Rio Day 12: Primetime is All About Track and Field

Women’s track and field events will occupy most of the Olympic primetime line-up Wednesday night, with medals being handed out in three high profile events.

Reigning champion American Brittany Reese will kick things off at 8:15 p.m. when she defends her long jump title against teammate Tianna Bartoletta and Serbia’s Ivana Spanovic, who recorded the best jump in qualifying rounds earlier this week.

Elaine Thompson of Jamaica, who won the women’s 100-meter sprint on Saturday, looks to earn another gold in the 200-meter event at 9:30 p.m.

Thompson will face stiff competition from a pair of American runners, Tori Bowie, who matched Thompson’s time of 22.13 in the semifinals, and Deajah Stevens, who finished about a second shy of Thompson’s time. Should Thompson win the race, she would best Usain Bolt as the first Jamaican to win a 200-meter sprint.

The women’s 100-meter hurdles final will close out the night. Americans Brianna Rollins and Kristi Castlin look to battle each other for the top spot, but first they must get through the semifinal round, which will be held just two hours before the final.

Rollins and Castlin took first and second place, respectively, in the first round competition earlier this week.

In earlier competition, Daniyar Yeleussinov defeated Uzbekistan’s Shakhram Giyasov and became the fourth straight boxer from Kazakhstan to win the Olympic welterweight gold medal. Yeleussinov, who suffered a vicious cut suffered in his semifinal bout, used some sharp lefts to rattle Giyasov and win 29-28 on all three scorecards.

Kazakhstan boxers Serik Sapiyev and Bakhyt Sarsekbayev won the last three welterweight gold medals.

In badminton, Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia took gold in the mixed doubles against Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying of Malaysia. Ahmad and Natsir got to Wednesday’s gold medal match in Rio by beating Olympic champions Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei of China.

The women’s beach volleyball competition will wrap up Wednesday night when Brazil takes on Germany in the gold medal match at 11 p.m. Brazil’s Barbara Seixas and Agatha Bednarczuk put an end to American Kerri Walsh Jennings’ hopes for a fourth gold medal Tuesday night after beating the American team in straight sets and handing Jennings her first ever loss in an Olympic beach volleyball match.

Team USA will take on a different Brazilian team, composed of Larissa Franca and Talita Antunes, in the bronze medal match at 9 p.m.

China will look to sweep the Olympic table tennis championships when world number one Ma Long and teammate Zhang Jike square off against Japan in the men’s team gold medal match. China has already won gold in the men’s singles and both the women’s singles and team tournaments. South Korea will play Germany for the bronze medal.

Other medal events include women’s sailing, both men’s and women’s boxing and taekwondo, as well as women’s wrestling. In total, 16 gold medals will be handed out Wednesday.

Source: Voice of America