Bronze for hijab-wearing US fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad

Fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad came to the Rio Games determined to show the world that Muslim-American women could compete in elite sports. And the 30-year-old from New Jersey, the first US Olympian to wear a hijab -- a headscarf worn by Muslim women -- during competition, came away with a bronze medal on Saturday in the women's team sabre event. The four-woman US team -- which also included double Olympic champion Dagmara Wozniak, Mariel Zagunis and Monica Aksamit -- beat Italy 45-30 to seal third place and the first women's medal in fencing for the Americans in Rio. "This has been a long journey for us," said Muhammad. "This is six years in the making. "I'll never forget this moment.” The US came back after a 45-42 semi-final loss to world champions Russia, who continued their domination of the event by claiming a first Olympic title in Rio, beating the Ukraine 45-30 in the final.–AFP

 

 

Iranian weightlifter Moradi wins men's 94kg

Iranian Sohrab Moradi topped the podium in the men's 94kg category on Saturday to claim Iran's second weightlifting gold medal of the Rio Games. Moradi, who previously served a two-year ban after testing positive for methadone, dominated the event with a combined total of 403kg. Vadzim Straltsou of Belarus claimed silver on 395 while Lithuania's Aurimas Didzbalis took bronze with 392. The run-up to the competition had been overshadowed by a doping scandal after Polish brothers Adrian and Tomasz Zielinski were both withdrawn for failing drugs tests. Adrian Zielinski, a 2012 Olympic champion, tested positive for the anabolic steroid nandrolone just three days after his brother Tomasz suffered the same fate, Poland's anti-doping committee said Friday. –AFP

 

 

 

Dutch Ligtlee stuns favourites to win women's keirin

Elis Ligtlee of the Netherlands upset the favourites to win women's Olympic keirin gold in Rio on Saturday. The 22-year-old beat Britain's Becky James into second with Australian track cycling legend Anna Meares coming third. "This is my first Olympics so I came here and my dream was always to have the gold medal," said Ligtlee. "When I started here I didn't know what my chance was and now I'm standing here with the gold medal." London 2012 champion Kristina Vogel of Germany, who is also the world champion, finished last in the six rider final at the Olympic velodrome. "I saw Becky at the finish line so I was thinking that I had silver, but then I saw the screen and there was a 'one' before my name -- that was ahhhhh, yeah crazy," added the new champion. Ligtlee, who stands 1m85 tall, led from the front on the final lap. –AFP

 

 

 

Rossetti blows away dad's Rio challenger

Italian hotshot Gabriele Rossetti nailed 94 targets in a row to seal the men's skeet Olympic title on Saturday and even dealt a blow to his father's hopes on the way. The 21-year-old did not miss a single clay from the qualifications, through the shoot-off, semi-final and 16-15 gold medal triumph over Swede Marcus Svensson. It was Italy's third shooting gold in Rio. Kuwaiti Abdullah al-Rashidi, competing as an independent, claimed bronze after overcoming Ukraine's Mikola Milchev 16-14 in the third place shoot-off. Rossetti struck gold 24 years after his father Bruno claimed bronze in Barcelona. Rossetti senior is now coach to the French team, and he must have looked on with a mixture of pride and angst as his son knocked out top-ranked French skeet-shooter Anthony Terras en route to the final. –AFP