Rio Olympics Day One: Belgium’s van Avermaet takes gold in dramatic road race

The action is underway in Rio de Janiero with he first day of the action including road cycling, swimming, gymnastics and judo just to name a few. Who were the big winners on day one of the 31st Olympic Games?

Medal Winners

In a dramatic close to the Cycling Road Race,  Belgium’s Greg van Avermaet took the gold medal after a very late charge as Italy’s much fancied Vincenzo Nibali crashed with Colombian Sergio Henao in the latter stages.

Great Britain’s Geraint Thomas also crashed out on the final descent as van Avermaet passed Rafal Majka very late on, as the Polish rider had to settle for bronze, with Denmark’s Jakob Fuglsang taking silver.

Greg van Avermaet won Belgium's first gold of the Rio Olympics image: cycling news.com

Greg van Avermaet won Belgium’s first gold of the Rio Olympics
image: cycling news.com

It was also a busy night in the Swimming pool, as Hungary’s Iron Lady Katinka Hosszu ended her long wait for Olympic victory as she smashed the world record in the Women’s 400m Individual Medley with a time of 4:26.36, beating the previous record by 2.07 seconds.

USA’s Madeline Dirado took the silver medal just over five seconds behind the Hungarian, as the bronze medal went to Spain’s Mireia Belmote Garcia.

Australia won two gold medals in the pool as the women’s relay team retained their Olympic title by winning the 4x100m freestyle relay in a world record time 3:30.65 iwith USA finishing as silver medallists and Canada took the bronze.

Mack Horton also won gold for the Aussies in the Men’s 400m freestyle as he beat China’s Sun Yang to the gold medal, with Italy’s Gabriele Detti taking bronze and after leading with 100m to go, Team GB’s James Guy finished a disappointing sixth.

Japan’s Kosuke Hagino won the men’s 400m Individual Medley beating the American Chase Kalisz – who was fastest in the heats – to win gold with fellow Japan swimmer Daiya Seto winning bronze.

The first gold medal of the Rio Olympics went to the United States with 19-year-old Virigina Thrasher winning gold in the Women’s 10m air rifle Shooting, as Chinese pair Du Li and Yi Siling took silver and bronze respectively.

Vietnam won their first ever medal at the Olympic Games as Vinh Xuan Hoang won the men’s 10m air pistol Shooting as Felipe Almedia Wu’s silver saw hosts Brazil win their first medal of Rio 2016, with China’s Wei Pang in third to take bronze.

A depleted Russia team also won their first gold medal at the Rio Olympics thanks to Beslan Mudranov as he defeated Kazakh Yeldos Smetov in the final of the men’s 60kg Judo.

Argentina’s Paula Pareto bagged gold in the women’s 48kg Judo with a win over South Korea’s Bo Kyeong Jeong in the final, but there was better news for South Korea in the men’s Archery team event beating USA to win the gold medal, with Australia taking bronze.

Emeze Szasz won gold in the women’s individual epee in Fencing defeating Italy’s double world champion Rosella Fiamingo 15-13 int he final. China’s Sun Yiwen took bronze.

In Weightlifting, Thailand’s Sopita Tanasan won her country’s first ever gold medal at the Olympic Games, as she won the women’s 48kg after lifting a weight of 200kg to win only Thailand’s second ever Olympics medal.

Team Ireland

Ireland’s Nicholas Roche matched Ireland’s best ever finish in the Cycling Road Race as he was pipped to a Irish record in a photo finish with Tour De France winner Chris Froome to finish 13th, equalling Ciaran Power’s result in Athens in 2004. Dan Martin finished 29th.

Kieran behan failed to make the top 24 in the men's individual all-around in Gymnastics image: rte.ie

Kieran behan failed to make the top 24 in the men’s individual all-around in Gymnastics
image: rte.ie

There was disappointment for Kieran Behan in the Gymnastics as he missed out on qualification after finishing 38th in the men’s individual round with a scored of 83.22.

The 27-year-old was going well with his best score coming on the vault with 14.3 but in the last event on the floor, Behan unfortunately dislocated his knee but did power through to finish the event in true champion style.

There was also disappointment for the Men’s Hockey team but they did put in a spirited display in a 3-2 defeat to India their opening Pool B game in Ireland’s first Olympic hockey match since 1908.

In Swimming, Nicholas Quinn missed out on the semi-finals of the 100m breaststroke after finishing fourth in his heat and 33rd overall, but next Tuesday’s 200m is his preferred event.

There was better news for Ireland in Rowing as Sanita Puspure, originally from Latvia, finished second behind Candian Carling Zeeman in heat three of the Women’s Singles sculls to qualify for the quarter-finals.

In Equestrian action, Padraig McCarthy completed the opening session in 12th place with a score of 46.80 on Simon Porloe , with teammate Claire Abott finishing just behind McCarthy in 13th scoring 47.00.

Best of the Rest

We will start in the swimming pool, as Team GB’s Adam Peaty set a new 100m men’s breaststroke world record of 57.55 seconds in the heats and will be favourite to take the gold medal in Sunday’s final.

Adam Peaty looks to beocme the first British male to win a gold medal in the pool since 1988 image: nbcolympics.com

Adam Peaty looks to become the first British male to win a gold medal in the pool since 1988
image: nbcolympics.com

Staying the pool, the Olympics Refugee Team’s first ever competitor Yusra Mardini won her heat in the 100m butterfly but it was not enough to see the 18-year-old through to the finals.

Basketball action saw USA getting off to a flying start with a 119-62 win over China, while the much fancied France fell to a surprise 87-66 defeat to Australia.

Rugby Seven’s featured at the Olympic Games for the first time as Team GB got off to convincing starts with a 29-3 win over Brazil and thrashed Japan 40-0 in their opening games, while next opponents Canada also had a convincing 38-0 over hosts Brazil.

Great Britain continued to impress in Gymnastics as they reached Monday’s men’s team final with an impressive display in qualification finishing fifth overall as China lead the way, followed by USA, Russia and Japan. Nile Wilson and Max Whitlock qualified for the individual all-around final.

Team GB’s Kyle Edmund and Heather Watson are also comfortably through to the next round in Tennis, but Venus Williams hopes of winning another singles goal medal is over after a opening round 4-6 6-3 7-6 (7-5) defeat to Belgian Kirsten Flipkens.

Ana Ivanovic also crashed out in the opening round as Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro cam from behind to beat the Serbian 2-6 6-1 6-2 to reach the next round.

Defending champion Sarah Menezes suffered a shock defeat in the judo -48kg quarter-finals as hosts Brazil will have to wait to win their first gold medal.

Finally, Briton William Fox Pitt leads the Equestrian leads the dressage with a score of 37.0 on Chilli Morning, just ten months after being in an induced coma after a fall.

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