Rio 2016: Phelps signs off with 23rd gold, Bolt makes 100m final in style | olympics | Hindustan Times
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Rio 2016: Phelps signs off with 23rd gold, Bolt makes 100m final in style

Michael Phelps hogged the limelight on Day 8 of Rio Olympics, bringing curtains on his illustrious career with his 23rd gold. Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt cruised to the 100m final, while Lalita Babar became the first Indian woman to qualify for the final of an Olympic individual track event since PT Usha in 1984 when she made it to the final of 3000m steeplechase. In action today will be, among others, Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu and Gagan Narang as India continue their quest for an elusive medal.

olympics 2016 Updated: Aug 14, 2016 09:45 IST
Michael Phelps’ medal tally stands at 28 medals, including 23rd gold.
Michael Phelps’ medal tally stands at 28 medals, including 23rd gold.(AFP)

Another day, another gold for Michael Phelps. The most decorated Olympian of all time, brought an end to his career at the Games in the best way possible, winning the 4x100m medley relay final with Team USA to earn his 23rd gold medal and 28th overall, at the Rio Games on Saturday. A little while earlier, US’ women’s team won their 4x100m medley relay to take USA’s all-time gold tally at the Olympics to a staggering 1000.

Elsewhere in athletics, Usain Bolt put on quite a show once again, proving, apparently, that you can traverse 100 metres in 10.07 seconds on a stroll.

The Beijing, London Olympics 100m, 200m sprint champion won his Heat 7 in that time, enough to look across the shoulders to, perhaps, check where the pretenders were, or to contemplate why they were that slow. A stroll of 10.07 seconds. That’s a delightful signal as we look forward to the semifinals and then the final of the 100m.

Meanwhile, the divisive American figure of Justin Gatlin recorded the fastest time in the heats, proving he is the strongest of all challengers the Jamaican has.

Rafael Nadal’s bid for an unprecedented second Olympic singles gold medal ended with a thrill-a-minute semifinal loss to the resurgent Juan Martin del Potro. Del Potro, who earned a bronze for Argentina four years ago, will add a silver or gold to that after advancing to the Rio de Janeiro Games final by coming back to stun the third-seeded Nadal 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (5) on Saturday.

Read | Rio 2016: Del Potro beats Nadal, to face Murray in men’s singles final

In the women’s 3000m steeplechase, Lalita Babar qualified for the final.The 27-year-old from Satara, Maharashtra began as a distance runner and her stamina has played a big role in her steeplechase success.Babar has been a consistent performer. She won bronze with a national record at the 2014 Incheon Asian Games. She also reached the final of the world championships in Beijing last year and set a national record. Babar, the first Indian woman to qualify for the final of an Olympic individual track event since PT Usha in 1984 (400m hurdles) won the title at last year’s Wuhan Asian Championships. She will also take part in the marathon at the Rio Games.

Follow live blog here:

8:08 am (IST): Ok, take a while reading this. USA have won their 1000th gold medal in Olympics! That takes some doing. The US women’s 4x100-meter medley relay team won gold - and reached a milestone for the United States.Kathleen Baker, Lilly King, Dana Vollmer and Simone Manuel team up to prevail at the Rio Games on Saturday night is recognized by the US Olympic Committee as the nation’s 1,000th gold medal in Summer Olympics history. Phew!

07:45 am (IST): Gold No. 23 for Michael Phelps! Team USA wins 4X100m medley relay as Phelps ends his career with 28 Olympic medals, the most in history. Britain take the silver, Australia win bronze. Phelps’ medal tally: Gold: 23 , Silver: 3, Bronze: 2. Meanwhile, American Ryan Murphy sets world record in 100 backstroke during 4x 100 medley relay, finishing in 51.85 seconds.

Phelps ends his Olympic career with a staggering 28 medals. (AP)

7:34am (IST): Ladies and gentlemen, time now to witness final flourish from the most decorated Olympian ever! Michael Phelps, chasing his 28th Olympic medal, is about to take the pool in 4X 100m medley relay. One last time.

7:13am (IST): Elaine Thompson of Jamaica wins women’s 100m gold! Clocks 10.71. Tori Bowie of the USA gets silver, and defending champion Shelly-Ann Frayser-Pryce of Jamaica is third.

7: 05am (IST): USA’s Jeff Henderson wins long jump gold.

6:38am (IST): Mo Farah wins! Defending champion endures an early fall to win the 10,000m. Becomes first British athlete ever to win three gold medals on the track (5000m and 10,000m in London, 10,000m at Rio).

Mo Farah of Britain reacts after winning the men's 10,000m final. (REUTERS)

5:27am (IST): Good showing by the shuttlers in their group match.

5:21am (IST): Meanwhile, India’s Manu Attri and Sumeeth Reddy have won the first game 23-21 against the Japanese pairing of Hiroyuki Endo and Kenichi Hayakawa in badminton.

5:20am (IST): Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna will take on Radek Stepanek and Lucie Hradecka in the bronze medal match today at 8.30pm IST (subject to change).

4:21am (IST): Monica Puig of Puerto Rico wins the women’s singles tennis final against Germany’s Angelique Kerber. This is the first gold, and first medal of any kind, for a Puerto Rican woman. She beat Kerber 6-4, 4-6, 6-1.

2:35am (IST)

2:32am (IST): Venus/Ram dominate the tie-break. Beat India’s Mirza/Bopanna 2-6, 6-2, 10 (3) to enter the mixed doubles finals. Meanwhile, India’s seven-time Olympian Leander Paes has reacted to the criticism of Indian athletes. Here’s what he has to say: 

2:23am (IST): It is now a super tie break between the pair. Whoever gets to 10 with a difference of two, wins.

2: 20am (IST): Sania Mirza is broken, and Venus/Ram take the second set 6-2. Now one set each.

2:14am (IST): Mirza/Bopanna tried, but Venus Williams holds serve to make it 5-2 in the second set.

2:11am (IST): Bopanna holds serve. India trail 2-4.

2:10am (IST): Irrespective of the result, this.

2:09am (IST): 

2:07am (IST): Venus/Ram hold serve. It’s now 4-1 in favour of USA. Mirza/Bopanna need to respond quickly to save this set.

2:05am (IST): 

1:58am (IST): It’s 2-1 in favour of the US in the second set of their mixed doubles match against India.

1:50am (IST): NADAL OUT! The Spaniard’s fightback was in vain. Argentine del Potro wins the third set and progresses to the men’s singles final. He beat Nadal 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (5). Nadal will face Japan’s Kei Nishikori in the bronze medal match while del Potro takes on defending champion Andy Murray.

1:49am (IST): India win the first set 6-2! Meanwhile, Nadal has fought back to make it 6-5.

1:45am (IST): India are sailing here. Mirza/Bopanna lead Williams/Rajeev ram 5-2 in the first set.

1:44am (IST): Nadal is in trouble. Trails del Potro 5-2 in the tie-break of the deciding set.

1:41am (IST): Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna lead 4-2 against USA’s Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram.

1:38am (IST): USA hold serve. It’s now 3-2. Meanwhile, Nadal and Del Potro have gone into a tie-break.

1:34am (IST): Sania holds serve. India lead 3-1 against USA in the mixed doubles’ first set.

1:33am (IST): Nadal holds serve to make it 6-5 against del Potro. Some nerve stuff for tennis fans, this.

1:32am (IST) 

1:31am (IST): India get the early break! Mirza/Bopanna break Venus Williams’ serve to make it 2-1.

1:30am (IST): It’s 1-1 in the first set between India’s Mirza/Bopanna and USA’s V. Williams/Rajeev Ram. Meanwhile, the men’s singles tennis semifinal between Rafael Nadal and Juan Martin del Potro is going down to the wire. It’s one set each, and 5-5 in the final set.

India's Sania Mirza (L) and India's Rohan Bopanna. (AFP)

1:16am (IST): The players are warming up. If India win this mixed doubles match, they will be assured of a medal.

1:15am (IST): The players are on court! Mirza and Bopanna that is.

1:11am (IST): The Sania Mirza/Rohan Bopanna vs Venus Williams/ Rajeev Ram match is about to begin shortly. Stay tuned for all the live updates.

1:01am (IST): Czech Republic’s Lucie Safarova and Barbora Strýcová win the women’s doubles bronze with a 7-5, 6-1 triumph over fellow Czechs Lucie Hradecka and Andrea Hlavackova.

12:47am (IST): The second men’s singles semifinal is turning out to be a tense encounter as Rafael Nadal leads 7-5, 4-6, 2-1 against Juan Del Potro.

12:00am (IST): A message from Indian tennis legend Leander Paes.

11:47pm (IST): Rafael Nadal is in a comfortable situation against Juan Martin Del Potro as he leads 7-5 1-1 in the second set.

11:21pm (IST): An impressive victory for the German men’s football team.

11:05pm (IST): A graphical look at Usain Bolt’s world record in men’s 100m sprint.

via GIPHY

10:53pm (IST): Petra Kvitova wins the bronze medal in women’s singles competition.

10:49pm (IST): 

10:31pm (IST): The second men’s tennis singles semifinal will start in some time.

10:20pm (IST): Germany have the advantage against Portugal in the men’s football quarterfinals.

10:08pm (IST): Andy Murray is just one win away from becoming the first player to win the men’s singles tennis gold twice.

9:41 pm: India’s Mairaj Ahmad Khan is out of skeet event. Finished 9th in the qualifying round.

9:38 pm:

100m Heat: Justin Gatlin advances to the semis as the fastest sprint in heats. Usain Bolt was the fourth fastest. France’s Christophe Lemaitre advances as a lucky loser. The qualifers are:

Justin Gatlin, Ben Youssef Meite, Andre De Grasse, Usain Bolt, Zhenye Xie, Yohan Blake, Andrew Fisher, Nickel Ashmeade, Trayvon Brommel, Kemarley Brown, Aska Cambridge, Chijindu Ujah, Jak Ali Harvey, Akani Simbine, Marvin Bracy, Christophe Lemaitre, Bingtian Su, Hassan Taftian , Kim Collins, James Dasaolu, Jimmy Vicaut, Daniel Bailey, Cejhae Greene, Ryota Yamagata

100m Heat 8: Hardly anyone paid attention after Bolt’s runs. For the record it was a win for South Africa’s 22-year-old Simbine

100m Heat 7: A stroll in the park for the Jamaican. Had enough time to look across his shoulder to decide if he should shift gears or not. Eventually the lower gear was good enough to win the Heat 7. That was some performance by Bolt.

100m Heat 6: Blake won alright, but yet not impressive.

100m Heat 5: Trayvon Brommel finishes second. France’s Christophe Lemaitre is third; he will have to wait if he advances as a lucky loser. The top two from each heat advances directly into the semis.

100m Heat 4: De Grasse too keeps it above 10-sec barrier.

100m Heat 3: Still awaiting an under-10 sprint in the Heat.

100m Heat 2:

100m Heat 1:

8:35 pm (IST): Bahrain’s Kemarley Brown, a Jamaican who switched allegiance, and Britain’s Chijindu Ujah win the Heat 1 of the men’s 100. The two deadlock at 10.13 sec.

8:24 pm (IST): Here’s an update from the man we are all waiting for.

8:19 pm (IST): In men’s beach volleyball, meanwhile, powerhouse Brazil continue their march, defeat Spain 24-22, 21-13 to advance to the quarterfinals.

Brazil's Alison Cerutti (left) spikes against Spain's Pablo Herrera Allepuz during the men's beach volleyball round of 16 match at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Saturday. (Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP)

8:00 pm (IST): Lalita is the first Indian woman to qualify for an individual Olympic track event final since PT Usha did so in 400m hurdles in the 1984 Games. She had finished fourth in the final.

7:20 pm (IST): Lalita Babar has qualified for the women’s 3000m steeplechase final. Her timing of 9:19.76 was enough to get her a place there as a lucky loser, i.e. best of the indirect qualifiers from the heats.

India's Lalita Babar (centre) competes in a women's 3000-metre steeplechase heat at the Olympic stadium in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on Saturday. (AP)

Meanwhile, a reminder of what happened in the wee hours of Saturday. Read about Singapore’s first gold medallist Schooling here.

7:19 pm (IST:) New Zealand’s Mahé Drysdale wins gold in men’s single sculls. Croatia’s Damir Martin and Czech Republic’s Ondřej Synek take silver and bronze.

7:13 pm (IST): Meanwhile, in rowing, Dattu Bhokanal is ranked 13th overall in the men’s single sculls final. In 3000m steeplechase, Lalita Babar finishes 4th in Heat 2 in 9:19.76.

7:08 pm (IST): This is getting brutal. Argentina score the fifth goal of the match. Two quarters left for India to manoeuvre.

7:05pm (IST): And its 4-0 Argentina!! Agustina Albertarrio’s scores the fourth. What a goal fest!!

7:04pm (IST): Argentina is killing it! Go up 3-0 thanks to Carla Rebecchi (penalty corner)

6:59pm (IST): Goooallllll again!!! Argentina go up 2-0 in the second quarter. This time thanks to Maria Granatto.

6:53pm (IST): Come one India!! Buck up!

6:50pm (IST): Goooaallll!! Argentina go up 1-0 thanks to Martina Cavallero (penalty corner)

6:47pm (IST): 1st quarter ends 0-0. Beginning of 2nd quarter, goalkeeper Savita saves a penalty corner by Argentina’s Carla Rebecchi

6:41pm (IST): 0-0 the score at the end of 10 mins in the 1st quarter

6:40pm (IST): India women’s hockey team have failed to win a single group match. Up against Argentina, they are hoping to turn their luck around. Let’s watch what happens...

6:25pm (IST): With the women’s tennis final slated later today it will be an interesting match to watch: Both first timers in an Olympic final, Germany’s Angelique Kerber is trying to emulate idol Steffi Graf’s gold from the 1988 Games while Monia Puig from Puerto Rico is gunning for glory, to win her country’s first gold. Who will emerge victorious?? Let’s watch and watch!

Puerto Rico's Monica Puig overcame Czech Republic's Petra Kvitova’s challenge during the semifinals. (AFP)
Germany's Angelique Kerber beat USA’s Madison Keys in the semis. (AFP)

6:12pm (IST): FYI - A great lift, celebrations and a collapse. That’s exactly what happened to Finland’s Milko Tokola. The mullet-haired 23-year-old lifted 175kg above his head on the clean and jerk, pumped his fists in celebrations and then blacked out, falling head first off the stage. Talk about a scare situation!

Milko Olavi Tokola of Finland competes in the men’s 85kg weightlifting competition in Rio. (AP)
And then he collapses as he tries to leave the stage. Later he said he had a headache, not bothering much about the incident. (AP)

6:01pm (IST): India’s shuttlers have been having mixed results in Rio. While our singles players have managed wins in their group play stages, our doubles teams have stuttered. But, with Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa on later today against Thailand, who all will be cheering for them? Raise your hands up!

Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa have had difficult matches in their group so far. (REUTERS)

5.51pm (IST):After you finish Usain’s tweet challenge, this might be of interest : The long run: Bolt, Phelps and their coaches who won the test of time

5.43pm (IST): With Michael Phelps’ Rio journey over, it’s now time for Usain Bolt to take centre stage. Will he defend his gold medals this time too? Well, that we shall soon know. But before he blazes down the tracks and lights up the stadium, enjoy his tweet challenge!

5:30 pm (IST): “I’m just ecstatic. I don’t think it has set in yet. It’s just crazy.” That’s 21-year-old Joseph Schooling after beating idol Michael Phelps last night in the 100m butterfly. Who saw that amazing race? What an amazing achievement for the young Singaporean. And could anyone believe a three-way tie for silver? That’s the Olympics for you!

Silver medallists - Hungary's Laszlo Cseh (from left), South Africa's Chad Le Clos and US' Michael Phelps and Singapore's gold medal winner Joseph Schooling on the podium. (AP)

4:30 pm (IST): Let’s kick off the day with this, shall we? Though we would like to imagine it is Bolt on the screen, and not Mr Kardashian.

4:40 pm (IST): In other news, India’s very own Dipa Karmakar is in action tomorrow in the women’s vault final. Fans have been continuously wishing the gymnast, who has captured the nation’s imagination, on social media!

5pm (IST): All Rafa fans out there, Vamos to your hearts content! Wrist injury forcing him out of the French Open, withdrawing from Big W and unsure of playing in this Olympics after landing in Rio, the Spaniard added a second gold to his Olympic collection with good friend Marc Lopez and will be taking on Djokovic slayer big serving Argentine Juan Martin Del Potro in the semis! Tense match for the fans for sure. Don’t forget to tune in!

5:10pm (IST): Neither Sania Mirza nor Rohan Bopanna had a good outing in their respective doubles events. But together, they are one win short of assuring themselves a mixed medal! Yesterday they beat Brits Andy Murray and Heather Watson and in their semifinal path today stand the formidable Americans Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram. Can they pull it off? Can they assure India their first medal at Rio?? Fingers crossed!

A good victory equals happiness! Sania Mirza and Rohan Bopanna are all smiles after beating Andy Murray and Heather Watson of Great Britain to enter the semi-finals . (PTI)