Australia’s Keegan Palmer took off for a stunning gold in skateboarding on Thursday as the United States suffered a disappointment on the track with a major flop in the 4 × 100-meter relay heats.
US shot putter Ryan Crouser threw an Olympic record 23.30 meters to retain his title, while Portugal’s Pedro Pichardo jumped to 17.98 m to win the men’s triple jump.
Jamaican Hansle Parchment upset American Grant Holloway to win the men’s 110m hurdles in 13.04 seconds, making it through the finals as the world champion faltered.
“It’s amazing to have caught this guy (Holloway),” said Parchment, 31. “My trainer reminded me to run to the end – and I did. ”
“I don’t think a lot of people expected me to win,” added the Jamaican.
But there was greater disappointment for Team USA when their relay team, the world champions and pre-Games favorites, finished sixth in their series and missed the final.
Sprint legend Carl Lewis called it “utter embarrassment” as Trayvon Bromell, Fred Kerley, Ronnie Baker and Cravon Gillespie became the first American quartet not to advance to the final after a round ended.
“We just didn’t get the job done today,” Kerley said. ” No excuses. “
At Ariake Urban Sports Park, Palmer wrapped up the inaugural Olympics skateboarding program with a brilliant gold in the park’s men’s event.
Shooting huge tunes, the 18-year-old scored 94.04 points in his first set before improving his score to 95.83, well ahead of silver medalist Pedro Barrios at 86.14 and American Cory Juneau, who won bronze with 84.13.
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The first of Thursday’s 27 gold medals came in marathon swimming, when Germany’s Florian Wellbrock won the men’s title in 1h48min 33.7sec.
Wellbrock and third-placed Gregorio Paltrinieri – who suffered glandular fever before the Games – also won medals in the pool, with 1,500m bronze and 800m silver respectively.
Also on Thursday, Kevin Durant’s United States faces a threat to their men’s basketball crown in their semi-final against a seasoned Australian team in the NBA including Patty Mills and Joe Ingles.
In the other semi-final, France, who stunned the Americans in their opener, must contain the scoreline of Slovenian Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic if they are to reach the final.
The men’s 20km race will take place in Sapporo, hundreds of kilometers north of Tokyo, after being relocated to avoid the capital’s summer heat.
However, Sapporo struggled with a heat wave with temperatures reaching 32 degrees Celsius (90 degrees Fahrenheit) on Thursday.
In what is expected to be her last Olympics, 36-year-old soccer star Megan Rapinoe will be looking to sign with a bronze medal when the United States faces Australia in Kashima.
China will look to tighten its grip on the diving events by retaining the women’s 10m platform title, and the dominant Chinese will face Japan in the women’s team table tennis final.
The women’s keirin and the men’s omnium are the next events in track cycling, with Australia facing Belgium in the men’s hockey final.
Also, the first Olympic medals will be awarded in sport climbing and karate, two new features on the program.
© 2021 AFP