July 26 Tokyo 2020 Olympics news and results

By Joshua Berlinger, Aditi Sangal and Adam Renton, CNN

Updated 12:00 a.m. ET, July 27, 2021
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9:50 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Tom Pidcock claims first ever mountain bike cross-country Gold for GB

From CNN's Aleks Klosok

Great Britain’s Thomas Pidcock celebrates winning the gold medal in the mountain bike cross-country race on July 26.
Great Britain’s Thomas Pidcock celebrates winning the gold medal in the mountain bike cross-country race on July 26. (Michael Steele/Getty Images)

Tom Pidcock secured Great Britain’s first ever mountain bike cross-country Gold medal with a dominant display.

The 21-year-old, who gained 26 positions on the first lap before moving to the front, never relinquished his lead, clocking a time of 1:25:14.

“It’s nothing like any other race. The Olympics just transcends any sport," Pidcock said after winning gold.
"You compete and represent your country and everyone in your country is behind you, no matter what sports they like. It’s just national pride, it’s unbelievable.”

The rider, who broke his collarbone after being hit by a car in training in June, beat Switzerland’s Matthias Flückiger by 20 seconds, with bronze going to Spain’s David Valero Serrano.

Pidcock's victory delivered GB’s third gold medal of the Games.

“It’s been a such a hard time coming here from crashing and breaking my collarbone and that’s just unbelievable," he added.
“I know that my mum and girlfriend are crying at home. It’s sad that they can’t be here but I'll see them when I get home.”
9:51 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Austria's Anna Kiesenhofer on her cycling gold medal: "I dare to be different"

From CNN's Aditi Sangal and Coy Wire

Austria's Anna Kiesenhofer competes in the women's road race on Sunday, July 25.
Austria's Anna Kiesenhofer competes in the women's road race on Sunday, July 25. (Greg Baker/AFP/Getty Images)

Anna Kiesenhofer secured Austria's first cycling gold medal since 1896 with a shock win.

The 30-year-old broke away from the leading group more than 40 kms from the end, and spent much of the rest of the 147-kilometer course so far ahead of the chasing pack that she was out of sight of the other cyclists.

As an athlete you want to win ... But also, I know well, realistically, I'm not supposed to win here. So, it was just yeah, incredible, I couldn't believe it even crossing the line I couldn't believe it," she told CNN.

The Austrian, who doesn't currently have a professional contract, only took up the sport in 2014, turning professional three years later.

Kiesenhofer isn't just an accomplished cyclist — she has a master's degree in mathematics from the University of Cambridge, England, and a Ph.D in applied mathematics from the Polytechnic University of Catalonia in Barcelona, Spain.

She credits her win to her ability to be unpredictable, she said.

In part, it's because I dare to be different. I have a different approach, and this means that I'm also unpredictable. And that's exactly, yeah, what happened yesterday. People didn't think I might win," she added.

Kiesenhofer gave the performance of a lifetime to eclipse a field of big names and win the race, finishing in just under four hours.

She explained her strategy ahead of the race.

"When I'm riding hard, there's not enough blood and oxygen in my brain to do math," she said. "In the lead up to a race, just an analytical mindset that makes me approach the race differently.
"So I really make a plan, I think about what power am I going to put out and at [what] point of the race, how I have to plan my nutrition and so on."

Kiesenhofer said she was thinking of her students and her family, who would be watching.

"I know that students are always googling the name of their teacher ... I've had students following my cycling and wishing me good luck when they knew a race was coming up," she said.
"My family, I knew they were watching. I visualized them in front of the screen already from the start of the race. I knew they were getting up at 6 a.m. in Austria to watch me. My mother had actually prepared for weeks, like 'how do I set up the livestream.'"

Watch the interview:

8:39 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Dutch tennis player drops out after testing positive for Covid-19 in Tokyo

From CNN's Gawon Bae and Chandler Thornton

Netherlands' Jean-Julien Rojer returns a shot during a doubles first round tennis match on July 24.
Netherlands' Jean-Julien Rojer returns a shot during a doubles first round tennis match on July 24. (Tiziana Fabi/AFP/Getty Images)

Dutch tennis player Jean-Julien Rojer has tested positive for Covid-19, according to the International Tennis Federation (ITF).

This ends the Olympic player's campaign along with his partner Wesley Koolhof.

"Rojer and his partner Wesley Koolhof have been withdrawn from the men's doubles event, and their opponents Marcus Daniell and Michael Venus of New Zealand receive a walkover into the quarterfinals," the ITF said in a statement Monday.

"We wish Jean-Julien a speedy recovery," the statement added.

Rojer is the fourth athlete from the Netherlands' team to test positive for Covid-19 in Tokyo, according to CNN reporting.  

Other Dutch athletes that tested positive include skateboarder Candy Jacobs, rower Finn Florijn and taekwondo athlete Reshmie Oogink.

4:12 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Athletes can take their masks off for a photo on the Olympic podium, IOC says

From CNN's Chandler Thornton

USA's Caeleb Dressel, Blake Pieroni, Bowen Becker and Zach Apple pose with their gold medals on the podium after the 4x100m freestyle relay swimming event on July 26.
USA's Caeleb Dressel, Blake Pieroni, Bowen Becker and Zach Apple pose with their gold medals on the podium after the 4x100m freestyle relay swimming event on July 26. (Attila Kisbenedek/AFP/Getty Images)

Masks are a "must-have" on the podium at. Tokyo 2020 but athletes will be allowed to take them off for 30 seconds for a photo, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has decided, according to spokesman Mark Adams.

The adjustment to the IOC's stance for Olympic athletes wearing masks on the Olympic podium was made after discussions, Adams added at Monday's press briefing.

"And I think everyone would appreciate one, that the risk is very, very, very, very low and two, that's completely understandable," Adams said.

This comes after Adams told reporters during an off-camera interview that there were no relaxations around mask rules for anyone at the Games.

8:43 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Tom Daley and Matty Lee win GB gold in men's synchronized diving

From CNN's Ben Church

Britain's Tom Daley and Matty Lee hug after winning the synchronized 10m platform diving final on Monday, July 26.
Britain's Tom Daley and Matty Lee hug after winning the synchronized 10m platform diving final on Monday, July 26. (Jonathan Nackstrand/AFP/Getty Images)

Great Britain's Tom Daley and Matty Lee edged out hot favorites China to win gold in the men's synchronized 10m platform diving, with a score of 471.81.

Daley — a national hero in Britain since making his Olympic debut as 14-year-old in 2008 — had tears in his eyes as he finally added gold to the bronze medals he won at London 2012 and Rio 2016.

His partner Lee was making his Olympic debut, but the British divers produced an impeccable performance in order to end China's winning run in the discipline that extended back to 2000.

China's impressive duo of Cao Yuan and Chen Aisen clinched silver with a score of 470.58, whilst Aleksandr Bondar and Viktor Minibaev of the Russian Olympic Committee won bronze with a score of 439.92.

5:34 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Surfer Stephanie Gilmore finds solace in Serena Williams' longevity after shock defeat

From CNN's Matias Grez

Australia’s Stephanie Gilmore reacts after losing her round 3 heat, eliminating her from the competition, on July 26.
Australia’s Stephanie Gilmore reacts after losing her round 3 heat, eliminating her from the competition, on July 26. (Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Decorated Australian surfer Stephanie Gilmore suffered an upset in her round of 16 clash against South Africa's Bianca Buitendag on Monday.

Few would have expected Buitendag to stand a chance against the world No. 5, but some indecision from Gilmore proved costly.

The 33-year-old chose to pass up on a wave, Buitendag rode it instead and posted a decisive score of 7.10 — surfers are ranked using their two highest scores.

“I was so fired up, yesterday was such a good heat," Gilmore said. "I was feeling really confident, really strong. Bianca is a really tough opponent. Both of us are probably the tallest girls in the whole event, so it was a really level playing field.

“Her backhand is really strong. I let her get that wave on the priority, and she got the highest heat score. I looked at that wave and was like, it doesn’t look that good. I let her have it. She turned it into a seven (point score), that was the most frustrating for me.

“I should’ve taken that wave and just kinda held that control of the situation. It’s a tough one. I still had a good five minutes in the end to try and make it, but I just couldn’t do it today.”

Gilmore, who will be 36 when the Paris Olympics are held in 2024, says athletes like Serena Williams remaining competitive at an older age is providing her with motivation.

“(I’m) super disappointed that I couldn’t make it happen, but there’s always Paris (in 2024)," she said. "I’m only 33 and there’s plenty of amazing female athletes who get up into their forties. Look at Serena Williams, she’s still doing so well. So there’s plenty of time.

“To come here and to be an Olympian is very special but to not get the result I wanted I’m really thinking, ’what did I do wrong, what can I do better and how do I get back?”
9:52 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

"Yeah, whatever," says Ariarne Titmus after beating Katie Ledecky to claim 400m freestyle gold

From CNN's Matias Grez

Ariarne Titmus, left, of Australia wins the final of the 400m freestyle ahead of Katie Ledecky, of the United States, on July 26.
Ariarne Titmus, left, of Australia wins the final of the 400m freestyle ahead of Katie Ledecky, of the United States, on July 26. (David J. Phillip/AP)

The women's 400 meter freestyle final was one of the most hotly anticipated races at these Tokyo Games — and it certainly delivered on the drama.

Ariarne Titmus fought her way back to overtake two-time defending Olympic champion Katie Ledecky and earn Australia's first gold in this event since 1972.

However, despite the intense pressure the two swimmers must have been feeling, 20-year-old Titmus remained remarkably calm — both during and after the race.

“Coming into the race my mind was very clear," she said. "I wasn’t thinking about splits or that kind of thing, I just swam intuition — the training that I’ve done, my body just knew what to do. I just tried to stay composed.

“Honestly, I didn’t even look at the time. I just saw ‘one’ against my name, and once I saw that I was just kind of, like, ‘yeah, whatever.' But it’s a PB so that’s good.

“I do feel pressure, but I feel like I do a good job at kind of eating it all up and using it. I’ve been very relaxed at this meet, more relaxed than I thought I would be. I was way more nervous swimming at trials than I was tonight.

“This is what we work for, I’m at the Olympic Games. I’m just trying to enjoy it as much as I can. As much as this isn’t a normal Olympics with the Covid protocols, I’m still having great fun. For me, tonight was just being out there in a race, it’s the best part about swimming.

“I was excited that to win this event. I had to beat a great champion [Ledecky] and that makes it even more satisfying. She has done unbelievable things for this sport, and especially middle-distance swimming.

“I feel like if people back home can enjoy this moment like I can, I’m really happy that I’ve brought some joy to the country during a tough time.”

The 24-year-old Ledecky was full of praise for her opponent and said they had "both helped each other" over the past few years.

Despite not taking home the medal she wanted, the US superstar said standing on the Olympic podium is "not something I take for granted."

"It’s just great for this event, and all the freestyle events, to have had some really great competitors in the field," she said.

"We’ve only raced a handful of times, I guess probably on average once a year over the last five years. Each race is always a tough race and that’s something that motivates you in training.

“When we meet up it’s always a great race. I hope we have many more great races this week and in the future.

“Of course you always want to hear your national anthem, but I’m proud of how I swam and how I got to that point. It’s not an easy journey, it’s never an easy journey to the podium, and so it’s not something I take for granted, being up there.

“I think I just came into this race very much at peace with the work that I’d put in to get to this point.

“That’s the biggest win of all. I just knew, no matter the outcome, that I was going to put up a fight, and put up a great race, and I’m glad I did. Even if I didn’t I was still going to be happy for whoever won gold.

“I just felt a lot of joy and happiness and love coming into this race, and just kind of carried that with me. That’s the biggest win of all."
3:09 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Media boat causes chaos at the start of the men's triathlon

From CNN's Ben Church

Triathletes dive into the water as a broadcast boat prevents all swimmers from starting forcing a restart before the individual triathlon on July 26.
Triathletes dive into the water as a broadcast boat prevents all swimmers from starting forcing a restart before the individual triathlon on July 26. (Adam Pretty/Getty Images)

There was chaos at the start of the men's triathlon when about half of the athletes dived into the water to begin their swim while a boat was still blocking many of the competitors on the platform.

The starting gun seemed to be triggered too early, causing the boat to hastily reverse out of the way while race officials recalled those who had started their swim.

After the restart, Norway's Kristian Blummenfelt went on to win gold -- his country's first medal at Toyko 2020 -- with a time of 1:45:04. 

Great Britain’s Alex Yee claimed the silver medal and Hayden Wilde of New Zealand took the bronze.

“I was caught up in that but it was kind of good but kind of annoying at the same time," Wilde said about the confusing start.
"I looked to the left and I was like, ‘oh man, I’ve had a great start, this doesn’t happen to me.' But then I realized that half of the field wasn’t actually there so we turned back.
"It was actually quite good to tick the arms over for 50 plus meters. But still, it kind of got the heart rate up a bit too much.
"It is what it is and you’ve just got to keep composed, and sometimes that happens and you’ve just got to roll with the punches.”
2:43 a.m. ET, July 26, 2021

Nationalist sentiment rises as China off to strong start at Tokyo Olympics

From CNN's Nectar Gan and Steve George in Hong Kong

Editor's note: A version of this post appeared in CNN's Meanwhile in China newsletter, a three-times-a-week update exploring what you need to know about the country's rise and how it impacts the world. Sign up here.

The Olympics has long been an occasion for celebrating national pride. And for an increasingly confident China, the Tokyo Games is seen as the latest opportunity to showcase its national strength, as it looks to challenge the United States for top spot on the medal table.

So far, Team China has got off to a strong start, to the cheers of millions of fans online.

On Saturday, Chinese social media exploded in euphoria when shooter Yang Qian won the first gold of the Tokyo Games in the women's 10-meter air rifle. The 21-year-old also set a new Olympic record with a 251.8 final score.

As of Monday morning in Japan, China has bagged six gold medals — three in weightlifting, one in fencing and one in diving in addition to Yang's air rifle gold. That's enough to top the medal table, followed by Japan and the United States.

Nationalist sentiment: On Weibo, China's heavily censored version of Twitter, the Tokyo Games has been among the top trending topics since Friday evening. While many are rightfully proud of the Chinese team's achievements, the nationalist sentiment has at times been more aggressive.

"Let the 'March of the Volunteers' blast forth in little Japan!" read the top comment under a post from Communist Party mouthpiece People's Daily announcing Yang's win, employing a common derogatory term for the Japanese ("March of the Volunteers" is China's national anthem).

The comment sections of top state media outlets like the People's Daily are among the most strictly censored corners of Weibo. The fact that the comment was allowed to receive nearly half a million "likes" and occupy top spot suggests at least official tolerance, if not encouragement of such rhetoric.

In other cases, the nationalist sentiment has gone too far even for Chinese censors. On Saturday, Yang was briefly attacked by some online nationalists and told to "get out of China" for having previously shown off her impressive collection of Nike sneakers on Weibo.

Nike, along with H&M and other big Western apparel brands faced calls for boycott in China in March, owing to their stand against the alleged use of forced labor to produce cotton in Xinjiang.

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