Current Affairs – Sports – Rio Olympics Highlights

On 5 August 2016, the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro were officially declared open by Brazil’s Acting President Michel Temer. Former Brazilian long-distance runner Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima, who won the bronze medal at Athens Olympics in 2004, lit the Olympic Cauldron during the opening ceremony.

Five-time Olympian and gold medallist at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Abhinav Bindra led the biggest ever Indian Olympic contingent as it entered the Maracanã Stadium. Among the Indian athletes was tennis ace Leander Paes making a record seventh Olympic appearance.

The 2016 Rio Olympics were declared closed on 22 August 2016, by the International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, following a ceremony which culminated in the handover of the Olympic flag to 2020 hosts Tokyo. The 2016 Games, which were the first to be held in South America, saw 11,000 athletes from 207 National Olympic Committees compete for 306 sets of medals.

Mascot: The mascot of Rio games was named Vinicius (after the poet of Bosa Nova), a mixture of all the Brazilian animals.

Bronze medal-winning wrestler Sakshi Malik was India’s flag-bearer for the closing ceremony.

USA topped the medals tally with 46 gold, 37 silver and 38 bronze medals. Great Britain was second with 27 gold, 23 silver and 17 bronze medals. China came third with 26 gold, 18 silver and 26 bronze medals. India could manage only two medals-bronze in Wrestling and silver in Badminton.

Highlights:

  • South Korean archer and former world number one Kim Woo-jin set a new world record, during the ranking round of the men’s individual archery competition. He scored the first-ever 700 in archery recurve, beating the previous record of 699 set by compatriot Im Dong-Hyun at London 2012.
  • American swimmer Katie Ledecky broke the world record in 400-metre freestyle, giving her country its first swimming gold of the Rio Olympics. The 19-year-old clocked 3:56.46 to better the previous record of 3:58:37, also held by her.
  • Kenya’s middle distance runner Conseslus Kipruto set a new Olympic record in the men’s 3000-metre steeplechase event after clocking 8:03.28 minutes in the final.
  • Jamaica’s Omar McLeod became the country’s first-ever Olympic 110-meter hurdles champion. He clocked a time of 13.05 seconds, which is the slowest winning time in an Olympic final since 1992.
  • Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson completed the double of 100-m and 200-m Gold to become the world’s fastest woman. This was also the first time a woman had completed a double since USA’s Florence Griffith Joyner at the Seoul Olympics in 1988. Thompson clocked timings of 10.71 seconds and 21.78 seconds in 100-m and 200-m, respectively.
  • Usain Bolt became the first athlete to complete a triple-triple of winning golds in 100-metre, 200-metre and 4X100-metre at three consecutive Olympics. With a total of nine golds in as many events, Bolt has the second most number of Olympic gold medals, behind American swimmer Michael Phelps.
  • American sprinter Allyson Felix became the first female track and field athlete to win five Olympic gold medals.
  • Great Britain’s 58-year-old Nick Skelton won the gold medal in the individual jumping event in equestrian, thereby becoming the oldest medallist in Olympic equestrian history. He also became the oldest medallist at the Rio Olympics and Britain’s oldest Olympic gold medallist since 1908, when shooter Joshua Milner won the gold, aged 61 years.
  • Great Britain women’s hockey team won its first ever Olympic gold after defeating defending champions Netherlands in the penalty shootout.
  • Argentinian men’s hockey team beat Belgium 4-2 to win their nation’s first ever medal in the men’s hockey event in Olympic history. The silver-medal finish for Belgium was their best finish at the Olympic Games in 96 years.
  • Brazil won its first ever Olympic gold in football after defeating Germany on penalties in the final.
  • German women’s football team won its first-ever Olympic gold medal after defeating Sweden 2-1.
  • American athlete Ryan Crouser broke a 28-year old Olympic record to win the gold in men’s shot put. His 22.52-meter throw broke the previous record of 22.47-metre made at 1988 Olympics.
  • Claressa Maria Shields of the United States won gold in women’s middle (69-75kg) boxing to become the first US boxer, male or female, to win two Olympic boxing golds.
  • USA’s Gwen Jorgensen won the gold medal in the women’s triathlon.
  • USA’s Ashton Eaton won gold in the men’s decathlon.
  • Bahrain’s Ruth Jebet won gold in Steeplechase with the second fastest time in history–8:59.75.
  • Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya won the men’s marathon gold.
  • Shaunae Miller of the Bahamas threw herself across the finish line in a daring lunge to beat out favourite Allyson Felix of the US for gold in the women’s 400m. By diving past the finish line, Miller crossed .07 seconds ahead of Felix.
  • Ethiopia’s Almaz Ayana won the women’s 10,000 meters as also broke the world record set in 1993 with a time of 29 minutes, 17.45 seconds.
  • Monica Puig of Puerto Rico won the Tennis women’s singles gold—first gold medal ever won by Puerto Rico.
  • USA’s Michelle Carter, won the women’s shot put final, becoming the first-ever female American shot put gold medallist, and the first to take the medal stand since 1960. (Her father, Michael Carter, a former NFL player, had won the shot put silver medal at the 1984 Games in Los Angeles.)
  • The artistic gymnastics women’s team gold was won by USA.
  • Cyclist Kristin Armstrong, just shy of her 43rd birthday, won her third consecutive gold medal in the women’s individual time trial. She became the first person to win the same event three times in a row, and the oldest woman to clinch gold in any Olympic sport.
  • Swimmers Yusra Mardini and Rami Anis were part of the refugee team—refugees of war-torn Syria who survived making the dangerous journey from Syria across the Aegean Sea to Greece in boats. It was the first time the International Olympic Committee allowed a team made up of Stateless refugees to compete in an Olympics.
  • Dipa Karmakar, India’s first ever female gymnast at the Olympics, became the first ever Indian to qualify for the apparatus finals of artistic Gymnastics at the Games. She bagged the fourth position, missing the bronze medal by a whisker.
  • Sakshi Malik clinched the bronze medal in 58-kg freestyle wrestling.  Notably, Malik also became the first Indian female wrestler to ever win an Olympic medal.
  • P.V. Sindhu became the first Indian female and first ever Indian shuttler to win an Olympic silver after she lost to world number one Carolina Marin in the final. She also became India’s youngest individual Olympic medallist. Before her, Vijender Singh was India’s youngest Olympic medallist. Sindhu became the fifth Indian woman to win an Olympic medal after Karnam Malleswari, Mary Kom, Saina Nehwal and Sakshi Malik

Current Affairs – Sports News – June-August 2016

ATHLETICS

Neeraj Chopra created a new junior world record on his way to the gold medal in the men’s javelin throw event at the IAAF World U20 Championships in Poland. He hurled the javelin to a distance of 86.48 metres, to beat the previous record of Latvia’s Zigismunds Sirmais by nearly two metres, and become the first Indian to win a gold medal in the history of the World U20 championship.

BADMINTON

Saina Nehwal defeated Chinese shuttler Sun Yu to win the Australian Open Super Series in Sydney. This was Saina’s first title in 2016, with her last win being the India Super Series in March 2015. Saina has won the Australian Open for the second time—she had won the title in 2014 also.

Indian shuttler Sai Praneeth defeated Korea’s Lee Hyun Il in the men’s singles final of the 2016 Canada Open. This was his first Grand Prix title.

CRICKET

India defeated West Indies by an innings and 92 runs on day 4 of the first Test in Antigua to register their biggest Test win outside Asia. Spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took 7/83 in West Indies’ second innings, while captain Virat Kohli scored the first double century of his career. This was Anil Kumble’s first match as Team India’s coach.

Ravichandran Ashwin has become the first Indian to score multiple hundreds and take multiple five-wicket hauls in a Test series; he achieved this milestone during the third Test against West Indies in August 2016. The 29-year-old also became the fourth player overall to achieve the feat. Ashwin joined Kapil Dev and Bhuvneshwar Kumar as the third Indian player to take two five wicket hauls and score two centuries in a Test series. While Kapil Dev achieved it twice in his illustrious career, Bhuvneshwar Kumar achieved this in the five-Test series against England in 2014.

Sri Lanka defeated Australia by 163 runs in the third Test, winning the series 3-0 and completing their first ever whitewash of Australia. The Aussies have lost 13 and won just one Test out of the 18 they have played in Asia since 2008. Before this series, SL had won only one Test against Australia in 33 years.

FOOTBALL

Chile upset favourites Argentina with a penalty shootout victory in the Copa America final to retain their title in the world’s oldest continental soccer competition. Colombia beat USA 1-0 to finish third.

Portugal defeated France 1-0 to win their first ever Euro Cup championship. Substitute Eder scored the winner for Portugal in extra time. This was the first ever Euro Cup final to end scoreless at the end of 90 minutes.

GOLF

Swedish player Henrik Stenson won the British Open at Royal Troon, pipping Phil Mickelson by producing a major championship record-equalling round of 63 on the final day. Mickelson finished on 17-under after a fine final round of his own of 65. J.B. Holmes of the United States was a distant third at six-under par.

GYMNASTICS

Dipa Karmakar, the first Indian woman to qualify for the gymnastics event in the Olympics, has been officially named a “World Class Gymnast”, by the governing body of world gymnastics, Federation de Internationale de Gymnastique. The title is given to some of the best gymnasts in the world.

TENNIS

World Number one Novak Djokovic completed his career Grand Slam after defeating Andy Murray to win the 2016 French Open Men’s Singles title. Novak Djokovic is the first man since 1969 to be the defending champion of all four Grand Slams—French Open, Wimbledon, Australian Open and US Open—at a single time. He is only the third man in history to achieve the feat after Don Budge in 1938 and Rod Laver in 1962 and 1969. Spain’s Garbiñe Muguruza won her maiden Grand Slam title after defeating the defending champion Serena Williams in women’s singlesMartina Hingis and Leander Paes each completed a career Grand Slam in mixed doubles after winning the Mixed Doubles title against Sania Mirza and Ivan Dodig.  Feliciano Lopez and Marc Lopez beat Bob and Mike Bryan to win the men’s doubles title.  The French pair of Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic secured a rare triumph for the home nation by winning the women’s doubles title.

World number two Andy Murray won his second Wimbledon men’s singles title, defeating Canadian Milos Raonic. This was Murray’s third Wimbledon final, with his first Championship victory coming in 2013 against Novak Djokovic.  Serena Williams beat Germany’s Angelique Kerber to win her 7th Wimbledon women’s singles titleher 22nd Grand Slam, equalling Steffi Graf’s record for most Grand Slam title wins in the Open Era. Serena Williams and Venus Williams won their sixth Wimbledon women’s doubles title after defeating Tímea Babos of Hungary and Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan. Heather Watson and Henri Kontinen won the mixed doubles title. Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut defeated fellow countrymen Julien Benneteau and Edouard Roger-Vasselin to win the men’s doubles title. It was the first all-French doubles final at Wimbledon in the Open Era.