani.

Pavlyuchenkova will face Germany's Anna-Lena Friedsam, who upset Great Britain's Heather Watson 7-6 6-3 in another early match.

In doubles, there was an eye-catching result for Britain's Andy Murray and Joe Salisbury, who took out French second seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut, scoring a 6-3 6-2 victory.

 

Men's gymnastics gets under way

Nikita Nagornyy turned in the strongest showing in the opening group as men's gymnastics got under way.

Nagornyy, who won the all-around at the 2019 World Championships and was part of Russia's silver medal-winning team at Rio 2016, posted an 87.897 to lead subdivision one, which included gymnasts from the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC), China, Ukraine and Spain along with individuals from other nations.

But his showing was not enough to put the Russians on top, as China earned the top score in the group with a 262.061 to the ROC's 261.945. The top eight ranked teams qualify for the team final, with two subdivisions still to compete Saturday.

"I don't think our team was really good today, but we made our best effort," Nagronyy said. "We have a lot to do."

 

Brazilians start strongly on the beach

Brazil's two returning beach volleyball medallists are off to a strong start five years later.

Alison Cerutti won gold in Rio and is teamed with new partner Alvaro Morais Filho for Tokyo. They won their opening match 2-0 against Argentina's Nicolas Capogrosso and Julian Amado Azaad.

On the women's side, Rio silver medallist Agatha Bednarczuk, also with a new partner in Eduarda Santos Lisboa, won by the same score against Ana Gallay and Fernanda Pereyra of Argentina.

While she was happy to advance, Agatha found the difference between Rio's raucous crowds and Tokyo's COVID-driven quiet jarring.

"It's so different. In Brazil we have the biggest support there. Many, many people cheering for us, and here, it's silence," she said.

"Here we need to put our emotion (aside) because we don't receive the emotion from the people. For me, this is very important because I like to play with emotions."

Jamaica gymnast Danusia Francis is unsure of when she sustained a competition-ending knee injury, and will only be able to symbolically compete in Saturday’s competition, but insists she remains proud to represent the country regardless.

The 27-year-old was diagnosed with a torn ACL on Friday and will now only take part in the Athletics Gymnastics Uneven Bars event at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.  Even so, the gymnast will not be able to fully compete as she will be unable to do a dismount routine.

 “I hope to do some sort of bar routine just to get a score on the board but without a dismount, it won’t be a competitive score, but I’ll be happy to see Jamaica represented at the Olympic Games and I still feel very proud to be wearing the Jamaican flag,” Francis told the press.

“The knee, I think, is getting worse and worse, so I can’t really tell you the exact time when the ligament damage occurred, but I found out today what it actually was and it will drastically affect my competition, unfortunately.”

  The Artistic Gymnastics competition is set to start tomorrow with the Uneven Bars finals for women taking place on Sunday.  The athlete will miss out on competing on the Balance Beam, Floor Exercise, and Vault.

 The gymnast admits the injury had come as a huge blow.

“I’m really upset to have hurt myself. I have been so prepared for this competition mentally and physically up to this point so to, at the last hurdle, be injured is disappointing. Luckily, the medics have taken really good care of me and I’m sure they will continue to do so.”

 

 Jamaica gymnast, Danusia Francis, will be unable to compete in the majority of her scheduled events for the Tokyo Olympics after suffering a torn ACL.

Francis, the country’s lone competitor in Artistic Gymnastics, was scheduled to take part in the four-event Women’s All-Round competition on Sunday.

After suffering a knee injury, however, the 27-year has had to alter those plans.  The results of an MRI, taken in the Olympic Village on Friday, showed that the damage to the joint was worse than hoped for.

As a result, Francis will only be able to compete on the Uneven Bars, which is the apparatus that is least likely to cause further damage to the injured joint.  That means the athlete will skip the Vault, Balance Beam, and Floor exercises.

Francis is the second female gymnast to represent Jamaica at the Olympic Games following in the footsteps of Toni-Ann Williams, who at the 2016 Rio Olympics, was the first female gymnast to compete for Jamaica at the Olympics.

The gymnast was able to qualify for the Games based on her performance at the 2019 World Championships.  She finished among the top 20 athletes who were not on a qualifying team. She ranked ninth in the group of competitors.

Germany's female gymnasts are preparing to compete at the Tokyo Olympics with a strikingly different look after packing unitards alongside leotards in their kit bags.

The unitard has characteristics of the traditional leotard but comes with attached leggings that run down to the ankles, being designed for comfort.

It was described by the German Gymnastics Federation (DTB) in April as being a move "against sexualisation in gymnastics".

The DTB said the kit's purpose was "to present aesthetically – without feeling uncomfortable", and after a positive pilot at the European Championships in Basle, an Olympic Games version of the kit has been launched for Team Deutschland's competitors.

Elisabeth Seitz, set to compete in her third Olympics, said: "It's about what feels comfortable. We wanted to show that every woman, everybody, should decide what to wear.

"Most people were positive about it. But after the European Championships the time was way too short for others to design a unitard. Maybe in the future. We really hope so."

It is not a given that Germany will wear the unitard for competition at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre, but that is an option. The team will vote on whether to don the leotard or unitard ahead of Sunday's qualification event.

"We decided this is the most comfortable leotard for today. That doesn't mean we don't want to wear the normal leotard any more," Seitz said. "It is a decision day by day, based on how we feel and what we want. On competition day, we will decide what to wear."

The Germany team's move comes at a time when there is scrutiny on the demands put on female sports stars when it comes to their attire.

Norway's beach handball team were fined as their shorts were ruled to be too long, while British Paralympic long-jumper Olivia Breen was told by an official her briefs were too short.

The German gymnasts have found support for their mission, with Games newcomer Sarah Voss saying: "We girls had a big influence on this. The coaches were also very much into it.

"They said they want us to feel the most confident and comfortable in any case. It just makes you feel better and more comfortable."

Jamaica has suffered an injury blow ahead of the start of the Tokyo Olympics this weekend.

The artistic gymnastics competition for women is scheduled to begin on Sunday morning in Japan (Saturday night in the Caribbean)

Members of the country’s 62-member team are arriving in Tokyo ahead of the games that officially begin tomorrow morning and right off the bat, it appears as if injury is playing an early role.

Gymnast Danusia Francis has revealed that she had an injured left knee. The severity of the injury is unknown but she is still managing to get her practice sessions in albeit with some amount of caution. The athlete, only the second female gymnast to represent Jamaica at the Olympics, posted pictures on her Instagram account knee on Tuesday and again on Wednesday that showed her heavily bandaged knee.

On Friday morning, she confirmed what the pictures were showing when she posted, “The arena is stunning. Unfortunately, I do have a knee injury so only bars today, but happy with my performance and enjoyed myself out there.” It is unclear whether she suffered the injury prior to or after her arrival in Japan.

She also posted a video of herself leaping and landing with stability, which might be an indication that the injury is not too severe.

Francis is expected to perform well at the Olympics on the strength of outstanding performances in her routines in Spain in June while competing for gymnastics club Xelska.

“My performances were really good. I was extremely happy with my bar routine, I got a really good score there, and then my vault was good,” she said at the time.

“I did make a mistake on (the) beam but as I mentioned, I was only supposed to do three of the events and the beam was a last-minute decision so I was a bit flustered and it was kind of an uncharacteristic mistake so nothing that I can’t fix.”

 

 

A female United States gymnast has tested positive for coronavirus while training in Tokyo ahead of the Olympics, the US Olympic Committee (USOC) has confirmed.

The unnamed athlete was an alternate – a team member included as a reserve – and will now isolate along with another team member who has been identified as a close contact.

"The health and safety of our athletes, coaches and staff is our top priority," a USOC statement read.

"We can confirm that an alternate on the women's artistic gymnastics team tested positive for COVID-19.

"Out of respect for the individual's privacy, we cannot provide more information at this time."

The positive test comes just four days before the delayed Games begins, with fellow US female gymnast Simone Biles set to be one of the stars of the competition.

The 24-year-old won four gold medals and a bronze at Rio 2016 and will be looking to add to that haul when the women's gymnastics competition starts on July 25.

It was also confirmed on Monday that Czech Republic beach volleyball player Ondrej Perusic tested positive for COVID-19.

Perusic and playing partner David Schweiner are due to begin their Tokyo 2020 campaign against Latvia on July 26, but the Czech Olympic Committee will seek to postpone the game until Perusic is cleared to play.

The number of Games-linked individuals to have tested positive for coronavirus since testing began on July 1 stood at 60 on Monday.

South Africa's men's football pair Thabiso Monyane and Kamohelo Mahlatsi were the first two athletes inside the Olympic Village to test positive over the weekend.

Around 11,000 athletes from 205 national Olympic committees are expected to stay at the village over the next three weeks.

The 2020 Games, delayed by a year due to the global health pandemic, will be held mostly without spectators due to a state of emergency being declared in Tokyo.

Infection rates in the Japanese capital have topped 1,000 for five days running, with a seven-day average of 1,068 as of Sunday.

The sporting calendar provides many memorable days throughout the year but rarely do elite events overlap as often as at the Olympics.

At this year's delayed Tokyo Games, there is the prospect of seeing several of the world's top athletes all competing for gold at the same time.

August 1 looks a good bet for the standout day in 2021.

The final round of the men's golf event could see Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm in the mix, with Andy Murray hopeful he will meanwhile be defending consecutive singles gold medals in the tennis.

This comes on the same day that Simone Biles could potentially become the most decorated Olympic gymnast of all time.

As if that were not enough, the men's 100m final is another must-watch event.

Expectations will be high heading into that second Sunday of the Games, with examples from the past three competitions living up to their billing...

AUGUST 16, BEIJING 2008

Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt would be firmly in contention to appear on the Games' own Mount Rushmore and each enjoyed one of the finest moments of their respective careers on the same day.

Phelps had spent the opening week of the Beijing Olympics pursuing Mark Spitz's 1972 record of seven golds and had six as he entered the pool again for the 100m butterfly final, almost 12 hours before Bolt's big moment.

Seventh at the turn, the United States superstar needed a remarkable recovery to triumph over a devastated Milorad Cavic by 0.01 seconds.

Phelps would pass Spitz with his eighth gold of the Games the following day, by which point he was sharing the headlines with Jamaica's own ultimate athlete.

Bolt's blistering 9.69-second final triumph in the 100m stood as a world record until the same man beat it exactly a year later. The new benchmark remains unmatched.

And that Saturday in China also saw the small matter of Roger Federer's only gold medal, claimed alongside Stan Wawrinka in the doubles final after falling to James Blake as the top seed in the singles.

AUGUST 4-5, LONDON 2012

It is actually tough to choose just one day from the 2012 Olympics, where this weekend delivered from start to finish.

On the Saturday evening, at the Aquatics Centre, swimming prepared to say goodbye to its greatest name. Phelps and the United States won the 4x100m medley, clinching his 18th gold medal in what appeared set to be his final race.

Indeed, Phelps confirmed his retirement following the Games, only to return in predictably dominant fashion in 2016.

Across the city that same night, Team GB athletes were capping a stunning run of medals that would see the day dubbed "Super Saturday". There were six home golds in all, including big wins for Jessica Ennis, Greg Rutherford and Mo Farah in quick succession.

The drama only continued the next day, too, as Murray finally sealed a Wimbledon win over Roger Federer in the tennis event, while Bolt lit up London Stadium in the 100m.

AUGUST 14, RIO 2016

Although there will be no Bolt brilliance in Tokyo, Brazil was treated to another show as he became the first three-time winner of the 100m – later doing likewise in the 200m.

The first triumph was almost overshadowed on the track, however, coming shortly after Wayde van Niekerk had broken Michael Johnson's 17-year 400m world record by 0.15 seconds.

Again, the excitement was not reserved for athletics, with Murray in action that evening to claim another gold after coming through a four-hour epic against Juan Martin del Potro.

Murray is the only player – men's or women's – to win consecutive singles golds, while Rafael Nadal's presence added a little more stardust even though he lost the bronze final to Kei Nishikori.

A stunning Sunday also saw Biles add to the reputation she takes with her to Tokyo, a third gold on the vault making her the most decorated American gymnast.

And there was history, too, for Justin Rose, as he edged past Henrik Stenson at the 18th hole of the fourth round to become the first Olympic golf champion in 112 years.

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