The 10th day of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games saw many records being made, along with some records that were not being made at the last moment.
A fine example would be the case of 19-year-old Simone Biles of the USA, whose hopes of winning five gold medals in Gymnastics at the Games perished with a mistake on the beam with her awkward landing while completing a front somersault.
She had already won three golds on Monday (all-around, team and vault), and was a clear favorite to finish off with two more. However, the balance beam title was won by Sanne Wevers of Netherlands, while the silver went to Laurie Hernandez of the USA.
The most dramatic of all moments was Shaunae Miller of Bahamas winning the 400m final by diving headfirst across the finish line in 49.44. This made Allyson Felix of USA, at 49.51, miss winning her fifth Olympic gold medal, at less than a hair’s breath. At 49.85, Shericka Jackson of Jamaica was the winner of the bronze medal.
In the Men’s 800m Final, David Rushida of Kenya, with the season best of one minute and 42.15 seconds, became the first man since Peter Snell in 1964 to retain a title over two laps. With his superb last lap, he made Taoufik Makhloufi of Algeria go for the silver and Clayton Murphy of the United States for the bronze.
At the Olympic Velodrome, the decathlon of cycling, an omnium composed of six different disciplines was won by Elia Viviani of Italy, who dissolved into tears after while receiving his medal. The silver was claimed by Mark Cavendish of Britain, and the bronze by Lasse Hansen from Denmark.
Cuba’s Mijain Lopez Nunez became one of the few three-time Olympic wrestling champions with his Greco-Roman 130kg gold. He had won 120kg wrestling titles at the London 2012 and Beijing 2008 Games.
Another star to keep shining was 31-year-old Polish hammer thrower Anita Wlodarczyk, who with an 82.29m lob crossed her own record set last year. With three of the five longest throws in the history of the competition, she now is the holder of the top 15 throws of all time.
After cyclist Laura Trott, British rider Charlotte Dujardin became the second British woman to have won three Olympic golds with the individual dressage title that she won with her horse Valegro, a horse whom she had been riding since he was 5. Now he is 14, and she said she would be soon retiring him.
The silver and the bronze were both won by Germany through Isabell Werth and Kristina Broring-Sprehe, respectively.
Meanwhile, Great Britain became one of the last four in the hockey tournament after beating Spain 3-1, thus joining New Zealand, Germany, and Netherlands. The semi-final is to be held on Wednesday 17th August.
Women continued to dominate the day, with Sharon van Rouwendaal of The Netherlands winning the gold in the 10km open water swimming event at Copacabana beach.
French world champion Aurelie Muller, who finished second, was disqualified after it emerged that she had pushed Rachele Bruni’s arm down to stop her touching the end board. The silver thus went to Bruni, and the bronze went to Brazil’s Poliana Okimoto.
The host nation had a good day at the Copacabana beach, with Brazilians Bruno Oscar Schmidt and Alison Cerutti winning the quarter-final match of the beach volleyball event, defeating American duo Phil Dalhausser and Nicholas Lucena.
And the samba roll continued with pole vaulter Thiago Braz winning his second gold with a 6.03 jump, defeating French favorite Renaud Lavillenie and becoming the first male athletics champion in 32 years. The bronze went to Sam Kendricks of the USA.
While the hosts do have reason to be ecstatic with their new records, the reception of the Rio Olympics has not been very good. When the country was awarded the Games in 2009, it was in the midst of solid economic growth.
However at present the economy has taken a nosedive, and Brazil is facing its worst recession in 80 years. So much so that in June this year, the Governor was forced to declare a state of financial emergency and ask for aid from the federal government.