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Olympic Daily News - Sunday, July 29

Deja vu on cue.

Ryan Lochte got Jason Lezak-ed by the French.

Yannick Agnel chased down Lochte after the final turn and France rallied to beat the United States in the 400-meter freestyle relay Sunday night, earning his country a dose of revenge four years in the making.

"It's incredible," said leadoff man Amaury Leveaux.

And familiar.

The finish mirrored Lezak's comeback four years ago at the Beijing Olympics, when he drafted off Alain Bernard and raced past him in the final 25 meters to will the U.S. to gold over France in the same relay.

Lezak's surge in 2008 secured one of Michael Phelps' record-setting eight gold medals.

Phelps was part of this script, too. With Nathan Adrian and Cullen Jones, he helped build a half-a-body-length lead over the French after 300 meters.

Lochte held on through the first 50 meters of his anchor leg but Agnel caught him down the stretch, touching .45 seconds faster. It was the only time the U.S. trailed since Adrian gave them the lead on the first turn of the race.

And the favored Australians? They finished fourth behind Russia, which won the bronze.

France -- with Leveaux, Fabien Gilot and Clement Lefert swimming the first three legs -- finished in 3 minutes, 9.93 seconds.

A bit of revenge? Sure. But also the end of a long day for America's newest Olympic star.

Lochte swam in two other races Sunday to qualify for the final of the 200 free, including a semifinal that started 83 minutes before the relay.

And all of it came a day after he won the 400-meter individual medley.

"We went out there to win," said Lochte, "but we came up short."

Phelps, after barely qualifying for the 400 IM Saturday before finishing off an Olympic medal podium for the first time since he was 15, looked stronger in his only race Sunday.

He won his 17th career medal, one short of tying the all-time Olympic record. It was only the third non-gold of his Olympic career.

"I felt a lot better," said Phelps. "I was able to put yesterday behind me."

None of the four Americans in the final swam in the morning qualifier. James Feigen, Matthew Grevers, Ricky Berens and Lezak did that lifting, coming in second fastest behind Australia.

AMERICAN VOLLMER WINS 100 FLY WITH WR

London, England (Sports Network) - American Dana Vollmer won the women's 100- meter butterfly Sunday night with a new world record.

Vollmer, who had set Olympic and American records in the heats Saturday, touched in 55.98 seconds -- beating the old world mark of 56.06 set by Swede Sarah Sjostrom in 2009.

"Being the Olympic champion is most important and the world record is the icing on the cake," said Vollmer. "Having a gold medal around my neck has made all the hard work I have done pay off."

It was Vollmer's second Olympic gold medal. She won her first as part of the women's 800-meter freestyle relay team as a 16-year-old at the 2004 Athens Games.

China's Lu Ying won silver and Australia's Alicia Coutts took bronze.

VAN DER BURGH WINS 100 BREAST; HANSEN GETS BRONZE

London, England (Sports Network) - South Africa's Cameron van der Burgh won the men's 100-meter breaststroke Sunday night with a world record.

Australia's Christian Sprenger touched second and American Brendan Hansen, trying again for an elusive Olympic gold medal, took the bronze.

Van der Burgh finished in 58.46 seconds, besting the old mark of 58.58 set by Aussie Brenton Rickard in 2009. Sprenger was .47 seconds back and Hansen 1.03.

Hansen medaled after getting the eighth and final qualifying spot and called his race "a gutsy swim."

"It's the shiniest bronze medal I'll ever have," he said.

The 30-year-old, who came out of retirement to race again, has two Olympic gold medals, but both were in the 400 medley relay at Athens and Beijing. He settled for silver in the 100 and bronze in the 200 at Athens and finished without a medal at Beijing in his only individual race.

Japan's Kosuke Kitajima, who captured the 100 and 200 breast at each of the last two Olympics, was trying to become the first male swimmer to win an individual event at three straight games but placed fifth.

Michael Phelps also failed to do that Saturday night when he finished fourth in the 400-meter individual medley.

MUFFAT WINS 400 FREE; SCHMITT GETS SILVER

London, England (Sports Network) - Camille Muffat of France won the women's 400-meter freestyle with an Olympic record Sunday night.

Allison Schmitt got the silver with an American record and Great Britain's Rebecca Adlington was third.

Muffat's time of 4 minutes, 1.45 seconds bettered the old Olympic record of 4:02.19 set by Federica Pellegrini of Italy at the Beijing Games in 2008.

Schmitt won a bronze medal with the 800 free relay team at Beijing four years ago.

U.S. LANDS TOP QUALIFYING SCORE; WIEBER MISSES CHANCE AT ALL-AROUND

London, England (Sports Network) - The U.S. women's gymnastics team had a lot to celebrate on Sunday after an outstanding performance at North Greenwich Arena, but it might take Jordyn Wieber some time to join the fun.

Though the U.S. left the third of five subdivisions atop the qualifying standings with a score of 181.863, and remained there at the end of the night despite a close call from Russia, Wieber missed out on a chance for all-around gold because her team is just, well, really good.

Aly Raisman, Gabby Douglas and Wieber posted the best three all-around scores -- though Russia's Victoria Komova would surpass them all later on -- but since a country is only allowed to send two gymnasts to the final, Wieber found herself as the odd one out.

The U.S. came out on fire, with Douglas, Wieber, Raisman and McKayla Maroney -- injured toe and all -- posting scores of at least 15.8 on the vault. Kyla Ross then stepped in for Maroney for the final three rotations and the group hardly stumbled.

They wrapped their part of the competition with an 11-plus point lead over Great Britain and that mark was good enough to stay ahead of Russia, which notched a score of 180.429 later on Sunday thanks to excellent performances from Komova (60.632 all-around score) and Aliya Mustafina.

"I think we definitely set the bar high. It's an amazing feeling that Team USA is so strong. I'm just so proud of those guys," noted Douglas.

Another medal hopeful, 2008 goal medalist China, was third and Romania grabbed the fourth spot, pushing Great Britain down to fifth. However, the top eight teams advance to Tuesday's team event and that will also include Japan as well as seventh-place Italy and Canada, which slid in at eighth.

It will be the U.S. leading the pack. The favored squad hardly showed any mistakes until the floor exercise, though Wieber had a crucial error on the third event -- the beam -- that hurt her score.

Ross, Wieber and Douglas all stumbled on landings on the floor, but Wieber's 14.666 mark still had her second behind Douglas. Then Raisman put together a great routine that netted her a 15.325, and an all-around score at 60.391. That was .126 ahead of Douglas, who will also head to the final of the event on Thursday.

Wieber is not.

"It is a bit of a disappointment. It has always been a dream of mine to compete in the all-around final of the Olympics, but I'm proud of Aly and Gabby and happy that they reached the all-around and that I was able to help the team get to the finals," said Wieber, who was the 2011 all-around world champion.

"I think from the beginning we were all looking very strong. It was always going to be close between the three of us doing all-around and in the end it is what it is."

Wieber still has a chance on Tuesday to help America earn its first team gold in the women's competition since 1996.

"The first thing I said to her was that I felt really bad for her," Raisman said. "I had no idea that I was in the position to outscore her, I was completely focusing on my exercises and not on the scores."

Another good sign for the U.S. was Maroney posting a score of 15.800 to qualify for the vault final later in the week. She is dealing with a toe injury after aggravating a previous fracture.

"If felt better today," Maroney said. "But you can ignore the pain you feel because it's the Olympics."

Gold on Tuesday could also have Wieber feeling better.

U.S. SHOOTER RHODE MAKES HISTORY WITH SKEET TITLE

London, England (Sports Network) - Kimberly Rhode became the first American to win a medal at five straight Olympics, taking gold in the women's skeet shooting competition at the London Games.

Rhode was nearly perfect in Sunday's event, setting an Olympic record by hitting 74-of-75 targets in the qualification round. She then hit on all 25 of her shots in the final round to take the gold with 99 successful attempts out of 100. She easily outdistanced China's Wei Ning, who hit eight fewer targets than Rhode to win silver.

The 33-year-old Rhode competed in the double trap event at the 1996, 2000 and 2004 Summer Games, winning two golds and a bronze at those Olympics before taking silver in the skeet competition four years ago in Beijing.

Rhode tied the all-time mark for Olympic medals in women's shooting, joining Russia's Marina Dobrancheva-Logvinenko, Mariya Grozdeva of Bulgaria and Jasna Sekaric, who won a total of five medals while competing for both Yugoslavia and Serbia and Montenegro.

However, now Rhode stands alone as the first woman to win three gold medals in shooting.

Danka Bartekova of Slovakia won a shoot-off against Russia's Marina Belikova to take the bronze.

GUO CLAIMS ANOTHER SHOOTING GOLD FOR CHINA

London, England (Sports Network) - Guo Wenjun won her second straight Olympic title in 10-meter air pistol on Sunday, giving China the first two women's shooting golds of the London Games.

France's Celine Goberville led the competition eight shots into the final round, but Guo scored 10.4 and 10.8, respectively, on her final two attempts to post a total score of 488.1. China's Yi Siling won gold in the women's 10m air rifle event on Saturday.

"This is the heaviest," said Guo of her medal. "I am so excited. It means I am the best."

Goberville won the silver after defeating Olena Kostevych of Ukraine in a shoot-off. The two women were tied for second with 486.6 points, but Goberville scored a 10.6 in the shoot-off compared to Kostevych's score of 9.7.

It was the first Olympic medal for Goberville and second for Kostevych, who won gold in this event eight years ago in Athens.

Sandra Uptagrafft of the United States failed to qualify for the finals and ended in 28th place. Canada's Dorothy Ludwig was 34th.

U.S. WINS 1ST DIVING MEDAL SINCE 2000

London, England (Sports Network) - Abigail Johnston and Kelci Bryant won the United States' first Olympic diving medal since 2000 on Sunday, while Canada's Emilie Heymans made history by capturing a bronze alongside Jennifer Abel.

Both teams finished well behind heavily favored Wu Minxia and He Zi of China in the women's synchronized 3-meter springboard.

Johnston and Bryant ended with 321.90 points -- 24.30 behind the Chinese -- for the U.S.'s first medal in the sport since Laura Wilkinson's platform gold at the Sydney Olympics.

Heymans, meanwhile, became the first female diver to make the podium at four consecutive games. She also has three platform medals -- three silver and one bronze. The Canadians were 5.10 points behind the Americans.

The Chinese continued their stranglehold on the sport at the games.

They entered London having won all eight events at the world championships in February and 13 of the last 16 Olympic gold medals, including seven of eight at Beijing four years ago.

Wu won her third straight Olympic synchro gold and fifth medal overall, moving her within one of countrywoman Guo Jingjing's record six diving medals. She and He finished with 346.20 points.

DURANT GUIDES TEAM USA TO EASY WIN OVER FRANCE

London, England (Sports Network) - Kevin Durant had 22 points and nine rebounds, as the United States opened its quest for another Olympic gold medal in men's basketball with a 98-71 victory over France.

The Americans, who beat Spain four years ago in Beijing to take home the gold medal, got 14 points from Kevin Love. Kobe Bryant tallied 10 points.

Team USA improved to 5-0 all-time against France in Olympic competition.

Ali Traore and Tony Parker ended with 12 and 10 points, respectively, for France, which is making its first Olympic appearance since 2000 when they lost to the USA in the gold medal game.

"We're pleased. We played a very good game against an outstanding team," USA coach Mike Krzyzewski said. "France is so well-coached and in (Tony) Parker, they have as good of a guard as there is in the tournament. I thought we did a good job defensively. We share the ball. We assisted on 27 of our 31 buckets and we rebounded the ball very well. Overall, it was a good first step or us, beating an outstanding French team."

The USA, gold medalists in 13 of the 16 Olympics in which it has played, took control of the game in the second quarter. Holding a 22-21 lead after 10 minutes, the Americans scored the first 11 points of the second stanza. LeBron James, Bryant and Chris Paul made three-pointers during the burst to make it a 33-21 game with 7:41 left.

France stayed within striking distance and cut the gap to 35-28 on a pair of free throws from Florent Pietrus with less than five minutes remaining.

But Team USA responded with eight straight points and never looked back. Love tallied five points during the spurt, including a three-pointer to make it 43-28. The Americans led 52-36 at the break.

The U.S. outscored France by a 26-15 margin in the third period and cruised to victory.

"We played very well," Bryant said. "In the first quarter we gave up way too many free throws. It made the game a little choppy. It was tough for us to generate some momentum. But then after that we were able to get into a good flow."

The Americans improved to 16-1 all-time in Olympic openers. They will take on Tunisia on Tuesday.

SPAIN HANDLES CHINA IN MEN'S BASKETBALL

London, England (Sports Network) - Pau Gasol recorded a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds, as Spain beat China by a 97-81 margin in the men's basketball tournament.

Serge Ibaka and Juan Carlos Navarro added 17 and 14 points, respectively, for Spain, which lost to the United States in the gold medal game four years ago.

Yi Jianlian ended with 30 points and 12 boards for China.

Spain, the two-time European champions, held a 19-17 lead after the first quarter. However, they outscored China by a 34-24 margin in the second period and cruised to victory from there.

BRAZIL HOLDS OFF AUSTRALIA IN MEN'S BASKETBALL

London, England (Sports Network) - Marcelinho Huertas made two free throws with five seconds remaining to help Brazil hold off Australia, 75-71, in the men's basketball tournament.

Huertas ended with 15 points and 10 assists for Brazil. Leandro Barbosa and Anderson Varejao tallied 16 and 12 points, respectively.

Patrick Mills had 18 points and seven rebounds to lead Australia. Joe Ingles and David Andersen added 15 and 14 points, respectively.

Ingles' layup with 1:14 to play pulled Australia within four, 73-69. After each team missed from beyond the arc, Barbosa was whistled for an offensive foul. Ingles followed with another layup to make it a two-point contest.

But Huertas made two big free throws with five seconds left to seal the victory for Brazil.

KIRILENKO LEADS RUSSIA OVER GREAT BRITAIN

London, England (Sports Network) - Andrei Kirilenko scored 35 points and led Russia to a preliminary round win over Great Britain, 95-75.

Alexey Shved contributed a double-double, dropping in 16 points and dishing 13 assists, as Russia won its first game of the Olympics.

Luol Deng paced Great Britain with 26 points in a losing effort, while Pops Mensah-Bonsu added 22.

Russia opened up a 15-point lead at half after outscoring Great Britain 25-15 in the second quarter.

NIGERIA WINS OLYMPIC MEN'S BASKETBALL OPENER

London, England (Sports Network) - Alade Aminu scored 15 points and pulled down nine rebounds, helping Nigeria beat Tunisia, 60-56, in the Olympic men's basketball opener.

Ike Diogu added 13 points and 10 boards for Nigeria. Al-Farouq Aminu, who played for the New Orleans Hornets last season, donated 10 points and nine rebounds.

Amine Rzig ended with 18 points for Tunisia. Marouan Kechrid and Makram Ben Romdhane had 12 points apiece.

VOS WINS WOMEN'S OLYMPIC ROAD RACE

London, England (Sports Network) - Marianne Vos of the Netherlands won gold at the end of a rainy women's Olympic road race Sunday, outsprinting Great Britain's Elizabeth Armitstead for the victory.

Armitstead's silver was the host country's first medal of these London Games.

The two had been in a breakaway with Russian Olga Zabelinskaya, pedaling through rain -- and, at times, hail -- for more than 25 kilometers. The trio managed to keep their distance from the chasing group and ensure it would decide the medals.

Zabelinskaya led as they came onto the finishing straight, and Vos jumped into her sprint first. Armitstead was in good position, behind Vos, but the Dutch superstar held on for the win.

"Maybe I should have jumped Vos earlier, but she was the stronger rider," Armitstead said. "I am thrilled. I am still a bit shell-shocked, to be honest. I cannot really get my head around it."

It was the second Olympic gold medal for Vos, who won the women's points race on the track four years ago in Beijing. She finished sixth in the women's road race that year.

"After Beijing, that was the only thing that was on my mind for four years," Vos said. "Now that it's happened, it's incredible. Now the gold is mine."

Zabelinskaya wasn't competitive in the sprint and earned bronze.

American Shelley Olds had been in the decisive move, but flatted and never caught back up despite the efforts of her team. She finished seventh.

Sunday's race featured just 67 riders and two ascents of Box Hill during its 140 kilometers, but the small field made it more open. With countries being limited to a maximum of four riders, no team could take over completely.

The entire race was filled with attacks, a series of potential breakaways and catches. It's the typical style of racing in the women's professional ranks, and Sunday featured many of the best riders jumping off the front -- Vos, Great Britain's Emma Pooley, American Evelyn Stevens, and Ellen van Dijk and Annemiek van Vleuten of the Netherlands, among others.

But more than halfway through Sunday's event, nothing had stuck. Then, Zabelinskaya jumped during the second time over Box Hill. Olds and Armitstead bridged up, while Vos joined them to make a strong quartet.

Vos was favored in the race for a reason. At just 25 years old, she has earned world championships in multiple cycling disciplines and recorded victory after victory. Earlier this year, she won her second title at the Giro Donne, a prestigious stage race for women.

But the rest of the break's riders were also strong. Olds and Armitstead are fast sprinters who come from track backgrounds. Armitstead won several notable races during the spring, while Olds overcame an early-season broken wrist to make the Olympic team. Wins at a world cup event and a stage at the Giro Donne told the rest of the women's peloton she had good form.

Zabelinskaya is her country's time trial champion.

So when they got away, they had the potential to make it work. With about 30km to go, Olds had a tire puncture and fell out of the break, her medal hopes all but gone.

But the three remaining riders continued to build their lead, which was at 45 seconds with 10km remaining, despite torrential downpours. At that point, all that was left to decide was the medal order.

AUSTRALIAN EVANS RULED OUT OF TIME TRIAL

London, England (Sports Network) - Australian cyclist Cadel Evans has been ruled out of the time trial because of fatigue.

The Australian Olympic Committee announced on Twitter that doctors ruled Evans out of Wednesday's event. His withdrawal means Michael Rogers will be the country's lone time trial participant.

Evans won the Tour de France in 2011 with a strong time trial, but struggled in the same discipline at this year's Tour, where he finished seventh.

SHARAPOVA MOVES ON, RADWANSKA OUSTED IN WOMEN'S OLYMPIC TENNIS

Wimbledon, England (Sports Network) - Julia Goerges of Germany posted a first- round upset win over Wimbledon runner-up Agnieszka Radwanska at the Olympics on Sunday.

Goerges outlasted Radwanska, the No. 2 seed, by a 7-5, 6-7 (5-7), 6-4 margin at the All England Club.

Rain forced the match to be played under the retractable roof on Centre Court. It was the first time Olympic tennis has been played indoors in the modern era.

Meanwhile, third-seeded Russian Maria Sharapova handled Shahar Peer of Israel 6-2, 6-0 in 65 minutes on Centre Court.

Sharapova won the French Open last month to complete the career Grand Slam. She carried the Russian flag in the opening ceremony.

A shoulder injury forced Sharapova to miss the 2008 Olympics.

Only three other first-round matches were completed Sunday due to the inclement weather.

Kazakhstan's Yaroslava Shvedova posted a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Simona Halep of Romania, Hungarian Timea Babos bested Shvedova's countrywoman Galina Voskoboeva by the same score and Anna Tatishvili of Georgia advanced with a 6-2, 6-0 rout of Liechtenstein's Stephanie Vogt.

DJOKOVIC, MURRAY WIN OPENERS AT OLYMPICS

Wimbledon, England (Sports Network) - Novak Djokovic and Wimbledon runner-up Andy Murray were among Sunday's first-round winners at the Olympics.

Djokovic, the No. 2 seed, rallied past Fabio Fognini of Italy 6-7 (7-9), 6-2, 6-2 in almost two hours.

This year's Australian Open champion, Djokovic won a bronze medal for Serbia in Beijing four years ago.

The third-seeded Murray cruised past Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland 6-3, 6-3 under the retractable roof on Centre Court. Rain forced the match to be played under the roof.

Murray, who lost to Roger Federer in the Wimbledon final three weeks ago, is trying to become the first British tennis player to win an Olympic medal since 1996.

Fourth-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer moved on with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Vasek Pospisil of Canada. Meanwhile, Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the No. 5 seed, rallied past Thomaz Bellucci of Brazil 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 6-4.

Kei Nishikori, the 15th seed, and Jarkko Nieminen also advanced on Sunday. Nishikori defeated Australian Bernard Tomic 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (7-4), while Nieminen took down Indian Somdev Devvarman 6-3, 6-1.

Rain suspended or postponed the rest of the first-round matches.

SOCCER SHOCKER: HONDURAS ELIMINATES SPAIN

Newcastle, England (Sports Network) - Spain is out of the men's Olympic soccer tournament.

The country that has won the last two European championships and the World Cup in 2010, was eliminated Sunday with a 1-0 loss to Honduras at St James' Park.

Even with rosters limited to just three players over age 23, Spain entered the tournament as the favorite to win gold. Instead, it lost its first two matches and cannot advance from group play with one match left.

The Spaniards, one of just two squads eliminated after two games, sit alone at the bottom of Group D.

Jerry Bengtson scored just 7 minutes into the match, and Honduras survived one chance after another in the second half from Spain - which struck the crossbar or post three times in the final 45 minutes.

Bengtson scored twice in the opening match of the tournament for Honduras, and added to his haul with a header into the bottom left early against Spain.

Spain piled on pressure as the match wore on, as Iker Muniain and Rodrigo were among those who hit the woodwork. Honduras goalkeeper Jose Mendoza also made a number of fine saves, but none bigger than a flying effort against Rodrigo.

Honduras is second in the group with one game remaining, but still needs a tie against Japan to secure its place in the quarterfinals.

Kensuke Nagai scored in the 84th minute as Japan defeated Morocco, 1-0, at St James Park to secure its second straight win and a berth in the quarterfinals from Group D. Morocco plays Spain in its final match.

Great Britain avoided an upset at Wembley Stadium in London, as Scott Sinclair and Daniel Sturridge came off the bench to score in a 3-1 win over the United Arab Emirates.

Ryan Giggs became the oldest man to score in the Olympics in the first half as Great Britain took the lead, but the UAE climbed level on the hour when Rashed Eisa converted to the bottom corner.

Great Britain settled in after a good stretch from UAE, and Sinclair scored in seconds after he replaced Giggs in the 73rd, and Sturridge capped the win with a nice chip in the 76th to secure the top spot in Group A on a tiebreaker.

UAE was eliminated, but Great Britain, Senegal and Uruguay are still alive for the two quarterfinal berths from the group.

Senegal used a pair of goals from Moussa Konate to surprise Uruguay, 2-0, in the other match in Group A at Wembley Stadium. Konate scored in the 10th and, after teammate Abdoulaye Ba sent off, added his second in the 37th.

Neymar scored a stunning free kick and had two assists as Brazil joined Japan in the last eight with a 3-1 win over Belarus at Old Trafford in Manchester, England.

Bardini Bressan scored early for Belarus, but Alexandre Pato tied the match in the 15th off an assist from Neymar, and the Santos forward added his free kick in the 65th. Neymar hit a right-footed shot from the right into the top left.

Neymar set up the final goal with a brilliant back heel at the top of the area to Oscar, a recent signing for Chelsea. Oscar finished into the top of the net to seal an impressive showing for Brazil, which has never won Olympic gold.

Brazil is comfortably atop Group C on six points. Belarus is second. Mohamed Salah scored in the 40th minute as Egypt tied New Zealand, 1-1, in the other game in Group C at Old Trafford.

Giovani Dos Santos scored twice in the second half as Mexico beat Gabon, 2-0, at City of Coventry Stadium in Coventry, England to move atop Group B. South Korea used goals from Park Chu-Young and Kim Bo-Kyung to nip Switzerland, 2-1, at Coventry Stadium to sit second in Group B.

KOREA KEEPS GOLD STREAK ALIVE IN WOMEN'S ARCHERY

London, England (Sports Network) - South Korea held on to beat China by one point in the final of the women's team archery competition at the London Olympics, keeping its gold medal streak alive.

The Koreans have won every gold medal in this event since it was introduced at the 1988 Seoul Games.

Sunday, the Koreans had a bye into the quarterfinals, where they beat Denmark to move into the semifinals. A rout against Japan placed them in the gold medal match, where they led by just two points after 21 of 24 arrows.

But in the final three arrows, China gained just one point on the Koreans, who came away with a 210-209 victory. The Chinese had to settle for a third consecutive silver medal, while Japan beat Russia for the bronze.

China's road to the final match was a long one. It defeated Italy in an elimination match, then took down the United States in the quarterfinals. The U.S. had a bye into that round and was looking for its first medal in the competition since 1988, when it won bronze.

SZILAGYI GRABS FENCING GOLD FOR HUNGARY

London, England (Sports Network) - Aron Szilagyi routed Italy's Diego Occhiuzzi in the final round of the men's sabre competition Sunday at the London Games, giving Hungary its first fencing gold medal in 20 years.

Szilagyi jumped out to an 8-1 lead over his Italian opponent in the gold medal match and cruised to a 15-8 victory. He became the first Hungarian to win an Olympic fencing competition since Bence Szabo also took gold in the men's sabre at the 1992 Barcelona Games.

The 22-year-old Szilagyi is the youngest gold medalist in this event since 1896, when Greece's Ioannis Georgiadis, who was also 22, won the sabre event at the first modern Olympics in Athens.

"I always dreamed of it since I was nine or 10 years old," Szilagyi said of being an Olympic champion.

Meanwhile, Occhiuzzi's silver gives Italy four fencing medals in London after Elisa Di Francisca, Arianna Errigo and Valentina Vezzali won gold, silver and bronze, respectively, in Saturday's women's foil event.

Russia's Nikolay Kovalev, who ousted world No. 1 Nicolas Limback of Germany in the quarterfinals, beat Romania's Rares Dumitrescu, 15-10, in the bronze medal bout.

Daryl Homer and Tim Morehouse of the United States finished sixth and eighth, respectively, in the men's sabre. Homer lost in the quarterfinals to Dumitrescu, while Morehouse was ousted by Occhiuzzu in the same round.

NORTH KOREA'S OM WINS GOLD IN WEIGHTLIFTING

London, England (Sports Network) - Om Yun Chol of North Korea set a new Olympic record in the clean and jerk Sunday at the London Games, helping him take gold in the men's 56-kilogram weightlifting event.

Om lifted 125 kilograms in the snatch portion and set the new Olympic mark with a clean and jerk lift of 168. The gold medal is the first for North Korea in any men's event at the Olympics since Kim Il won 50-kilogram freestyle wrestling at the 1996 Atlanta Games.

Om's epic clean and jerk score helped him become the first person from the "B" group to win gold in the history of the Olympic Games.

"I am very happy and thankful to my leader and weightlifting association to give me the strength to lift like this," said Om.

Gold medal favorite Wu Jingbiao of China finished second with a total of 289.

Valentin Hristov of Azerbaijan won the bronze, giving his country its first weightlifting medal.

KAZAKHSTAN'S CHINSHANLO WINS WEIGHTLIFTING GOLD

London, England (Sports Network) - Zulfiya Chinshanlo of Kazakhstan won the women's 53-kilogram weightlifting competition Sunday at the London Games, giving her country its first-ever Olympic gold medal in women's weightlifting.

Chinshanlo lifted 95 kilograms in the snatch and 131 in the clean and jerk to post a winning total of 226. Her clean and jerk lift set a new world record.

"I want to celebrate the gold medal by drinking a glass of beer. Actually, I am only able to drink half a glass," quipped Chinshanlo.

Hsu Shu-Ching of Chinese Taipei and Moldova's Cristina Iovu each finished with a total of 219, but Hsu was awarded the silver because Iovu came into the event with a higher body weight.

Citra Febrianti of Indonesia finished a distant fourth with a final total of 206.

AN, SHAVDATUASHVILI EARN JUDO GOLD

London, England (Sports Network) - North Korea's An Kum Ae won the women's 52- kilogram judo event Sunday and Georgia's Lasha Shavdatuashvili earned gold in the men's 66kg.

Both divisions saw the favorites knocked out early on in the tournament.

Japan's Misato Nakamura was the favorite for the 52kg, but was defeated by An, who later bested Cuba's Yanet Bermoy Acosta in the gold medal match.

An became the second representative for North Korea to win multiple judo medals, having also taken silver in the 2008 Beijing Games.

"I am very happy to win the gold medal," said An. "I think I was able to bring some glory to my nation."

Shavdatuashvili didn't have to go through Russian favorite Musa Mogushkov -- he failed to win his first match -- and landed a win over Miklos Ungvari of Hungary to claim the gold.

"Some months ago I could not even imagine taking part in the Olympic Games. I had just transferred from juniors," said Shavdatuashvili, who at 20 was the youngest competitor in the 66kg.

Sunday's bronze medals in the men's 66kg went to Japan's Masashi Ebinuma and Cho Jun-Ho of South Korea, while Italian Rosalba Forciniti and France's Priscilla Gneto captured bronze in the women's 52kg.

ROGERS, DALHAUSSER OPEN OLYMPIC DEFENSE WITH WIN

London, England (Sports Network) - Americans Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser opened their Olympic title defense with a straight-set win Sunday.

Rogers and Dalhausser beat Kentaro Asahi and Katsuhiro Shiratori 21-15, 21-16 in 40 minutes on the sand at Horse Guards Parade.

The top-ranked Brazilian team of Emanuel Rego and Alison Cerutti survived a three-set scare before knocking off Austria's Clemens Doppler and Alexander Horst 19-21, 21-17, 16-14.

Americans Jennifer Kessy and April Ross also opened with a victory, beating Argentina's Maria Virginia Zonta and Ana Gallay 21-11, 21-18.

U.S. WOMEN'S EIGHT ADVANCES TO FINALS

London, England (Sports Network) - The U.S. women's eight team advanced to the finals after winning its heat Sunday at Eton Dorney.

The veteran-led crew posted a time of six minutes, 14.68 seconds. Six of the rowers won gold in this event in Beijing, while members Caryn Davies and Mary Whipple also grabbed silver in 2004.

The Americans will be joined in the final by Canada, which had a time of 6:13.91 to win the second heat, while Great Britain is one of the boats headed to the repechage.

The U.S. also advanced into the semifinals of the lightweight men's four after winning Sunday's repechage.

Repechages were also held in men's double sculls, where the Australian duo of David Crawshay and Scott Brennan came out victorious, as well as men's and women's single sculls.

The Great Britain duo of Sophie Hosking and Katherine Copeland won their respective heat in lightweight women's double sculls, with America and Canada seeing their boats come up short in heat two.

Canada suffered a similar fate in the lightweight men's double sculls, moving to the repechage, while Great Britain's Zac Purchase and Mark Hunter won their heat to advance to the semifinals.

U.S. MEN WIN VOLLEYBALL OPENER

London, England (Sports Network) - The United States began its gold medal defense with a straight-sets victory over Serbia on the first day of the men's volleyball tournament at the London Games.

The Americans defeated Serbia, 25-17, 25-22 and 25-21 in a match that lasted 1 hour, 25 minutes. Next up for the U.S. is Tuesday's Pool B match against Germany, which lost in three sets to Russia on Sunday.

The U.S. won gold at the 2008 Beijing Games despite tragedy striking former head coach Hugh McCutcheon's family. McCutcheon's father-in-law, Todd Bachman, was stabbed to death at a Beijing city landmark early in the competition. McCutcheon is currently coaching the U.S. women at the 2012 Olympics.

Brazil, the silver medalist in Beijing, also won in straight sets in its Pool B opener against Tunisia.

In Pool A action, Bulgaria and Argentina both won in straight sets, defeating Great Britain and Australia, respectively. Poland also won, taking its match with Italy in four sets.

QUEEN'S GRANDDAUGHTER RIDES FOR GREAT BRITAIN

London, England (Sports Network) - Zara Phillips and her horse are ready to move on.

Queen Elizabeth's granddaughter -- and daughter of Princess Anne -- rode her gelding High Kingdom for Great Britain Sunday and scored 46.10 penalty points, good for 24th.

"He's bored with dressage now and wants to get out there," Phillips said of her horse. "Cross country is our strongest phase so we hope we can improve our score."

The host British were third behind Germany and Australia in the team rankings after the second day of dressage.

Japan's Yoshiaki Oiwa was first in the individual standings ahead of Italy's Stefano Brecciaroli and New Zealand's Mark Todd, who is trying to become the only athlete to win three gold medals in individual eventing.

Eventing combines dressage, cross-country and jumping. The individual and team competition run concurrently and medals are awarded for both.

UZBEK GYMNAST TESTS POSITIVE FOR DIURETIC

London, England (Sports Network) - Uzbek gymnast Luiza Galiulina has been provisionally suspended from the London Olympics after testing positive for a banned diuretic.

A urine sample Galiulina provided July 25 tested positive for furosemide, and she was immediately given the provisional sentence. A final decision will be announced once her 'B' sample is analyzed.

AN, SHAVDATUASHVILI EARN JUDO GOLD

London, England (Sports Network) - North Korea's An Kum Ae won the women's 52- kilogram judo event Sunday and Georgia's Lasha Shavdatuashvili earned gold in the men's 66kg.

Both divisions saw the favorites knocked out early on in the tournament.

Japan's Misato Nakamura was the favorite for the 52kg, but was defeated by An, who later bested Cuba's Yanet Bermoy Acosta in the gold medal match.

Shavdatuashvili didn't have to go through Russian favorite Musa Mogushkov -- he failed to win his first match -- and landed a win over Miklos Ungvari of Hungary to claim the gold.

Sunday's bronze medals in the men's 66kg went to Japan's Masashi Ebinuma and Cho Jun-Ho of South Korea, while Italian Rosalba Forciniti and France's Priscilla Gneto captured bronze in the women's 52kg.

BOXER EVANS WINS OPENING BOUT FOR GREAT BRITAIN

London, England (Sports Network) - Great Britain's Freddie Evans won his opening bout in the men's welterweight competition Sunday, as he began his quest for an Olympic medal.

Evans outpointed his opponent, Algerian Ilyas Abbadi, by an 18-10 margin and moved on to face fourth-seeded Egidijus Kavaliauskas of Lithuania in the 69- kilogram category.

The Welsh Evans burst upon the boxing scene last year, when he won the welterweight gold at the European Championships.

American Errol Spence and Australian Cameron Hammond, ranked fifth in the world, were among the other welterweight winners.

The lightweight (60kg) competition also began Sunday, and fifth-seeded Gani Zhailauov advanced in a close bout against Thailand's Saylom Ardee. They were tied on points, 12-12, after three rounds and the Kazakh won on countback.

Zhailauov won bronze at the 2011 world championships.

American Jose Ramirez and Turkey's Fatih Keles, the No. 6 seed, also won in early-round lightweight action.

Boxing continues Monday, when the flyweight (52kg) and light heavyweight (81kg) competitions begin.

MARTIKAN BEGINS QUEST FOR FIFTH MEDAL IN CANOE SINGLES

London, England (Sports Network) - Slovakia's Michal Martikan began his quest for a fifth Olympic medal on Sunday by posting the best time in men's canoe singles heats at Lee Valley White Water Centre.

Martikan had the quickest time in the 17-man field, completing his heat in 90.56 seconds.

Great Britain's David Florence, a 2008 silver medalist in Beijing, finished fifth, while two-time Olympic champion Tony Estanguet of France was seventh.

Only the top 12 of the 17 athletes move on to the semifinals. American Casey Eichfeld finished 14th.

Men's kayak singles were also held on Sunday, with German Hannes Aigner posting the fastest time at 83.49 seconds. World No. 1 Peter Kauzer of Slovakia was fifth, while 2008 bronze medalist Benjamin Boukpeti of Togo just snuck into the semis at 14th.

The top 15 of 22 kayakers advanced. Scott Parson of the U.S. finished 16th and Canada's Michael Tayler was 20th.

U.S. MEN WIN WATER POLO OPENER

London, England (Sports Network) - The U.S. men slipped past Montenegro by an 8-7 margin on Sunday in their opener at the Water Polo Arena.

Beginning Group B play against the 2012 runners-up at the European Championship, the Americans got a goal from Tony Azevedo to stretch their margin to two with 57 seconds left. It was a needed goal as Montenegro pulled within one just 11 seconds later.

Peter Varellas scored three goals on three shots for the U.S.

Great Britain, also in Group B, made its Olympic return to the sport for the first time since 1956, but was hammered 13-4 by Romania. Rob Parker had two of the host's goals.

Also in Group B, Serbia knocked off Hungary 14-10.

In Group A play on Sunday, Spain bested Kazakhstan 14-6, Croatia downed Greece 8-6 and Italy handed Australia an 8-5 setback.

U.S. DROPS FIELD HOCKEY OPENER AGAINST GERMANY

London, England (Sports Network) - The United States women lost their opening game of the Olympic field hockey tournament on Sunday, losing 2-1 to Germany in Group B action at Riverbank Arena.

The Germans jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first half before Lauren Crandall got the U.S. on the board in the second half. Next up for the Americans is Tuesday's contest against South Africa, which lost 7-1 to Argentina on Sunday in a game that tied the Olympic record for largest margin of victory in women's field hockey.

In other Group B action, New Zealand beat Australia, 1-0, while defending gold medalists Netherlands began Group A play with a 3-0 win over Belgium. Also in Group A, China defeated South Korea, 4-0, and Great Britain topped Japan by the same score.

FRANCE BEGINS DEFENSE OF MEN'S HANDBALL GOLD WITH ROUT OF GB

London, England (Sports Network) - Defending gold medalists France opened up men's handball Group A play on Sunday with a 44-15 victory against Great Britain at the Copper Box.

France got 11 goals out of Guillaume Joli on his 13 shots, while Jerome Fernandez scored nine goals.

Great Britain, playing its first ever men's handball match in the Olympic Games, was paced by Robin Garnham's six goals.

Group A member Iceland, which won the silver four years ago, knocked off Argentina on Sunday, while Spain handed Serbia a 26-21 defeat. The Spanish, part of Group B, won bronze four years ago in Beijing.

Also, Croatia bested Korea 31-21 in Group B play, three-time Olympic silver medalist Sweden -- back in the Olympic Games following a 12-year absence -- scored a 28-21 triumph over fellow Group A team Tunisia and Denmark topped Hungary 27-25.

GREAT BRITAIN'S RADCLIFFE OUT OF MARATHON

London, England (Sports Network) - British marathoner Paula Radcliffe will not run at the London Olympics because of a foot injury.

The British Olympic Association said the decision was made after Radcliffe went through a fitness test Sunday. Following the workout, it was decided she wouldn't be able to race competitively.

"This is obviously a disappointing day for Paula and our sport but it was important to her that if she made the start line it would be in the best possible shape," said Charles van Commenee, Great Britain's team leader for athletics. "It wasn't meant to be and she has taken the right decision to withdraw at this stage."

Radcliffe, 38, is the world recorder holder in the women's marathon and has won numerous prestigious races. She took three victories at both the London and New York Marathon, and won a world title in 2005.

However, she has not had the same success at the Olympics. Radcliffe sustained an injury shortly before the 2004 games and didn't finish the marathon, then finished 23rd in '08.

Radcliffe was disappointed to not have the chance to compete in London.

"From the day when it was announced that London had won the bid, taking part and performing well in the London Olympic Games has been a major goal in my life," she said. "The goal of a fifth Olympics in my home country, what better? The chance to make amends to myself for bitter disappointments at the previous two Olympics.

"Through a lot of tough times it has kept me fighting, motivated and focused. That is why it hurts so much to finally admit to myself that it isn't going to happen."

HSING'S RUN IN WOMEN'S TABLE TENNIS COMES TO AN END

London, England (Sports Network) - American Ariel Hsing advanced to the third round in women's table tennis on Sunday, but dropped her second match of the day to second-ranked Li Xiaoxia.

Hsing began Sunday with a four-set victory over Xia Lian Ni of Luxembourg, but she was bested in six games by China's Li in the evening.

Brit Joanna Parker failed to make it out of the second round, falling to German Kristin Silbereisen as the women filled out the fourth-round bracket.

On the men's side, they concluded second-round play. Great Britain's Paul Drinkhall was a four-set winner over Singapore's Zi Yang. He'll face eighth- ranked German Dimitrij Ovtcharov in the third round on Monday.