Norway's Karsten Warholm smashed the world record in the men's Olympic 400 metres hurdles final, breaking the 46-second barrier on the way to gold medal glory.

Warholm finished in 45.94 seconds, well ahead of his own previous record mark of 46.70. USA's Rai Benjamin claimed silver in 46.17, also beating the old world record, with Alison dos Santos taking bronze in 46.72.

"It's by far the biggest moment of my life," Warholm said. "It defines everything, all the hours I put in, everything that my coach has been working for.

"With all the respect for all the athletes, there are athletes that were not good that will get an Olympic gold. Rai running 46.17 would deserve a gold medal. It is crazy, it is just an honour to be a part of it. I never thought in my wildest imagination that this would be possible."

Asked about his dash to the line in the closing metres, Warholm added: "I couldn't even feel my legs. I knew I had a crazy American trying to catch me, so I ran for my life."

Germany's Malaika Mihambo admitted she could not watch the finale to the women's long jump as she won gold.

Mihambo took the lead with a jump of 7.00m with her final attempt before USA's Brittney Reese and Nigeria's Ese Brume had their last jumps.

Neither could better the leading mark, with Reese settling for silver with 6.97 metres on countback ahead of Brume.

"It was really hard to watch, so I tried to just have a sneak peek on the display and see how far it was," Mihambo said.

"I really don't like this position where you cannot do anything about it, and you just have to let the girls do what they're able to do. You have to wait, so it was a horrible moment, but at least it was short.

“I feel overwhelmed. It was, I think, the most exciting women’s long jump competition in history."

DURANT DOMINATES AS USA SURVIVE SCARE

The United States did not have it all their way but triumphed 95-81 over Spain to seal a spot in the men's basketball semi-finals.

Spain led by as much as 10 points in the second quarter before USA drew level by half-time and accelerated in the second half. Spain again closed within four points of the gold medal favourites in the final quarter, inspired by Ricky Rubio's 38 points.

Kevin Durant excelled for Team USA, with 29 points and four assists, while Jrue Holiday contributed 12 points and five assists as they capitalised on a 17-9 turnover differential.

USA lost to Australia and Nigeria in exhibition games prior to Tokyo 2020 before losing their Olympics opener to France but have since steadied.

The winner of Australia-Argentina will play USA in the semi-finals on Thursday.

NBA duo Zoran Dragic (27 points, six rebounds and four assists) and Luka Doncic (20 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists) starred as Slovenia also progressed to the semi-finals with a 94-70 win over Germany.

CARRINGTON'S GOLD KAYAKING DOUBLE

New Zealand's Lisa Carrington had a golden day in the kayaking, remarkably winning two gold medals within an hour.

Carrington won her third straight gold in the women's kayak single 200m with an Olympic best time of 38.12 seconds, ahead of Spain's Teresa Portela and Denmark's Emma Jorgensen.

The New Zealander backed up alongside Caitlin Regal to win the women's kayak double 500m final with a world best time of 1:35.785.

Carrington joined fellow kayakers Ian Ferguson and Paul MacDonald and equestrian great Sir Mark Todd as the only New Zealanders to have won five medals at the Olympic Games.

The 32-year-old may win more medals too, competing in the K1 500 event which starts on Wednesday.

“Today was about taking just one race at a time," Carrington said. "There's a plan, and it was just about executing it. For me, it was just trying to stay in the moment and doing the best I can. We've worked really hard and knew today was going to be a big day.”

HENDRICKX POWERS BELGIUM INTO HOCKEY FINAL

World champions Belgium qualified for the gold medal match of the men's hockey after a commanding final quarter sealed a 5-2 win over India.

Belgium piled on three fourth-quarter goals to guarantee a medal in the decider where they will face either Australia or Germany.

Alexander Hendrickx scored a hat-trick including two of the Red Lions' goals in the final quarter after India had fought back from an early deficit to lead 2-1 at quarter-time.

Drag flick expert Hendrickx has scored an unrivalled 14 goals during Belgium's Tokyo 2020 campaign, eight clear of the next best, Australia's Blake Govers.

Hendrickx said: "It's really a team job that comes together. It's my name on the scoresheet, but it's a team job."

World number one Australia and sixth-ranked Germany meet later on Tuesday to determine the other gold medal match finalist.

French super-heavyweight Mourad Aliev bizarrely claimed he was the victim of "an act of sabotage" as he staged a sit-down protest after being disqualified from his Olympic quarter-final.

Aliev was fighting Great Britain's Frazer Clarke when their tussle was stopped by referee Andrew Mustacchio in the second round at the Kokugikan Arena.

He was punished for use of the head but complained that he had not been warned by the referee before the fight was halted.

Aliev said: "I sat down to protest against the unfairness for me. I really wanted to fight against the injustice, so that was my way to show that I don't agree with that decision."

He had won the first round on three of the five judges' scorecards and said of his sudden elimination: "I was just stopped without any warning and they just told me that 'you lost' – just like that. So I think it was an act of sabotage.

"I fought my whole life. I prepared my whole life for this event, so getting mad for something like that is natural."

Clarke described the situation as "a bit confusing" and urged Aliev to rein in his complaints.

"I didn't want him to damage his reputation or to be rude to the judges and officials, because they're only doing their job," Clarke said.

Aliev was allowed to carry out his protest as the fight was the last on the schedule in Sunday's opening session, meaning it caused no delays.

"I felt there was a couple of heads going in there if I'm honest," Clarke said. "Whether it's intentional or not I don't know. Orthodox boxing a southpaw, it often happens.

"I'm not going to stand here and say that he did it on purpose because I'm sure that he wouldn't have wanted to have finished his Olympics the way that it has."

French boxing team general manager John Dovi protested: "The Englishman was cut with regular punches, not the head. Mourad therefore received a totally unjustified warning."


PICTURE PERFECT FOR WHITTAKER

Britain had a strong day at the boxing, with Ben Whittaker reaching the light-heavyweight final after a majority points verdict against hard-punching Russian Imam Khataev.

He will face Arlen Lopez of Cuba in Wednesday's final. Lopez won middleweight gold at the Rio Olympics.

Whittaker explained his pre-fight inspiration, saying: "My coach, every Christmas he used to buy me a Muhammad Ali photo from the Olympics when he's standing on the podium and he had the gold medal at 81kg.

"He said, 'This is going to be you'.

"Just before I came into the arena he sent me the photo and said, 'It's time, baby'. I replied back, 'It is time'.

"I’ve got the chance to do it now. Every kid's dream as an amateur is getting to that Olympic final and now I've got to change that colour to gold."


KNOCKING ON THE DOOR

Turkey's Buse Naz Cakiroglu guaranteed herself at least bronze by reaching the flyweight semi-finals, seeing off Thailand's Jutamas Jitpong by unanimous verdict.

The World Championship silver medallist considered it a victory for herself and the future of boxing in her homeland.

And if it means a little less of a quiet life when she returns, then the boxer who is affiliated to the Fenerbahce sports club is prepared to accept that.

"We were already on this road by getting good scores, good results in the European Championship, World Championship and there are little girls that come to my house to get my signature," she said.

"I believe that by getting successful in the Olympics, this will increase and we will inspire more little girls."


CUBAN TEST FOR McCORMACK

Britain's Pat McCormack was handed a free pass through to the welterweight final after Irish opponent Aidan Walsh pulled out of their last-four clash with an ankle injury.

Blocking the path to the gold medal will be Cuban Roniel Iglesias, who won light welterweight gold at the London 2012 Olympics.

Although both are experienced fighters, this will be their first clash, and the stakes could hardly be any higher.

"No, I never fought against him," Iglesias confirmed. "That is interesting that it will be the final of the Olympics, so I will just try to win."

Wayde van Niekerk was one of the great stories of Rio 2016, stunning the world with his record time of 43.03 as he won gold in the 400 metres.

The South African was back on the track on Sunday morning in Tokyo, and he has some work to do if he wants to get back to the medal stand five years later.

Van Niekerk finished third in his heat to qualify for the semi-finals, but his time of 45.25 seconds ranked as the 12th-fastest among all competitors.

"I definitely came with a bit of nerves but I think I handled it well," he said. "I took it by my stride, switched off a bit too soon, but still got the job done."

USA's Michael Cherry had the leading time at 44.82, while the top two finishers in Van Niekerk's heat, Colombia's Anthony Zambrano (44.87) and Steven Solomon (44.94) of Australia, were both among the fastest four athletes.

After his heat, Van Niekerk sounded like a man adjusting to his new reality, as he will not sneak up on anyone this time.

"Walking around again, looking at [the] Olympic record and world record and that's my time, it sometimes feels a bit unreal," he said. "But this time around it’s a new championship, new rounds. I have to totally focus on the mission right now."

In the only medal event of the morning at the Olympic Stadium, China's Gong Lijiao took gold in the women's shot put with a throw of 20.58m, with USA's Raven Saunders second at 19.79m.

But Valerie Adams' bronze medal at 19.62m may have been the most impressive achievement, as the 36-year-old medalled in the event for the fourth consecutive Olympics.

After finishing seventh at Athens 2004, Adams won gold in Beijing and London before taking silver in Rio. She is now the only woman in history to medal in the same field event four times. 

WORTHINGTON TAKES BMX FREESTYLE GOLD

Charlotte Worthington won the BMX freestyle park event Sunday, making Great Britain the first nation to take gold in all five Olympic cycling disciplines.

The 25-year-old from Manchester fell on her first run in the final but landed the first-ever 360 backflip in competition on her second to score a 97.50.

Hannah Roberts of the USA took silver with a 96.10 on her first run before falling on her second and Nikita Ducarroz of Switzerland claimed bronze with an 89.20.

“I'm over the moon," Worthington said. "I’m still sitting here waiting to wake up. I’ve been thinking about this day for the past three or four years, just going in and out of thinking I can, or I can’t do it.

"I’m literally waiting to wake up right now. It feels like a dream.”

Australia's Logan Martin took the first men's gold medal in the event, his 93.30 on the first run getting the better of Venezuela's Daniel Dhers (92.05) and Great Britain's Declan Brooks (90.80).

FIRST MEDAL AT LAST FOR FRATUS

Amid more history-making performances for the American men and Australian women on the final day of swimming competition, Brazil's Bruno Fatus achieved some long-awaited personal glory.

The 32-year-old took bronze in the 50m freestyle behind Caeleb Dressel of the USA and Florent Manaudou of France, his first Olympic medal in his third attempt.

A three-time world championships medallist in the 50m free, Fratus finished an agonising 0.02 seconds off the podium at London 2012, then placed sixth in the event four years later in Rio.

On Sunday, he ascended to the podium at last.

"Winning bronze releases a lot of pressure that was on my back," Fratus said. "I’m so pleased to step on the podium with Caeleb and Florent, two of the best swimmers in history.

"Caeleb has all the potential to beat Michael Phelps’ (records) one day, who knows?

"And Florent is a beast, a monster and one of the best in history. I’m proud to be his friend and share an Olympic podium with him."

Dressel won gold in the 4x100m medley too to reach five Olympic titles in Tokyo, while Australian Emma McKeon also did the 50m free and medley relay double to complete a haul of four gold medals and seven medals in all for the Games. She equalled the haul of gymnast Maria Gorokhovskaya at Helsinki in 1952 – the most won by any woman in one Olympics.

IRELAND BOXER WITHDRAWS FROM SEMI-FINAL

Ireland's Aidan Walsh was forced to withdraw from his welterweight semi-final bout against Great Britain's Pat McCormack due to an ankle injury suffered in the quarter-finals.

McCormack moves on to fight for gold against the winner of the other semi between Cuba's Roniel Iglesias and Andrei Zamkovoi of the Russian Olympic Committee.

Walsh will leave Tokyo with a bronze medal and the praise of Ireland's boxing team leader Bernard Dunne.

"What Aidan did this week is an incredible achievement," Dunne said in a statement. "His performance throughout the tournament has been outstanding.

"It is great to see him write his name in the annals of Irish sport. Just over two years ago we selected Aidan for his first major championship, and over the past few months that potential that we had identified has grown and developed into a world-class performance, that reflects greatly on the level of preparation he has put in ahead of these Games."

Walsh's older sister Michaela also fought in Tokyo, falling Monday in the featherweight round of 16.

American Keyshawn Davis accused Olympic boxing organisers of disrespect after flooring lightweight favourite Sofiane Oumiha and said he now had "no choice" but to win Olympic gold.

The 22-year-old from Norfolk, Virginia, who fought on the undercard of the big Arlington showdown between Canelo Alvarez and Billy Joe Saunders in May, is away to a flying start in his Tokyo 2020 campaign.

Frenchman Oumiha won silver at Rio five years ago and the 26-year-old was the top seed at these Games, but he lost by second-round knockout as Davis pulled out a big shot that booked him a quarter-final place.

The USA last won an Olympic boxing gold medal at the 2004 Games, but Davis may have a shot of ending that barren run and he will not be found wanting for confidence.

"I feel like this is my opportunity. I feel like I can't let no competitor beat me or even come close to that," Davis said after his second win in Japan's capital.

"I'm just making sure throughout every fight that I'm putting on a good performance, I'm putting on a show, but I'm also having fun in the ring.

"My confidence has already been high, but looking at my opponents right here, I don't feel like they’re as good [as Oumiha].

"I've got no choice but to get gold. I'm getting gold, and that's what I'm shooting for is getting gold."

Davis then questioned why he should get such a tough opening fight at the match-up with Oumiha.

"They've given me these tougher opponents early. I feel kind of disrespected," he said, "like they're trying to get me out of the tournament early, or that's just how I take it to motivate myself to go into each one of these fights.

"But I don't care if you gave me [world champion] Andy Cruz the first day, I was going to beat him and move onto the next day, and that's how I felt coming into this tournament."

Russian Olympic Committee's Gabil Mamedov is next for Davis, with Cruz on the opposite side of the draw.

 


GOLDEN CHANCE FOR JAPANESE YOUNGSTER

Japan's Sena Irie will fight for gold on Tuesday in the first final of the Tokyo boxing programme, a thrill for the 20-year-old home boxer.

Featherweight Irie won silver in the Asian and Oceanian Olympic qualifying event, held in Jordan almost 18 months ago. She also finished fifth at the 2019 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships.

Now she could deliver an Olympic title for the hosts after edging out Great Britain's Karriss Artingstall on a split (3:2) points decision in their semi-final.

Irie said: "It was a very close match but if I had lost in the third round I probably would have regretted it for the rest of my life. I honestly did not think I would be going to the finals. Now that I have, I want to get the gold."

She will face reigning world champion Nesthy Petecio of the Philippines who beat Irma Testa, also by split decision (4:1) with the judges. Petecio has been regarded as the title favourite.

Petecio said: "This means so much to me as not only it is my dream, it is my father's dream. It's not for  me, it's for my family, my country and for all the people from the Philippines who have prayed for me."


WORTH THE WEIGHT?

Japan's Ryomei Tanaka is fighting in the flyweight division and going great guns, reaching the quarter-finals on Saturday with a points win over China's Jianguan Hu.

But making the 48-52kg class is a strain, Tanaka admits, and the sooner these Games are over, the happier the 27-year-old will be on a personal basis.

"It is not easy getting to the weight to compete. I want to meet up with my friends to drink and eat," he said.

His life in recent times has been built around the objective of success at the Kokugikan Arena, however, and those social treats can wait a little longer.

"I have been preparing for several years for this chance. I don't care about who my opponent is or what he can do. I just think about my style," Tanaka said.

"The next round is for a medal, but I want the gold. But more important than my performance, I just like to knock out my opponent. I sometimes care more about that than the result."

Selemon Barega took the first athletics gold of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on a day when Novak Djokovic saw his Golden Slam hopes ended.

Barega topped the podium for Ethiopia as he saw off competition from Ugandan duo Joshua Cheptegei and Jacob Kiplimo on Friday.

The 21-year-old ran a smart race and had the stronger finish in him to see off pre-race favourite Cheptegei, who took silver ahead of compatriot Kiplimo.

"It means a lot to me because I have been practising a lot, not only by myself but together with the Ethiopian people," said Barega, who quickly sets his sights on future success.

"As an athlete the primary target for us is to participate in the Olympics, be a champion, and also be able to break the record.

"So I'm really thinking about future opportunities for me to achieve that, and if possible I'm also communicating with my manager about that."

There was no such joy for Djokovic as his bid to become the first man to win a calendar Golden Slam was crushed by a semi-final defeat to Alexander Zverev.

Djokovic was a set and a break up but the Serbian contrived to lose eight games in a row en route to a 1-6 6-3 6-1 loss.

Germany's Zverev had sympathy for his beaten opponent, who he declared as the greatest of all time.

He said: "I know that he was chasing history, chasing the Golden Slam and chasing the Olympics, but in these kind of moments me and Novak are very close. Of course I'm happy that I've won, but at the end of the day I know how Novak feels.

"I feel sorry for Novak, but he's won 20 grand slams, 550 Masters Series or whatever, you can't have everything.

"He's the greatest player of all time, he will win the most grand slams out of anybody on tour, but I'm also happy that I'm in the final."

Defeat in the mixed doubles means the 20-time grand slam champion will face two bronze medal matches in Japan.

 

MIXED RELAY WOES FOR USA

The 4x400 metre relay mixed event made its debut in the Olympics on Friday but it did not go well for the favourites as the United States suffered disqualification.

One of the team's baton exchanges was deemed to have taken place outside the designated zone, ending their campaign and leaving the gold medal up for grabs.

Poland qualified fastest with a time of three minutes 10.44 seconds, with the Netherlands close behind and Jamaica also in the mix.

 

SCHAUFFELE LEADS THE WAY IN RAIN-AFFECTED MEN'S GOLF

Xander Schauffele fired a 63 to move top of the leaderboard at Tokyo 2020, while home favourite Hideki Matsuyama and Rory McIlroy made big moves on Friday.

The threat of serious weather caused another delay on day two, and eventually brought an early end to play with Matsuyama among those not to finish his round.

But Schauffele, who has a big following in Japan as his mother was brought up in the country, sat pretty at 11 under as the stellar names bared their teeth at Kasumigaseki Country Club.

Matsuyama was six under through 16 holes of his second round and eight under overall for the tournament.

McIlroy matched Matsuyama's round-one score but shot five under in round two and is well in the mix four shots back.

 

A LONG TIME COMING

Ma Long took gold in the table tennis as he became the first man to win consecutive Olympics titles in the event.

It was an all-Chinese final and Ma roared to victory against Fan Zhendong.

China also secured a one-two in the badminton mixed doubles.

 

IGLESIAS CAN BE CUBA'S HERO

Cuban welterweight fighter Roniel Iglesias earned a third Olympic medal after sinking American Delante Johnson with a sweep of the scorecards.

After a bronze in Beijing and gold at London in 2012, Iglesias savoured another chance to target the top step of the podium.

The 32-year-old said: "It is my third medal which is very important but what I really want is to win the gold medal. It is a historic moment for me and for my country, Cuba. I am very happy at this achievement."

Light heavyweight Ben Whittaker admitted he was a blubbering mess after securing at least a bronze medal for Great Britain. He set up a semi-final against Imam Khataev – representing the Russian Olympic Committee – after scoring a majority points win over Brazilian Keno Machado.

Whittaker was overwhelmed by the result and burst into tears at the realisation he would be taking home a medal.

"That was the hard part, getting that medal," Whittaker said. "I won't relax, but I've pushed through that first door now and all I have to do is start changing that colour. Bronze is a lovely colour but everyone wants gold."

 

DRAMA APLENTY IN WOMEN'S FOOTBALL

The quarter-finals of the women's football competition delivered on drama in a big way.

Penalty shoot-outs were needed for Canada and the United States to progress to a last-four showdown, with Brazil and the Netherlands their respective victims.

Australia won a seven-goal thriller 4-3 against Great Britain after extra time and will now meet Sweden, who knocked out hosts Japan 3-1.

Proud boxing star Ben Whittaker admitted he was a blubbering mess after securing at least a bronze medal for Great Britain at the Tokyo Olympics.

The Wolverhampton-based light heavyweight set up a Sunday semi-final against Russian Olympic Committee's Imam Khataev after scoring a majority points win over Brazilian Keno Machado.

Whittaker was overwhelmed by the result and burst into tears at the realisation he would be taking home a medal.

"That was the hard part, getting that medal," Whittaker said. "I won't relax, but I've pushed through that first door now and all I have to do is start changing that colour. Bronze is a lovely colour but everyone wants gold."

His verdict until beating Machado was that anything less than gold would amount to "nothing", but when the reality that he would be on the podium struck, Whittaker let his emotions spill out.

"I was crying, bogies were flying everywhere. I was trying to keep as calm as I could but I couldn't help it," Whittaker said. "I've just got to compose myself now as Sunday is when it gets real.”

He said his father, a council worker, would usually be at work at 5am but was given permission to stay at home to watch the 24-year-old Olympian in action.

"He hasn't slept all night and he has been giving me tactics, trying to keep me calm but I know my dad when he is nervous. His nervousness was making me a bit nervous," Whittaker said.

"My mum was probably trying to talk to him and he was probably telling her to shut up and whatnot. But bless him, I've done it for him, not just me."

Khataev had a third-round knockout win over Spain's Gazi Jalidov to earn a shot at Whittaker next.

The other light heavy semi-final will see Azerbaijan's Loren Berto Alfonso Dominguez tackle Cuban Arlen Lopez after both enjoyed unanimous judges' verdicts.


CUBAN STAR TAKES DOWN JOHNSON

Cuban welterweight fighter Roniel Iglesias earned a third Olympic medal after sinking American Delante Johnson with a sweep of the scorecards.

After a bronze in Beijing and gold at London in 2012, Iglesias savoured another chance to target the top step of the podium.

The 32-year-old said: "It is my third medal which is very important but what I really want is to win the gold medal. It is a historic moment for me and for my country, Cuba. I am very happy at this achievement."

Russian Andrei Zamkovoi awaits him next, with Great Britain's Pat McCormack tackling Ireland's Aidan Walsh on the opposite side of the draw.


FIRE FUELS JONES GOLD DREAM

American Oshae Jones saw off Dominican Maria Moronta on points in their women's welterweight last-eight clash, and afterwards the 23-year-old from Ohio opened up on the fire that nearly took her life in May.

Jones was woken by banging on the door of her Toledo home as a blaze took hold of her home. Now a guaranteed medallist, she recalled: "We barely got out. We've got pretty noisy neighbours, thank god. Any other neighbourhood, where people mind their business, I would be dead.

"The home is coming together again, slowly but surely. I had to get a whole new roof and inside drywall, wiring. It's a lot, but I keep pushing every day. My boyfriend and I had purchased it. It was a fixer-up and we were almost done. Now we've had to start over.

"It's always in the back of my mind when I am at camp: what I am going to go home to, is the house going to be done? All I can do is give my best here.

"I’ve thought about winning a medal and had a vision of me standing on the podium. I practise my gold-medal speech every day, so I plan on winning."


'FIST THROUGH HIS FACE'

New Zealander David Nyika secured a heavyweight medal by beating Belarusian Uladzislau Smiahlikau emphatically on points, and 2019 World Championship winner Muslim Gadzhimagomedov stands in his way of a place in the final.

If Nyika gets his way, Gadzhimagomedov will not be standing for long when they battle it out on Tuesday.

"Yeah, 'Gadz' is top class. I have nothing but respect for him as he has accomplished so much. But I'm going to try and put my fist through his face," said Nyika.

The 25-year-old Nyika was a flagbearer for his country at the Olympic opening ceremony and is feeling the weight of expectation to deliver.

"Getting bronze doesn't take the pressure off, I'm still under a lot of pressure. The rest of New Zealand is shouting for me but I know I've got a lot more to do," he said.

"I've got a lot to prove, not only to them but to myself. I've been working so hard and mentally I've been through some pretty rugged stuff over the last 18 months and I'm pretty sure I'm going to come out of it on the other side a lot bigger and a lot stronger.

"I'll have proved to myself that I'm worthy of everyone’s respect and the honour that my team has given me."

The opposite heavyweight semi-final will see Brazilian Abner Teixeira tackle Cuban Julio Cruz.

Jamaican Super-Heavyweight, Ricardo Brown, came up short in his bid for a medal as he lost in a first-round bout to India’s Satish Kumar, by split decision.

Four judges scored the fight in favour of Kumar and one scored it for the Jamaican.

Brown, popularly known as ‘Big 12,’ had a slow start, losing the first round on all the judges’ scorecards and never really recovered from there.

He showed more intent and tried to pick up the pace in rounds 2 and 3 but ultimately didn’t do any significant damage as Kumar, who fought a more technical fight, was able to come away with the win.

Kumar, a two-time Asian Championships bronze medalist, was cut on the forehead after an accidental clash of heads in the 3rd round but kept his composure, and avoided some potentially devastating right hands from Brown, to seal victory and advance to the quarterfinals, one step closer to an opportunity at a medal.

He will next face reigning world and Asian Champion Bakhodir Jalovov of Uzbekistan on Saturday.

Brown, 31, was a bronze medalist at the 2019 Pan Am Games in Lima, Peru, and was seeking to become Jamaica’s 1st boxing medallist at the Olympics.

 

Mary Kom does not appear ready to throw in the towel on her dreams of an Olympic boxing gold medal despite defeat at Tokyo 2020.

The 38-year-old from India lost a split decision (3-2) to flyweight rival Ingrit Lorena Valencia Victoria of Colombia in the round of 16 at the Kokugikan Arena on Thursday.

Haiti's Darrelle Valsaint Jr is out to make history, while fellow victorious middleweight Eumir Marcial of the Philippines hopes a boxing legend can inspire him to glory.

We take a look at the pick of the action in the ring.

 

KOM REFUSES TO GIVE UP ON GOLDEN DREAM

Kom, a mother of four, has not ruled out an appearance at Paris 2024 at the age of 41 if she meets the age qualification in force at that time.

Her career has yielded six world titles and Olympic bronze from London 2012m which she desperately hoped to turn into gold in Tokyo.

"There is an age limit of 40 but maybe it will change,” said Kom.

"I'm still strong enough. It’s what's in your heart and your mind. It's about if you have the will power, a strong mentality.

"Being focused, disciplined. For 20 years all my focus has been on fighting and I know all my country is with me. 

"When I look at my memories, it’s been incredible. It’s very easy to say I’m a one, two-time world champion, but in reality, doing that is not easy. You have to have a unique personality."


MARCIAL HOPES ROACH'S INFLUENCE HAS RUBBED OFF

Marcial of the Philippines hopes time spent with legendary coach Freddie Roach at his gym in Los Angeles can fire his bid for Olympic glory.

Roach, one of the best boxing trainers of all time, is the coach of Marcial's compatriot and eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao.

Marcial progressed to the last 16 of the men's middleweight after the referee stopped his bout against Algerian Younes Nemouchi after two minutes and 41 seconds.

"I learnt a lot of tactics from coach Freddie and his other trainers and I can use that experience in my competition here," Marcia said.

"I have been training for this since I didn’t make Rio 2016. I’ve worked hard for four years for this moment so I will be ready.

"But I am very grateful to my national team coaches as for the last month before we came here they have given me all the support I needed."

 

VALSAINT JR BIDDING TO END HAITI'S LONG WAIT

Not since Silvio Cator's silver in the long jump in 1928 have Haiti won a medal at the Olympic Games, but Darrelle Valsaint Jr is out to end that long wait.

Orlando-born Valsaint Jr is into the quarter-finals after a points victory over Democratic Republic of Congo fighter David Tshama Mwenekabwe.

"My mum and dad were born in Haiti. I still feel a proud Haitian," he said.

"It’s an honour to represent Haiti in the Olympics and I am on the verge of making history for Haiti as the last time Haiti had a medal was 1928. I believe in myself and I know I can make history.

"I’ve visited Haiti twice and both times I went there were no riots or anything, just peace and love.

"As of right now I know it is kind of crazy down there, it like a war zone. Hopefully when I win the gold medal it will calm things down, that’s what I’m hoping for.

"To get to go back to Haiti with the gold medal would be another dream come true."

Sena Irie made boxing history for Japan and Kurt Walker produced a huge upset by ending Mirazizbek Mirzakhalilov's bid to win gold at the Tokyo Olympics on Wednesday.

Featherweight Irie became the first woman to win an Olympic boxing medal with a points victory over Maria Claudia Nechita at the Kokugikan Arena in her homeland.

Irish featherweight Walker eliminated world champion and top seed Mirzakhalilov of Uzbekistan in the round of 16, claiming a split decision.

We take a look at the pick of the action in the ring.

 

IRIE WANTS JAPANESE WOMEN TO SWAP JUDO FOR BOXING

The 20-year-old Irie will win at least a bronze medal after her defeat of Nechita and faces Team GB's Karriss Artingstall, who edged out Skye Nicolson of Australia, at the semi-final stage.

Irie hopes her exploits will inspire Japanese women to pick boxing over judo.

"Judo is a much more famous sport in Japan so I hope this makes boxing a lot more famous and inspires more Japanese women to take it up," she said.

"I've shown other women who might not be good at sport that you can achieve something if you work hard.

"This medal is the result of 13 years' hard work. I've made history but it is still just a little contribution. I want to do more. Winning gold would be so much bigger."

 

KURT WALKING TALL 

Walker produced the performance of his career to eliminate Mirzakhalilov.

Mirzakhalilov was strongly fancied to take gold, but Walker had other ideas as he pulled off a shock victory.

The 26-year-old said: "I'm over the moon. I really can't explain it, but I worked on it and I knew it was going to happen. I believed. I knew. I'm not surprised. 

"It's just brilliant. I never would have thought it before I came, it's a fairytale. But there is still more work for me to do. I need to recover, go back and get more tactics and hopefully get a medal."

Asked how he ranks the win, he said: "The best I'd say. I beat the current world champion, the number one seed, in the Olympics Games, the biggest stage of the lot."

Duke Ragan will be Walker's quarter-final opponent on Sunday after the American dominated Serik Temirzhanov of Kazakhstan.

 

FONTIJN: PRICE NOT IN MY HEAD

Nouchka Fontijn and top seed Lauren Price could be on a middleweight semi-final collision course after securing midweek victories.

Fontijn of the Netherlands beat Pole Elzbieta Wojcik in the first round, while Price got her quest for Olympic glory by dominating Mongolia's Myagmarjargal Munkhbat.

Dutch boxer Nouchka thought she had won the world title in 2019, but Price took the title in Russia after the British team launched a successful appeal.

The two will meet it again if they come through their quarter-final bouts this weekend and Fontijn says Price is not in her head.

"I’m not busy with Lauren Price any more than other opponents," said the Rio 2016 silver medallist. "Some people think I need revenge and that she's always in my head and that's not true. I am just working towards my next fight and we'll see what happens then.

"I've already got the silver, and gold would be perfect in my collection. But every Olympic Games is another chapter and it’s been five years since Rio. There's a whole new squad of opponents, so it’s a different story."

Simone Biles said she had put her "mental health first" after missing out on adding a fifth Olympic gold medal to her collection following an early withdrawal from the women’s team final.

The 24-year-old gymnastics icon revealed she was “dealing with things internally” after a disappointing performance on the vault.

Biles posted the lowest score of the first rotation on Tuesday as she landed awkwardly after failing to execute an Amanar, while only completing a Yurchenko 1.5 twist.

After she subsequently withdrew, Team USA had to settle for a silver medal behind the Russian Olympic Committee while Great Britain completed the podium.

Biles admitted that she was "fighting demons", explaining: "I just don't trust myself as much as I used to. I don't know if it's age. I'm a little bit more nervous when I do gymnastics. I feel like I'm also not having as much fun."

She added: "I say, 'put mental health first'. Because if you don't, you won't enjoy sport and won't succeed as much as you want to.

"So it's okay sometimes to sit out the big competitions to focus on yourself, because it shows how strong a competitor and person that you really are, rather than just battling through it."


OSAKA STUNNED

The big names continue to tumble in the women’s singles tennis event, with second seed Naomi Osaka defeated in straight sets.

The home favourite, who lit the Olympic cauldron on Friday, was denied a place in the quarter-finals after being ousted 6-1 6-4 by world number 42 Marketa Vondrousova.

This event marked Osaka’s first competitive tennis in two months since her early withdrawal from the French Open at the end of May, citing mental health issues.

The world number two is the latest of the big names to fall at the Tokyo Games, with top seed Ash Barty and third seed Aryna Sabalenka also suffering early exits.

"Of course, it's one of the biggest wins of my career," Vondrousova said. "Naomi is a great player, so I knew it would be a tough match. 

“I'm very happy with my play. I played amazingly in the first set, and then the second set was really tough. I'm just happy to be through."

 


ARGENTINA RECOVER TO SEE OFF SPRINGBOKS

Argentina recovered from a dreadful start to beat South Africa and book their place in the rugby seven semi-finals.

Trailing 7-0 after just under two minutes, the Pumas were then reduced to six men when Gaston Revol - who was reduced to tears - was shown a straight red card.

Nevertheless, they demonstrated tremendous resilience and character before eventually running out 19-14 winners.

Argentina will play Fiji in the last four after the reigning Olympic champions swept Australia aside 19-0.

Great Britain stormed back from 21-0 down to beat the USA, scoring four tries to secure a dramatic 26-21 victory.

Team GB will play New Zealand, who eased to a 21-10 success over Canada.

Women's featherweight favourite Lin Yu-ting suffered early elimination from the Tokyo Olympics on Monday as the four seeded boxers in the event all crashed out.

Top seed Lin was beaten on points by her much smaller opponent Nesthy Petecio on a day of surprises at the Kokugikan Arena.

"I knew she was the top seed, but I didn't think about that in the ring," said Philippines hopeful Petecio, who won gold at the 2019 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships.

"Just because I have beaten the number one doesn't make me more confident. I want to win the gold medal for my country, no one has ever done that." [Hidilyn Diaz won gold for the Philippines in the weightlifting elsewhere on Monday]

 

ARTINGSTALL OUT TO CEMENT HER NAME IN HISTORY

Jucielen Romeu was one of the other favourites to fall in the women's featherweight competition, going down by a unanimous points decision to Great Britain's Karriss Artingstall.

Artingstall took control of the bout with some controlled aggression and will now face Skye Nicolson, who beat Im Aeji, for a place in the semi-finals.

"Everybody wants gold," Artingstall said. "But I want my face cemented on that wall in Sheffield at boxing HQ, so they can look at my face for the rest of their lives.

"Seeds mean absolutely nothing to me, it's a number – one, twos, threes, whatever you want to call yourself. 

"Until you get in that ring and beat me, I'm not going to say you're better than me or you box better than me. For her to be the number three seed meant absolutely nothing."

Michaela Walsh and Khouloud Hlimi Ep Moulahi were the other two seeds to fall on Monday, losing to Irma Testa and Sena Irie respectively on points.

HOME HOPEFUL MORIWAKI GETS HIS REVENGE

Japan's Yuito Moriwaki beat Seyedshahin Mousavi with a split decision win in the men's middleweight division to remain on course for a medal on home soil.

Moriwaki, who lost to the same opponent last year, will now take on number one seed Oleksandr Khyzhniak of Ukraine in the last 16.

"The concept for this match was revenge," Moriwaki said. "I am glad I could achieve that today.

"I was able to come here mostly because of the support from people around me. I will not forget gratitude for them and do my best."

Also through to the last 16 are the likes of Tuoheta Erbieke and Troy Isley, the latter overcoming Vitali Bandarenka on points to set up a meeting with second seed Gleb Bakshi.

NO RIO REPEAT IN STORE FOR FINOL

Yoel Finol claimed a silver medal for Venezuela at the Rio Games but he will not have a chance to match or better that achievement five years on in the men's flyweight.

The 24-year-old dropped a three-round unanimous decision to Japan's Ryomei Tanaka, and a showdown with Hu Jianguan of China now awaits the latter.

"I knew he was the silver medallist for the Rio Olympic Games. He is also very tall, too," Tanaka said. 

"His weapon is a left straight punch. My weapon is also left straight. Having the same strength, I wanted to win that."

Galal Yafai, competing in his third Games for Great Britain, beat Koryan Soghomonyan with a third-round stoppage in one of the performances of the day.

The four seeded boxers – Amit Panghal, Billal Bennama, Yosvany Veitia and Mohamed Flissi – will enter the competition in the next round.

Keyshawn Davis has his sights trained on gold after dominating his first Olympic fight, while Charley Davison wants a "Battle of the Super Mums" with Mary Kom in Tokyo.

American Davis earned a unanimous decision in his lightweight (57-63kg) round-of-32 bout with Dutchman Enrico Lacruz at the Kokugikan Arena and declared that was just the start.

Team GB fighter Davison is eyeing a clash with fellow mother Kom, a superstar of the sport, after coming through her first Olympic fight.

Boxing action at the Games on Sunday certainly delivered on its promise.


DAVIS: GOLD IS ALL I'M MISSING

Davis won all three rounds in his debut Olympic bout against Lacruz of the Netherlands and is determined to become the youngest winner of this event since Oscar de la Hoya was crowned champion aged 19 in 1992.

He said: "I feel great, I got a unanimous decision on my Olympic debut. I felt like I could have given more, but I did what I had to do.

"In my previous competitions, especially in the amateurs, each day I got better and better, got more in the groove. Today was just the start and there is more to come."

The 22-year-old added: "The gold medal is the one and only thing that I need to put on my resume as of right now. That's the only thing I am focusing on."

 

 

DAVISON TARGETS MOTHER OF ALL FIGHTS

Davison only joined the Great Britain Olympic programme last year as a mother of three and beat Morocco's Rabab Cheddar on points in her maiden Olympic fight.

The 27-year-old flyweight would relish the chance to step into the ring with Indian mother of four Kom, the 38-year-old six-time World Championship gold medallist who is in her half of the draw and made it through to the last 16.

Asked about the prospect of that fight taking place, she said: "We were only taking about that earlier. What a fight that would be, the 'Battle of the Super Mums'. I'd love that.

"I know her background, and she is a brilliant athlete who has done so well in the sport. She was the first one to do it as a mum, so I'm basically following on from her."

 

NAKIMI IN THE HUNT TO EMULATE ADAMS

Japan's Tsukimi Namiki beat Catherine Nanziri on points in the women's flyweight (48-51kg) round of 32.

Namiki, a bronze medallist at the 2018 World Championships, had the better of all three rounds of her fight with Ugandan Nanziri.

Nicola Adams is the only female boxer to win an Olympic medal on home soil, with gold in London nine years ago, but Namiki could also achieve that feat.

Joe Joyce kept his heavyweight title ambitions on track with a sixth-round stoppage against Carlos Takam at Wembley Arena on Saturday.

The 35-year-old secured his latest win against former challenger Takam to stretch his unbeaten record to 13 fights, including 12 knockouts.

As the WBO's mandatory challenger, Joyce will now have a keen eye on the outcome of September's bout between Anthony Joshua and Oleksandr Usyk.

"What I want is AJ or Usyk. I'm ready now and don't need any more tests," he told BT Sport.

Joyce absorbed pressure from Takam in the early rounds before a barrage of punches in the fourth put him in control of the contest.

A powerful left hook from Joyce at the start of the sixth startled Takam and the referee intervened with the Frenchman increasingly unsteady on his feet.

"He is still dangerous, so I had to take my opportunity when I got it," Joyce added.

"He did mildly hurt me, I had to use the sweet science of boxing such as movement and feints to get the performance done.

"He didn't say anything about the stoppage, he is a warrior. It was a very tough fight, so my respect to him.

"I will go back in the gym and watch my fights back, analyse my performance and work on my mistakes, like when I got caught with silly shots."

Sena Irie has dreamt of winning an Olympic gold medal for Japan since she began boxing as a child, and a triumphant start at Tokyo 2020 has supercharged her self-belief.

The 20-year-old beat El Salvador's Yamileth Solorzano on a unanimous points verdict as all five judges scored her a comfortable winner, setting up a last-16 clash with Tunisia's Khouloud Hlimi Ep Moulahi.

Irie is a featherweight who took silver in the Asian and Oceanian Olympic qualifying event, held in Jordan almost 18 months ago. She also finished fifth at the 2019 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships.

Asked what a gold would mean at the Olympics, Irie said: "Boxing is a minority sport in Japan, but it would mean so much for the sport and for me.

"It's hard to say in words. But I have been training for this moment for 13 years and winning gold is what I have been dreaming about all that time."

Fighting at the Kokugikan Arena came as a relief to the young Japanese star, who had feared the Games would be cancelled.

"I felt very sad about that possibility as I wanted to compete in a Games in my home country," she said.

"All the athletes were sending messages to each other with what was happening until we heard the news the Games would go ahead. We were so happy then. But now I can try and win a medal for my country after getting through my first fight."

Irie will face stiff competition, with the Philippines' Nesthy Petecio also in the draw and seeking to add Olympic gold to the World Championships title she secured two years ago.

Petecio beat Irie at that event, but the Japanese fighter avenged that loss in the Olympic qualifiers.

After starting with a points win over DR Congo's Marcelat Sakobi Matshu in the first boxing match of Tokyo 2020, Petecio said: "This is my first Olympics but there are mixed emotions really. I want to enjoy it but I know I need to improve."

Petecio added: "This is a new medal to fight for. It's a chance for a new achievement and I have forgotten about what I have achieved in the past."

She will tackle Taiwanese number one seed Lin Yu-Ting next, and said: "It's a fight I am very excited about. I know she also will have been looking at facing me in the draw so it will be a great fight."

Professionals are mixing with amateurs at the Tokyo Games, and among the men's featherweights is 23-year-old American Duke Ragan, who has taken his first steps in the paid ranks.

Ragan snatched a split points win over Frenchman Samuel Kistohurry on Saturday and accused his opponent of turning their battle into "a wrestling match".

"The guy was like wrestling me, making it hard for me. It was a great fight though," said Ragan. "He did what he came to do to try to make it rough on me because guys know that I like to box and be on the outside.

"I was a bit hard-headed, going to try and do what I thought was right. I've got to listen to the eyes on the outside to make adjustments."

Anthony Joshua will defend his WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles against former undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 25.

Joshua had been in negotiations to face Tyson Fury in an all-British blockbuster but an arbitration hearing ruled Deontay Wilder had a contractual right to face the WBC champion for a third time.

Fury and Wilder's trilogy showdown was set to take place this weekend before the 'Gypsy King' tested positive for coronavirus.

That bout has now been shifted to October 9 in Las Vegas, meaning Joshua will have another chance to impress before his heavyweight rivals step out again.

That is not to say looking ahead to future contests would be wise for the 31-year-old, given the exceptionally skilled Usyk is intent on cleaning up at heavyweight as he did in the 200lbs division and boasts a professional record of 18 victories and no defeats.

Joshua avenged his shock loss to Andy Ruiz with a lopsided points win over the Mexican-American in Saudi Arabia at the end of 2019. The sole defence of his second reign as champion came with a dominant ninth-round stoppage of Kubrat Pulev at Wembley Arena last December, before Joshua's latest period of Fury-based frustration began.

Usyk has previously enjoyed success in the UK, both when he knocked out Tony Bellew in his final fight at cruiserweight and outpointed the veteran Dereck Chisora last year.

The Ukrainian also won heavyweight gold at London 2012, where Joshua triumphed at super-heavyweight. Indeed, this will be the first professional meeting between men who won Olympic gold medals in those respective categories.

"We are two Olympic gold medallists who have fought our way to the top and never avoided challenges," Joshua said.

"The stadium is exceptional, the atmosphere will be electric. I'm honoured to be the first person to fight in such an awe-inspiring venue. The stage is set and I am ready to handle business."

Joshua's stadium shows have become a fixture of UK boxing in the modern era.

He stopped Wladimir Klitschko in a thrilling Wembley contest in April 2017 before a September 2018 KO of Alexander Povetkin at the same venue – a fight for which Usyk was in attendance.

In between those triumphs, he beat Carlos Takam and then-WBO champion Joseph Parker at Cardiff's Principality Stadium.

In his sole remarks around the fight announcement, Usyk cryptically said: "The path will be mastered by the walking one."

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