Olympic Daily News: 23 August 2020

Get your daily update of Olympic news: Trivia, trends, and talking points featuring Eliud Kipchoge helping plant millions of trees in Kenya, Kobe Bryant's birthday, girl's viral nutmeg, and finding your soulmate

By Ken Browne

Eliud Kipchoge is reigning Olympic marathon champ, world record holder, and the first man in history to run a sub-two hour marathon, but now he's aiming to break records as an environmental champion too:

Kipchoge wants Kenya to become the country to plant the most trees in the world.

“Kenyans are not limited," the star runner told KTN Kenya a a sub-two minute tree planting challenge, "I am happy that my 1:59 challenge has inspired the (environment) ministry. We can celebrate for being in the Guinness Book of World records by being the country which has planted the largest number of trees,” he said.

"We want every Kenyan to spend at least one hour 59 minutes to just plant 60 seedlings, only 60."

Kenya has a population of over 51 million people, so this initiative has the potential to see millions of new trees planted.

A day after it was confirmed that Kipchoge will run for a historic 5th title at the London marathon, the man himself took part in this tree planting event near his Global Sports Communication training camp in Kaptagat.

Back in June, Kipchoge adopted 50.8 hectares of Kaptagat forest, and in partnership with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry has launched this new tree planting drive.

“I want to leave Kaptagat a greater place,” the Olympic champion said.

Kipchoge's environmental outreach is spreading, earlier this month, the Ministry of Tourism named Kipchoge a Maasai Mara brand ambassador to help boost the tourism sector.

He visited the area in early August and posted this beautiful video of his morning run with wilder beast and zebra sprinting across his path.

Kobe Bryant's birthday

On the 23 August 1978 Kobe Bryant came into this world, he would have been 42 today, and we remember him again, the basketball player, the father, the man.

Today fans all over the world are showing why Kobe will never be forgotten.

Here's Kendrick Lamar's powerful tribute to Kobe: "Kobe taught us to be better."

The NBA posted this.

RIP legend.

Nutmeg of the century?

Kobe inspired a lot of people across the world in basketball and beyond.

And he would have been impressed by this little girl absolutely owning it in this viral video reposted by Judy Murray - yes, Andy's mum.

Nutmeg of the century?

Katie Taylor retains world titles

And here's another impressive woman: Ireland's superstar boxer Katie Taylor went a gruelling 10 rounds with Belgian slugger Delfine Persoon yesterday, successfully defending her world lightweight titles.

This hotly anticipated rematch came after the two fought in New York's Madison Square Garden on 1 June 2019 with Taylor edging it while Persoon and her camp claimed she should have won the fight.

But Taylor's better footwork and precise punching helped her grind out the win last night, recording a unanimous decision at the Matchroom Fight Camp in Brentwood, England, without supporters present. Judges scored it 98-93, 96-94 and 96-94 in favour of Taylor, whose professional record is now an impeccable 16-0.

"I knew it was never going to be an easy fight against Delfine, she's relentless," Taylor said afterwards, both fighters bruised, battered and swollen.

Taylor became an instant Irish hero by winning Olympic gold at London 2012 in a stadium packed with Irish fans.

Now with her professional career going from strength to strength, the sky's the limit for Katie Taylor, the unified, undisputed and unbeaten champion of the world.

Joy for Adam Ondra and Laura Rogora

There was joy too for climbing sensation Adam Ondra as the Sport Climbing World Cup got back into action after months of postponements due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Czech scaler Ondra looked like he'd never been away, beating Slovenia's 26-year-old Domen Škofic into first place to win his 23rd IFSC World Cup gold medal in Briançon in the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur region in southeastern France.

And there was a huge upset in the women's event as Italian teenager Laura Rogora stunned favourite Janja Garnbret.

The 19-year-old claimed the first World Cup medal of her career, outclimbing 26 World Cup events and six World Championships-winning Garnbret from Slovenia.

France's Fanny Gibert won bronze and there were emotional scenes as she dedicated her medal to late team-mate Luce Douady, who died tragically in a climbing accident in June aged just 16.

Get set to see much more sport climbing as it makes its Olympic debut next summer at the Tokyo Games.

We can't wait.

Finding your soulmate

When you find them, you just know. ❤️️

Time for Trivia

It's time to bring your full brain workout again.

Yesterday we asked: Who is the reigning Olympic champion in women's football from Rio 2016? These were your options:

  1. USA
  2. Sweden
  3. Netherlands
  4. Germany

And the answer is Germany, who beat Sweden by two goals to one in a thrilling final.

Here's today's question:

At the Atlanta 1996 Olympics, superstar boxer Floyd Mayweather won:

  1. Gold
  2. Silver
  3. Bronze
  4. Nothing

You might get a clue or two in the video below. 😉