Highlights of action Wednesday at the Games
Posted: Thursday August 26, 2004 1:12AM; Updated: Thursday August 26, 2004 1:12AM
Wednesday, Aug. 25
--Rulon Gardner of the United States won his bronze medal wrestling match, then tearfully untied his shoes and left them in the ring -- the traditional sign of retirement.
--Israeli windsurfer Gal Fridman won sailing's Mistral class, his nation's first gold medal ever.
--U.S. middleweight Andre Dirrell narrowly beat Cuba's Yordani Despaigne to advance to the Olympic boxing semifinals.
--Cuba won the gold medal for the third time in the four Olympics that included baseball, with Frederich Cepeda hitting a two-run homer in a 6-2 win over Australia.
--Fani Halkia of Greece won gold in the 400-meter hurdles with a time of 52.82 seconds.
--Olga Kuzenkova of Russia won gold in the hammer throw with an Olympic record of 246 feet, 1 inch.
Marion Jones made a quiet Athens debut, advancing to the long jump final. Without fanfare that accompanied her quest for five golds at the 2000 Sydney Games, Jones made the final with the seventh-best jump of the qualifying round: 21 feet, 11 3/4 inches.
U.S. hurdler Allen Johnson, a four-time world champion and former Olympic gold medalist, made a shocking exit when he crashed in the second round of the 110-meter hurdles. He tripped over the ninth hurdle and fell under the final one.
Greek protest groups urged the government to call off a planned visit by Secretary of State Colin Powell, saying he will try to exploit the Olympics for President Bush's re-election campaign. Powell plans to arrive Saturday.
The U.S. women's volleyball team came to Athens expecting to play for gold. Instead, the Americans were eliminated from the quarterfinals by unbeaten Brazil after a shaky showing in the preliminary round.
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Zimbabwe put aside an official hate campaign against the nation's tiny white community and hailed its triple medal winner swimmer Kirsty Coventry as "a national treasure." She is white and trains at Auburn University.
--Prosecutors have seized the hospital records of two Greek sprinting stars who withdrew from the Olympics after missing a doping test. Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou were involved in a suspicious motorcycle accident.
--In another development, a man who said he witnessed the accident was arrested after police discovered he had an outstanding warrant for an unrelated fraud conviction.
A Hungarian weightlifter is under investigation for failing to provide a urine sample after his competition. Zoltan Kovacs, who finished at the bottom Tuesday in the 105kg weightlifting, testified before the IOC disciplinary committee.
The Fab Five of U.S. women's soccer -- Mia Hamm, Brandi Chastain, Julie Foudy, Joy Fawcett and Kristine Lilly -- play their final major international tournament together, going for gold against Brazil. ... 100-meter sprint champion Justin Gatlin tries for another gold in the 200, a sweep last accomplished by Carl Lewis in 1984. ... The U.S. men's basketball team plays Spain in the Olympic quarterfinals.
The temperature reached 91 degrees under sunny skies at the Olympic stadium. Thursday's forecast called for more sunshine and an expected high of 93.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"Every Olympics we dream of hearing the anthem and seeing the flag. It's the top. I was feeling very proud and so happy to hear the people singing it. I sang as strong as I could, but nobody heard it because everybody was screaming." -- Windsurfer Gal Fridman, the first Israeli ever to win a gold medal.