Guaranteed medals came to fruition and the records kept tumbling for our Aussies on an action-packed Day 14 at Tokyo 2020. With medals in the field, ring and on the sand defying the water-winning themes of Tokyo 2020, this is your daily Australian recap. Keep up to date with all the happenings at Tokyo 2020 through The Inner Sanctum’s Olympic hub and Olympic Central.
Beach Volleyballers net Silver
Aussie duo Mariafe Artacho del Solar and Taliqua Clancy have seen their incredible Olympic run culminate in a silver medal, going down to the USA in the women’s beach volleyball final. The pair has been one of the highlights of the Games, with their enriching friendship and chemistry evident every time they stepped onto the court.
It ends a dry-spell in beach volleyball dating back to Sydney 2000 with Natalie Cook and Kerri Pottharst; they were the first women in an Olympic medal match at all since Athens 2004.
The gold medal match didn’t get off to the best of starts for the Aussies, quickly succumbing to a deficit and eventually losing out in the first set 21-15. Needing to even the sets in the second, they responded with inspiring resilience, but the USA duo were too good.
The US rattled off four of the next five points from 13-16 to give themselves six gold medal points. They converted on their third attempt.
You can read more about Aussie duo Mariafe Artacho del Solar and Taliqua Clancy’s awesome run to the pinnacle of beach volleyball here.
It’s a beautiful Bronze for Harry Garside
Harry Garside has ended a 33-year medal drought for boxing in Australia, claiming bronze at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. The fiery 24-year-old lost in a unanimous decision to one of the great amateur boxers in the world, Cuba’s Andy Cruz, in a highly entertaining clash.
All five judges scored the lightweight bout 30-27 in the Cuban’s favour, but Garside was unlucky to not gain a scorecard or two in the second round. He was ultra-aggressive towards the end of the clash, knowing he needed to get a finish in the final round.
Ultimately, he bowed out with a bronze medal, with the losers of both semi-finals in boxing being awarded bronzes in the Olympics. He makes history as the first Australian to claim a boxing medal at the Olympic Games since 1988.
Read a full recap of his history-making run here.
More Tokyo 2020 News
Montag Magnificent in Women’s 20km Race Walk
It’s one of the toughest events on the Olympic calendar. Athletes are watched on by hawk-like officials to make sure one foot is on the ground at all times, and the soaring temperatures of Japan made it a gruelling 20 kilometres for the women’s race walking at Tokyo 2020.
Jemima Montag finished an amazing sixth for Australia. The 23-year-old from Melbourne finished 10th in the 2019 World Athletic Championships, and was able to improve on that finish with a high cadence. Under three minutes split first and 16th in the race.
Montag completed the race walk in 1:30.39, just a minute and 27 seconds behind the race winner.
The other two Australians – Katie Hayward and Rebecca Henderson – found themselves close together by the end of the race and crossed the line 10 seconds apart, finishing in 37th and 38th.
Antonella Palmisano finished in first for Italy, with the Sandra Lorena Arenas [COL] and Hong Liu [CHN] finishing second and third respectively.
Madison Medal not meant to be for Aussies
Georgia Baker and Annette Edmondson carried the hopes of Australia out to the track for the women’s Madison final, but it was Great Britain who dominated proceedings to claim gold, with the Aussie duo finishing tied-sixth with Poland.
Team Great Britain was simply spectacular, and never looked like losing its grasp on the top spot. The team of Katie Archibald and Laura Kenny – the latter of which claimed her fifth Olympic gold medal – lost only one sprint, claiming the maximum five points in the rest.
The Madison was making its debut at Tokyo 2020 for the women, and it was an overall success. It’s a gruelling race of 120 laps, which includes gaining points for sprints and lapping other riders. Riders are scattered all-around the 250 metres of track, with teammates pulling each other around the velodrome to gain pace and win the sprints which occur every 10 laps.
Annette Edmondson and Georgia Baker were unable to capitalise on the sprints, and were dealt a blow with a crash in the middle stages of the race.
Great Britain claimed gold, while Denmark and surprise packet the ROC rounded out the podium.
Rousseau dives head-first into Semis
Cassiel Rousseau has made the semi-finals of the men’s 10-metre platform diving after several superb dives. The other Australian – Sam Fricker – wasn’t able to progress to the next stage from the preliminary round.
Rousseau finished in eighth place with a cumulative score of 423.55 points. He saved his best dive for his last of six, scoring an 83.25 with a Forward 4½ Somersaults dive that got his coach jumping up and down. It was a dive he needed to pull given the precarious position he was in on the leaderboard going into the final round. Jian Lang of China qualified in first with 546.90 points.
The 20-year-old from Brisbane finished ninth in the World Championships in 2019, and will be keen to improve on that performance in his first Olympic Games.
World Champ Barber wins Javelin Bronze
Kelsey-Lee Barber has claimed bronze in the javelin, after three Australians qualified for the event final. The field superstar won Australia’s second medal in track and field after Ash Moloney won bronze in the men’s decathlon.
Her throw of 64.56 metres was good enough for third place, holding off Turkey’s Eda Tuğsuz by 56 centimetres. She was an agonising five centimetres off second with her best throw, which was her sixth and final.
The other Aussies were sensational as well, making it into the top-eight and earning themselves three additional throws in the final. Kathryn Mitchell was as consistent as it gets, unable to get past sixth position with a throw of 61.82 metres. Mackenzie Little finished in eighth with a throw of 59.96 metres.
China’s Liu Shiying won gold with 66.34 metres, while Maria Andrejczyk was unable to better her second-place finish with the final throw of the competition, taking home silver for Poland.
Hall and Hull fly the flag in 1500m Final
Jessica Hull and Linden Hall have flown the Australian flag proudly on the track in the final of the 1500 metres at Tokyo 2020.
Hall did all she could, finishing with a personal best time in an Olympic final. She ran the 1500 metres in 3:59.01, breaking the four-minute mark and sprinting home strongly for a sixth-place finish in hot conditions. She found herself in 12th position after 800 metres, and fought back through the pack to attain an incredible placing.
Hull finished in 11th place with a time of 4:02.63, unable to work her way to the front of the pack as it started to stretch out during the later laps. She was in eighth at the end of the first three laps but faded a little bit when the leaders made their move.
Kenyan Faith Kipyegon was simply superb in her gold medal-winning performance. She made her move with 300 metres to run, sprinting past her opponents and never looking back to win in 3:53.11, an Olympic Record. Laura Muir ran a National Record for Great Britain to claim second, while Sifan Hassan rounded out the podium for the Netherlands.
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