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Dublin: 17 °C Monday 24 June, 2019


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WE’RE READY TO go for day four in London. As you might expect, it’s going to be a busy one.

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Another day, another smorgasboard of Olympic goodness to enjoy. That’s right, it’s a smorgasboard. If only every Tuesday was like this…

We’ll be keeping track of all of the day’s major events right here so that you don’t miss a thing. Niall Kelly here to hold your hand through the morning’s session. Let’s get this show on the road.

First things first, let’s have a look at the morning’s main headlines:

If you missed Team Ireland’s performances yesterday, you missed some great stories. Here’s the important stuff that you need to catch up on:

  • Annalise Murphy got off to a dream start on her Olympic debut as she won her first two races in the laser radial class at Weymouth.
  • Ireland’s eventing team lie in eighth place at the start of the final day of competition. The team’s three remaining riders — Aoife Clark, Joseph Murphy and Mark Kyle — need a strong showing in today’s showjumping if they are to challenge for a podium finish.
  • Antrim’s Hannah Craig booked her spot in the semi-finals of the canoe slalom, finishing 14th in yesterday’s heats.
  • Scott Evans was eliminated from the badminton after losing in straight sets to the second seed, Lin Dan of China.
  • Sycerika McMahon set a new personal best to finish third in her 200 IM heat but just missed out on a semi-final place.

This morning’s swimming session is just getting underway in the Aquatics Centre but before we turn our attention there, here’s a quick run-down of where you can see Team Ireland today.

  • Equestrian: Aoife Clark, Joseph Murphy and Mark Kyle will be in showjumping action at Greenwich Park from 10.30am.
  • Rowing: Sanita Puspure needs a top three finish to book a place in the semi-finals of the women’s single sculls rowing. Puspure has been drawn in the second quarter-final from 11.40am.
  • Sailing: Four Irish boats resume competition today looking to build on an excellent first two days in Weymouth. Annalise Murphy is up at 12pm and 2.10pm in the laser radial; Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern are in the 49er class at 12pm and 12.50pm; Peter O’Leary and David Burrows are in star action at 12.10pm and 1.50pm; and James Espey is in the men’s laser at 2pm and 3.30pm.
  • Badminton: With a place in the last 16 at stake, Chloe Magee takes on Beijing quarter-finalist Hongyan Pi of France. Chloe is due on court at 2.17pm.

The men’s 100m freestyle heats are already underway but we’re holding our fire until heats seven and eight. That’s when it’s really going to get good.

France’s Yannick Agnel — the man who brought Ryan Lochte crashing down to earth in the 4×100 freestyle relay and again in last night’s 200m freestyle — is the favourite to win his third gold of the Games. He’ll have good company in James Roberts of Australia.

The Aussies’ star man James “The Missile” Magnussen goes in the eighth and final heat. He’s no relation to Missy “The Missile” Franklin, FYI.

As you might expect, the time are getting progressively faster as we move down through the heats. America’s Nathan Adrian has just set the qualifying mark, winning the sixth heat in 48.19.

Here comes Agnel…

That’s a slower heat, won by Pieter Timmers of Belgium in 48.54 seconds. Only joint third for Agnel in 48.93 seconds but with 16 going through to tonight’s semi-finals, that should be more than enough.

Sebastiaan Verschuren takes that last heat in 48.37 ahead of James Magnussen in second, so no real surprises at all. Nathan Adrian goes through to tonight’s session as the fastest qualifier; Yannick Agnel is only joint 12th, but there are no medals for blitzing the field at this early stage.

If you’re wondering about the format of today’s fourth and final day in the eventing, wonder no more. Here’s how it works.

There are two showjumping sessions in Greenwich Park today, with the scores from the first jump used to sort out the podium placings in the team competition. Once that is all done, the top 25 (and tied) riders will have a second jump to decide on the individual competition’s medal winners.

Each rider’s score is cumulative across the four days of competition but crucially, only the top three scores from each country count towards the final team standings.

So there.

If you thought yellow jerseys were just for big men with sideburns named Bradley, think again. Here’s what Annalise Murphy will be sporting when she takes to the water for races three and four in the laser radial class. The 22-year-old leads the standings after winning both of her opening races yesterday.

In the heats of the women’s 200m fly, China’s Liuyang Jiao has set the qualifying standard with a time of 2:07.15 in the third heat. Just one more to go before the line-up for tonight’s semis is complete.

Oof, there’s the first shock of the morning. Team GB’s Ellen Gandy, the silver medallist at last year’s World Championships, is out of the 200m fly. Britain’s other competitor, Jemma Lowe, is safely through after she finished second to Kathleen Hersey of America in the final heat. Hersey is the morning’s fastest qualifier in 2:06.41.

We’re up and running in Greenwich Park in the final day of the eventing. Mark Kyle and Coolio will be the first of the Irish trio to jump. He’s 22nd in the running order.

Adam O’Sullivan: “Well done to Sean O’Neill from Pallaskenery on qualifying for the men’s 4′s semi-final with New Zealand.”

O’Neill will be back in action on Thursday morning in the semi-finals.

BREAKING: RTÉ report that Gráinne Murphy has pulled out of the 800m freestyle. Hugely disappointing for the Wexford teenager who looked to still be struggling with illness earlier in the week.

The line up is complete for tonight’s 200m breaststroke semi-finals. Andrew Willis and Michael Jamieson of Great Britain have qualified as second and third fastest behind Daniel Gyurta of Hungary, who won heat four in 2:08.71.

Japanese duo Ryo Tateishi and Kosuke Kitajima are both safely through as well.

This from the Guardian on the future of the British football team:

Stuart Pearce, the manager of Team GB’s men’s football squad, has said he doesn’t think the British team will endure after this Olympics. “I honestly don’t believe it will happen again.”

Great start for Team GB in the eventing. They started the day in the silver medal position and their first rider, William Fox-Pitt, has just put in a clear round to strengthen their bid. About 20 minutes to go before Mark Kyle jumps.

After three days of competition, North Korea are currently rubbing shoulders with the big boys at the top end of the medal table. They’ve already won three golds and a bronze, so naturally, the boyos in Pyongyan’s official and totally transparent news agency are having a party.

‘The news that DPRK [Democratic People's Republic of Korea] athletes bagged two gold and one bronze medals in two days after the start of the London Olympic Games has delighted local people,’ it trumpeted.

Kwon In Guk, a coach of the Jangsan Sports Team, told KCNA: ’A Korean proverb says that a good beginning makes a good ending. DPRK athletes made a good start as they won two gold medals in 24 hours in the Olympiad.’

Read the full article here >

As my colleague Gavan Reilly has pointed out, North Korea’s early success depends on what yard stick you use to order the medal table. If the countries are ranked based on their amount of gold medals — like the official London 2012 website does — then they’re currently fourth.

But if you’re not quite comfortable with seeing North Korea so high up the the table, you might rank countries based on their total number of medals. NBC have kindly obliged…

Here’s more on that breaking news that Grainne Murphy has withdrawn from the 800m freestyle. Cruel, cruel timing.

GRAINNE MURPHY HAS been forced to withdraw from her 800 metre freestyle heat due to illness, Swim Ireland have confirmed.

The Wexford native, who is based in Limerick, is considered Ireland’s brightest prospect in the pool, but has endured awful luck in the run up to these Olympic Games.

Murphy, 19, pulled out of yesterday’s 200m freestyle to give her every chance of overcoming glandular fever and getting healthy for the 800m freestyle – her strongest event after the 1500m, which is not an Olympic event.

In April, Murphy suffered a sinus infection which heavily disrupted her preparation. The latest illness impacted on her Olympic debut in the 400m freestyle, where she finished last in her heat in a time of 4:19.07.

If you blinked, you might have missed it. Mark Kyle’s turn in the showjumping has come and gone. He’s picked up six penalty points on Coolio and moves up to 10th place in the overall standings for now. Joseph Murphy should be up next in about 20 minutes.

Considering how mental LOCOG have been about protecting their “corporate partners”, it’s nice to see a little bit of consistency. Bleh.

In rowing, the quarter-finals of the women’s single scull have just started in Eton Dorney. Sanita Puspure is in QF2, so she should be starting in about 10 minutes. We’ll keep you posted.

If you were watching yesterday’s cross-country eventing, you will have seen the bad fall that Camilla Speirs had on Portersize Just A Jiff. Horse Sport Ireland have confirmed that both rider and horse are doing well:

Marcus Swail, Team Ireland’s vet at the Olympic Games in Greenwich, said this morning that he wished to clarify the position on Camilla Speirs’s horse Portersize Just a Jif, who sustained a fall during the cross country phase of eventing yesterday (Monday).

“The horse sustained some bruising to his ribs and chest during the fall. He has been under observation at the Olympic Venue Veterinary Clinic during the night and this morning was comfortable, ” he said.

“He is moving to another veterinary clinic off site today for a few more days of observation just to make absolutely sure that he’s fine.”

Rider Camilla Speirs is also fine after the fall.

Sanita’s quarter-final is underway. She needs to finish in the top three for a place in the semis.

Overheard in the office: “She should row faster. Or get a longer boat. Is that what you call it?” That’s the kind of stunning insight we bring you here at

Sanita is third through the first 500m split, 1.51 seconds behind Knapkova of the Czech Republic.

At the half-way stage, Puspure has dropped back into fourth. Knapkova has started to open up a big lead over the field bur Sanita is only 1.1 seconds behind Stone of America in third.

Puspure still in fourth as the race enters its final 500m but she has a lot of work to do. There’s a 3.5 second gap to third place now…

Fourth for Sanita Puspure…

That won’t be good enough for a place in the A/B semi-final on Thursday but a great effort from Sanita. She went out strongly but just couldn’t keep pace with Stone and Svensson in the end.

DOUBLE CLEAR FOR JOSEPH MURPHY! That won’t hurt Ireland’s prospects one little bit. They’re looking to rein in Australia and USA to finish fifth in the team competition and Murphy’s perfect round on board Electric Cruise has given them every chance. And it’s enough to guarantee that Murphy will finish in the top 25 individuals, giving him a place in this afternoon’s final.

Aoife Clark and Master Crusoe are still to come.

ANNALISE LEADS! The action’s coming thick and fast now as laser radial leader Annalise Murphy gets her afternoon underway. After two wins yesterday, the Dubliner leads through by 13 seconds through the first mark of race three.

In the men’s 49er, Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern are 51 seconds back in 18th place through the second mark.

Annalise Murphy leads from Tania Elias Calles of Brazil through the second mark. Seaton and McGovern have pulled back a couple of places — they’re in 14th place through the third mark.

IT’S GOLD FOR GERMANY! We’ve still got riders to come but a double clear from Michael Jung has ensured that Germany will be taking home the top honours in the team eventing. The battle for silver and bronze is still ongoing, as is Ireland’s quest to catch Australia and the USA.

Mrs Mike Tindall (aka Zara Phillips) and High Kingdom knock a fence during today’s showjumping round.

(Owen Humphreys/PA Wire/Press Association Images)

49er: Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern have finished 15th in Race 3 of the 49er, subject to confirmation. The Irish and American boats were both credited with the same time, 1:39 behind race winners New Zealand.

DOUBLE CLEAR FOR AOIFE CLARK! Ah, we’re class at this showjumping lark. Aoife Clark has just put in Ireland’s second successive double clear round to keep the pressure on Australia and the US all the way to the line.

All three Irish riders — Clark, Murphy and Kyle — have qualified for this afternoon’s individual final. Excellent.

IRELAND GUARANTEED FIFTH: A mistake by Australia’s Christopher Burton and Ireland are confirmed as finishing at least fifth in the team eventing. Wonderful stuff from Clark, Murphy and Kyle this morning. The team really pulled it out of the bag after a slow start in the dressage over the weekend.

The race for silver and bronze continues…

Race three in the men’s star has started. The Irish boat of Peter O’Leary and David Burrows are 14th through the first mark, a minute off Great Britain’s lead.

THREE OUT OF THREE: Annalise Murphy’s dream start to the Olympics has continued. She wins Race 3 in the laser radial class, coming home eight seconds ahead of Great Britain’s Alison Young. Wonderful stuff.

So it’s silver for Team GB and bronze for New Zealand in the team eventing. Ireland finish an excellent fifth.

And here’s the report on Ireland’s eventing success >

IRELAND’S RIDERS SAVED their best for last as they charged up the standings to finish fifth in the team eventing competition.

Double clear rounds from Joseph Murphy and Aoife Clark, as well as brilliant ride from Mark Kyle, helped Ireland leapfrog Australia and the USA on the final day of competition in Greenwich Park.

Niall Kelly is popping out for a granola bar and protein shake so you’ve got me, Ben Blake, for the next while.

In the sailing, Seaton and McGovern have done brilliantly to finish second today – leaving them sixth overall in the 49er. Messrs O’Leary and Burrows, meanwhile, are also currently sixth overall after an eleventh-place finish in Race 5 of the Star class.

James Espey, competing in the Men’s Laser Radial, begins the first of two races today at 2pm.

Seaton and McGovern. Credit: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

We’re around 20 minutes away from Chloe Magee’s last 32 match in the badminton women’s singles. The Donegal player takes on Hongyan Pi of France.

Irish swimmer Grainne Murphy has just been speaking to RTE Sport about pulling out of the 800m due to glandular fever:

I got it back in March and April and had just been trying to manage it. I had been training hard and putting everything into it. Unfortunately on the day it was disappointing. I tried to keep it low key.

It was quite difficult to come to terms with it myself. After swimming the 400m and speaking to different people about it, this is the best decision for me looking at the future.

I prepared everything I could to get here and I came here to compete the best I can but right now my ability isn’t where it should be.

Annalise Murphy, the overall leader in the Laser Radial, is looking to make it four wins from four this afternoon. She is back in the water around now.

Coin toss is underway so Chloe Magee is minutes away from her last 32 match…

Magee takes the first two points but concedes the third before making it 3-1. Good start.

A lengthy rally ends with a smash from the French opponent, who know leads 4-3.

Hongyan Pi in control of another rally. She is 7-3 up as it stands.

Magee now 9-7 down in the first set.

Elsewhere, Annalise Murphy leads her fourth race by 17 seconds after two marks.

Magee showing real courage here to battle back. Leading 11-10 at the break.

Superb from Magee. Ahead by 15 points to 12.

19-15 to Magee, who is in a commanding position at the moment.

Game point Magee…

And she takes it 21-15 after Pi leaves a shot which bounces in. One game to nil.

Another poor decision from Pi as she allows a shot to drop in. Magee 4-2 up.

Pi has recovered and is ahead by two points – 6-4.

11-8 to Pi at the changeover.

Both players look exhausted and there has been very little in this second game. Pi leads by 19-16.

The second game has gone to Pi. She wins it 21-19 after a slip from Magee.

It’s on a knife-edge as we go into the final set. Magee needs a big showing if she’s to progress to the last 16.

Lightning reflexes from Magee to return with a back hand and narrow Pi’s lead to one. She wins the following two points and is now in front, 8-7.

Over at Greenwich Park, Mark Kyle has recorded an overall score of 76.90 in the first run of the Eventing Individual Jumping. Joseph Murphy has done terrifically well with a 60.40, which could put him in line for a medal. Aoife Clark, meanwhile, scores 52.50 to take top spot on the leaderboard. She has since dropped down to third and is contention for bronze with four riders still to come.

FOUR OUT OF FOUR Another incredible performance from Annalise Murphy sees her pick up a fourth consecutive win in the Laser Radial. We’ll have more to follow on that shortly.

Having pulled it back to within three points, Magee has lost the last three points and is 19-13. She needs to win the next couple of scores or it’s all over for the Donegal native.

MAGEE LOSES OUT: Final score – 21-14 to Pi and Chloe Magee is out of the Olympics after losing in three sets. Excellent in the first set, she looked good to go through to the last 16 but Pi came back stronger in the final game. Disappointing result but she did Ireland proud on the day.

EVENTING SUCCESS: Well done to Kildare’s Aoife Clark, who just misses out on a medal with her seventh-place finish in the Eventing. On Master Crusoe, Clark scored 52.50. Joseph Murphy and Electric Cruise were back in 14th, while Mark Kyle was 21st.

The overall winner was Michael Jung of Germany, Sara Algotsson Ostholt of Sweden takes silver and the bronze goes to Sandra Auffarth, also of Germany.

Read up on Annalise Murphy’s lastest performance here:

IRELAND’S ANNALISE MURPHY made it a sensational four wins out of four as she stayed on track for sailing gold in Weymouth today.

The Dubliner came home 30 seconds ahead of Team GB’s Alison Young in second and China’s Lijia Xu.

James Espey, competing in Race 4 of the Laser, recorded his best result so far with a 22nd-placed finish.

Earlier, O’Leary and Burrows came in at 11th in the sixth race of the Star class.

WITHOUT BREAKING A SWEAT: Novak Djokovic has made light work of seeing off Team USA’s Andy Roddick – winning 6-2 6-1 in under an hour. The Serb will play the winner of Australia’s Lleyton Hewitt and Marin Cilic of Croatia in the third round.

Some other news: Team GB have been gone down 41-19 to Sweden in the Men’s handball, while the Women’s gymnasts final is underway.

Read the report on Novak Djokovic’s win over Andy Roddick here

SERBIA’S NOVAK DJOKOVIC fired a warning to his Olympic rivals as the world number two crushed three-time Wimbledon finalist Andy Roddick 6-2, 6-1 in the second round

While Roger Federer is the gold medal favourite after his recent Wimbledon triumph, Djokovic, a bronze medallist at the 2008 Games in Beijing, also has his sights firmly set on the top prize.

“This is going be a piece of piss now compared to that (the Tour de France). It’s just an hour and not three weeks. It’s been the best preparation.

That’s the baseline of worst-case scenario of pressure and expectation, with three weeks lying ahead of you.

And we handled that pretty well, so an hour time trial to make history should be a doddle.”

Team GB’s Bradley Wiggins is in a pretty confident mood ahead of tomorrow’s time trial.

Kazakhstan’s Maiay Maneza has set a new Olympic record on her way to winning gold in the Women’s -63kg weightlifting with a combined total of 245kg.

Evening all. Niall Kelly back for a brief stint in the hotseat and I have some BIG news to bring to your attention. In the men’s tennis, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Milos Raonic are locked in an epic battle.

As things stand, it’s 6-3 3-6 15-15 as we approach the 2hr50 mark. Yes, you’re reading that correctly — the deciding set is tied at 15 games apiece. As I said: epic.

MATCH POINT TSONGA… but Raonic saves it! And forces the match to 16-16. The epic continues.

Finalement! Our feed to French TV and Wimbledon was inexplicably whipped from beneath our feet with the score at 17-17.

We’re safely back in their hands now with the score 19-19 and JW Tsonga serving to Raonic.

Meanwhile over at the Gymnastics hall where little girls’ dreams are being unmercifully crushed by other, more agile, little girls. USA and China are duking it out for gold. Gabrielle Douglas is on the floor for the US and powers her way to 15.066.

Take THAT, China.

Team GB’s Beth Tweddle has got the crowd into raptures with a 15.833 on the uneven bars.

Meanwhile Alexandra Resiman was on the mat for the US, the whole team celebrate for gold as she comes off, but still face the long wait until the score is unveiled….

15.something something…. anything with a 15 was enough to vindicate the US celebrations. They take gold ahead of Russia (silver) and Romania (bronze),

Over in Wimbledon, Tsonga had match-point on Raonic’s serve, but he returns into the net and we’re back to square one. 21 games all now.

I’m gtting tired just looking at them.

As our copains and copines on French TV have abandoned hope of Tsonga v Raonic reaching any sort of conclusion this week (it’s now 23-23) and a muzak version of Chariots of Fire plays as USA’s gymnasts accept their medals, we’ll search around the Olympic park for something else spectacular. …

Ah, the womens’ synchronised diving is on with Barrow and Couch in action for GB .

Oh, hang on. Tsonga has three match points. 40-0 up on Raonic’s serve with the score 24-23. Brace yourself.

BOOM! Joe Wilfried Tsonga has – at long last – beaten Canadian Milos Raonic 6-3, 3-6, 25-23.

It took him 179 minutes and 48 games in the third set to do it, but he’s finally in the third round.

The third round? Hardly seems worth it, lets hope he can eventually make it count on the podium.

I definitely enjoy it when it’s windy. It’s the condition I love. I’m prepared for whatever I get, but yeah, I’ve enjoyed the last two days racing,” sailor Annalise Murphy on a fourth win earlier today.

Coming up… Swimming and lots of it.

We’ve got the Men’s 100m Freestyle semi-final is first up and the swimmers are making their way out to the pool as I type.

With a time of 47.63, Australia’s James Magnussen has beaten current world record holder Cesar Cielo in the first semi-final. Nikita Lobinstev of Russia is in third.

Hello, Paul here taking over from Ben. I’ll be taking you through for the next hour or so before we finish up for the day.

USA’s Nathan Adrian has just won the Men’s 100m Freestyle to qualify for the final tomorrow night.

The Women’s 200m freestyle is up next in the swimming…

Alison Schmitt has absolutely destroyed the competition, winning gold in the 200m Freestyle and setting a new world record in the process.

Camille Muffat takes silver and Bronte Barratt is third.

The much-hyped 17-year-old Missy Franklin comes fourth, while Federica Pellegrini only finishes fifth.

Schmitt’s gold is USA’s fifth in the pool, and Michael Phelps is up next to potentially win their sixth.

Meanwhile, a shock is on the cards in women’s football, with Team GB currently beating Brazil 1-0 thanks to a goal from Steph Houghton.

Michael Phelps misses out on gold in the 200-meter butterfly final.

Phelps was leading for most of the race, but ultimately had to settle for silver, as he tired at the end, with South African Chad Le Clos beating him marginally by 5 hundreths of a second with a time of 1:52:96.

There is some consolation for Phelps though, as he now has the joint most medals of any athlete in Olympic history.

“Michael’s my hero,” says a jubilant Le Clos. “I can’t believe it,” he adds tearfully.

Jiao Liuyang of China wins the first women’s 200m butterfly semi-final.

Natsumi Hoshi from Japan finishes second, with Cammile Adams of USA third.

Jemma Lowe of Great Britain receives a rousing reception from the crowd, as she emerges for the second 200m Butterfly semi-final of the evening.

USA’s Kathleen Hersey wins the 200m butterfly. Belmonte Garcia of Spain comes second. Jakabos of Hungary finishes third.

There is a big cheer from the home crowd, as they realise Jemma Lowe’s fifth-place finish is enough to get her into the final.

Cliche alert: the BBC’s Clare Balding is getting tired “just watching” the 200m butterfly event.

Semi-Final 1 of the 200m Breastroke is coming up.

Michael Jamieson, who set a new British record to qualify, is obviously the home favourite.

The crowd go ecstatic as Jamieson takes gold, smashing the British record again in the process.

A remarkably calm Jamieson describes his victory as “something special” and says he “had to really go for it”.

It’s also worth noting that Clarke Burckle of the US took second, while Ryo Tateishi came third.

Daniel Gyurta wins the 200m Breastroke just about.

Andrew Willis of Britain comes second  and sets a new English record (but not British record) as Jamieson is Scottish.

What an hour it’s been for the home crowd.

Great scenes as 20-year-old Chad le Clos tries really hard not to cry as he stands on the podium while the South African national anthem plays.

His mother, who observes proceedings from the stands, shows less restraint and is in floods of tears as she watches him.

Phelps smiles graciously as he accepts his silver.

“Unbelievable,” le Clos’ father tells the BBC, “who also calls him a beautiful boy”.

Le Clos will probably watch the interview back later with a mixture of embarrassment and pride.

Meanwhile, Phelps shows admirable character to provide words of encouragement and guide le Clos through the whole process.

Ye Shiwen has done it again, setting an Olympic (but not a world) record in the process.

Meanwhile, Australia’s Alicia Coutts and Caitlin Leverenz of USA come second and third respectively.

The relay is up next, with Phelps and his USA teammates hotly tipped to win this one.

USA look set to win this, with Phelps about to become the greatest Olympian ever (judging by medal wins anyway).



An incredible performance from team USA, ensuring Michael Phelps makes history in a fitting manner, as they win by some distance.

Michael Phelps pays tribute to Chad le Clos and says he “can’t be too disappointed” after becoming the greatest Olympian in history.

That’s the type of attitude that inspired him to win so many medals in the first place.

Stella McCartney is talking to Gary Linker about designing stuff for the Olympics.

She denies any responsibility for those horrible Olympic costumes the British athletes wore in the Opening Ceremony.

She also says, somewhat unconvincingly, that she’s “really interested in sport now”.

Okay, that’s it from me for now. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Stay tuned, as we’ll have our round-up of all the day’s Olympic-related events up very shortly on the site.

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TheScore Team