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WATCH LIVE: Murray, Nadal continue quest for 2nd Olympic gold

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Among those in action on the tennis courts Wednesday are Spain’s Rafael Nadal and Great Britain’s Andy Murray, with both in search of their second Olympic gold medal in men’s singles. Nadal takes on France’s Gilles Simon in the third round match, with Murray facing Italy’s Fabio Fognini in another third round match. Nadal is scheduled to begin play at noon Eastern, with Murray’s match scheduled to begin at 2 p.m.

The mixed doubles tournament begins Wednesday, with Americans Venus Williams and Rajeev Ram looking to redeem themselves after quick exits in other tournaments in Rio. Williams was bounced from both the women’s singles and women’s doubles tournaments in the first round, and dealing with illness during that portion of the week didn’t so her any favors.

WATCH LIVE: Olympic Tennis, Day Five — 9:45 a.m. Eastern

As for Ram, he and partner Brian Baker were eliminated in the second round of the men’s doubles tournament. Williams and Ram open mixed doubles play against Kiki Bertens and Jean-Julien Rojer of the Netherlands at 10 a.m.

Other Americans in action Wednesday include Madison Keys in women’s singles, Steve Johnson in men’s singles and the men’s doubles semifinals with partner Jack Sock, and the mixed doubles team of Sock and Bethanie Mattek-Sands. The first matches begin at 9:45 a.m. Eastern, with Keys and Daria Kasatkina of Russia meeting in the quarterfinal round of the women’s singles tournament.

Dan Hicks, Rowdy Gaines call backyard pool swim race

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Dan Hicks and Rowdy Gaines covered swimming together at the last six Olympics, including every one of Michael Phelps‘ finals, but they’ve never called a “race” quite like this.

“We heard you were looking for something to commentate during the down time….might this short short short course 100 IM help?” tweeted Cathleen Pruden, posting a video of younger sister Mary Pruden, a sophomore swimmer at Columbia University, taking individual medley strokes in what appeared to be an inflatable backyard pool.

“Hang on,” Gaines replied. “This race of the century deserves the right call. @DanHicksNBC and I are working some magic!”

Later, Hicks posted a revised video dubbed with commentary from he and Gaines.

They became the latest commentators to go beyond the booth to post calls on social media while sports are halted due to the coronavirus pandemic.

NBC Sports hockey voice Doc Emrick (who has also called Olympic hockey and water polo) did play-by-play of a windshield wiper installation.

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MORE: Ledecky, Manuel welcome Olympic decision after training in backyard pool

Which athletes are qualified for the U.S. Olympic team?

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Soon after Tokyo Olympic qualifying events began getting postponed, the International Olympic Committee announced that all quota places already allocated to National Olympic Committees and athletes will remain with those NOCs and athletes.

The IOC repeated that position over the last week, after the Tokyo Games were postponed (now to open July 23, 2021). What does that mean for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee?

Well, 76 athletes qualified for the U.S. Olympic team before the Olympic postponement was announced. That full list is here.

Those 76 athletes can be separated into two categories.

  • Athletes who earned Olympic spots BY NAME via International Federation (i.e. International Surfing Association or International Aquatics Federation) selection procedures.
  • Athletes named to the U.S. Olympic team by their national governing body (i.e. USA Swimming or USA Track and Field) and confirmed by the USOPC using NGB selection procedures after the NGB earned a quota spot.

When the IOC says “all quota places already allocated to National Olympic Committees and athletes will remain with those NOCs and athletes,” it means just that. USA Softball still has 15 athlete quota spots from qualifying a full team via international results. Surfer Kolohe Andino still has his Olympic spot from qualifying BY NAME via the International Surfing Association selection procedures route.

USA Softball named its 15-player Olympic roster last fall. Those 15 athletes did not earn Olympic quota spots for themselves. Unlike Andino (and 13 other American qualifiers across all sports), the 15 softball players had to be nominated by USA Softball and confirmed by the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee.

Unless and until the USOPC confirms that any of those other 62 athletes remain qualified, for now the list of U.S. Olympic qualifiers is these 14 who qualified BY NAME:

Karate (1)
Sakura Kokumai

Modern Pentathlon (2)
Samantha Achterberg
Amro Elgeziry

Swimming (3)
Haley Anderson
Ashley Twichell
Jordan Wilimovsky

Sport Climbing (4)
Kyra Condie
Brooke Raboutou
Nathaniel Coleman
Colin Duffy

Surfing (4)
Caroline Marks
Carissa Moore
Kolohe Andino
John John Florence

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MORE: Qualified athletes go into limbo with Tokyo postponement