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Olympics: American Paul Hamm Wins Men's Gymnastics All-Around Gold Medal - 2004-08-18


The Olympics returned to their ancient home while two Greek sprinters left the Games in disgrace Wednesday on Day five of the competition at the Athens Olympic Games.

Russia's Irina Korzhanenko became the first woman to win an Olympic championship at Ancient Olympia when she won the women's shot put with a toss of 21 meters, six centimeters. Ukraine's Yuriy Bilonog took the men's gold in the shot with a toss of 21.16.

South Korea's Park Sung Hun continued her country's dominance of the individual archery competition by taking the gold at Panathinako Stadium, the site of the first Modern Olympics in 1896. South Korea has won six straight gold medals in the event going back to 1984.

Greek fans had to deal with the withdrawal of star sprinters Kostas Kenteris and Katerina Thanou, who pulled out midway through an IOC hearing on whether they should be banned from the games for missing a mandatory drug test.

At the pool, the United States broke the oldest world record in swimming when they won the women's Olympics 4x200m freestyle relay gold in a new world record of 7 minutes 53.42sec.

Japan's Kosuke Kitajima won the men's 200-meters breaststroke gold medal. Three-time European champion Otylia Jedrzejczak of Poland won the women's Olympics 200m butterfly gold.

Jodie Henry of Australia set a new women's 100-meters freestyle world record with a time of 53.52sec in a semifinal heat. Pieter van den Hoogenband of the Netherlands successfully defended his men's Olympics 100m freestyle gold.

Paul Hamm of the United States came back from a disastrous result in the vault to win the Olympic men's gymnastics all-around gold medal by 0.012 of one point.

Valentina Vezzali of Italy took gold in the women's individual foil event.

Nataliya Skakun of Ukraine won gold in the women's 63-kilogram weightlifting event, even though Hanna Batsiushka of Belarus lifted a world record 115 kilograms in the snatch. Both athletes ended with the same weight total but Skakun won because she weighed less. Zhang Guozheng of China won the gold medal in the men's 69kg weightlifting division

In cycling events, the Netherlands' Leontien Zijlaard van Moorsel won the women's time trial, while Tyler Hamilton of the United States won the time trial for the men.

Japan's Masae Ueno and Georgia's Zurab Zviadauri each earned gold in judo competition, while gold medals for shooting went to Bulgarian Maria Grozdeva and American Kimberly Rhode.

In rowing events, Tony Estanguet of France won the men's slalom canoe, and Slovakia's Elena Kaliska won the women's slalom Kayak.

Germany took the gold in the equestrian team event after first winning the event, the losing the gold when France protested the initial result. Judges overturned the standings and gave France the gold, but the Germans appealed and were awarded the top prize. France took the silver. German rider Bettina Hoy won the individual gold medal.

Japan's men's soccer team reached the quarterfinals thanks to a 1-0 win over Ghana and Paraguay's 1-0 win over Italy. The result meant Paraguay topped Group B and will meet Korea in the quarterfinals. Italy plays Mali while Ghana is eliminated.

Iraq's soccer team lost for the first time in the tournament 2-1 to Morocco. However, two earlier wins guaranteed the Iraqis a berth in the quarterfinals against Australia. Costa Rica knocked Portugal out of the tournament, 4-2, and takes on Argentina in the final eight.