Highlights of action Sunday at the Games
Posted: Monday August 23, 2004 2:15AM; Updated: Monday August 23, 2004 2:15AM
Sunday, Aug. 22
--Sprinter Justin Gatlin barely held off the field to win the 100 meters in 9.85 seconds to claim the title of world's fastest man. Francis Obikwelu of Portugal got the silver in 9.86 and defending champion Maurice Greene won bronze in 9.87
--The U.S. men's elite eight crew ended a 40-year American drought in rowing gold medals, taking a big lead and then holding off a late charge by the Netherlands.
--Mizuki Noguchi of Japan won gold and American Deena Kastor used a late burst for a bronze medal in the women's marathon.
--Sarah Ulmer of New Zealand continued her dominance of pursuit racing, breaking her own world record to win the Olympic gold medal in track cycling's 3,000-meter event.
--Christian Olsson won the triple jump, just minutes after Swedish countryman Stefan Holm celebrated victory in the high jump.
--Greek gymnast Dimosthenis Tampakos sent the Olympic Indoor Hall into a frenzy, winning gold on the rings.
Gail Devers, the most talented yet star-crossed hurdler of her generation, couldn't complete even one hurdle in 100-meter event. The 37-year-old Devers, a three-time world champion, has failed to win an Olympic hurdles medal in five tries.
OFF THE MARK
American shooter Matt Emmons fired at the wrong target on his final shot, blowing a commanding lead in the Olympic 50-meter three-position rifle event and allowing Jia Zhanbo of China to take the gold.
Paul Hamm is angry his all-around gymnastics title is being disputed. He won the gold Wednesday because of a scoring mistake that prevented a South Korean from finishing first. Hamm would've been second. "I'm not a silver medalist," he said. "Once the meet is over, it's over."
DOWN AND OUT
Marathon favorite and world record holder Paula Radcliffe of Britain faded to fourth place and then quit about 31/2 miles from the finish, then sitting on a curb and sobbing.
FILLING THE HOUSE
Olympic organizers said venues averaged more than three-fourths full over the weekend, with track and field leading a growing list of sold-out events. Total sales rose to 3.34 million tickets out of 5.3 million available. Organizers hoped to sell 3.4 million tickets.
Greek weightlifter Leonidas Sampanis was stripped of his bronze and expelled from the Olympics for a doping offense. ... Russian shot put gold medalist Irina Korzhanenko, the winner at Ancient Olympia, is under investigation after testing positive for the steroid stanozolol -- the same drug that cost Canadian sprinter Ben Johnson his 100-meter gold at the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell will attend the closing ceremony. While in Athens, he'll meet with Greek Premier Costas Caramanlis.
Guard Katie Smith reinjured her right knee in the first quarter of the U.S. basketball team's final preliminary round game against China. The initial diagnosis was a sprain. She will have an MRI on Monday.
A Hungarian fencing referee was expelled from the Olympics and suspended for two years after making errors during Saturday night's gold-medal match in men's team foil. Referee Joszef Hidasi made mistakes in six scoring decisions -- all in favor of gold medalist Italy.
Mia Hamm goes into the last two games of her soccer career as the United States faces Germany in the Olympic semifinals. ... Lisa Fernandez and the U.S. women's softball team plays Australia for the gold medal, trying to win their third straight. ... U.S. sprinters compete in the 400 meters -- a race the Americans have won in the last five Olympics.
It was another steamy day in Athens, with the mercury reaching 99 degrees at the Olympic stadium under mostly clear skies. Monday was expected to be a little cooler -- 89 degrees and clear.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"I can't believe it happened. It was a very great race. I'm living the moment. The competition was stellar. I said it was going to be the most exciting race in the world, and it was."
-- Sprinter Justin Gatlin of the United States, gold medalist in the 100 meters.