Olympics Latest: Russian karate athlete positive for COVID

TOKYO (AP) — The Latest on the Tokyo Olympics, which are taking place under heavy restrictions after a year’s delay because of the coronavirus pandemic:


A Russian athlete competing in karate has been ruled out of the Tokyo Olympics after testing positive for the coronavirus.

The Russian Karate Federation says on Instagram that Anna Chernysheva will not be able to compete and that her positive test was confirmed by a second test.

The 19-year-old was the Russian Olympic Committee team’s only karate athlete at the Olympics. She was due to compete Thursday in the women’s 55-kilogram kumite event on the first ever day of Olympic karate competition. It’s a new sport on the program in Tokyo.

Olympic organizers also say Algerian weightlifter Walid Bidani has withdrawn from the men’s over-109-kilogram event Wednesday “due to health situation which requires him to undergo quarantine.” The statement doesn’t mention the cause. Bidani won gold at the African championships in May.


Harrie Lavreysen and Dutch teammate Jeffrey Hoogland tied for the Olympic record in qualifying for the men’s sprint at the Izu Velodrome, clocking the same time of 9.215 down to the thousandth of a second.

In the qualifying rounds, cyclists get what’s called a flying start before they are timed over 200 meters.

That means the two Dutch riders averaged 48.55 mph during their qualifying lap.

Hoogland will be seeded first and Lavreysen second for the knockout rounds. That’s when riders face off against each other in a cat-and-mouse game over three laps with the fastest to the finish line advancing to the next round.



Mat Belcher and Will Ryan of Australia have won the two-person dinghy event at the Tokyo Olympics.

Belcher won gold at the London Olympics in 2012 in the 470 class and combined with Ryan to win the silver medal at Rio de Janeiro in 2016. Belcher and Ryan only had to finish the last race without penalty to clinch the gold medal.

Anton Dahlberg and Fredrik Bergstrom of Sweden won the silver medal and Spain’s Nicolas Rodriguez Garcia-Paz and Jordi Xammar took bronze.

The women’s two-person dinghy, the last medal race in sailing at the Tokyo Games , was scheduled later Wednesday.



Arlen López has won his second Olympic boxing gold medal for Cuba, beating Britain’s Benjamin Whittaker in the light heavyweight final at the Kokugikan Arena.

López outclassed the defense-minded Whittaker to win the fight on four of the five judges’ scorecards. Cuba had never won gold at light heavyweight in its decorated Olympic boxing history until Julio Cesar La Cruz claimed the title in Rio de Janeiro.

López is the second Cuban boxer in two days to win a second gold medal in a different weight class by beating a British fighter after Roniel Iglesias achieved the same feat Tuesday. López won the middleweight division in Rio.

Russian athlete Imam Khataev and Cuban-born Loren Alfonso of Azerbaijan won light heavyweight bronze medals.


The defending champion Russian women’s handball team has reached the semifinals with a 32-26 win over Montenegro after a troubled start to the tournament.

The Russian Olympic Committee team seemed unlikely to play for a medal after opening Olympic play with a 24-24 tie with Brazil and a crushing 36-24 loss to Sweden.

Further complicating matters, former coach Evgeny Trefilov has often been in the arena, sometimes calling out instructions which clashed with those from the coaches on the sideline.

Now, though, the Russians are on a four-game winning streak after beating Hungary, Spain and France to qualify from the group stage before dismissing Montenegro in the quarterfinals.

The Russian team’s semifinal opponent is Norway, which beat Hungary 26-22 on seven goals from Kari Brattset Dale. That sets up a repeat of the 2016 semifinals, when Russia beat Norway 38-37 in overtime.


American silver medalist Raven Saunders says her mother has died.

The shot putter wrote on her Twitter account early Wednesday that “my mama was a great woman and will forever live through me. My number one guardian angel.”

Media reports say that Clarissa Saunders died in Orlando, Florida, where she had been attending Olympic watch parties. Raven Saunders won silver Sunday.

At the medal ceremony, she stepped off the podium, lifted her arms above her head and formed an X with her wrists. Asked what that meant, she explained: ”It’s the intersection of where all people who are oppressed meet.”

The International Olympic committee was investigating whether the gesture violated a prohibition on political statements at medal ceremonies, but suspended the investigation after Saunders’ mother’s death.

Spokesman Mark Adams says the IOC “extends its condolences to Raven and her family.”


NBA veteran Paul Gasol has been voted by his fellow Tokyo Games athletes to represent them as a member of the International Olympic Committee.

The IOC says Gasol got the most votes among 30 candidates for four vacant seats on the Olympic body. The results were announced the day after Gasol and Spain lost in the quarterfinals to the United States.

Gasol will be an IOC member for seven years through the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles, where he won two NBA titles with the Lakers.

The three-time Olympic medalist got 1,888 votes of more than 6,800 cast by athletes at Tokyo.

The other new members are cyclist Maja Martyna Wloszczowska of Poland, Italian swimmer Federica Pellegrini and Japan’s Yuki Ota, from IOC president Thomas Bach’s sport of fencing.

The losing candidates include Danka Bartekova, the Slovakian shooter who has been an IOC member since 2012, men’s high jump gold medalist Mutaz Barshim of Qatar, and Australian swimmer Cate Campbell who won two relay gold medals in Tokyo.


The U.S. women’s volleyball team has made it to the semifinals for the sixth time in the past eight Olympics after beating the Dominican Republic in straight sets in the quarterfinals.

The Americans advanced to a matchup with the winner of Serbia-Italy in semis, despite playing without injured starters Jordyn Poulter and Jordan Thompson.

Fill-ins Micha Hancock and Annie Drews helped set the tone early for the U.S. and the team wasn’t seriously challenged at any point by the Dominicans. Drews finished with a team-high 18 points.

The U.S. is seeking its first gold medal in the sport after winning bronze five years ago in Rio de Janeiro and silver in 2008 and 2012.



Sakura Yosozumi of Japan has won the inaugural Olympic women’s park event in skateboarding, solidifying Japan’s dominance of the sport making its Olympic debut.

The silver went to Kokona Hiraki, who at 12 became Japan’s youngest Olympic medalist.

Britain’s Sky Brown prevented a Japanese medal sweep, taking the bronze.

Yosozumi won with a trick-filled first run that scored 60.09, the only score to break 60 points in the event at the Ariake Urban Sports Park.

It immediately piled on pressure on the seven other finalists, and none was able to dislodge her. Japanese skaters also took both golds in the men and women’s street events in the first week of the Tokyo Games.


Damian Warner of Canada is leading the Olympic decathlon with 2,966 points after the first three events.

The 2016 Olympic bronze medalist is 223 points clear of fellow Canadian Pierce Lepage and 255 ahead of 2018 world junior champion Ash Moloney of Australia.

Decathlon world record holder Kevin Mayer of France, the Olympic silver medalist from Rio and world champion in 2017, is in fourth spot with 2,662 points.

Warner opened the competition by equaling his world decathlon best time of 10.12 seconds in the 100 meters and then produced an Olympic decathlon best 8.24 meters in the long jump. He had 14.80 meters in the shot put, allowing Lepage and Mayer to close the gap.

In the heptathlon, defending Olympic champion Nafissatou Thiam is leading with 2,176 points after two disciplines, 19 points clear of American Erica Bougard.

Thiam was 15th after the 100-meter hurdles but picked up 1,132 points in the high jump by clearing 1.89 meters to take the lead. Bougard moved from fourth place into second by clearing 1.86 and 2019 world champion Katarina Johnson-Thompson moved from seventh to third place on 2,138 points with a best jump of 1.86.


The International Olympic Committee says it will question two Belarus team officials who were allegedly involved in trying to remove a sprinter from the Tokyo Olympics.

IOC spokesman Mark Adams says it’s part of a disciplinary case opened “to establish the facts” in the case of sprinter Krystsina Tsimanouskaya.

After Tsimanouskaya criticized the management of her team on social media, she says officials hustled her to the airport and trying to put her on a plane back to Belarus.

The IOC says the Belarus officials under investigation are Artur Shumak and Yuri Moisevich.

Tsimanouskaya boarded a flight to Vienna on Wednesday, though it wasn’t clear if that was her final destination. Several countries offered to help her and Poland has given her a visa on humanitarian grounds because she fears her life would be threatened in Belarus.

The IOC could suspend the Belarusian national Olympic committee ahead of the closing ceremony on Sunday.



American Sydney McLaughlin has broken her own world record to win the women’s 400-meter hurdles in 51.46 seconds. She edged out Dalilah Muhammad, who won silver to make it a U.S. 1-2 finish.

McLaughlin set the previous world record of 51.90 seconds in June. Muhammad, who set the world record twice in 2019 and won the world championship gold medal that year, finished in 51.58.

Femke Bol of the Netherlands took bronze in 52.03.


A Belarusian Olympic sprinter who had a public feud with officials from her team has boarded a plane to Vienna.

It’s not clear if Austria is Krystsina Tsimanouskaya’s final destination. Several countries had offered to help her, and Poland has granted her a humanitarian visa.

She said in an interview with The Associated Press that officials from her team had “made it clear” she would face punishment if she returned home to an autocratic government that has relentlessly stifled any criticism.

Tsimanouskaya has said she hopes she can continue her career, but for now her safety is the priority. After she criticized the management of her team on social media, she accused officials of hustling her to the airport and trying to put her on a plane back to Belarus.

She was seen in Tokyo on Wednesday morning entering Narita International Airport surrounded by an entourage.


Brazil is out of the men’s beach volleyball tournament at the Olympics, and Latvia can take the credit.

Latvia’s Martins Plavins and Edgars Tocs beat 2016 gold medalist Alison and his partner Alvaro Filho 21-16, 21-19 on Wednesday. The Latvians knocked out the other Brazilian men’s team — with Alison’s partner in Rio de Janeiro, Bruno Oscar Schmidt — in the round of 16 on Monday.

Only one of the two Brazilian women’s teams has survived the quarterfinals, meaning the traditional beach volleyball power can win at most one medal in Tokyo. That will be its worst performance since the sport was added to the Summer Games in 1996.

In the other morning quarterfinal, top-seeded Anders Mol and Christian Sorum of Norway eliminated Russia. The Norwegians finished atop the qualification points list but lost to Russians Ilya Leshukov and Konstantin Semenov in the round robin.

Norway won the rematch 21-17, 21-19.



Ana Marcela Cunha of Brazil won the women’s 10-kilometer marathon swimming event.

Cunha touched first in 1 hour, 59 minutes, 30.8 seconds on Wednesday morning, finishing nine-tenths of a second ahead of defending champion Sharon van Rouwendaal of the Netherlands.

Van Rouwendaal took silver in 1:59.31.7.

Kareena Lee of Australia earned bronze in 1:59.32.5.

Cunha won her first medal in her third Olympics. She was 10th five years ago in Rio de Janeiro and fifth in the 2008 Beijing Games.

American Haley Anderson finished sixth and her teammate, Ashley Twichell, was seventh.

The seven-lap course in Tokyo Bay featured a backdrop of skyscrapers, the Rainbow Bridge and the nearby floating Olympic rings.

The air temperature during the latter stages of the race was 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 Celsius), with 74% humidity that made it feel like 95 degrees (35 C).

The water temperature was about 84 degrees (29 C), under the allowable limit of 88 degrees (31 degrees C).


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Categories: National Sports