The Age from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on October 1, 2000 · Page 18
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The Age from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia · Page 18

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Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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Sunday, October 1, 2000
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Page 18
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t2nSSt . . ' . .; WATER POLO TAEKWONDO SAILING PENTATHLON The Sunday Age 19 .Historical bag HATER POLO JakeNiaU You couldn't quite call It fairytale final A strange coincidence maybe or perhaps fate. Certainly organism could scarcely fix a water polo final with more historical baggage than Russia versus Hungary. The two teams will grapple for gold today at the Aquatic Centre in a rematch of the most famous and brutal water polo match in history, the bloodbath at the 1956 Olympics in Melbourne. Technically speaking, the 1956 match pitted the Hungarians Trenton kicks on, TAEKHOHDO Richard Wood Try as they might, the barracking home crowd was unable to lift Australia's valiant Daniel Trenton to victory in the heavyweight finaL Defeated by the giant South Korean Kim Kyong Hun, Trenton lost the gold medal bout 7-2, unable to overcome the significant height and reach advantage of the Korean, whose selection in his country's team ahead of three-time world champion Ja-Kyeong Kim had been somewhat controversial Trenton had been aggressive all day but appeared to suffer from nerves early in the bout. The Korean scored quickly and grabbed a significant lead before Trenton could register a hit Late in the contest, the Korean was hampered by a knee injury, which he protected, pushing Trenton away when possible. "I fought bigger opponents before.'but he had size and skill," said Trenton. "It was a fantastic experience, it was something I will never forget" The silver medal capped of a brilliant four days for Australia, in which Lauren Burns surprised the world by winning taekwondo's first Olympic title. "We expected some medals, probably one or two more, but it has been a great week for taekwondo and the team. I think we can hold our heads high and the sport will grow," he said. . : "I will never forget tonight, (the standing ovation) was more than I could hope for. It U definitely a highlight of my career." It had been yet another day of controversy when Kim's win in the semi-final over Frenchman Pascal Gentil was challenged by a protest from the French coach Patrick Stanczak. The appeal was almost immediately dismissed but the Frenchman went on to win the bronze medal. ' 1 Trenton's path to the final was eased by a serious injury to former world champion Alexandros Nikolaidis of Greece. The .Greek was well in control of his bout with Milton Castro of Colombia when midway through the second round his shin protector began to slip. Rather than call for the clock to be stopped, Nikolaidis tried to move the guard back into place between attacks, but the former world champion snapped his right ankle during a clash of kicks, sparking emotional scenes. His mother, standing on the sidelines, became hysterical and his father, George a legend of the sport who has won 13 world championship titles attempted to run to his son on the mats, only to be held back by officials. Nikolaidis realised the extent of his injury immediately. He lay down on the mats, covering his face, but Britain relives former glories by sailing triumphantly in Sydney Harbour SAILING Steve Laque and Alan Kennedy More than two centuries after first sailing into Australia and claiming it as their own, the British have again claimed Sydney Harbour. They may not have the same authority as they did when they first arrived, but Britannia certainly ruled the waves in the Sydney 2000 sailing regatta. In their best performance In an Olympic regatta since 1908, the British team have won three gold and two silver medals. Yesterday, on the final day of the sailing regatta, they picked up the gold in the Finn class and silver in the Stars to be the leading nation. .- Britain also won gold in the Laser class after Ben Ainslie survived a night in the protest room on Friday to retain his one-point lead over - Brazilian champion Robert Scheldt The pair were involved in one of the most memorable contests in . Olympic sailing in the last heat of the series, with both sailors pushing the rules to their extreme. . With so much at stake, it ended up in the protest room, but it was Scheldt, who won the gold medal in Atlanta, who was disqualified. MEA gage won't weigh against the Soviet Union, rather than Russia. But, this is only splitting historical hairs. The Melbourne Olympics were held less than three weeks after 200,000 Soviet troops marched into Hungary to crush an anti-Soviet uprising. The timing was such that Melbourne's Olympic pool presented the Hungarians with their first - and probably only opportunity to- make a political statement at the Games. That statement was to sully the Olympic pool with Russian blood, but the Soviets did not take a backward stroke.. The referee, a suitably neutral Swede, ordered five Daniel Trenton kicks out In a bout his cries could be around the hushed stadium. Trenton's speed and fitness helped him overcome Castro in the semi-final. Trenton is one of the It was almost a fitting end to a battle between two of the world's leading dinghy sailors. The British also won gold in the women's Europe class and silver in the 49er. While Australia did not live up to expectation, they also enjoyed their most successful Olympic sailing regatta, with four medals two gold, a silver and a bronze. The home nation also created history when its 470 crew of Jenny Armstrong and Belinda Stowell won their first medal in women's sailing. In the first week of the Olympics, the fickle conditions played into the hands of the light weather specialists among the European competitors. The two biggest upsets came on the last day of the regatta. The first came in the Stars, where Atlanta gold medallists Torben Grael and Marcelo Ferreira, of Brazil, slipped from first to third in the last race. Then in the final racing of the 2000 Olympics, the Soling match-racing maestro Jochen Schuemann, of Germany, and his crew of Gunnar Bahr and Ingo Borowski were beaten in a thrilling seven-race final by the Danish boat skip players from the pool for punching, kicking and scratching. Few can remember the result or, politics aside, what was at stake in 1956. For the record, the match was a round-robin final, with gold on the line (there was no gold-medal game). Hungary was ahead 4-0 when the referee, fearful of crowd violence, called it off with less than a minute remaining. Reports of the day said the presence of police had prevented the incensed pro-Hungarian crowd from rioting. Hungary won the gold medal and about halt of their team did not return to Hungary after the Olympics. against Colombian Milton Castro. Tht lighter heavyweights, but his court skills left the Colombian helpless and he finished the 8-2 victor. Trenton had been super aggressive all day. He easily won his open pered by Jesper Bank and crewed by Henrik Blakskjaer and Thomas Jacobsen. Schuemann won the Soling gold in Atlanta and Barcelona and the Finn gold in Montreal in 1976. The Soling fleet is packed with the world's best sailors and is the toughest medal to win in Olympic sailing. Bank's hard-fought win is Denmark's first gold at the Sydney Olympics. The short match-racing course was laid in the shadows of the Opera House and the races were watched by thousands packed along the shoreline and a huge flotilla of spectator boats. The Danish contingent along the walls of the Botanical Gardens grew all afternoon and after his win, Bank parked his boat lust off the sea wall to acknowledge the roar of his flag-waving countrymen. The match itself was absorbing, with Bank able to suck Schuemann into making some fundamental mistakes that drew penalty calls from the judges. On two occasions, Schuemann led the race to the finish but was passed by Bank on the line as he made his penalty turn. down teams as they Yesterday, Russia was the first to qualify for the final, bearing Spain 8-7 in the first semi-final Then the Hungarians pipped the hitherto unbeaten Yugoslavia in a similarly tight contest, 8-7. They took the lead early in the last quarter, when Gergery Kiss scored his third goal and clung on for another five-and-a-half minutes. While comparisons and contrasts between today's match and its 1956 version were drawn yesterday, the events of 44 years ago have little meaning for today's combatants. Russian skipper Dmitri Gorchkov, who scored the winner for his team yesterday, said the but has to settle for silver O L mml 4 , vW-at -:f -) &W ' 4 )' Australian reached the heavyweight ing two bouts against Swede Marcus Thoren and Great Britain's Colin Daley. In the women's over-67 kilogram division, China's Zhong Chen, who Atlanta avenged as Russian runs away with it MODERN PENTATHLON Jennifer Cooke In a thrilling finale to the men's mo.dern pentathlon, Russian Dmitry Svatkovsky won the gold medal after overtaking four competitors in the chase-run segment. Waving the red, white and blue striped flag of the Russian Federation, an emotional Svatkovsky ran a lap of honour in front of an appreciative crowd of more than 14,000 at the Sydney Baseball Stadium at Homebush Bay. His run of just over nine minutes 40 seconds went part of the way to reclaiming the honour stolen from compatriot Edouard Zenovka, who had the lead snatched dramatically from him just seconds from the finish line in Atlanta by Aleksandr Parygin of Kazakhstan. Svatkovsky, too, began slowing and waving to the crowd with the end in sight but did not trip and fall, as did Zenovka. The silver medal yesterday went to last year's world champion, Hungarian Gabor Balogh, a 24-year-old student from Budapest who was also second in the world championships in Pesaro, Italy, three months ago, Third was Pavel Dovgal, 24, of ghost of 1956 didn't mean anything to him. For the Hungarians, the fact that they had won their first Olympic medal since 1980 and had earned a shot at their first gold since 1976 held greater importance than the distant past. "This is the year 2000," said coach Denes Kerne ny. The difficulty we face is the strength of the Russian team." In the earlier match, Russia finally prevailed with a golden goal after the teams were tied at the end of two periods of extra-time. The teams were locked on seven goals for an extraordinary 16-and-a-half minutes more than half of a final, but was beaten for gold by the Korean giant Kim Kyong Hun. eliminated Australia's Tanya White in the preliminary rounds, defeated Russia's Natalia Ivanova 8-3. White never looked at ease in her opening bout against the Chinese Robert McGregor duals with German Belarus, the bronze medal also mirroring his placing at this year's world championships. Melbourne-based Robert. McGregor, the Oceania. champion representing Australia, could manage only 20th place after a poor fencing round and a disappointing showjump with four knockdowns and two refusals. "I was hoping to finish in the top 15," he said. "With a decent ride I could have started the run in about 15th place and beep able to run a little higher." pursue gold in the pool ' regular match after the Spanish levelled the scores with a minute-ahd-a-half remaining in normal time. When the teams remained deadlocked after two three-minute periods of extra-time, the match went into sudden-death. The first goal thus, would be the winner. Both teams had many chances, including extra-man advantages, to score the winner, but were repeatedly thwarted by the quick reflexes of the respective goalies, Jesus Rollan and Nikolai Maximov. As the match went deeper into extra-time, fatigue rendered scoring increasingly difficult Finally, nearly 10 minutes into player, losing 6-0. White moved into the repechage stages, where she had some hope of winning a bronze medal, but lost 3-1 to Morocco's Mounia Bourguigue. Erie Walter. Photo: Andy Zakell The early leader, Olivier Clergeau of France, finished eighth and America's Brad Senior, who alto led for part of the competition, was sixth. He outran his compatriot Velizar Uiev, who started in equal first place in the staggered start of the chase-run. Uiev bevn the final segment of this challenging five-discipline sport - shooting, fencing, swimming, showjumping and running -equal with Clergeau. Earlier, the near-capacity crowd had been treated to thrills and the sudden-death period, the Russian captain Gorchkov beat the lunge of Rollan to secure Russia's finals berth to end one of the longest stints of extra-time in Olympic water polo history. Meanwhile, Italian coach Ratko Rudic was yesterday suspended from all FINA water polo competitions for one year for having "brought the sport of water polo into disrepute" with his behaviour at the conclusion of Italy's quarterfinal loss to Hungary. ' Four Italian players were suspended for between one and four matches for their part in the after-match controversy. . Photo: Joe Armao In the end, the bronze medallist for the division was Canada's Dominique Bosshart, who overcame Croatian Natassa Vezmar 11-8. spills and a sensational four eliminations in the showjumping leg. Several European riders came to grief on volatile Australian horses and even McGregor, who had been practising and competing on the horses for the past two years, could not complete a clear round. No-one did. McGregor scored only 905 pentathlon points of a possible 1100 after four knockdowns and two refusals by his mount, Yarran-gobilty, but moved up to 19th position from his 22nd-place finish after the swim, his weakest event. Among the riders eliminated with no score during the showjumping was China's Zenhua Qian, who appeared to have little control over his mount at times and hung sideways off his horse, Wantabadgery, for several seconds before falling off and almost being trodden on. After remounting, he was tossed high over the top of his mount at the next jump. Two falls meant automatic disqualification. Most dramatically, Cookardinia threw off both its riders - Horacio de la Vega of Mexico and Tzanko Hantov of Bulgaria (twice). Hantov appeared to injure his back. The inaugural Olympic women's modern pentathlon starts at 6.45 am today. 51 'A .1. ''3 icmoviiMn GOLD I" Kim Kyong Hun KOR V SILVER t DanMTrtnton " AUS BRONZE ; Pascal Gentil FRA voMorsovn 6rna 1 GOLD 7 Zhong Chen CHN '',, SILVER Natalia Ivanovt- rus -r BRONZE Dominique Bosshart CAN MOOCRN NNTATHUN GOLD DMITRY SVATKOVSKY RUS SILVER . HUN"8'' BRONZE: PavtJ Dovgal -

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