Rio Olympics Daily Preview: August 16

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Day 11 features some of Team USA’s most dominant women’s team members taking one more step toward the Olympic podium. On Copacabana beach, Day 11’s semifinals will set the stage for the men’s and women’s medal matches in beach volleyball.

In women’s basketball, the quarterfinals begin, where it’s expected the U.S. women, directed by head coach Geno Auriemma, will continue their defense of their 2012 Olympic title.

Track cycling’s women’s Omnium comes to a finish on Day 11 after three more races in Rio. Look for the U.S.’ Sarah Hammer, 2012 silver medalist, in the velodrome. After the sun sets in Rio, watch for Tori Bowie to make her Olympic debut in the first round of the 200m in track and field.

What to Watch: Day 11, Aug 16

8:30 a.m. EDT — WATCH LIVE — Track and Field: Day 11 Morning Session

Must see:

Men’s triple jump final

Men’s 200m Round 1

U.S. triple jump teammates Christian Taylor and Will Claye took home gold and silver in London, but Claye outjumped Taylor at the 2016 U.S. Trials, setting up a potential intrasquad showdown on the runway in Rio.


Women’s Basketball quarterfinalsWATCH LIVE

10 a.m. EDT– Game 1 – Australia vs. Serbia

1:30 p.m. EDT – Game 2 – France vs. Canada

5:45 p.m. EDT – Game 3 – USA vs. Japan

9:15 p.m. EDT – Game 4 – Spain vs. Turkey


Women’s Track Cycling: Omnium WATCH LIVE

9:57 a.m. EDT – 500m Time Trial

3:10 p.m. EDT – Flying Lap

4:05 p.m. EDT – 25km Points Race

Derived from the Latin word meaning “all,” the Omnium is track cycling’s multi-race event. Cyclists race on the velodrome in six separate races with names like scratch, elimination, individual pursuit, time trial, flying lap and points over two days. Riders receive points at the end of each race.

Returning to the Olympics, London gold medalist Laura Trott of Great Britain will look to defend her title against London silver medalist Sarah Hammer of the U.S. in the Omnium.


Beach Volleyball semifinals WATCH LIVE

3 p.m. EDT – Game 1 – Larissa-Talita (BRA) vs. Ludwig-Walkenhorst (GER)

4 p.m. EDT – Game 2 – Alison-Bruno (BRA) vs. Meeuwsen-Brouwer (NED)

10 p.m. EDT – Game 3 – Nicolai-Lupo (ITA) vs. Krasilnikov-Semenov (RUS)

11 p.m. EDT – Game 4 – Walsh Jennings-Ross (USA) vs. Agatha-Barbara (BRA)


1 p.m. EDT — WATCH LIVE —  Gymnastics: Event finals Day 3

Must see:

Men’s parallel bar final

Women’s floor final

Men’s high bar final

Defending Olympic champion Aly Raisman hopes to hold off her teammate Simone Biles, who won the floor title at the last three world championships, in the floor final.

Expect more high-flying acrobatics in the high bar final, where Netherland’s Epke Zonderland blew away the London crowd on his way to a gold medal in 2012. USA’s Danell Leyva and Sam Mikulak get a chance for individual redemption on the high bar while, on parallel bars, Leyva could contend for a medal on one of his best events.


Soccer — Women’s semifinals WATCH LIVE

Noon EDT – Game 1 – Brazil vs. Sweden

3 p.m. EDT– Game 2 – Canada vs. Germany


1 p.m. EDT  — WATCH LIVE — Synchronized Swimming: Duets free routine final

The field narrows as the top 12 synchronized swimming duets advance from the preliminary technical and free routine rounds into the final. Powerhouse Russia has dominated the event, winning every synchronized swimming duet gold this century; look for their Natalia Ishchenko and Svetlana Romashina to win their fourth career Olympic gold medals.


5 p.m. EDT — WATCH LIVE — Men’s Diving: 3m springboard final

China’s Cao Yuan won synchronized 10m platform gold in London but in more recent years has switched his specialty to the 3m springboard. He Chao, also of China, is the reigning world champion on the event. He’s older brother, He Chong, won springboard gold at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The two of them will be a formidable opponent for anyone who’s looking to break China’s dominance over diving disciplines in Rio.


7:15 p.m. EDT — WATCH LIVE —  Track and Field: Day 11 Evening Session

Must see:

Men’s high jump final

Women’s 200m semifinal

Women’s 1500m final

Men’s 110m hurdles final

For the U.S., the 200m will have a different look in Rio than it had in London.  Defending Olympic 200m champion Allyson Felix did not qualify for the event at U.S. Olympic Trials, so look for first-time Olympian Tori Bowie in the women’s 200m semifinal.  Also, in the women’s 1500m final, Jenny Simpson hopes to break a 44-year gold medal drought for the U.S. in Olympic track and field events longer than 400m. To do it, Simpson will have to stay ahead of the favorite, Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba.

Elena Fanchini, medal-winning Alpine skier, dies at 37

Elena Fanchini
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Italian skier Elena Fanchini, whose career was cut short by a tumor, has died. She was 37.

Fanchini passed away Wednesday at her home in Solato, near Brescia, the Italian Winter Sports Federation announced.

Fanchini died on the same day that fellow Italian Marta Bassino won the super-G at the world championships in Meribel, France; and two days after Federica Brignone — another former teammate — claimed gold in combined.

Sofia Goggia, who is the favorite for Saturday’s downhill, dedicated her win in Cortina d’Ampezzo last month to Fanchini.

Fanchini last raced in December 2017. She was cleared to return to train nearly a year later but never made it fully back, and her condition grew worse in recent months.

Fanchini won a silver medal in downhill at the 2005 World Championships and also won two World Cup races in her career — both in downhill.

She missed the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics because of her condition.

Fanchini’s younger sisters Nadia and Sabrina were also World Cup racers.

USA Boxing to skip world championships

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USA Boxing will not send boxers to this year’s men’s and women’s world championships, citing “the ongoing failures” of the IBA, the sport’s international governing body, that put boxing’s place on the Olympic program at risk.

The Washington Post first reported the decision.

In a letter to its members, USA Boxing Executive Director Mike McAtee listed many factors that led to the decision, including IBA governance issues, financial irregularities and transparency and that Russian and Belarusian boxers are allowed to compete with their flags.

IBA lifted its ban on Russian and Belarusian boxers in October and said it would allow their flags and anthems to return, too.

The IOC has not shifted from its recommendation to international sports federations last February that Russian and Belarusian athletes be barred, though the IOC and Olympic sports officials have been exploring whether those athletes could return without national symbols.

USA Boxing said that Russian boxers have competed at an IBA event in Morocco this month with their flags and are expected to compete at this year’s world championships under their flags.

“While sport is intended to be politically neutral, many boxers, coaches and other representatives of the Ukrainian boxing community were killed as a result of the Russian aggression against Ukraine, including coach Mykhaylo Korenovsky who was killed when a Russian missile hit an apartment block in January 2023,” according to the USA Boxing letter. “Ukraine’s sports infrastructure, including numerous boxing gyms, has been devastated by Russian aggression.”

McAtee added later that USA Boxing would still not send athletes to worlds even if Russians and Belarusians were competing as neutrals and without their flags.

“USA Boxing’s decision is based on the ‘totality of all of the factors,'” he said in an emailed response. “Third party oversite and fairness in the field of play is the most important factor.”

A message has been sent to the IBA seeking comment on USA Boxing’s decision.

The women’s world championships are in March in India. The men’s world championships are in May in Uzbekistan. They do not count toward 2024 Olympic qualifying.

In December, the IOC said recent IBA decisions could lead to “the cancellation of boxing” for the 2024 Paris Games.

Some of the already reported governance issues led to the IOC stripping IBA — then known as AIBA — of its Olympic recognition in 2019. AIBA had suspended all 36 referees and judges used at the 2016 Rio Olympics pending an investigation into a possible judging scandal, one that found that some medal bouts were fixed by “complicit and compliant” referees and judges.

The IOC ran the Tokyo Olympic boxing competition.

Boxing was not included on the initial program for the 2028 Los Angeles Games announced in December 2021, though it could still be added. The IBA must address concerns “around its governance, its financial transparency and sustainability and the integrity of its refereeing and judging processes,” IOC President Thomas Bach said then.

This past June, the IOC said IBA would not run qualifying competitions for the 2024 Paris Games.

In September, the IOC said it was “extremely concerned” about the Olympic future of boxing after an IBA extraordinary congress overwhelmingly backed Russian Umar Kremlev to remain as its president rather than hold an election.

Kremlev was re-elected in May after an opponent, Boris van der Vorst of the Netherlands, was barred from running against him. The Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled in June that van der Vorst should have been eligible to run against Kremlev, but the IBA group still decided not to hold a new election.

Last May, Rashida Ellis became the first U.S. woman to win a world boxing title at an Olympic weight since Claressa Shields in 2016, taking the 60kg lightweight crown in Istanbul. In Tokyo, Ellis lost 3-0 in her opening bout in her Olympic debut.

At the last men’s worlds in 2021, Robby Gonzales and Jahmal Harvey became the first U.S. men to win an Olympic or world title since 2007, ending the longest American men’s drought since World War II.

The Associated Press and NBC Olympic research contributed to this report.

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