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China Enjoys Surprising Day on Olympic Track - 2004-08-27

The main Olympic Stadium in Athens was the center of events Friday with seven gold medals decided.

China enjoyed a surprising day on the track. Liu Xiang of China set an Olympic record and tied the world record to win the men's 110-meter hurdles with a time of 12.91 seconds. American Terrence Trammell won the silver medal (13.18) seconds. Anier Garcia of Cuba got the bronze (13.20).

Xing Huina of China won the women's 10,000-meter run in a time of 30 minutes, 24.36 seconds. Ejegayehu Dibaba of Ethiopia won the silver medal (30:24.98). Derartu Tulu of Ethiopia got the bronze (30:26.42). Paula Radcliffe of Britain dropped out of the race as she did Sunday during the women's marathon.

Tatyana Lebedeva led a Russian sweep of the medals in the long jump, relegating Marion Jones of the United States to fifth place in her only individual event of the Athens Games. Lebedeva leaped 7.07 meters to take the gold. Irina Simagina was second (7.05) and Tatyana Kotova won the bronze (also with 7.05).

Jones and her U.S. teammates also lost a chance at a medal in the women's four-by-100 meter relay. Jamaica won the race in a time of 41.73 seconds. Russia won the silver medal (42.27). France got the bronze (42.54). The U.S missed a handoff when Lauryn Williams left too early and Jones could not reach her with the baton until it was too late.

American Timothy Mack won the pole vault by clearing an Olympic record 5.95 meters. Toby Stevenson of the United States won the silver medal (5.90). Italian Giuseppe Gibilisco took bronze (5.85).

The results helped leave the United States at the top of the medal standings with 29 gold and 90 total. China follows with 27 gold and 57 total. Russia and Australia both have 17 gold, with Russia collecting 68 total while Australia has 44. Japan and Germany follow in the official standings ranked by gold medals.

In other action, Osleidys Menendez of Cuba won the women's javelin with a new Olympic record throw of 71.53 meters. Steffi Nerius of Germany won the silver. Mirela Manjani of Greece took the bronze. Her toss gave the host nation its largest Olympic medal collection in more than a century with 14, including six gold.

Robert Korzeniowski of Poland won the 50-kilometer walk in a time of 3 hours, 38 minutes, 46 seconds. Denis Nizhegorodov of Russia got the silver medal. Aleksey Voyevodin of Russia took the bronze.

Germany won the four-woman, 500-meter kayak race, one of six medal races Friday at the Schinias canoe and rowing centre. Hungary won the silver and Ukraine took the bronze.

The men pulled their oars in five medal events, all over the 1,000 meter distance. David Cal of Spain won the canoe singles race. Andreas Dittmer of Germany won the silver. Attila Vajda of Hungary took the bronze. Christian Gille and Tomasz Wylenzek of Germany won the canoe doubles race. Russia won the silver. Hungary took the bronze.

Eirik Veraas Larsen of Norway won the singles kayak race. Ben Fouhy of New Zealand won the silver and Adam van Koeverden of Canada took the bronze. Markus Oscarsson and Henrik Nilsson of Sweden won the kayak doubles event. Italy won the silver. Norway took the bronze. The Hungarians crossed the line first in the four-man kayak race. Germany placed second. Slovakia was third.

The men's field hockey tournament came to a dramatic close when Jamie Dwyer scored a golden goal to give Australia a 2-1 victory over the Netherlands. World champion Germany took the bronze by defeating Spain, 4-3, on Bjoern Michel's golden goal in the play-off for third and fourth places.

Taekwondo added two more Olympic champions to the list of winners in Athens. Jang Ji-won of South Korea won the gold medal in the women's under-57-kilogram weight division. She beat Nia Abdallah of the United States, 2-1. Iridia Salazar Blanco of Mexico won the bronze.

Hadi Saei Bonehkohal of Iran won gold in the men's 68-kilogram class, beating Chih Hsiung Huang of Taiwan, 4-3. Song Myeong-seob of South Korea got the bronze.

Zsuzsanna Voros of Hungary took the gold medal in the Olympic women's modern pentathlon, which includes shooting, fencing, swimming, riding and running. Jelena Rublevska of Latvia took silver and Georgina Harland of Britain bronze. Cian O'Connor of Ireland won the equestrian gold medal in show jumping aboard the horse Waterford Crystal. Rodrigo Pessoa of Brazil won the silver riding Baloubet Du Rouet. American Chris Kappler got the bronze on the horse Royal Kaliber.

Gunn-Rita Dahle of Norway won the Olympic women's mountain bike race with a time of 1 hour, 56 minutes, 51 seconds. Marie-Helene Premont of Canada won the silver medal. Sabine Spitz of Germany won the bronze.

Russia successfully defended its Olympic synchronized swimming team title with a score of 99.501. The Russians led after Thursday's technical program and remained in front during the free routine final. Japan took the silver (98.501). The United States got the bronze (97.418).

Elsewhere, Italy denied Iraq its first Olympic medal for 44 years by winning the men's football third place match, 1-0.

Argentina defeated the United States team of National Basketball Association stars, 89-81, in the Olympic semi-finals. The loss dethrones the three-time defending Olympic champions. The U.S. team becomes the first group of National Basketball Association players not to claim Olympic gold. With three total Athens losses, the squad has dropped one more game than all U.S. teams combined in the previous 68 years.

Argentina ensured a first-ever Olympic medal. Italy handed Lithuania its first loss of the tournament, 100-91, in the other semifinal to set up the gold medal game Saturday. The United States will play for bronze Saturday against Lithuania.

The U.S. women have a chance for basketball gold after beating Russia, 66-62. Australia was the other semifinal winner, 88-75, over Brazil.

The handball finals are set. In the men's tournament semifinals, Croatia defeated Hungary, 33-31. Germany was a 21-15 winner over Russia. Among the women, South Korea downed France, 32-31, while Denmark topped Ukraine, 29-20.

In the semifinals of men's volleyball, Italy beat Russia, 3-0, and Brazil knocked off the United States, 3-0. The men's final of water polo will be decided by Hungary and Serbia-Montenegro. Hungary beat Russia in the semifinals, 7-5, and Serbia-Montenegro was a 7-3 winner over Greece.

Russian 400-meter runner Anton Galkin was expelled from the Olympics Friday after testing positive for steroids. Galkin's samples showed traces of stanozolol after the 400 semifinals on August 21st. Galkin finished fourth in the race and did not make the finals.

In the streets, several hundred demonstrators marched Friday though downtown Athens, angered by a weekend visit by U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell. The protesters shouted slogans against the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq during the first protest during the Olympics. There were minor scuffles and police used pepper spray on some demonstrators to push them back.