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Phelps, Soni Break Own Olympic Records

  • RFE/RL

Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) congratulates Russia's Tagir Khaibulayev after he defeated Mongolia's Tuvshinbayar Naidan in their men's 100-kilogram final judo match at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) congratulates Russia's Tagir Khaibulayev after he defeated Mongolia's Tuvshinbayar Naidan in their men's 100-kilogram final judo match at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

Michael Phelps of the United States has won gold in the men's 200-meter individual medley in London to collect the 20th Olympic medal of his career.

America's Ryan Lochte took silver with Laszlo Cseh of Hungary claiming bronze.

Phelps raised his record as the best decorated modern Olympian to 16 gold, two silver, and two bronze.

Phelps eclipsed the previous record of Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina's 18 medals on July 31.

Earlier in the day, American Rebecca Soni beat her own world record as she won gold in the women's 200-meter breaststroke.

The 25-year-old clocked a time of 2 minutes and 19.59 seconds to become the first woman to break 2:20.00.

Japan's Satomi Suzuki took silver while Russia's Iuliia Efimova finished third.

The United States was at the top of the overall medal table after the day's competition on August 2 with 37 medals, including 18 gold. China was in second place with 34 medals, including 18 gold, followed by Japan with 19 medals.

In Judo, Russia's Tagir Khaibulayev beat defending champion Tuvshinbayar Naidan of Mongolia to win the men's 100-kilogram judo title.

Khaibulayev claimed his country's third gold medal of the judo competition with an unstoppable shoulder throw. Henk Grol of the Netherlands won bronze.

British Prime Minister David Cameron and Russian President Vladimir Putin watched the event following talks on Syria.

"I look forward to taking the president to the judo at the Olympic Park," Cameron said after the meeting, "But I note that we will be spectators and not participants."

Badminton Fallout

Meanwhile, Ranomi Kromowidjojo of the Netherlands won the gold medal in the women's 100-metre freestyle. Aliaksandra Herasimenia of Belarus, who was joint world champion last year, won the silver, with Tang Yi of China taking bronze.

Also on August 2, Italy beat Russia to take the women's team foil fencing gold medal. The Italian trio beat Inna Deriglazova, Larisa Korobeynikova, and Aida Shanaeva, who took the silver medal. South Korea took bronze.

Meanwhile, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has asked the national delegations of China, South Korea, and Indonesia to investigate the roles of their badminton coaches following the disqualification of eight female players.

Four women's doubles teams – one from China, one from Indonesia, and two from South Korea – have been disqualified from the Olympic badminton tournament for deliberately trying to lose matches in order to secure an easier run in the knockout rounds.

"The national Olympic committees are autonomous, they take action," IOC spokesman Mark Adams told reporters. "We work together with all of them. We obviously want to see what we would say is a good and positive result for the sport and for the Olympics. And now we're also, by the way, just making sure at this stage that they consider also the entourage, and in this case also the coaches, just to make sure that it isn't just the athletes who are punished for this."

One of the Chinese players, Yu Yang, has announced that she is quitting the sport, saying her dreams had been "heartlessly shattered."

The coach of China's Olympic badminton team, Li Yongbo, has apologized for the incident.

With reporting by AFP, dpa, and Reuters

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