Olympics 2012: Live Report

Judith Evans and Ruth Holmes
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PHOTO OF THE DAY: USA's Carmelita Jeter takes her team to victory in the 4 x 100m relay final

US' Carmelita Jeter wins the women's 4 x 100m relay final at the athletics event of the London 2012 Olympic Games on August 10, 2012 in London

That's all the action for tonight. At the end of the day, USA remains at the top of the medal tables with 41 golds out of a total of 94. China is second with 37 golds and 81 in total, while Great Britain has 57 overall, including 25 golds.

Here's a roundup of today's action:

+ America's women smashed the 4x100m relay record which had stood since 1985 while the Bahamas shocked the United States in the men's 4x400m relay.

+ Usain Bolt's team-mates left him on the verge of yet more history when they smashed their 4x100m relay heat.

+ Meseret Defar took the 5,000m title from Ethiopian team-mate Tirunesh Dibaba while Turkey's Asli Cakir Alptekin won the women's 1500m.

+ Former world record-holder Tatyana Lysenko of Russia won the women's hammer while the men's pole vault was won by France's Renaud Lavillenie, after Australia's defending champion Steve Hooker crashed out.

+Tunisia's Oussama Mellouli claimed the men's 10km swimming marathon, becoming the first person to win Olympic titles in both pool and open water races.

2242 GMT: And our PHOTO OF THE DAY comes from that event too: USA's Carmelita Jeter takes her team to victory in the 4 x 100m relay final, setting a new world record of 40.82 for the first time in 27 years.

2236 GMT: That brings us smoothly onto tonight's TWEET OF THE DAY as events here draw to a close. It comes from American 400m champion Sanya Richards-Ross to her world record setting teammates: "Big S/O to @teamTianna @allysonFelix @MidKnightDreams @carmelitaJeter on an amazing 4x1 relay! So proud!!! WR in style #TeamUSA." S/O being shout-out and WR being world record, for anyone struggling with the lingo.

2229 GMT: In another Olympics first, AFP gets a mention in a tweet from star Kenyan athlete David Rudisha. @rudishadavid tweeted an article by Pirate Irwin on his world record victory in the 800m last night. He later tweeted a snap of himself "chilling out with the great Haile Gabriel Selassie, at Westfield"!

2222 GMT: BOXING: Britian's Anthony Joshua wins 13-11! He fights defending champion, Roberto Cammarelle of Italy for the gold medal on Sunday afternoon.

In other boxing news South Korea's Han Soon-Chul has is through to Sunday's lightweight final against world champion Vasyl Lomachenko with a 18-13 win over Lithuania's 20-year-old Evaldas Petrauskas.

2217 GMT: Oscar Pistorius may have had less success in his relay, finishing last in the 4x400m men's final, but he too has made history at these Games and he calls the experience "phenomenal" and "humbling".

He writes on Twitter: "I can't describe the feelings I've had this week... Thank you all for playing a part in one of the greatest weeks of my life!"

2211 GMT: ATHLETICS: With so much going on tonight, there's barely been time to reflect on the stunning performances on the track earlier, including that American world record in the women's 4x100m relay.

For 200m champion Allyson Felix it was her second gold of the Games. Beaming after the race says: "It's an honour to be part of this team. Who would have thought that we would have had a world record tonight? It's amazing... Our names are going down in history."

2202 GMT: In BOXING tonight Welshman Fred Evans, beat the Ukranian and world number one, Taras Shelestyuk, despite a late rally and some good combinations in the final round by the latter. He will now compete in the 69kg gold medal fight.

And now his GB teammate, Anthony Joshua, is battling it out in the men's boxing super heavyweight (91kg+) semi-final against the experienced Kazakh boxer, Ivan Dychko.

2155 GMT: Argentina may have lost out in the hoops but they've struck gold in taekwondo...


Sebastian Crismanich struck the only point 22 seconds from the end of the third and final round to claim the men's under-80kg taekwondo title -- Argentina's first gold medal of these Games.

The seventh seed snatched a tight final against fifth seed Nicolas Garcia 1-0 to deny Spain a second gold of the taekwondo competition.

Bronze medals were taken earlier by Britain's Lutalo Muhammad and Italy's Mauro Sarmiento took the second.


Kevin Durant scored 19 points and LeBron James added 18 to lead the US team of NBA stars over Argentina 109-83 into the final against Spain.

That showdown will be a rematch of the 2008 Olympic final and it's the 15th time the USA will have reached the medal game in 17 attempts. The American star team will be seeking their 14th gold medal against a Spanish side also filled with NBA standouts.


Two-time world champion Hwang Kyung-Seon retains the title afterdominating second seed Nur Tatar of Turkey 12-5 in the final.

American Paige McPherson beat world champion Sarah Stevenson of Great Britain 5-1 in the first round and then defeated Slovenia's Franka Anic 8-3 for the first bronze medal.

Germany's former European champion Helena Fromm beat Carmen Marton of Australia 8-2 for the other bronze.

2139 GMT: Also in those diving heats, Germans Sascha Klein (525.05) and Martin Wolfram (496.80) qualified third and fourth, ahead of Mexicans, German Sanchez (495.85) and Navarro Garcia (491.70).

Australia's defending champion Matthew Mitcham finished in ninth place with 457.20, and British star Tom Daley paid for a poor penulatimate dive (39.60) to squeeze into the semis in 15th spot with 448.45.

2135 GMT: DIVING: The men's 10m platford diving has also been on tonight's programme and it's China's peerless Qiu Bo who marches into the semi-finals as the top qualifier.

The 19-year-old, who was 2011 FINA male diver of the year, performed a series of sublime dives to lead the top-18 into Saturday's semi-finals with a total score of 563.70 from his six immaculate dives. Unchallengeable in the leadup to the event, he finished 31.55 points ahead of his nearest rival -- team-mate Lin Yue on 532.15.

2128 GMT: TAEKWONDO: The medals are rolling tonight and we're a little behind on this one so apologies... Britain's Lutalo Muhammad missed out on a place in the final but he bounces back to win bronze in the men's under-80kg taekwondo division.

In doing so he helps British Taekwondo to their best ever Olympic performance and vindicates the British selectors who controversially picked him ahead of world number one Aaron Cook.

2120 GMT: In tonight's WATER POLO semi-final Italy beat Serbia 9-7 (4-2, 2-2, 2-1, 1-2). It puts them through to a final with Croatia who earlier beat Montenegro 7-5 (3-1, 2-0, 2-2, 0-2).

2115 GMT: Back at the BASKETBALL Jim Slater reports: "A spec-TAC-ular slam dunk from LeBron James with 3:46 to go in the third quater. He drives to the hoop, leaps high into the air and slams the ball into the hoop and gets fouled.

"Then he hits a free throw to complete a three-point play and push USA lead to its biggest yet at 64- 57. Roar from crowd and U-S-A chant loudest yet.

"NBA scoring champion Kevin Durant just hit back-2-back three-pointers and USA now leads 70-53.

2110 GMT: In VOLLEYBALL Brazil beat Italy 3-0 (25-21, 25-12, 25-21) in the men's semi-finals, setting up a clash with Russia in the final.

And in HANDBALL France beat Croatia 25-22 in their semi-final to put them through to a final against Sweden.

2105 GMT: ATHLETICS: To clarify the results of that hammer event earlier, won by Russia's Tatiana Lyssenko... China's Asian record holder Zhang Wenxiu initially took bronze (76.34m). But officials then admitted to an error in measuring German Betty Heidler's attempt , which elevated her to bronze and relegated the Chinese athlete to fourth.

2100 GMT: And some other results... In FOOTBALL South Korea claim the bronze with a 2-0 win over Japan.

2055 GMT: BASKETBALL: Jim Slater updates us on the USA-Argentina match: "Argentina's Manu Ginobili sank a three-pointer from the corner at the halftime buzzer to pull the south american squad within 47-40 at the break.

"Kobe Bryant 13 points and LeBron James 11 to lead USA. Carlos Delfino 13 points and Luis Scola 10 to lead Argentina."

2051 GMT: ATHLETICS: More now on that pole vault final... In-form Frenchman Renaud Lavillenie wins the gold after Australia's reigning champion Steve Hooker bowed out without clearing a single height.

It's Lavillenie's first global outdoor title and set a new Olympic record of 5.97m. German pair Bjorn Otto and Raphael Holzdeppe took silver and bronze after both cleared 5.91m.

2047 GMT: The Netherlands can now win both hockey titles, with their men's team playing Germany on Saturday.

Argentina captain Luciana Aymar, 35, wins her fourth straight Olympic hockey medal but was unable to claim her first gold -- the only missing major title of her career.

2043 GMT: More now on that HOCKEY result: The Netherlands successfully defended their Olympic women's hockey title with a 2-0 win over world champions Argentina.

Dutch captain Maartje Paumen scored both goals in the final.

2041 GMTL Oscar Pistorius, the double amputee who runs on carbon fibre blades, ran the final leg of that 4.400m relay for South Africa but it was disappointment for his team who came last.

2037 GMT: ATHLETICS: Where to start with that flurry of gold?! First, more on the men's 4x400m relay... The Bahamas timed a national record of 2mins 56.72sec for their first gold in the event -- in what was really only a two-team race in the final leg

The USA's Tony McQuay was first to hand over the baton in the final changover but anchorman Angelo Taylor couldn't keep up with with Ramon Miller of the Bahamas. The USA claimed silver in 2:57.05 while Trinidad and Tobago took bronze in a national record of 2:59.40.

Double amputee Oscar Pistorius's hopes of an historic medal never looked likely as South Africa, who had only reached the final after appealing when they failed to finish their heat, finished eighth and last.




USA take silver with Trinidad and Tobago claiming bronze.

2021 GMT: ATHLETICS: Back on the track, it's the men's 4x400m relay final and the USA are the first to changeover the baton into the last leg but the Bahamas are driving forward...

2020 GMT: And in BASKETBALL: Argentina are playing the US dream team in their semi-final clash. Jim Slater reports: "Kevin Durant slams down an uncontested fast break dunk to give the USA a 15-4 lead over Argentina just 3:51 into this men's basketball semi-final.

"The US NBA stars look set to book a rematch with Spain of the final they won in Beijing in 2008."

2015 GMT: The women's HOCKEY final is also in full swing with the Netherlands on track to defending their title with a 2-0 lead over Argentina.

2010 GMT: There are of course still events going on outside the stadium tonight. In TAEKWONDO Afghanistan is closing in on a second medal in London as Nesar Bahawi is thrashing New Zealand's Vaughan Scott in the repechage final, Barnaby Chesterman tells us.

If he were to win a medal it would be only Afghanistan's third ever, and all in taekwondo.

2007 GMT: Turkey's Asli Cakir Alptekin won the women's 1500m in 4min 10.23sec. Another Turk, Gamze Bulut, took silver in 4:10.40, with Bahrain's Ethiopian-born Maryam Jamal claiming bronze (4:10.74).


2002 GMT: Former world record holder Tatyana Lysenko of Russia wins the women's hammer Olympic title with an Olympic record of 78.18m.

The 28-year-old -- who returned from a two-year doping suspension in April 2011 -- edged Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk into second (77.60m) while Germany's Betty Heidler took bronze with a throw of 77.13.


1953 GMT: The American team, including 200m gold medallist Allyson Felix and 100m silver medallist Carmelita Jeter, who ran the final leg, are in raptures as they realise what they've done.

Not only have they beaten arch-rivals Jamaica but they've smashed one of the oldest world records standing. And it's the USA's first Olympic gold in the event since the 1996 Atlanta Games.

1945 GMT: The Americans speed to gold and a new world record in an incredible 40.82 -- breaking the 41.37 record set by East Germany back in 1985.

Jamaica's quartet finished second and broke their national record with a 41.41 run while Ukraine also broke their national record for bronze in 42.04.


1938 GMT: Next up on the track... the women's 4x100m realy final...

1934 GMT: Dibaba had been leading to the final corner but Defar picked up the pace after the bend to sprint past her to the finish, with Kenya's Cheruiyot also leaving the favourite behind.

1925 GMT: Meseret Defar of Ethiopia, who also won the 5000m at the Athens Games in 2004, falls to the ground sobbing after storming the home straight to finish first in 15:04:24.

World champion Vivian Cheruiyot of Kenya takes silver in 15:04:73 while Ethiopia's Tirubnesh Dibaba has to settle for bronze with 15:05:15.


1918 GMT: Running concurrently is the men's POLE VAULT final where Steve Hooker's reign as Olympic champion has ended with a whimper.

The "yips" that have dogged his recent career returned to haunt the Australian who failed with three attempts to clear 5.65 metres, a full 41cm under his personal best.

1911 GMT: ATHLETICS: The women's 5,000m final is under way at the Olympic Stadium now, where Ethiopian distance legend Tirunesh Dibaba is looking to defend her crown.

She's got every chance of winning the long-distance double for a second time having already won gold in the 10,000m in these Games and at Beijing. But she'll have tough competition from Kenya's Vivian Cheruiyot who is unbeaten in two years.

1906 GMT: Jordan Burroughs of the United States defeated Iran's Sadegh Gourdazi in the final to claim that gold.

Victory saw Burroughs extend his winning streak to 38 bouts after he triumphed in what was a repeat of last year's world championship final.

Bronze medals go to Russia's Denis Tsargush and Soslan Tigiev of Uzbekistan.


1857 GMT: The USA blitz the field in their relay heat, winning in 37.38 -- a new national record -- and setting up what it sure to be a thrilling Jamaica-USA clash in the 4x100m final.

Second to qualify were Japan (38:07), with Trinidad in third place (38.10), both running season's bests. The two fastest losers to go through are France and Australia.

1850 GMT: The Jamaican team run a season's best of 37.39 while Canada finish second with 38.05. The Netherlands also qualify in third with 38.29.

But it's bad news for the Brits -- they are disqualified after failing to hand over the baton in time. Daniel Talbot passed to Adam Gemili outside of the changeover zone.

1845 GMT: Next up on the track we've got the heats of the men's 4x100m relay.

The Jamaican team is in heat one -- but Usain Bolt is NOT on the line-up. Nesta Carter takes the first leg with Michael Frater running the second, Yohan Blake taking the third and Kemar Bailey-Cole in the final leg... They storm to victory even without the legend.

1838 GMT: The two slowest losers to qualify from those heats are Nigeria and the Czech Republic.

1834 GMT: America's quartet win heat two of that 4x400m relay in 3:22:09, with Dee Trotter, in the final leg, crossing the line ahead of Anastasiya Kapachinskaya who took Russia to second place (3:23:11).

Great Britain qualified third, with their 400m favourite Christine Ohuruogu taking the final leg to give them a season's best of 3:25:05.

1827 GMT: ATHLETICS: At the stadium the women's 4x400m relay heats are in full swing -- and no dropped batons yet.

The Jamaican team easily won their first heat with a season's best of 3:25:13, beating Ukraine who finished second to qualify. The French came third, putting them through to the next round as well.

1818 GMT: Russia's Dzhamal Otarsultanov takes the men's 55kg freestyle wrestling gold medal after defeating Georgia's Vladimer Khinchegashvili in the final at the Excel Arena.

The two bronze medals go to Japan's Shinichi Yumoto and North Korea's Yang Kyong-Il.


1814 GMT: And in TAEKWONDO, reigning champion Hwang Kyung-Seon reaches a second straight Olympic final in the women's under-67kg division.

South Korea's Hwang, the overwhelming favourite, will meet fifth seed Nur Tatar of Turkey. In the semi-finals whe beat Ruth Gbagbi of Ivory Coast 4-1 and then ousted Germany's Helena Fromm 8-4 before stunning Slovenia's Franka Anic with a 7-0 victory.

1807 GTM: Before we go to the stadium, some VOLLEYBALL news... Russia may have lost out to Spain in the basketball but it compensated in the men's volleyball with a 3-1 win over Bulgaria 1 (25-21, 25-15, 23-25, 25-23).

They will play either Italy or Brazil in Sunday's gold-medal match depending on the outcome of that semi-final match-up (1930 GMT).

1800 GMT: Usain Bolt will be eyeing more Olympic glory in the 4x100m relay in an immensely strong Jamaican quartet. Asked if the existing best mark of 37.10sec could be under threat he said: "I think there's a possibility.

"But you can never really say it, because it's a relay and there's a baton. You never know. But for me, we're going to go out, enjoy ourselves, run as fast as possible. It would be a good way to close the show again."

1755 GMT: ATHLETICS: Tonight's athletics session will be getting under way in a few minutes. Coming up we've got the men's pole vault final (1800 GMT); men's hammer final (1935 GMT) and women's 5,000m final (2005 GMT).

Later on there's also the women's 4x100m relay final (1940 GMT); men's 4x100m relay hears; the women's 1,500m final (1955 GMT), and the men's 4x400m relay final (2020 GMT).

1747 GMT: Pau Gasol scored 16 points and grabbed 12 rebounds to lead reigning European champion Spain into the men's basketball gold medal game with a 67-59 victory over Russia

The Spaniards will play for the championship on Sunday against the winner of a later semi-final between the defending champion United States team of NBA stars and 2004 Olympic gold medallists Argentina.

Jose Calderon added 14 points for Spain while Sasha Kaun led Russia with 14 points.


1742 GMT: HOCKEY: Great Britain's 3-0 victory over New Zealand today was largely inspired by skipper Kate Walsh -- only a week after she fractured her jaw. She says: "I don't think it will hit me what a crazy fortnight it's been until a few weeks' time.

"We were heart-broken after the semi-final (with a 2-1 loss to Argentina) and vowed we would not go away from here empty-handed.

"The result was that we played our best game of the tournament by miles. It's amazing."

1735 GMT: BASKETBALL: Back at the Russia v Spain game, Jim says: "Jose Calderon hits two three-pointers in a 14-1 Spanish run early in the 4th quarter to put Spain ahead 60-50.

"Spain's going to get another chance at gold after losing to USA in 2008 Beijing final."

1730 GMT: An update now on today's WRESTLING... Jordan Burroughs remains on course for gold after the American reached the 74kg freestyle wrestling final.

After making light work of the early rounds, Burroughs overcame a tricky quarter-final opponent in Canada's Matthew Gentry 3-1. In the semi-finals he defeated Russia's two-time world champion Denis Tsargush. He will face Iran's Sadegh Gourdazi in the final.

1723 GMT: BASKETBALL More from Jim Slater now on that Russia v Spain men's semi-final: "Jose Calderon hits a three-pointer at the buzzer of the third quarter to lift Spain into a 46-46 deadlock with Russia entering the final quarter.

"Going to be a fun finish..."

1712 GMT: It's not over yet, but in case you're just joining us here's a recap of today's action so far:

+ Tunisia's Oussama Mellouli claimed the men's 10km swimming marathon, having already won bronze in the 1,500m.

+ Australians Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page won the men's 470 Olympic sailing gold with New Zealand's Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie taking the women's 470 title.

+ Latvia's Maris Strombergs took the men's BMX title after an afternoon of high-octane action while Mariana Pajon of Colombia tool gold in the women's event.

+ Russia won gold in the the team synchronised swimming, maintaining their longstanding dominance of the sport.

1653 GMT: BASKETBALL: Back to that Russia v Spain semi-final now, where it's half -time and Russia are 31-20 up.

"The Russians have outplayed the reigning European champions in the first half," says AFP's man at courtside, Jim Slater.

If they win, it is likely to set up a final with the US Dream Team, who face Argentina in the other semi later.

Jim reports that British singer Conor Maynard performed at half-time. "The Brighton-born Justn Beiber purportedly," he adds, sounding decidedly unimpressed.

1643 GMT: SYNCHRONISED SWIMMING: There were some extraordinarily graceful moves taking place in the water earlier in the women's teams free routine final.

Spain, wearing eye-catching metallic swimsuits and hats, pulled off a dazzling routine to the delighted cheers of the crowd. But ultimately it was Russia's swimmers in heavy eye make-up and sparkly swimsuits who grabbed the glory.

1628 GMT: "Russia up 21-14 with 6:25 to go in the second quarter," Jim tells us. "Russians on a 12-5 run with five different scorers. They are making the European champions shoot low percentage shots.

"Interesting inside matchup of NBA big men Pau Gasol for Spain and Andrei Kirilenko for Russia."

1623 GMT: BASKETBALL: The men's semi-final -- Spain v Russia -- is under way at the North Greenwich Arena. Jim Slater reports: "No 20-2 runaway lead for Spain in this men's basketball semifinal as there was in their preliminary round matchup.

"Spain missed eight of their first nine shots and Russia seized a 9-4 lead. Rudy Fernandez answered with a three-pointer for Spain and it's 9-7 Russia early."

1617 GMT: BMX: Maris Strombergs is up on the podium now and there's enough Latvian flags in the crowd to make a stab at the national anthem.

Strombergs claimed the maiden Olympic men's BMX gold when the sport made its debut in Beijing. And despite coming up against a handful of strong younger riders in the earlier rounds, the Latvian stepped up when it mattered most.

He shot off the eight-metre high ramp and quickly built a slight lead on the rest of the field fending off a late fightback from Willoughby to cross the line first.

1611 GMT: TAEKWONDO: Barnaby Chesterman brings us this update from from the ExCel centre: "Looks like there will be no dream second medal for Afghanistan at these Olympics. Nesar Ahmad Bahawi is being well beaten by Argentina's Sebastien Crismanich. Can't see many Afghan flags in the crowd either."

1600 GMT: BMX: More details on that women's BMX final from Justin Davis as the medallists enjoy their moment on the podium in a sun-drenched park:

"Pajon, who started from gate four, burst down the start ramp and took the lead from the outset on the 440m women's circuit and was never in danger of being overtaken.

"British gold medal hope Shanaze Reade lost ground midway through the race and eventually finished sixth, one place behind Australia's Caroline Buchanan."

1556 GMT: HOCKEY: Meanwhile Britain have won the women's field hockey bronze medal with a 3-0 win over New Zealand after taking three successful penalty corners in the second half.

1547 GMT: Latvia's Maris Strombergs wins gold in the BMX final ahead of Australian Sam Willoughby who takes silver and Carlos Mario Oquendo Zabala of Colombia with bronze.

Bad news for Britain's Liam Phillips who finishes in eighth place.


1540 GMT: It's bad luck for Britain's world champion Shanaze Reade, who crashed out in Beijing and finished sixth today after a slow start.

She says: "Today's schedule has been pretty hard. I just tried to stay focused and do my best and today it just wasn't good enough. At the moment, I'm pretty emotionless. I'm sure it'll sink in."

But the action doesn't stop there. Men's final up now...

1535 GMT: Mariana Pajon of Colombia clinches BMX gold ahead of New Zealand's Sarah Walker who takes silver and Dutchwoman Laura Smulders who wins the bronze.


1530 GMT: BMX: Next up at the track it's the women's final... we've got Buchanan in gate 1, Reade in gate 2, Le Corguille gate 3, Pajon in four, Pottier five, Walker six, Smulders -- the baby of the pack at 18 years old -- in gate seven and Crain in gate 8. The French are the only country with more than one rider in the final.

1529 GMT: HOCKEY: Great Britain and New Zealand women's teams are locked in a 0-0 draw at half time, with a bronze medal to play for...

1525 GMT: TAEKWONDO: At the ExCel centre Spaniard Nicolas Garcia Hemme has defeated British hope Lutalo Muhammed 7-3 in the quarter final.

AFP's Barnaby Chesterman, who watched the fight, says: "Lutalo Mouhammad's defeat there has put British Taekwondo under pressure. Let's not forget they picked world number 58 Muhammad over world number one Aaron Cook. If Muhammad doesn't come back to win bronze through the repechage, that's going to be one huge own goal."

1519 GMT: Then this from Justin on heat two: "Shock as France's world silver medallist Joris Daudet crashes and sees his qualifying hopes vanish.

"Only four go through to the final from each heat and from heat two it's Aussie Sam Willoughby. Maris Strombergs of Latvia, Twan Van Gendt of the Netherlands and Colombia's Carlos Oquendo."

1515 GMT: We're on to the men's third race now and USA's Connor Fields, Dutchman Raymon van der Beizen, Britain's Liam Phillips and Andres Jimenez of Colombia all go into the final from heat one...

1511 GMT: BMX: Buchanan, Reade, Crain and Le Corguille all make it through to the final from that first semi.

In the second heat Colombia's Mariana Pajon makes it look easy by winning all three of her races, Justin tells us. She is joined in the final from heat two by France's Magalie Pottier, New Zealand's Sarah Walker and Laura Smulders of the Netherlands.

1507 GMT: So hot favourites Russia maintain their total domination of synchro stretching back to the Sydney Games in 2000. Winning with a total score of 197.030, they complete their fourth consecutive Games clean sweep after lifting the duet title.

China came in second, with Spain taking the bronze medal.


1500 GMT: "Next up it's the girls' third and final race. So far Aussie Caroline Buchanan, Shanaze Reade of Britain, American Brooke Crain, Mariana Pajon of Colombia, Frenchwoman Magalie Pottier and Lauara Smulders of the Netherlands are all in a strong position to qualify," Justin tells us.

1455 GMT: Back at the BMX track Justin Davis reports: "One more race for the men and we'll know the finalists, but Australia's Sam Willoughby, Connor Fields of the USA, Dutchman Raymon van der Biezen, Latvia's Maris Strombergs and Britain's Liam Phillips are all in a good position."

1451 GMT: The British PM raised hackles earlier in an ongoing domestic debate about sports provision in schools.

"The trouble we have had with targets up to now…,” Cameron told broadcaster ITV this morning, “is that a lot of schools were meeting that by doing things like Indian dance or whatever, that you and I probably wouldn’t think of as sport.”

The organisation Bollywood Dance London challenged Cameron to take part in one of their classes before rushing to judgement -- a photo opportunity not to be missed.

1446 GMT: Ex-England football star David Beckham spotted in the crowds at the BMX -- widely touted as the top ticket in town today. PM David Cameron sat next to him.

1440 GM: GYMNASTICS: And over to another slightly calmer event... Russia’s Daria Dmitrieva, the 2010 ribbon gold medallist in the world championships, is in the lead with 57.80 points after the individual qualification round of the rhythmic gymnastics.

Compatriot Evgeniya Kanaeva – 2008 all-round gold medallist and 11 times world champion – is some 0.175 points behind Dmitraeva after a mistake in her hoop routine.

Russia has long been the leading country in this, but Dmitraeva’s upstaging of Kanaeva came as a surprise.

1435 GMT: BMX: It's on the women's semi-finals now, but with no less drama, reports Justin Davis: "Laetitia Le Corrguille of France, the silver medallist in Beijing, crashes early as the women begin the second of three races.

"Shanaze Reade wins, to all but qualify for the finals."

1430 GMT: AQUATICS: If all that high-adrenalin action is too much to bear, there's a more sedate event also under way -- the team free routine event of the synchronised swimming.

Australian Olympic Committee tweets: "The @aussieopals are getting in the spirit at the synchronised swimming! #goaussies", with a pic of the team practicing their routine.

Synchronised swimming has Australian origins but hasn’t yet brought the country medals here.

1425 GMT: Ex-footballer turned commentator Gary Lineker ‏@GaryLineker tweets: "Not sure BMX is the sport for me in Rio. Complete and utter maniacs."

Hard to disagree. Hair-raising stuff.

1421 GMT: More from our man on the track: "Another big spill there on the first berm takes several riders out the game and leaves three men -- Van der Biezen, Phillips and Jimenez to cross in first second and third.

And on the next heat: "Kiwi Marc Willers comes down just before the last bend, another innocuous crash with no one near him. World champion Sam Willoughby of Australia brings it home ahead of Carlos Oquendo of Colombia."

1418 GMT: "Brazil's Stein has been carried off the track by medics after being fitted with a neck brace," Justin reports. "Stadium has gone silent. Let's hope it's nothing too serious.

"Now it's time for the men's semi-finals. Let's hope the crashes are kept to a minimum."

1414 GMT: "Buchanan of Australia wins the first race ahead of Shanaze Reade of Britain. Venezuela's Stefany Hernandez trails in last after a rather innocuous looking crash," Justin tells us.

The next pile-in sounds rather less benign: "That looked like a nasty crash for Brazil's Squel Stein. She's still on the ground as Mariana Pajon of Colombia leads Magalie Pottier of France home."

TV images are showing medics preparing a stretcher and neck brace.

1411 GMT: BMX: AFP's Justin Davis is down at the BMX VeloPark for the men's and women's medal rounds. First up, it's the women's semi-finals, he says: "Team GB's Shanaze Reade will be hoping to make up for her crash-out in the 2008 final, but a strong bunch of rivals will be just as determined. The sun is out, the stands are packed and everyone here is primed for an afternoon of thrills and spills.

"A quick recap: two heats of eight women race three times and at the end the top four women -- based on points --qualify for the final. The remainder are eliminated."

1409 GMT: NEW ZEALAN'DS ALEH AND POWRIE WIN WOMEN'S 470 SAILING GOLD. (Apologies, we're a little behind on this one which slipped under our radar while we were bringing you other results).

New Zealand's Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie, already in front going into the medal race in the two-handed dinghy class, won the closing contest to seal the gold ahead of Great Britain's Saskia Clark and Hannah Mills. Lobke Berkhout and Lisa Westerhof of the Netherlands took bronze.

1359 GMT: Barnes was a little more philiosphical about the result in this post bout interview, however, where he says of his defeat to Zou: "I'm proud of it, because he beat me 15-0 in Beijing, so to bring it back to 15-all is not bad."

"The judges were fair, I won't be appealing the decision and I wish him all the best in the final. Hopefully I'll have a shot in four years time when he has retired."

1354 GMT: BOXING: Irish boxer Paddy Barnes, who lost his light-flyweight semi-final against China’s Zou Shiming on a countback today after a 15-15 draw, appears less than satisfied with his bronze. Paddy Barnes ‏@paddyb_ireland tweets: "Journey ends here, thanks for all the support people, Zou Shimming if you are reading this LEAVE ME ALONE! #devastated."

1349 GMT: Olympics euphoria is still running high here only a few days to go but one country is not feeling the joy. Austria is already lamenting its biggest washout in half a century, with no medals to show for.

"Biggest Olympic disaster now official," a headline in the tabloid Oesterreich read, after the country's last big hope -- canoe-kayak pair Yvonne Schuring and Viktoria Schwarz -- finished fifth in Thursday's final.

1343 GMT: SWIMMING: Tunisia’s Mellouili was seen pumping his chest in a hearty celebration after that marathon swim victory – which comes on the heels of a bronze in the 1500m. He says of the doing the double:

"I don't think this has ever been done before. This is probably one of the toughest things to do. I'm a pretty solid guy and I never react but you saw that reaction, that says it all."

1334 GMT: BOXING: Ireland's John Joe Nevin is through to the bantamweight final, having beaten Cuban world champion Lazaro Alvarez Estrada 19-14.

"I'm over the moon at beating the world champion. I've said I'm up there with the best in the world and I can be if I put my mind to it," Nevin said afterwards.

And in the other semi-final, Great Britain's Luke Campbell battered Japan's Shatoshi Shimizu 20-11, setting up a Nevin-Campbell final tomorrow. More semi-finals in the other weights this afternoon.

1326 GMT: And now we've caught our breath after that amazing 10,000km swim (all right, we didn't actually swim it ourselves) stand by for some updates on the men's boxing...

1324 GMT: More on Tyler Hamilton's revoked 2004 medal from our reporters over at the Olympic Park:

"Russia's Viatcheslav Ekimov is finally awarded the 2004 Olympic Games cycling time trial gold medal, a year after dope-tainted winner Tyler Hamilton gave it up.

"An International Olympic Committee (IOC) spokesman said that America's Bobby Julich, who was third in Athens, will be handed the silver medal with Michael Rodgers of Australia taking bronze.

"In May 2011, Hamilton admitted doping and returned his gold medal from the 2004 Games."

1319 GMT: It's the medal ceremony for the men's 10km marathon swim now, and unlike many, Oussama Mellouli appears to be singing every word of his national anthem.

1312 GMT: ATHLETICS: South African "blade runner" Oscar Pistorius tweets: "Can't believe I'm running in an Olympic Final tonight! 4x400m, Lane 1 and I'm on the Final Leg. We off at 2130 UK Time (GMT+2)."

Pistorius almost missed out on this final when his team failed to complete their heat due to a crash. But they were reinstated on appeal, so the history-making double amputee will run tonight.

1311 GMT: And Mellouli's the first Olympics swimmer to take gold medals in both pool and open water!

1308 GMT: British swimmer Rebecca Adlington, who failed to defend her two Olympic titles in the pool this time around, is still sad to see the Games' swim programme end.

"That's it!!!" she tweets. "All the swimming at the Olympics has finished :-( its been amazing! Thank you soooo much for all your support, its incredible!"

1305 GMT: More background on 28-year-old Mellouli: he became the first African man to win an Olympic gold swimming medal when he topped the podium in Beijing.

1253 GMT: Mellouli won gold in the 1m500m freestyle at the 2008 Olympics and this year took bronze in the same race.

He's sent Tunisians into a frenzy now. "Oussama Mellouli is about to become Olympic Champion and I'm about to cry. #ProudToBeTunisian," tweets one user, calling himself Sam B.

1252 GMT: There were huge cheers for Mellouli as he slapped that finishing board! And now he's cheering himself as he walks from the water.

1251 GMT: Mellouli took that in 1:49.55. Thomas Lurz of Germany gets the silver and Richard Weinberger of Canada takes bronze.


1249 GMT: Mellouli is right out ahead in the final stretch -- Lurz in second place, then Weinberger. A truly brisk pace now despite the gruelling distance they've already swum.

1246 GMT: Tunisians are starting to celebrate on Twitter, but it's not quite over yet...

1241 GMT: With about 1,000 metres to go, Mellouli has a ten-metre lead over Spyridon Gianniotis of Greece and Canada's Richard Weinberger, who are neck-and-neck, with Thomas Lurz of Germany not far behind them.

1239 GMT: Back to the SWIMMING and Mellouli is out in front by several metres.

1236 GMT: ATHLETICS: A quick diversion from Hyde Park to let you know that London Games chief organiser Sebastian Coe says he is satisfied that double sprint champion Usain Bolt and his Jamaican teammates are being properly drug-tested outside races.

After his 200m victory last night, Bolt said he had lost all respect for US sprint legend Carl Lewis after the American said he doubted the toughness of Jamaica's drug-testing procedures.

"I haven't heard those remarks but my admiration for both Carl Lewis and Usain Bolt is undiminished," says Coe.

"I have no reason to believe that they are not testing out of competition. I think the IAAF... (in our) domestic and international testing arrangements have been very comfortable about how Jamaica and the Jamaican track and field federations are upholding those values and protocols."

1233 GMT: With one lap to go in the men's 10km swim, Oussama Mellouli of Tunisia is in the lead followed by Thomas Lurz of Germany, then fellow German Andreas Waschburger.

1227 GMT: Almost all the swimmers are opting not to take drinks as they pass a station -- seems they're too afraid of losing the pace at this stage.

1222 GMT: AFP's Tom Williams tweets from Hyde Park: "Still very tight out there on the Serpentine. Germany's Andreas Waschburger leads from Richard Weinberger and Oussama Mellouli with two laps remaining."

1209 GMT: Many are commenting on the spectacle of "feeding stations" where coaches can hold out energy drinks on flagged poles for their swimmers, which the swimmers try to grab and drink without slowing down too much.

These moments can give rise to some of the buffeting that at times makes this race look like a fist-fight. But swimmers can be handed red or yellow cards for bad behaviour.

1207 GMT: SWIMMING: Coot alert! The pack of 10km marathon swimmers appears to be on a collision course with a small flock of coots on the Serpentine.

The coots wisely decide to steer clear.

1206 GMT: Remember Michael Phelps? The retired swimmer? He tweets: "First workout in retirement ... Painful but good way to end the day after 3hours of beach volleyball!!!"

1204 GMT: More from the taekwondo: "Wild celebrations from the Afghans after their man Nesar Ahmad Bahawi upsets second seed Issam Chernoubi of Morocco with a winning kick two seconds from time," Barnaby reports.

1157 GMT: AFP'S Barnaby Chesterman reports from the TAEKWONDO, "Following the support for Rohullah Nikpah yesterday the Afghans are back at the taekwondo today and getting behind Nesar Ahmad Bahawi.

"There aren't so many Afghan fans today but then again there are quite a few empty seats in the stands anyway."

1153 GMT: SWIMMING: Nearly an hour in to the men's 10km swim, Canada's Richard Weinberger remains in the lead as the swimmers thrash through the dark Serpentine. We're coming up to the end of the third lap, the half-way mark.

1150 GMT: Bithell, of the silver-winning pair, says of the Australian sailors: "They sailed a fantastic race, we tried to attack them when we could but they held their nerve and they're worthy champions."

1139 GMT: Aussie pair Matt Belcher and Malcolm Page triumphed in that race but Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell from Great Britain were so happy with their silver that they somersaulted off their boat into the water. Bronze goes to Argentina's Juan de la Fuente and Lucas Calabrese.

A lot of very happy-looking men standing atop capsized boats off Weymouth now.


1130 GMT: SWIMMING: From the men's 10km marathon swim, AFP's Tom Williams reports that Canada's Richard Weinberger is leading after a quick first lap, with early pace-setter Oussama Mellouli of Tunisia second, and Britain's Daniel Fogg third.

Here's his rundown of the favourites: "Despite being born in Liverpool, Spyridon Gianniotis represents Greece and he started the race as the favourite, having triumphed at last year’s World Championships.

"Daniel Fogg flies the flag for Great Britain, while Germany's Thomas Lurz will hope to improve on the bronze medal he collected in the inaugural Olympic race in Beijing four years ago."

1127 GMT: A small time warp now as we bring you some news from the 2004 Olympic Games.

American cyclist Tyler Hamilton has been stripped of his 2004 Athens Olympics road race time trial gold after he admitted doping, the BBC is reporting.

Hamilton had actually requested that the medal be reassigned by the International Olympic Committee -- he served a ban after testing positive for a banned anti-depressant in 2009 but has since admitted doping before that and he handed back the actual medal last year. The medal now goes to Russian rider Viatcheslav Ekimov.

1115 GMT: TAEKWONDO: Twice world champion Sarah Stevenson, of Great Britain, has said she'll consider her future in taekwondo after her first-round defeat today.

She went into the Olympics heartbroken by the death of both her parents and lost 5-1 this morning to American Paige McPherson.

"The last year has helped put this event into perspective. I wanted to be here, I wanted to give 100 percent and I wanted to fight," says Stevenson.

"This is the Olympics, it's not life or death, it's meant to be fun. There are more important things in life than taekwondo." Now, she says, "I'm going to have a holiday, rest, time out with family and think about where the future lies - maybe with taekwondo, maybe not."

1109 GMT: From AFP's Tom Williams in Hyde Park: "The sun bore down on the 25 men competing in the open water swimming marathon as they strode out for the start of the 10km race.

"With the thermometer reading 23 degrees Celsius, the heat felt even more intense than it had done in the women's race the day before.

"Once again, fans had flocked to the park to watch the event, with a carpet of spectators covering the south bank of the Serpentine lake as the race got under way."

1106 GMT: The men's marathon 10k swim has begun, with the winning time expected to be under two hours.

1059 GMT: Australian swimmer Stephanie Rice tweets a photo of Buckingham Palace and writes: "On the way to 10k Open Water to support @ky_hurst."

Hurst, shortly to be powering through the Serpentine, has also won dozens of surf lifesaving awards and takes part in long-distance Ironman triathlon events.

1050 GMT: SWIMMINGS: AFP's Tom Williams tweets: "Back at the Serpentine for the men's 10km swimming marathon. Feels even hotter than it was yesterday."

The gruelling race starts shortly, at 1100 GMT.

1043 GMT: Anyway, Bolt can't fully relax just yet, with the 4x100m relay heats today and final tomorrow. After that? He's going to "party like it's my birthday".

1041 GMT: Of his unique "double-double" wins in the 100m and 200m at two successive Olympics, Bolt says: "To have set a goal for yourself for years to become a legend, you can't really explain what that means. It's not going to hit you until you sit down and think about it.

"Those are the things that will bring tears to your eyes. I know that when I sit down and think about the struggles that I've been through over the seasons, it will be emotional.

"I have been saying this for the last three years, that I want to become a legend, and I've done it. Now I'm going to sit back and relax and see what I'm going to do."

1039 GMT: ATHLETICS: After his staggering gold medal achievements, Usain Bolt admits repeating them again in Rio in 2016 would be a tough call.

"I think it's going to be a hard mission," 25-year-old Bolt says. "Both these guys (Yohan Blake and Warren Weir) are 22 -- I'm going to be 30, they are going to be 26... Yohan Blake is running 19.4 already, he's running 19.7, so in the next four years he's going to be firing. I think I want to get out before he starts running too fast.

"I think I've had my time. In life everything is possible, but for me this is going to be a hard reach."

But he adds: "I'm not ready to retire yet. I love this sport, I have got all my success through this sport. I got all my fans through this sport."

1030 GMT: AFP's Barnaby Chesterman reports from the taekwondo: "I was getting a tad distracted at the taekwondo this morning until I was arosed from my day-dreaming by the announcer introducing a Tommy Mullet!

"Turns out the Dutchman's actual name is Mollet but say that with a northern accent and you get the most giggle-tastic name of the day so far."

1025 GMT: Britain's Ed McKeever, the 2010 world champion, takes the second K1 200m semi-final in 53.619. Also through to the final are Maxime Beaumont of France, Miklos Dudas of Hungary and Ronald Rauhe of Germany.

Meanwhile, an eerie calm at the Olympic park as there are no sports happening for the moment -- but a women's hockey 5th and 6th place decider between China and Australia starts shortly and this afternoon will be typically action-packed with BMX, synchronised swimming and athletics, among others.

1015 GMT: In the CANOE sprint K1 200m semi-final, it's a photo finish between Spain's Saul Craviotto and his close pursuer Canada's Mark De Jonge.

De Jonge gets first place in 35.595, a whisker ahead of Craviotto in 35.597, but they're both through to the final along with Marko Novakovic of Serbia and Evgeny Salakhov of Russia.

1000 GMT: In the men's under-80kg TAEKWONDO, Britain's European gold medallist Lutalo Muhammad beats Farkhod Negmatov from Tajikistan 7-1 to move into the quarter-finals.

0957 GMT: Yet another record for Usain Bolt. Twitter announced last night: "Record alert! @usainbolt sets a new Olympic Games conversation record with over 80,000 TPM for his 200m victory." That's tweets per minute, in case you were wondering.

0947 GMT: "I tried my best -- it's been hard," Sarah Stevenson tells the BBC. She's been struggling with a cruciate ligament injury but says that wasn't the reason she couldn't deliver today.

British pundits will be hugely sympathetic to the 29-year-old fighter who has spoken of the pain of losing both of her parents last year.

0944 GMT: And McPherson takes it! She's through to the quarter-finals and it's a bad day for world champion Stevenson although she could still end up fighting for a bronze if McPherson makes it to the final.

0940 GMT: In the women's -67kg category, American Paige McPherson is surprisingly dominating world champion Briton Sarah Stevenson so far -- it's currently 5-1.

Stevenson, a third-time Olympian, has declared she's going for gold at this Olympics so if she doesn't make a comeback this could be an upset result.

0930 GMT: More TAEKWONDO preliminary rounds are underway at the ExCeL Centre and number one seed Ramin Azizov of Azerbaijan -- reigning world bronze medallist -- has beaten the US's double Olympic gold medallist Steven Lopez 3-2 in the under-80kg category.

Servet Tazegul earned Turkey's first gold of this Games in the under-68kg last night.

The ExCeL is packed this morning and crowds are buzzing although it's only 10.30am here in London.

0913 GMT: Four-times gold-medal-winning US swimmer Missy Franklin, who's finished with competition for the Olympics, tweets: "Perfect way to start off my morning in London! Coffee, a panini, and Harry Potter:) #prisonerofazkaban #dementorsreallyfreakmeout."

We're very much enjoying her R&R updates (yesterday it was the 12th-century Leeds Castle) and Britain's tourist board must be her biggest fan.

0900 GMT: The US' women footballers may have seized gold yesterday with their victory over Japan but coach Pia Sundage says that's just the beginning.

"In 2015 there is a World Cup in Canada and I think the US could be unstoppable," Sundhage says. (The team didn't win the World Cup last year for the first time since 1999.)

"We have young players like Tobin Heath who have come in and showed great composure and skill during this tournament.

"We always said the US had a great attitude and competed really well, but if you had technique it is very exciting when you look ahead to 2015."

0845 GMT: The Olympics has mainly put the spotlight on the British capital, but another English city is basking in some glory this morning after medal-sweepers Bolt, Blake and Weir issued a shout-out to Birmingham.

The central English city of a million people, where the Jamaicans trained ahead of the Games, got the Bolt seal of approval as "extremely great" and Blake reiterated the point on Twitter, saying: "Birmingham was solid. They are my new peeps."

The hashtag #boltlovesbirmingham is now trending on Twitter, the Birmingham Mail led with the story and local radio presenter Ed James declared he was renaming the popular Balti curry a "Bolti".

0835 GMT: Men's canoe sprint heats are underway now at Eton Dorney -- it's a beautiful sunny morning on the river and paddles are flying. We'll bring you some updates on that a little later.

0830 GMT: A heartbreaking apology from badminton legend Lee Chong Wei, of Malaysia, after he was beaten by defending champion Lin Dan, of China, to singles gold last Sunday.

"I have let down my country, my fans, my family and above all myself as I so wanted to win the gold medal. I am truly sorry as I failed to deliver the medal," says Lee on the Malaysian Sports website.

"When the final point was won, I just collapsed, knowing I had let 28 million Malaysians who were counting on me to win down. And when they played the Chinese national anthem, tears flowed freely as I had dreamt of listening to Negaraku (the Malaysian anthem) at the famous Wembley Arena."

But there is hope! Lee also says he will fight on for gold at the Rio Olympics in 2016.

0820 GMT: A source with knowledge of the case tells AFP that French 5,000m runner Hassan Hirt has tested positive for the banned blood booster EPO.

Hirt, who was eliminated in the heats of the event, failed a drugs test on August 3.

He has been suspended by the French athletics federation and removed from the squad in London.

0815 GMT: And here's his closest challenger Yohan Blake: "Racers track club (where the gold, silver and bronze medallists all train) and Jamaica just did a little housekeeping tonight-clean sweep!!"

"Coach Mills for national hero!! Usain is a legend but our coach is a HERO!!"

Veteran coach Glen Mills has said that in Jamaica track and field events are "a way of life". He stepped down as Jamaican athletics coach in 2009 after 22 years in which the team won 71 world championship and 33 Olympic medals, but continued to work with Bolt.

0812 GMT: Last night's goodnight tweets from a happy Usain Bolt after Jamaica's clean sweep of the 200m medals:

"Big yohan and warren my training team mates we say jam all the way. Big up the man behind the sense coach glen mills the genius."

And: "I want to thank GOD for everything he as done for me cause without him none of this wouldn't be possible."

Can he make it three with a relay win in the event that starts today? Jamaicans will be hoping so -- but his legend status won't be much affected either way. Jamaica are missing the injured Asafa Powell from their stellar line-up, which could weaken them as they battle the powerful US team.

0800 GMT: With 17 medals up to be won today, here are some of the top events coming up:

+ Usain Bolt begins bid for third gold in men's 4x100m relay (2020 GMT)

+ Jamaica's women's 4x100m relay squad seek to atone for a disastrous performance in the 2008 final (1940 GMT)

+ US NBA Dream Team tackle Argentina for place in men's basketball final (2000 GMT)

+ Netherlands and Argentina meet in women's hockey final (1900 GMT)

+ The US' one-lap specialists aim to extend their astounding record in the 4x400m relay, where they remain unbeaten since 1984 (2020 GMT)

+ Ethiopian distance legend Tirunesh Dibaba seeks to defend her crown in the women's 5,000m final (1955 GMT)

+ Synchronised swimmers show their most spectacular moves in the team free routine (1400 GMT)

+ After yesterday's women's thriller, the men's 10km swim marathon takes place in the chilly Serpentine (1100 GMT).

WELCOME TO AFP'S LIVE REPORT on the London 2012 Olympics on August 10, with Usain Bolt -- fresh from his historic defence of his 100m and 200m crowns -- set to go for a third gold in the men's 4x100m relay.

Stand by for a rundown of the key events to look forward to today.