What the hell did we watch? Why didn't someone help Liu Xiang up? Why was he left hopping around on one foot like an inspirational failure?
Liu Xiang was in the sixth heat of the preliminaries in the 110-meter hurdles, and on his first leap his left foot collided with the hurdle, sending him down. He landed awkwardly, tumbled and tumbled, and the CCTV commentators emitted a scream and then went speechless for the next five seconds.
Was a note proving injury all that was required to get the world’s No. 1 badminton team of Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli reinstated after their high-profile disqualification for match-fixing (and the DQs of three other teams)? I’ve emailed Thomas Lund, firstname.lastname@example.org, and the Badminton World Federation (BWF) to find out, and will report back if... Read more »
China’s Lin Dan beat Malaysia’s Lee Chong Wei 15-21, 21-10, 21-19 earlier today, becoming the first person to repeat as Olympic men’s badminton champion (he also beat Lee in the 2008 finals). That in itself could establish him as the best male badminton player of all time, but then you consider his 48 career titles, including four... Read more »
Internationally famous Chinese man Yao Ming has been color-commentating the men’s basketball games on CCTV, but as has always been his case, he’s too intelligent and opinionated to be boxed in by his sport. Very recently, as reported by Reuters, he spoke on the record with Xinhua about the badminton and Ye Shiwen controversies: “(The) same... Read more »
Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli were disqualified for match-fixing because they wanted to avoid facing Tian Qian and Zhao Yunlei in the semifinals, and now we know why. Tian and Zhao just won the gold medal, never dropping a set in any of their three knock-out round matches. They beat Japan’s Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa 21-10 25-23.... Read more »
Australia beat Brazil 70-66 yesterday to clinch a spot in the quarterfinals, but all anyone is talking about is Liz Cambage's dunk, which people are agreeing is the first-ever in women's basketball in the Olympics.
The Guardian continues to win its coverage of the Olympics. You might remember they were right on top of the Ye Shiwen story, and what can you say about their Lego reenactments of Olympic moments except bravo, good sirs.
Yu Yang’s retirement announcement Hold the phones, everyone. This story isn’t as straightforward as we thought, and it doesn’t seem like Yu Yang completely agrees with the Badminton World Federation’s decision to disqualify her and teammate Wang Xiaoli for match fixing. (Also, she announced her retirement on Tencent Weibo, but we’ll get to that in a... Read more »
When the Badminton World Federation (BWF) announced yesterday it was disqualifying four teams from the women’s doubles competition for trying to lose, including the world’s top team, China’s Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang, I have to admit my first reaction was fear that this would create more controversy than it would resolve. (Here are match “highlights.”)... Read more »
Courtesy of Sina, here’s actual Olympic footage! UPDATE, 12:06 pm: They’ve disabled the embed. But you can watch on Sina’s website if you’re within the mainland. The players in the above have, as reported, been disqualified from the tournament. The Indonesian team withdrew its appeal, and the two South Korean teams’ appeals were rejected, according to... Read more »
If you’re not up to speed on badminton’s big scandal, first go read this. And then realize that the IOC and Badminton World Federation just dropped the biggest bombshell of these Games by disqualifying four pairs of teams from the quarterfinals for match-fixing, including two teams — both South Korean (what is it with South Koreans... Read more »
Let’s start with the format: the Olympic women’s doubles badminton tournament begins with pool play with four groups of four teams, with the top two teams in each group moving on to the quarterfinals. The matchups in the quarters are predetermined: teams from Groups A and C crossover (1st-place team from A plays 2nd-place team from... Read more »
By Andray Abrahamian There was something approaching unabashed joy at Danny Boyle’s opening ceremony for London 2012. Partly because it was a creative way to render the best of Britain on stage, partly because the soundtrack was great, but mostly because it stood up to the incredible spectacle of Beijing. After the handover at the... Read more »
A Ye Shiwen ad on CCTV-5 preceded the race. Coming off the block in the fourth lane, she appeared to emerge from the water and break into the butterfly too early, but she was still in first place coming off the turn. She was barely in first after the backstroke, but slipped to third after... Read more »
You don't need to know Chinese to appreciate this video (though the subtitles by chnnewsengsub are appreciated).
Wu Jingbiao, the two-time reigning World Weightlifting Championships gold-medalist, was the favorite to win on Sunday, and would have if not for North Korean Om Yun Chol's perfect day. In his post-lift interview, Wu was inconsolable. “I feel terribly guilty for disappointing my country, the Chinese weightlifting team and all the people who supported me," he said. "I really wanted to be the best but I didn’t make it. I am sorry!"
While we all await Ye Shiwen’s next race — she’s the top qualifier (and Olympic record-holder) in the 200-meter individual medley, which begins at 8:43 pm London time / 3:43 am Beijing time — you might be interested to know that women’s gymnastics is on right now. Other Olympics stuff happened too, as you’ll see... Read more »
We’re at the point where Ye Shiwen can no longer be found guilty in China, if that makes sense. This issue has become about more than swimming. If it ever does come to light that Ye used a banned substance, I suspect the relevant organs will find a scapegoat who admits that he accidentally put... Read more »
UPDATE, 6:19 pm: The Ku6 video has been pulled, but you can watch the full race on Sina here if you’re within mainland China (they don’t allow embedding). All eyes will be on Ye Shiwen tonight (8:43 pm London, 3:43 am Beijing) when she competes in the 200-meter individual medley (she set an Olympic record... Read more »
Ye Shiwen, the 16-year-old swimmer who set a new world record on Saturday in the 400-meter individual medley, has been accused of cheating. The Guardian’s Andy Bull, who on Sunday published a very interesting and insightful account of Ye’s swim and the reactions to it and her teammates (“Over the course of the 1990s [China] had... Read more »