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Posted: Thursday July 31, 2008 9:28AM; Updated: Monday August 4, 2008 12:00PM
Brian Cazeneuve Brian Cazeneuve >
INSIDE OLYMPICS

Medal Picks (cont.)

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TRIATHLON

Men
G: Javier Gómez, Spain
S: Bevan Docherty, New Zealand
B: Frédéric Belaubre, France
Gómez was once barred from racing because of an abnormal heart valve.

Women
G: Emma Snowsill, Australia
S: Vanessa Fernandes, Portugal
B: Emma Moffatt, Australia
Snowsill won '03 worlds but was left off Athens team.

VOLLEYBALL

Men
Indoor
G: Brazil
S: Russia
B: Poland
Improved U.S. has a shot at a medal.

Beach
G: Rogers & Dalhausser, U.S.
S: Ricardo & Emanuel, Brazil
B: Marcio Araujo & Fabio Luiz, Brazil
At 6' 9", Phil Dalhausser has seven inches on Todd Rogers.

Women
Indoor
G: Brazil
S: Italy
B: Russia
This would be first gold for Brazil's women's team.

Beach
G: May-Treanor & Walsh, U.S.
S: Tian & Wang, China
B: Branagh & Youngs, U.S.
Returning champions have a 96-match winning streak.

WATER POLO

Men
G: Serbia
S: Croatia
B: Spain
Newly separated Serbia and Montenegro may win medals.

Women
G: Russia
S: U.S.
B: Australia
U.S. won '07 worlds then lost to Russia in World League final.

WEIGHTLIFTING

Men
56 kg (123 lbs.)
G: Eko Irawan, Indonesia
S: Li Zheng, China
B: Hoang Anh Tuan, Vietnam
Turkish great Halil Mutlu canceled his comeback.

62 kg (136.5 lbs.)
G: Zhang Xiangxiang, China
S: Im Yong Su, North Korea
B: Oscar Figueroa, Colombia
China chose Zhang though he's No. 6 in national rankings.

69 kg (152 lbs.)
G: Shi Zhiyong, China
S: Vencelas Dabaya, France
B: Kim Chol Jin, North Korea
World champ Zhang Guozheng did not make Chinese team.

77 kg (169.5 lbs.)
G: Li Hongli, China
S: Gevorg Davtyan, Armenia
B: Oleg Perepechenov, Russia
Bulgaria's Ivan Stoitsov (box) is world champ.

85 kg (187 lbs.)
G: Andrei Rybakou, Belarus
S: Izzet Ince, Turkey
B: Valeriu Calancea, Romania
Rybakou won '07 worlds by an astounding 46 pounds.

94 kg (207 lbs.)
G: Roman Konstantinov, Russia
S: Szymon Kolecki, Poland
B: Yoandris Hernández, Cuba
Konstantinov beat these two rivals on final lift at '07 worlds.

105 kg (231 lbs.)
G: Andrei Aramnau, Belarus
S: Dimitry Klokov, Russia
B: Dmitry Lapikov, Russia
Allowed a total of six lifters, Russians are doubling up here.

105+ kg (231+ lbs.)
G: Hossein Rezazadeh, Iran
S: Viktors Scerbatihs, Latvia
B: Matthias Steiner, Germany
Iranian TV carried Rezazadeh's wedding live in 2003.

Women
48 kg (105.5 lbs.)
G: Chen Xiexia, China
S: Pramsiri Bunphithak, Thailand
B: Estefania Juan, Spain
Deep China could replace Chen with Yang Lian -- and still win.

53 kg (116.5 lbs.)
G: Nastassia Novikava, Belarus
S: Yu Wei Li, Hong Kong
B: Wandee Kameaim, Thailand
Limited to four women's entries, China skips this class despite having world's two best.

58 kg (127.5 lbs.)
G: Qiu Hongmei, China
S: Marina Shainova, Russia
B: O Jong Ae, North Korea
China might replace Qiu with '04 champ Chen Yanqing.

63 kg (138.5 lbs.)
G: Liu Haixia, China
S: Svetlana Tsarukaeva, Russia
B: Meline Daluzyan, Armenia
Liu is reigning world champion.

69 kg (152 lbs.)
G: Oxana Slivenko, Russia
S: Liu Chunhong, China
B: Nazik Avdalyan, Armenia
Slivenko won world title in 2006 at age 19.

75 kg (165 lbs.)
G: Nadezda Evstyukhina, Russia
S: Hripsime Khursudyan, Armenia
B: Lidia Valentin, Spain
Russia leaves home world-record holder Natalia Zabolotnaya.

75+ kg (165+ lbs.)
G: Jang Mi Ran, South Korea
S: Olha Korobka, Ukraine
B: Mariya Grabovetskaya, Kazakhstan
U.S.'s Cheryl Haworth could win her second Olympic medal.

WRESTLING

Men's Freestyle
55 kg (121 lbs.)
G: Besik Kudukhov, Russia
S: Radoslav Velikov, Bulgaria
B: Henry Cejudo, U.S.
B: Andy Moreno, Cuba
Cejudo was training partner for ex-Olympian Patricia Miranda.

60 kg (132 lbs.)
G: Yandro Quintana Ribalta, Cuba
S: Mavlet Batirov, Russia
B: Anatolie Guidea, Bulgaria
B: Seyed Morad Mohammadi, Iran
Quintana Ribalta gave up only one point en route to '04 gold.

66 kg (145 lbs.)
G: Otar Tushishvili, Georgia
S: Ramazan Shahin, Turkey
B: Irbek Farniev, Russia
B: Geandry Garzón Caballero, Cuba
U.S.'s Doug Schwab is medal threat.

74 kg (163 lbs.)
G: Buvaysa Saytiev, Russia
S: Ibragim Aldatov, Ukraine
B: Aliasghar Bazrighaleh, Iran
B: Chamsulvara Chamsulvarayev, Azerbaijan
Colorful U.S. hope Ben Askren vows to win gold.

84 kg (185 lbs.)
G: Georgy Ketoev, Russia
S: Zaurbek Sokhiev, Uzbekistan
B: Revaz Mindorashvili, Georgia
B: Reza Yazdani, Iran
Ketoev replaces two-time world champ Sajid Sajidov for Russia.

96 kg (211 lbs.)
G: Shirvani Muradov, Russia
S: George Gogshelidze, Georgia
B: Saeid Abrahimi, Iran
B: Daniel Cormier, U.S.
Cormier's infant daughter, Kaedyn, died in '03 car accident.

120 kg (264 lbs.)
G: Artur Taymazov, Uzbekistan
S: Beylal Makhov, Russia
B: Alexis Rodriguez, Cuba
B: Vadim Tasoev, Ukraine
Taymazov won gold in Athens with a spectacular pin.

Greco-Roman
55 kg (121 lbs.)
G: Hamid Souryan Reihanpour, Iran
S: Park Eun Chul, South Korea
B: Rovshan Bayramov, Azerbaijan
B: Nazyr Mankiev, Russia
Iran has won 34 medals in combat sports.

60 kg (132 lbs.)
G: David Bedinadze, Georgia
S: Armen Nazarian, Bulgaria
B: Eusebiu Diaconu, Romania
B: Makoto Sasamoto, Japan
Nazarian won first of his two golds for his native Armenia.

66 kg (145 lbs.)
G: Farid Mansurov, Azerbaijan
S: Nikolay Gergov, Bulgaria
B: Kanatbek Begaliev, Kyrgyzstan
B: Steeve Guenot, France
Jake Deitchler, 18, is youngest U.S. Olympic wrestler since '76.

74 kg (163 lbs.)
G: Mark Madsen, Denmark
S: Volodimir Shatsykykh, Ukraine
B: Valdemaras Venckaitis, Lithuania
B: Yavor Yanakiev, Bulgaria
Only two of Denmark's 42 golds have been won in wrestling.

84 kg (185 lbs.)
G: Alexei Mishin, Russia
S: Brad Vering, U.S.
B: Nazmi Avluca, Turkey
B: Saman Tahmasebi, Iran
Vering has degree in agriculture.

96 kg (211 lbs.)
G: Ramaz Nozadze, Georgia
S: Karam Gaber, Egypt
B: Ghasem Rezaei, Iran
B: Marek Svec, Czech Republic
Gaber was '04 champ.

120 kg (264 lbs.)
G: Mijain Lopez, Cuba
S: Khasan Baroev, Russia
B: Dremiel Byers, U.S.
B: Mihály Deák-Bárdos, Hungary
Byers spent years in shadow of Olympic champ Rulon Gardner.

Women's Freestyle
48 kg (105.5 lbs.)
G: Chiharu Icho, Japan
S: Irini Merleni, Ukraine
B: Carol Huynh, Canada
B: Ren Xueceng, China
In '04 Merleni was first woman to win wrestling gold.

55 kg (121 lbs.)
G: Saori Yoshida, Japan
S: Marcie Van Dusen, U.S.
B: Natalia Golts, Russia
B: Tonya Verbeek, Canada
Yoshida shut out Verbeek 6-0 for gold in Athens.

63 kg (138.5 lbs.)
G: Kaori Icho, Japan
S: Xu Hai Yan, China
B: Alena Kartashova, Russia
B: Yelena Shalygina, Kazakhstan
Icho won '04 final in overtime.

72 kg (158.5 lbs.)
G: Stanka Zlateva, Bulgaria
S: Kyoko Hamaguchi, Japan
B: Wang Xu, China
B: Olga Zhanibekova, Kazakhstan
Hamaguchi's dad was a pro wrestler known as the Animal.

 
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