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Olympic Village, Day Nine, wrap: Ireland medal, Bolt wins gold

John Joe Nevin secured Ireland’s first medal, while the 100m Final was won by Usain Bolt in a time of 9.63, with Yohan Blake second.

Image: Martin Rickett/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Headline of the day

Team GB in Dreamland! Before today, Great Britain probably thought their Olympics couldn’t get any get any better, but Andy Murray winning a major event in tennis is another considerable achievement. While subsequently, Murray and Laura Robson were beaten by Belarus in the mixed doubles, this disappointment will only slightly temper the ecstasy the Scot is undoubtedly feeling after his singles victory.

What we learned today?

  • Ireland are guaranteed a medal.

John Joe Nevin ensured that the Irish team would leave London with at least one medal secured. He produced an intelligent performance to beat Oscar Fierro 19-13, meaning he goes into the semi-finals guaranteed a bronze medal at the very least.

  • Usain Bolt. Legend.

The Jamaican took the 100m gold from Yohan Blake, with Justin Gatlin in third. A phenomenal run from the world record holder in a time of 9.63, a new Olympic record.

  • Andy Murray is definitely not a choker.

The Scot delivered a fine performance to finally beat Roger Federer on the big occasion, preventing the Swiss player from claiming the one major accolade he has yet to win in the process. Perhaps the most surprising aspect of his performance was the comprehensive manner in which he beat Federer, winning 6-2 6-1 6-4, making the Swiss athlete look his age for once. There was no surprises in women’s tennis however, as Venus and Serena Williams took home gold.

  • Irish athletes are cursed.

With the likes of Ciaran O’Lionaird and David Gillick already suffering injuries that either hampered their performance or prevented them from competing completely, Ireland’s athletes have been the victims of much misfortune of late. Today, sadly, was no exception, as a foot injury ensured Caitriona Jennings finished in last position in her event.

  • Tomorrow won’t be easy for Katie Taylor.

It was today confirmed that Katie Taylor will face Britain’s Natasha Jonas, who produced an impressive performance to convincingly beat the USA’s Queen Underwood 21-13. While Taylor remains the strong favourite for tomorrow’s bout, Jonas’ display provided a warning to the Irish boxer that she will need to be at the top of her game if she wants to progress to the semis, particularly given that Jonas will have the backing of the home crowd.

Highlights from Team Ireland

(Ireland’s Derek Burnett - Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

  • Cian O’Connor advanced to the semi-final of the show jumping but Billy Twomey was eliminated.
  • Linda Byrne finished 66th in the Women’s Marathon.
  • Of the other marathon runners, Ava Hutchinson was 68th while Caitriona Jennings came in last, in 107th, and in some discomfort.
  • In shooting, Derek Burnett finished the day in 24th place, five shots off the leader
  • John Joe Nevin advanced to the semi-finals of the boxing, securing a medal in the process.

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Hero of the day

Caitriona Jennings may have come in last position, but the courage she showed in continuing to run despite the considerable pain she must have been feeling, owing to her foot injury, was highly admirable. While she was visibly upset following her performance, perhaps she will realise on reflection that fate conspired against her and that she should still take pride in giving her all, especially in such difficult circumstances. John Joe Nevin, of course, also deserves a special mention, for obvious reasons.

Tweet of the day


A new friend we made today

Or perhaps ‘frenemy’ is a more accurate description of Natasha Jonas, who will face Katie Taylor tomorrow, after she put in an impressive performance to beat Queen Underwood today.

Olympic dictionary

Plantar fasciitis – defined as “a painful inflammatory process of the plantar fascia, the connective tissue on the sole (bottom surface) of the foot,” it is the area where Caitriona Jennings’ injury occurred, hampering her chances of performing to her potential in the process.

You said what?

“I watched the athletics last night, it was just amazing. The way Mo Farah [in the 10,000m] won, I mean I do 400m repetitions in my training and when I’m completely fresh I can run it in 57 seconds and his last lap after 9600m was 53 seconds. It’s just unbelievable fitness and it gave me a boost.” Andy Murray reveals that he drew inspiration from last night’s events.
“The atmosphere is really buzzing … From Victoria Station on the subway out to the (Olympic) Park, it is just thronged with people. I could almost feel the butterflies again, like when I was competing.” Eamonn Coughlan looks forward to the evening’s feast of athletics action.
“We made a bet. Geraint Thomas was going to get a bottle of Cristal (champagne) for every tenth we took off the world record.” Ed Clancy, after winning bronze in the maiden Olympic omnium track cycling competition.

Medal table

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