US swimmer Michael Phelps claims his seventh gold medal Mark Spitz has no qualms about handing over his 36-year title of king of the Olympic pool to Michael Phelps, calling him the best ever.

Phelps, 23, on Saturday matched Spitz’s record of winning seven gold medals at one Olympics with a fingertip victory in the men’s 100 metre butterfly final.

This not only puts him on a par with Spitz’s record but also gives him a shot at topping that by bagging an eighth gold when he competes in his final event on Sunday, the 4×100 medley relay.

“I think that he can be called, Michael, the best Olympian of all time, more so not because he has more gold medals than anybody but in the way he’s handled himself and in the way he’s actually won under a tremendous amount of pressure,” Spitz told United States television network NBC.

Spitz, 58, said he always knew someone would eventually match the benchmark he set at 1972 Munich Games.

He called Phelps’s performance “epic” and said the Baltimore native represents “an inspiration to youngsters around the world”.

As Phelps has bagged gold after gold at Beijing, the world’s media had been hunting for Spitz to get his reaction to the swimmer attacking his record after 36 years.

There were rumours that he was in Beijing, then that he was in Hong Kong, and then that he was at home in California.

However it turned out he was in Detroit, watching one of his two sons play in a basketball tournament.

After Saturday’s race Phelps told NBC that he thought he had lost the race that earned him a extra $US1 million from sponsor Speedo, which promised him a bonus if he matched Spitz’s record.

“As soon as I took the last half stroke, to be honest, I thought I had lost the race,” he told the US network that bought exclusive broadcasting rights to the August 8-24 Games.

“And that was the difference, ’cause if I would have glided then I would have come up short. I’ve been lucky enough over the last four years to have two pretty good finishes in Olympic finals. I guess I’m blessed.”

Whether he wins an eighth gold medal or not, Phelps will leave Beijing as the most successful Olympian of all time.

By Saturday he had lifted his gold medal tally to 13, which tops the previous record of nine held jointly by Spitz, U.S. sprinter Carl Lewis, Finnish distance runner Paavo Nurmi and Soviet gymnast Larysa Latynina.

Source : abc.net.au /Reuters

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_8y1rIJTSPA

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From Olympics

Fingers to the fore…classic Nadal….and the big men add a little powder…

Highlights

Men’s 200-meter individual medley

Michael Phelps won his sixth gold medal of the Beijing Olympics with a world-record time of 1:54.23 in the final of the men’s 200m individual medley. The gold puts him one gold medal away from Mark Spitz‘s individual record of seven gold medals at a single Olympiad, set at the Munich Olympics in 1972. It was also his sixth world record, also one short of a single-Olympiad record set by Spitz as well.

Hungarian László Cseh won the silver medal with a time of 1:56.52, an European record. Cseh out-touched American Ryan Lochte, the bronze medal winner, by 0.01 seconds (1:56.53).

The previous world record time was 1:54.80, set by Phelps at the 2008 United States Olympic Trials in Omaha, Nebrasha.

Men’s 50m freestyle

In the first semifinal of the men’s 50m freestyle, Cesar Cielo Filho set a new Olympic record with a time of 21.34 seconds, 0.12 seconds ahead of the previous Olympic record and 0.06 seconds behind the current world record.

“It was a great race. The 50m is so fast and it was my best-ever race,” said Filho after the race. ‘I’m in lane four [in the final]. I’ll just do my best and focus on my own race and will touch the wall with my best performance.”

Women’s 200m breaststroke

American Rebecca Soni net a new world record and won the gold medal in the final of the women’s 200m breaststroke with a time of 2:20.22.

Leisel Jones, who was representing Australia, took the silver medal, while Sara Nordenstam finished in third place with a time of 2:23.02, less than one second behind Jones’ time of 2:22.05.

Women’s 75kg weightlifting

The Chinese Cao Lei set a new world record and won the gold medal women’s 75kg weightlifting. Her score of 282 beat the competitor who took the silver medal by sixteen points.

“I was excited and overjoyed because I won the seventh gold medal for Chinese weightlifting,” she said, after the event.

Men’s individual pursuit

British Bradley Wiggins set a new Olympic record in qualifying round of the men’s individual pursuit with a time of 4:15.031 and an average speed of 56.463 km/h.

Hayden Roulston, who was representing New Zealand, finished in second place, while Alexei Markov finished in third place with a time of 4:21.498.

Women’s artistic gymnastics individual all-around

American Nastia Liukin won the gold medal in the women’s individual all-around in artistic gymnastics. She is the daughter of former Soviet Union gymnast Valeri Liukin, who won a gold medal at the Seoul Olympics in 1988. Her total score was 63.325: 15.025 in vault, 16.650 in uneven bars, 16.125 in balance beam and 15.525 in floor exercise. Her scores at balance beam and floor exercise were the top scores for the individual all-around competition.

Her American teammate, Shawn Johnson, won the silver medal with a total score of 62.725. Johnson had the top score in the vault, with a score of 15.875. Chinese gymnast Yang Yilin won the bronze medal with a total score of 61.925. Yang had the top score in the uneven bars, with a score of 16.725.

Medal Table


Men’s 100m backstroke

American Aaron Peirsol set a new world record and won the gold medal in the final of the men’s 100m backstroke with a time of 52.54 seconds.

Matt Grevers, who was representing the US with Peirsol, took the silver medal, while Arkady Vyatchanin and Hayden Stoeckel tied for third place with a time of 53.18.

Men’s 200m freestyle

American Michael Phelps set a new world record and won the gold medal in the final of the men’s 200m freestyle with a time of 1:42.96 minutes.

Taehwan Park, who was representing South Korea, finished in second place and set a new Asian record, while Peter Vanderkaay, who was representing the US with Phelps, finished in third place with a time of 1:45.14.

Phelps beat the old world record by almost one second. The Australian reported that Phelps ‘shattered’ the previous world record, which was also set by him.

Women’s 100m breaststroke

Australian Leisel Jones won the gold medal and set a new Olympic record in the final of the women’s 100m breaststroke with a time of 1:05.17 minutes.

“It has been a long journey. It’s been a long eight years,” said Jones, after her victory. “And I think just a lot of relief that the training was definitely worth it.”

Rebecca Soni, who was representing United States, won the silver medal, while Mirna Jukic finished in third place with a time of 1:07.34.

Men’s double trap

American Walton Eller set a new Olympic record in the qualification round of the men’s double trap with a score of 145.

Francesco D Aniello, who was representing Italy, finished in second place, while Jeffrey Hologuin, who represented the US with Eller, finished in third place with a score of 140.

Men’s 200m butterfly

American Michael Phelps set a new Olympic record when he finished in first place in heat six of the men’s 200m butterfly with a time of 1:53.70. This record is one of several set by Phelps during the Olympic games.

Kaio Almeida, who was representing Brazil, finished in second place, while Takeshi Matsuda finished in third place with a time of 1:55.06, 1.36 seconds behind the time set by Phelps.

Women’s 200m individual medley

Zimbabwean Kirsty Coventry set a new Olympic Record in semifinal of the women’s 200m individual medley with a time of 2:09.53 minutes. Coventry’s first fifty second were the quickest, with her first length taking only 29.17 seconds.

Stephanie Rice, who was representing Australia, finished in second place, while Katie Hoff finished in third place with a time of 2:10.90, just over one second behind the time achieved by Coventry.

Medal Table


Source : wikinews

India beats china in shooting and wins gold in olympics 2008

Watch video Stunning opening ceremony Beijing Olympic 2008

Two web sites purporting to sell tickets to the 2008 Summer Olympic Games due to open in Beijing, Chinon Friday have been the subject of lawsuits from the International Olympic Committee in United States courts in recent weeks. The web sites, beijingticketing.com and beijing-2008tickets.com, were designed to resemble official sites and often appeared above the official sites in Google searches, and scammed some victims out of up to US$50,000 each for tickets to events such as the Opening Ceremony and swimming, which were listed despite the official Beijing ticket web site stating that tickets to all events had sold out as of July 27. The sites are believed to have taken in millions of dollars in total.

Ken Gamble, a private investigator from Sydney, Australia, believes the sites are operated by Terance Shepherd, whom Gamble has been tracking for several years in relation to other fraudulent web sites selling tickets to events such as the FIFA World Cup. According to Gamble, Shepherd’s modus operandi involves setting up the fake web sites, overselling the tickets, and then failing to produce the tickets. “The story’s always the same,” Gamble said, “it’s an ‘unfortunate mistake’ or someone has ‘let them down’. They promise a refund, which never happens, and the credit companies end up paying all the refunds.” Shepherd owns a home in the London suburb of Blackheath, although authorities believe he is currently hiding in Barbados.

On Monday, beijingticketing.com customers received an email from someone named “Alan Scott”, claiming that the site’s ticket supplier had filed for bankruptcy. The email recommended that customers should contact their credit card companies to seek refunds “immediately”, and said that the company would set up a call centre to provide assistance to its customers. However, the site has been shut down and a phone number previously listed on it has been disconnected. The company’s address, in Phoenix, Arizona, was found to be an empty office space. Visa International has stated that victims who used their Visa card to pay should be able to get their money back, but it is not yet clear whether the same will apply to all customers

Source : wikinews

The Olympics 08.08.08
BBC Sport’s marketing campaign and titles for the forthcoming Olympic Games are based upon the traditional Chinese folklore ‘Journey to the West’…

Andrew Huse.

Maria Sharapova in 2006.
Image: Andrew Huse.

International tennis star Maria Sharapova will miss the 2008 Beijing Olympics because of a shoulder injury sustained during the WTA Rogers Open in Montreal, Canada.

Sharapova, 21, defeated Poland’s Marta Domachowska during the second round of the Open, but was in pain during the three-hour match.

“This is something that needs a lot of time to heal. It really hurts me to say I have to miss the Olympics,” she said on her official website, according to the BBC. “After Wednesday’s match I knew there was something seriously wrong with my shoulder.” “There are so many mixed feelings because on Wednesday night they were almost positive there was something wrong with my nerve, which could have ultimately been much more serious,” Sharapova said, according to The Daily Telegraph. “But after Thursday morning’s tests, for the first time in a while, they were able to give me a different answer and a different problem. This is something that needs a lot of time to heal. It really hurts me to say I have to miss the Olympics.”

The Associated Press reports that Sharapova, three-time Grand Slam champion, has has two small tears in tendons in her shoulder, discovered through an MRI exam and other medical tests.

The tennis section of the Olympics will start on August 11 and run through to August 15. The U.S. Open tournament will start Aug. 25 and the Associated Press reports that Sharapova may also miss that tournament.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Sharapova joins former world No 1 and Athens Olympic silver medalist Amelie Mauresmo and fellow French star Mary Pierce on a list of tennis players not competing in the 2008 Olympics.

The Kommersant reported Friday that Elena Dementieva, Svetlana Kuznetsova and Dinara Safina play for Russia in Beijing.

Source : wikinews

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has lifted a ban on Iraqi athletes participating in the Beijing Olympics. The IOC placed a ban on the country’s participation on July 24 claiming a political influence within Iraq’s national Olympic committee. This came after the Iraqi government’s suspension of the National Olympic Committee (NOC) of Iraq in May 2008.

The 2008 Summer Olympics Logo

The 2008 Summer Olympics Logo

The decision to remove the ban is a result of the Iraqi government’s agreement to allow free elections for their National Olympic Committee while under international scrutiny. “The National Olympic Committee will have fair elections before the end of November,” said Pere Miro, Director of the IOC’s relation with NOC’s. In the meantime, Iraq’s NOC will be run by a interim Committee approved by the IOC.

Even though the ban has been lifted, five of the seven athletes are still unable to participate due to the final date of selections having passed. Two athletes participating in sprinting and rowing are expected to compete.

There has been some who believed that Iraq has been treated wrongly in the matter of their NOC. Ahmed Tabour, head of the Cultural and Sports Committee stated that “Iraq was never suspended during the days of Saddam [Hussein], who personally appointed the national Olympic committee. The Iraqi people need hope, and sport gives them a lot of hope.”

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has told the Iraqi Olympic Committee that Iraq can not field a team in the 2008 Summer Olympics, which are due to open in Beijing, China August 8, 2008.

The Olympic flag

The Olympic flag

The International Olympic committee said that it took this action “as a consequence of the ongoing political interference by the government within the sports movement in Iraq.” The Iraqi government suspended its Olympic Committee, the National Olympic Committee of Iraq, which they viewed as dysfunctional for several reasons, including the holding of illegitimate meetings, having officials serve past their post and living outside of the country. Interference by government is not permitted by the IOC.

The government of Iraq has said that the decision undermines the effort athletes put into getting a place in the Iraqi Olympic team. Dana Hussain, one of the sprinters who would have been on the Iraqi team, was reported to be distraught by the decision. According to her coach she was “crying for about two hours.” Her coach compared the decision to “finding out that a close relative has died.”

The deadline to register for five of the seven would-be Iraqi Olympians has passed. However, if the National Olympic Committee of Iraq is reinstated, the possibility exists that its two sprinters may be able to compete, if they register before the track and field

Source : wikinews

Since the current issues including oil price increasing, energy-saving, carbon-decreasing were progressively respected by the public, the “bicycle” became a topical product as everyone wanted to own it. But some industrial businesspeople pointed out a critical issue on bicycle riding, that is, “security” (safety).

Jack Cheng-kuan Hsieh, Chairman of KHS Mountain Bike Corp., discussed some of the dangers of cycling with Wikinews Journalist Rico Shen as part of a press conference.

Rico Shen.

Riding a bicycle is GOOD, but without complete preparations, accident will be taken place like THIS picture described.
Image: Rico Shen.

Safety first before sporting
All the riders wanted to circle around the Taiwan or the other places but [they] often ignored several critical issues especially pre-tour preparations. Damages or accidents often caused with lack of preparations. Therefore, choosing a proper [cycling] lane, planing well, and doing necessity preventions are considered critical and must-be-done elements when riding a bicycle. In addition, proper clothing should be adapted in different weathers, and last but not least, DO NOT RIDE WHEN IT’S BAD WEATHER!
Safety first before sporting

In addiiton to Hsieh, Wikinews also interviewed Frank Feng-chou Kuo, Technical Chair of International Association of Ultra Runners. Following is an extract from his comments made to Wikinews Journalist Rico Shen:

Safety first before sporting
Whether a sport requires endurance or not, competitors should prepare fully before competing in any event. In most cases, accidents are often caused by the lack of preparation before an event.
Safety first before sporting

In general, when sporting anytime and anywhere, preparations should be done for a better performance and security issue whether it needs more or less endurance or physical strengths.

Sorce : wikinews