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Grand finale for Biles with 4th gold

US gymnast Simone Biles celebrates on the podium of the women’s fl oor event fi nal of the artistic gymnastics at the Olympic Arena during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on Aug 16. (AFP)
US gymnast Simone Biles celebrates on the podium of the women’s fl oor event fi nal of the artistic gymnastics at the Olympic Arena during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on Aug 16. (AFP)

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug 17, (Agencies): US star Simone Biles got the golden finale she craved in Rio with a record equalling fourth women’s crown but former gymnastics power China leave the Games on a low.

The 19-year-old Biles wrapped up ten days of incredible gymnastics with her trademark dominant display of acrobatics and tumbling on the floor in the Rio Olympic Arena. The 1.45m (4ft 9ins) gymnast from Texas got the crowd behind her with her Samba routine to lead a US 1-2 ahead of Aly Raisman. It was her fifth medal in Rio and fourth in gold after the team, all-around and vault, along with bronze on the beam.

The three-time world floor champion scored 15.966 points with 2012 Olympic floor champion Raisman taking silver with 15.500. Britain’s Amy Tinkler (14.933) won bronze. Meanwhile, Jamaica unleashed a new sprint sensation as Omar McLeod took the Rio Olympics 110m hurdles while Chinese sports fans lamented the team’s perceived lack of gold medal success in Rio.

Frustration bubbled over in China where sports fans branded their athletes Olympic failures while Britain cemented its position in second place ahead of China in the medals table with more gold medals in cycling.

Meanwhile sports officials slammed the Rio Games crowd for abusing French pole vault star Renaud Lavillenie, leaving him in tears following his medal ceremony. McLeod said inspiration had come from Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who took bronze in the 100m.

Earlier Tuesday the Rio Olympics atmosphere soured when the crowd in the sparsely populated stadium jeered France’s Lavillenie for the second day. The crowd had also jeered Lavillenie when he jumped in Monday’s competition. Tears streamed down Lavillenie’s face as he stood for the Brazilian anthem. Meanwhile, Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon produced a startling last-lap sprint to outpace favourite Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia to win the Olympic women’s 1500m gold on Tuesday.

Kipyegon clocked 4min 08.92sec after her burst over the last 250 metres, world record holder Dibaba taking silver in 4:10.27. American Jennifer Simpson claimed bronze in 4:10.53. “I knew it would be a fast race, I really had to kick on the last lap,” asid Kipyegon. Canada’s Derek Drouin beat a quality field to add the Olympic high jump crown to his world title after a cliff-hanger of a final in Rio. Drouin cleared 2.38 metres in Tuesday’s competition, edging Qatari Mutaz Barshim into the silver medal spot to become Canada’s first Olympic high jump champion since 1932.

Barshim, the world indoor silver medallist, took silver after posting a height of 2.36 while Ukraine’s Bohdan Bondarenko, who was runner-up to Drouin at last year’s world championships, took bronze with 2.33m. Conseslus Kipruto stormed to victory in the men’s 3000m steeplechase to extend Kenya’s remarkable winning streak in the event. Kipruto timed an Olympic record of 8min 03.28sec for gold, American Evan Jager taking silver in 8:04.28.

Two-time Olympic champion and reigning four-time world gold medallist Ezekiel Kemboi, also of Kenya, claimed bronze (8:08.47). Reigning champion Mo Farah survived a “nerve-wracking” trip from behind to secure his place in the Olympic final of the men’s 5,000m in Rio on Wednesday.

The Briton, who recovered from a fall to retain his 10,000m crown last weekend, was clipped by American Hassan Mead but stayed on his feet to finish third in his heat and preserve his hopes of a double-double.

On Saturday, Farah will be seeking to become the first man since Finland’s Lasse Viren in 1976 to retain two Olympic distance title after completing the double in London four years ago. France won the Rio Olympics team show jumping gold medal on Wednesday, their second equestrian gold of the Games after their triumph in the team eventing.

The United States earned silver, while Germany seized bronze in a jump-off against Canada. Serbia’s Davor Stefanek added Olympic Greco-Roman wrestling gold to his 2014 world title when he defeated Armenian Migran Arutyunyan in the 66kg final at the Rio Games on Tuesday.

Stefanek, who missed out on a medal in two prior Olympics — in 2004 and 2008 — claimed Serbia’s second gold medal in Olympic history after Milica Mandic’s Taekwondo gold in London four years ago. Bronze went to Georgia’s Shmagi Bolkvadze and Rasul Chunayev.

Armenia’s Artur Aleksanyan won the 98kg gold, defeating Yasmany Lugo of Cuba in the gold medal match. Bronze went to Ghasem Gholamreza Rezaei of Iran and Cenk Ildem of Turkey.

Meanwhile, China continued to show why they are the goliath of table tennis on Tuesday with a dominant win over Germany to take the women’s team gold, the champions dropping only one game in the final.

In a 3-0 whitewash that lasted just oneand- a-half hours, China’s Li Xiaoxia and Liu Shiwen utilised booming smashes and prodigious spin shots to overcome Han Ying and Petrissa Solja of Germany without dropping a game in the opening singles matches. Germany showed a little resistance in the doubles match when they took the third game but Liu and her partner Ding Ning soon regained control to complete a resounding victory.

Patty Mills scored 24 points and Aron Baynes added 16 to spark Australia over Lithuania 90-64 Wednesday, advancing the Boomers to the Olympic men’s basketball semifinals. Chinese badminton superstar Lin Dan survived a major scare to set up a mouth-watering semifinal clash with Malaysian archrival Lee Chong Wei at the Rio Olympics on Wednesday. Two-time Olympic champion Lin required three games and one hour eight minutes to defeat ninth-seed Srikanth Kidambi of India after top-ranked Lee cantered to a routine victory against Taiwan’s Chou Tien-chen. Lin, who is bidding for a third consecutive Olympic gold, won the first game easily, triumphing 21-6, but succumbed in the second, losing 21-11, before scraping the third game 21-18.

Competing in his fourth and probably final Olympics, the 32-year-old star is going for a third singles gold after triumphing at his home Beijing Games in 2008 and again in London four years ago. Indonesia’s Ahmad Tontowi and Liliyana Natsir stomped on Malaysia’s dreams of a maiden Olympic gold medal at the badminton on Wednesday by hammering Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying in the mixed double final. Roared to the title by dozens of feverish home fans, the world number three pairing pounced all over the Malaysians from the first point at the Riocentro and never dropped the pressure in the 21-14 21-12 win. Tontowi and Natsir captured their delegation’s first gold of the Rio Games and seventh in Olympic badminton, closing out the match when Goh netted the last shuttlecock.

Neymar scored twice, including the fastest goal in Olympics history, as Brazil coasted into Saturday’s gold medal football match with a 6-0 thrashing of Honduras at Rio’s iconic Maracana. The hosts now have the chance to ease some of the pain caused by a 7-1 humiliation at the hands of Germany on home soil at the 2014 World Cup by delivering Brazil’s first football gold medal. A mouth-watering rematch with the Germans is in store should the world champions see off 1996 winners Nigeria in other semi-final, in Sao Paulo.

Neymar had been much criticised for his lacklustre displays in two 0-0 draws to start the tournament, but his transformation back from the nation’s whipping boy to golden boy was capped by his determination to open the scoring after just 15 seconds.

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