Olympic Daily News: 3 September 2020

Get your daily update of Olympic news: Trivia, trends, and talking points as Karolina Pliskova falls, Naomi Osaka and Novak Djokovic advance at the US Open, Riga claims FIBA 3x3 Masters title

By Scott Bregman

We’re used to seeing Olympians push the boundaries of their sports, but what David Blaine did Wednesday is extreme.

Blaine latest daring – and yes, magical – feat involved the illusionist floating to over 24,000 feet (7,315m) above the earth before skydiving and parachuting down. The event was live streamed on YouTube.

Which Olympians have taken their sports to new heights? Let us know on Twitter!

No. 1 seed Karolina Pliskova pushed out; Naomi Osaka, Novak Djokovic advance at US Open

The third-ranked women’s tennis player Karolina Pliskova, who is the US Open’s top seed player, feel Wednedsay to France’s Caroline Garcia. Garcia took it in straight sets, 6-1, 7-6 (7-2) and will face American Jennifer Brady next.

"I maybe didn't play my best. But that's how it is sometimes,” said Pliskova afterward. “I'm not a robot, so I don't have to play every day amazing."

Japan’s Naomi Osaka advanced, winning against Italy’s Camila Giorgi easily (6-6, 6-2). The 20-year-old former US Open champion wore a mask with the name ‘Elijah McClain’ on it as she walked on court. McClain died last year after being put in a chokehold by police.

"I just want people to have more knowledge,” said Osaka. “I feel like the platform I have right now is something I used to take for granted and I feel like I should be using it for something."

Olympic bronze medallist Novak Djokovic held off Great Britain’s Kyle Edmund, who claimed the first set a tie break. Play continues Thursday with Olympic champs Serena Williams and Andy Murray headlining the evening session.

Gymnastics’ first Olympic balance beam champion Nina Bocharova dies at 95

Nina Bocharova, the first gymnast to win Olympic gold on the balance beam, died earlier this week at 95.

“With women’s artistic gymnastics still in its infancy, Bocharova exuded strength and grace, the trademarks for which the Soviet program came to be known,” said the International Gymnastics Federation.

Bocharova, born in Ukraine, was part of the Soviet team that took gold at the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki. It was the first Games where medals were available in women’s gymnastics beyond just the team event.

The Soviets began their domination of the sport, winning four of the six gold medals in women’s gymnastics in Helsinki in their first appearance at the Olympics. Its team victory was the first of eight-straight titles.

Riga claims FIBA 3x3 World Tour Hungary Masters 2020

Riga (LAT) took the title Tuesday at the FIBA 3x3 World Tour Hungary Masters in Debrecen, Hungary. They faced Ub (SRB), a team that had beaten them in the pool stage, coming out on top in a 21-20 victory.

Riga was led by Edgars Krumins, who had a team-high 9 points, while Nauris Miezis sunk the buzzer beater to take the championship. Karlis Lasmanis was named MVP of the event in what was Riga’s fourth Masters win.

Ub’s top scorer was Ivan Popovic, who added 11 points.

3x3’s return to action continues with the third of three Masters events in Debrecen set to begin Friday with the Europe Masters.

Trivia time

Yesterday, we asked who the last non-Russian woman to win individual rhythmic gymnastics gold at the Olympics. That’s Ukraine’s Kateryna Serebrianska at Atlanta 1996.

Here’s today’s question:

What Youth Olympics discipline will be featured as part of the Olympic programme in Tokyo 2020?

  1. Roller speed skating

  2. 3x3 basketball

  3. Breaking

  4. Ski mountaineering