Surprises all around on first day of Olympics | News | DW | 28.07.2012
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Surprises all around on first day of Olympics

Michael Phelps has failed in his first bid. Kazakh Alexandre Vinokourov upset British hopes by winning gold in the cycling road race. China has tallied four golds, and Germany is off to a disappointing start.

Phelps didn't even make it to the podium in the 400-meter individual medley at the Aquatics Centre on Saturday, the first full day of competition at the games. He was fourth behind winner and fellow American Ryan Lochte, who was en route to a world record but faded on the last lap.

Lochte was more than three seconds ahead of Brazil's Thiago Pereira. Japan's Kosuke Hagino claimed the bronze.

Ye Shiwen set a world record to win the women's 400 individual medley, China's second gold of four. Sun Yang won the 400 freestyle, beating 2008 champion Park Tae-hwan of South Korea, who was reinstated for the final after first being disqualified in the heats.

Cycle surprise

The Kazakh Alexandre Vinokourov triumphed over the cycling world champion Briton Mark Cavendish when he claimed the gold medal in the Olympic road race. Colombia's Rigoberto Uran won the silver, with Norway's Alexander Kristoff taking the bronze after the 249.5-kilometer race, which finished in the shadow of Buckingham Palace on The Mall.

Brazil's Sarah Menezes celebrates after defeating Romania's Alina Dumitru (white) in their women's -48kg final judo match, at the London 2012 Olympic Games

Brazil's Menezes triumphed over Romania's Alina Dumitru

Martial matters

In judo, Brazil's Sarah Menezes took gold in the women's under-48-kilogram category on Saturday by defeating the reigning Olympic champion, Romania's Alina Dumitru.

Russia's Arsen Galstyan was the surprise winner in the men's under-60-kilogram category on Saturday, defeating the top two seeds on his way to gold. Galstyan, who is 23, beat Japan's Hiroaki Hiraoka, the silver medalist at last year's world championships.

Shooting success

Jin Jong Oh of South Korea won the second Olympic gold of his career, coming first in the men's 10-meter air pistol, with a score of 688.2. Luca Tesconi of Italy earned silver with 685.8, and the bronze went to Andrija Zlatic of Serbia with 685.2

Earlier on Saturday, Yi Siling claimed the first of 302 gold medals at the London Games in the women's 10-meter air rifle. Sylwia Bogacka of Poland took silver, and Yi's teammate, Yu Dan, bronze.

New rowing record

In rowing, New Zealanders Hamish Bond and Eric Murray set a new men's pairs rowing world record in the Olympic heats, smashing the mark held by Britain's Matthew Pinsent and James Cracknell.

The multiple world champions timed 6 minutes, 8.5 seconds, almost six seconds quicker than the 10-year-old record set at the 2002 world championships.

China's Wang competes on the women 48Kg Group A weightlifting competition at the London 2012 Olympic Games July 28, 2012.

It's Wang's first time at the Olympics

Heavy medal

China's second gold came when Olympic first-timer Wang Mingjuan extended a 10-year unbeaten record to win in the first women's weightlifting event of the London Games, giving the team a perfect start in their defense of four Olympic titles. Wang, 26, eased to victory in the 48-kilogram weight division, lifting a combined total of 205 kilograms to the delight of the strong Chinese contingent in the 6,000-seat ExCel arena. Lifting the heaviest weight in both styles - the explosive one-phase snatch and the two-stage clean and jerk - Wang posted a total of 8 kilograms more than silver-medal winner Hiromi Miyake from Japan and 13 more than bronze winner Ryang Chun Hwa of North Korea.


Italy won the gold medal in men's team archery, the first ever for the country. The United States took silver, and South Korea won the bronze medal in Saturday's competition at Lord's Cricket Ground. Michele Frangilli, Marco Galiazzo and Mauro Nespoli hugged and raised their hands in celebration after the final arrow determined they had won, beating the Americans 219-218.

The German swim team in better days

Germany's swimming team suffered on Saturday

Bad start for Germany

Germany, meanwhile, got off to a disappointing start with no medals won so far. Paul Biedermann, the world record holder for the 200-meter freestyle, failed to make the final in the men's 400-meter freestyle.

The women's 4x100-meter freestyle relay team, led by Olympic champion Britta Steffen, also failed to qualify for Saturday's final by only managing ninth place.

ng,mkg/mkg, tm (AFP, Reuters, dpa)

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