Life and politics from the Sunshine State's best city

What to watch at the Rio games on Thursday

in Sports/Top Headlines by

Day 13 of the Rio Games features medal action in track and field, beach volleyball, platform diving, wrestling and more. Here are some things to watch (all times local):


Usain Bolt should be lining up for gold medal No. 8 at 10:30 p.m. in the 200 meters and the biggest drama may not be whether he wins, but whether he cracks the once-thought-untouchable 19-second barrier. He already owns both the world record at 19.19, and Olympic record at 19.30.

Rio Olympics Athletics

Among those who will challenge him include Canadian Andre De Grasse, who was on Bolt’s shoulder for much of the semifinal Wednesday night, and LaShawn Merritt of the U.S. De Grasse won bronze to Bolt’s gold in the 100.

American Justin Gatlin – who won silver in the 100 and was booed at that event – failed to qualify in semis.

Men’s decathalon medals will be awarded after the 1500m finals, which start at 9:56 p.m. The athletes’ day starts with 110m hurdles (9:30 a.m.), discus (10:25 a.m.), pole vault (1:25 p.m.), javelin (6:45 p.m.) American Ashton Eaton is leading in points after the first day of events. Damian Warner of Canada, beat Eaton in a 100-meter heat and set an Olympic decathlon best 10.30 seconds in the process.

Ashton Eaton

In the women’s 400 hurdles at 10:15 p.m., the Americans try to capture their first Olympic gold in the event. Dalilah Muhammad is the favorite, but Ashley Spencer is running well.

The 30-year-old Kerron Clement tries to add a gold medal in the 400 hurdles, which start at noon. He won a silver in the event at the 2008 Beijing Games (and had a cameo in a Beyonce video ). Jamaica’s Annsert Whyte has the second best time of the year.

At 9:31 p.m., South Africa’s Caster Semenya runs in the 800 semis at 9:31 p.m. Semenya has been under unwanted scrutiny ever since word leaked in 2009, just before she won the 800-meter world title as a 19-year-old, that track officials mandated that she undergo sex testing.

The shot put finals, starting at 10:30 p.m., are Joe Kovacs‘ to lose. The American has four of the top five best throws in the world this season.

The women’s javelin finals are at 9:10 p.m.


The U.S. will most likely be without star guard Sue Bird when they face France in the semifinal at 7 p.m.

Sue Bird

Bird suffered a sprained knee capsule and is listed as day-to-day. Even without the four-time Olympian, the Americans still have the most potent offense in the tournament, averaging over 104 points a game. They have won 47 consecutive games in the Olympics and stand two victories away from a sixth straight gold medal.

The game is a rematch of the 2012 London Games gold medal match, which the Americans won by 36 points. France had its own injury at point guard when star Celine Dumerc hurt her ankle right before the Olympics began.

Earlier, at 3 p.m., Spain plays Serbia.

The gold medal game is Saturday afternoon.


The top-ranked American women look to move one step closer to a first gold when they take on Serbia in the semifinals at 1 p.m. The landscape of the tournament changed after two-time defending Olympic champion Brazil made an early exit at China’s hands.

Serbia lost in four sets to the U.S. during pool play but pulled off a surprising five-set victory at last year’s World Cup in Japan that forced the Americans to qualify for Rio in January.

China will face the upstart Netherlands women, who are leaving their mark in Rio playing in their first Olympics in 20 years. They play at 10:15 p.m.


Three-time world champion Adeline Gray is a heavy favorite in the 75-kilogram weight class, while Helen Maroulis is a serious medal contender at 53 kilograms.

Adeline gray

Gray’s top challenger will likely be Aline Da Silva Ferreira, a silver medalist from the world championship in 2014 who’ll no doubt be backed by a boisterous home crowd.

Maroulis, who won a world title at 55 kilograms in 2015, will find herself up against the toughest opponent of her career if she and Japan’s Saori Yoshida reach the finals.

Yoshida is a 16-time world champion – including three Olympic titles – and she hasn’t lost in a major tournament in years. But Yoshida’s margins of victory have shrunk in recent tournaments, and Maroulis hasn’t lost a match in two years.

The qualification matches start at 10 a.m.


U.S. bantamweight Shakur Stevenson is scheduled to face Russia’s Vladimir Nikitin at 2:30 p.m. for a spot in the gold-medal bout, although Nikitin might be unable to fight after taking serious damage in his hotly disputed win over Ireland’s Michael Conlan two days earlier.

Shakur Stevenson

Three Cuban boxers appear in the final four fights, culminating in Julio Cesar La Cruz‘s gold-medal light heavyweight bout with Kazakhstan’s Adilbek Niyazymbetov at 3:30 p.m.


China’s dominance at the diving pool shows no signs of waning as the 10-meter platform finals approach at 4 p.m.

Si Yajie and Ren Qian went 1-2 in the preliminaries Wednesday, setting themselves up to challenge for China’s sixth diving gold medal of the Rio Olympics.

Si scored no lower than 76.50 in any of the five rounds and posted the top score of 397.45 points. Ren was a bit off on her third dive but still claimed the second spot at 385.80.

No one else was even close. Jessica Parratto of the United States took third at 346.80.

The top 18 move on to Thursday’s semifinals at 10 a.m.

Republished with permission from the Associated Press.

Latest from Sports

Go to Top