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Dublin: 6°C Tuesday 2 March 2021
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Winter Olympic Village: Day 12

Join us for an apres-ski shandy.

Pic of the day

Sochi Olympics Nordic Combined Men Germany's team celebrate winning the silver as Norway's gold medal winners applaud during the flower ceremony of the Nordic combined Gundersen large hill team competition. Source: Matthias Schrader

Talking points

  •  The deadly violence convulsing Ukraine in the midst of the Winter Olympics has put the International Olympic Committee in a delicate situation as it seeks to keep politics out of the Games and implement rules banning mourning symbols. The IOC’s new president Thomas Bach has repeated throughout the Sochi 2014 Olympics — shadowed by concerns about hosts Russia’s own rights record — that political statements should not be made “on the backs of athletes” today.
  •  Adelina Sotnikova won Russia’s first ever women’s Olympic figure skating gold tonight. She took the title ahead of South Korea’s Kim Yu-Na, the defending champion, with Italy’s Carolina Kostner winning the bronze after the free skating final. Big shock there, Bill.
  • Jean Frederic Chapuis led home a French clean sweep in men’s ski cross. Arnaud Bovolenta took silver while Jonathan Midol finished with the bronze despite crossing the line on his backside.
  • Norway beat Germany by a fraction of a second in a thrilling final sprint to take gold in the Nordic Combined Team event. The initial ski jumping phase of the two-sport discipline left Norway, Germany and Austria ahead and the three were never challenged in the decisive 4x5km cross country ski race. Norway’s Joergen Graabak and Germany’s Fabian Riessle surged ahead of Austria in the final section of the last leg and Graabak just managed to hold off a fast-finishing Germany. Nordic combined is now the sole sport at the Olympic Games to be only open to men.
  • Canada won their first Olympic women’s curling gold since 1998 when they defeated Sweden 6-3 in the final. Skipped by Jennifer Jones, who took to the rink appropriately wearing golden eye shadow, Canada ended Sweden’s hopes of a third successive Olympic title. Earlier, Britain defeated Switzerland 6-5 to take the bronze medal.

You gotta see this

It could have been all so different for Sweden. Sweden were in a prime position to pull the upset until the final shot in the ninth end. Canada were up 4-3, but Sweden had the last shot in the second-to-last end (the hammer). The team that throws last is always supposed to score in curling.

Above is what it looked like before the shot. Canada’s stones are yellow, Sweden’s are red. At the very least, the Swedish thrower had to knock out one of the Canada’s two yellow stones. With a perfect shot, she could tied it up at 4-4 going into the final end.

But she got incredibly unlucky. The shot came in and knocked the red Swedish stone out of the second position, leaving the two Canadian stones closest to the button for the two-point steal:

Hero of the day

The American luger Kate Hansen who tweeted that there was a wolf wandering around the hallways of her Olympic dorms.

wolfofsochi

The animal was more likely one of Sochi’s many stray dogs. Scary though.

They said what?

Sochi Olympics Curling Women Britain's skip Eve Muirhead, right, embraces Anna Sloan after defeating Switzerland to win the women's curling bronze medal. Source: Robert F. Bukaty

“It’s a dream come true. This is the medal we’ve been missing and to win it with four of my best friends feels so special,” said Muirhead, who skipped the team to the 2013 world title.

“That shows what great athletes we are. You have to learn to lose before you can win and get back up from a defeat. To lose a semi-final at the Olympics and then come back and play for bronze is extra tough. We regrouped and came out fighting.”

Medal table

Tomorrow’s highlights

Kick off your weekend with more curling! The men are centre stage with Canada and Team GB going for gold. USA and Canada’s men face off in the ice hockey semis.

Aussie hurdler Michelle Jenneke invents new sport of hallway hurdles

Olympic ski race ends in insane crash at the finish line, three-way photo finish

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