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Olympic Gold For Russia, Ukraine

  • RFE/RL

Russia's Mansur Isaev (white) celebrates after beating Japan's Riki Nakaya (blue) during their men's 73 kilogram judo contest final at the Olympic Games in London.

Russia's Mansur Isaev (white) celebrates after beating Japan's Riki Nakaya (blue) during their men's 73 kilogram judo contest final at the Olympic Games in London.

Ukraine's Yana Shemyankina has won a gold medal in the women's individual epee fencing competition at the London Olympics.

Shemyakia defeated the defending champion Britta Heidemann of Germany 9-8 on July 30. The victory came after an hour-long delay in the semifinals due to an appeal by South Korea against an earlier victory by Heidemann over their fencer Shim A-lam

Meanwhile, Russia's Mansur Isaev won a gold medal in the men's 73 kilogram category of judo -- the second gold medal for Russia in the sport.

Isaev beat Japan's Riki Nakaya, who won silver. Mongolia's Nyam-Ochir Sainjargal took bronze by beating Dutchman Dex Elmont.

Mongolia has now won judo medals at every Olympic Games since Athens in 2004.

Isaev's gold is Russia's fifth medal at the London Games. Russia has won another gold and three bronze medals so far.

Isaev's victory lifted Russia to seventh in the overall medals table -- moving ahead of Kazakhstan, which is now ranked eighth with two golds (one in cycling, one in weightlifting) but no silver or bronze medals.

China Tops Medals Table

China leads the overall medals table with nine gold, five silver, and three bronze medals. The United States is in second while France is in third.

Romania took its first gold medal on July 30 with Alin George Moldoveanu's surprise victory in the 10 meter air rifle event.

Also on July 30, Yulia Kalina of Ukraine took bronze in the women's 58 kilogram weightlifting category by lifting a combined total of 235 kilograms in both the snatch and the clean and jerk. She was one kilogram behind silver medalist Pimsiri Sirkaew from Thailand. China's Li Xueying won the gold and set a new Olympic record by lifting a combined total of 246 kilograms.

On the same day, Russia's world champion women's volleyball team was given a scare by the Dominican Republic. But the Russian women managed to win 3-1 -- their second preliminary round victory of the London Olympics -- to remain undefeated.

The women's team from Serbia lost their volleyball match to South Korea 1-3.

Elsewhere, in a Group A preliminary round of men's field hockey, Pakistan tied 1-1 with Spain.

In women's handball, Russia defeated Great Britain 37-16 in a preliminary round of Group A.

The Russian women's basketball team defeated Brazil 69-59.

Russia's women were also victorious in water polo, beating Britain 7-6 in a women's Group B match.

Afghan Boxer Tastes Defeat

Afghanistan's sole boxer at the London Olympics, Ajmal Faisal, was beaten by the experienced French flyweight Nordine Oubaaili on July 30.

Despite being defeated, the 21-year-old Faisal said just getting to London for the Olympics had been a triumph considering threats from Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan and the lack of facilities for training there.

In table tennis, top seed and world champion Zhang Jike from China managed to advance to the quarter-finals after a seven-game thriller against Belarus's Vladimir Samsonov.

The Belarusian player had not been expected to challenge China's top star.

Zhang said after beating the Belarusian by 4-3 that "Samsonov made me feel uncomfortable."

Meanwhile, Europe's top ranked player -- Timo Boll of Germany -- was eliminated from the table tennis competition after losing his fourth round match to Romania's Adrian Crisan.

The Romanian player will take on Chuang Chih-Yuan of Taiwan in his quarter final match.

Away from the field of play, Swiss soccer player Michel Morganella was expelled from the London Olympics on July 30 for apparently sending a racist message on Twitter after his team's defeat by South Korea.

Swiss team head Gian Gilli told reporters that the player "discriminated, insulted and violated the dignity of the South Korean football team and the South Korean people."

Morganella's Twitter account has since been deleted.

Morganella is the second Olympic athlete kicked off a team for offensive Twitter comments.

Greece dropped triple jumper Voula Papachristou last week after she posted a comment mocking African immigrants.

With reporting by Reuters, AP, and AFP

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