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Defending champion Sun Yang claims silver behind Australian


08-07-2016 15:48 BJT

Full coverage: 2016 Rio Olympics

Obviously we begin in Brazil with the 2016 Rio Olympics, where the first day of medal competition concluded on Saturday. One of the last events to finish was swimming, and China's Sun Yang came into the Olympic Aquatics Stadium as the defending champion in the men's 400-meter freestyle, carrying heavy expectations to repeat and win the first gold medal for his country at these Summer Games. Lots of pressure on the big man, who would also be the only Chinese swimmer to reach the finals on Day One.

Defending champion Sun Yang claims silver behind Australian

Defending champion Sun Yang claims silver behind Australian

Sun is also the world record holder and reigning champion in the 1500-meter freestyle. And lining up in Lane Six for the 400-meter final, Sun would be up against strong opponents such as Mack Horton of Australia, and James Guy of Great Britain.

Guy gets off to a good start, and he would hold on to the lead and remain at the front after 250 meters. But that's when Horton and Sun start to speed up, and by the next turn, the Australian would take over the lead, with the Chinese just behind him.

Horton and Sun are neck in neck in the last 100 meters, building to a thrilling finish. But it's Horton who touches the wall first in three minutes, 41.55 seconds, with Sun just 13-hundredths of a second behind, and in silver medal position, a heart-wrenching result that leaves the dethroned champion in tears.

"I never thought too much about winning the first gold for China's delegation. I just wanted to have a perfect start for the swimming team. Over the years, it has been my team that has helped me through injuries, and set up training abroad. We can see that the level of the swimming this year is much higher than at the World Championships and previous Olympics. Furthermore, wins and losses are a matter of course for sportsmen. So now I need to make adjustments, and prepare for Monday's 200-meter freestyle," said Sun.

Hungarian sets new world record in victorious time of 4:26.36

Elsewhere, five-time world champion Katinka Hosszu set a new world record in the women's 400 meter individual medley final, after finishing in a time of four minutes, 26.35 seconds, beating Maya Dirado of the USA, and Spain's Mireia Belmonte Garcia.

USA’s Chase Kalisz & Japan’s Daiya Seto complete podium

In the men's individual medley, Japan's Kosuke Hagino, the bronze medalist from the London Olympics, shows his speed and claims the first gold medal for Japan in a time of four minutes, 6.05 seconds. USA's Chase Kalisz and Daiya Seto of Japan comes in second and third.

Chinese swimmer Li Xiang advances to event’s men’s Semi-Finals

And Adam Peaty of Great Britain would demolish his own world record in the heats of the 100-meter breaststroke, as he launches a bid to become the first British man to win an Olympic swimming gold medal for 28 years. China's Li Xiang is also into the semi-finals, after finishing 11th in the heat.

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