Ana Marcela Cunha, of Brazil, celebrates after winning the women’s marathon swimming event at Tokyo. Jae C. Hong/Associated Press

TOKYO — Ana Marcela Cunha of Brazil won the women’s 10-kilometer Olympic marathon swimming event in Tokyo on Wednesday.

Cunha touched first in 1 hour, 59 minutes, 30.8 seconds, finishing nine-tenths of a second ahead of defending champion Sharon van Rouwendaal of the Netherlands. Van Rouwendaal took silver in 1:59.31.7.

Kareena Lee of Australia earned bronze in 1:59.32.5.

Cunha won her first medal in her third Olympics. She was 10th five years ago in Rio de Janeiro and fifth in the 2008 Beijing Games.

“We arrived here wanting, as much as you can, this medal,” Cunha said. “I said to my coach to win this race will be very difficult for my opponents because I want it so hard, so much, and I’m really well prepared.”

American Haley Anderson finished sixth and her teammate, Ashley Twichell, was seventh.

Cunha and Twichell traded the lead through the first five laps before the American dropped to fourth. Leonie Beck of Germany moved into first ahead of Cunha on Lap 6, when the top eight swimmers broke away from the field. They swam in parallel groups of four, with the Brazilian soon taking over the lead for good and slapping the overhead timing device to clinch the gold.

“We are Latin people; we are hot, we are emotional people,” Cunha said, “so I had to be very cold mentally in the race to be focused. I knew I was prepared for that.”

Sporting green-and-yellow hair resembling the colors of Brazil’s flag, Cunha smiled and signaled No. 1 after getting out of the water.

After putting the medal around her neck, Cunha set down her bouquet on the podium and saluted the flag with her right hand. She later took a playful bite out of her medal.

Van Rouwendaal was among the top 10 before beginning her move on Lap 5. She worked her way into third behind Beck and Cunha, and outswam Lee on the final lap to secure silver.

“I had to be smart and I didn’t want to swim in front because as the favorite, people would maybe pull me back,” Van Rouwendaal said, “so I tried to stay second and third, and then saw Ana. It’s best to let her stay in front, then maybe I could come back, but it got really hard.”

The seven-lap race began at 6:30 a.m. in an attempt to beat the searing heat and humidity.

The air temperature during the latter stages of the race was 86 degrees with 74% humidity that made it feel like 95.

The water temperature was about 84 degrees, under the allowable limit of 88.

Alice Dearing, the first Black female swimmer to represent Britain in the Olympics, finished 19th. She made news before the Games with her bid to wear an extra-large cap designed specifically for thick and curly hair.

FINA rejected the cap, citing no previous instances in which swimmers needed “caps of such size and configuration.”


WRESTLING: As Tamyra Mensah-Stock celebrated winning her Olympic gold medal, she hoped her victory would encourage Black girls in the United States to consider wrestling.

When she defeated Nigeria’s Blessing Oborududu 4-1 in the women’s 68-kilogram freestyle wrestling final, she became the first American Black woman to win Olympic gold in wrestling and the second American woman overall.

“These young women are going to see themselves in a number of ways and they’re going to look up there and go, I can do that,” she said. “I can see myself.”

Helen Maroulis was the first American woman to earn Olympic gold in the sport when she upset Japan’s Saori Yoshida to win the 53 kg class in 2016.

Black women have had their moments in U.S. women’s wrestling. Toccara Montgomery won gold at the Pan-Am Games in 2003, Iris Smith won a world title in 2005 and Randi Miller earned bronze at the 2008 Olympics.

“They paved the way for me,” Mensah-Stock said.

Oborududu made history also as the first Nigerian – male or female – to earn a wrestling medal at the Olympics.

“After wrestling to get into the final yesterday, I was having a lot of messages, a lot of calls,” Oborududu said. “I locked down my phone, because I don’t want to receive any calls, or anything that was really disturbing me. I switched off my phone so I was not in any kind of pressure. I know that I’ve created the record for my country.”

Mensah-Stock was proud of the fact that she wrestled a Black African woman for the gold medal. Mensah-Stock’s father is from Ghana, a nation in West Africa.

“I’m like, ’Oh my gosh, look at us representing,” Mensah-Stock said. “It’s so freaking awesome. You’re making history, I’m making history. We’re making history. So it meant a lot.”

Mensah-Stock, the No. 1 seed, blitzed through a formidable field. She defeated Japan’s Sara Dosho – a 2016 Olympic gold medalist – 10-0 in the first round.

She beat China’s Feng Zhao 10-0 in the quarterfinals, then beat Ukraine’s Alla Cherkasova – a former world champion – 10-4 in the semifinal.

She finished the dominant run by defeating Oborududu, the No. 2 seed and a three-time Olympian, in the final.

WOMEN’S BEACH VOLLEYBALL: The women’s semifinals are set in beach volleyball after a pair of upsets at the Tokyo Olympics.

Latvia and Australia advanced to the final four at the Shiokaze Park venue after they both beat favored teams from Canada. The United States and Switzerland won in the morning session and will meet in the first match on Thursday.

Mariafe Artacho and Taliqua Clancy of Australia beat top-seeded Sarah Pavan and Melissa Humana-Paredes 21-15, 19-21, 15-12. Tina Graudina and Anastasija Kravcenoka of Latvia eliminated Heather Bansley and Brandie Wilkerson 21-13, 18-21, 15-11.

It would be the first-ever women’s beach volleyball medal for either Switzerland or Latvia and just the second for any European country. Germany won gold in Rio de Janeiro.

MEN’S BASKETBALL: Australia has two more chances to finally secure its first major men’s international medal. And a matchup with the U.S. awaits.

Patty Mills scored 18 points, Australia used a 25-0 run in the second half to turn a close game into a runaway, and the Boomers beat Argentina 97-59 on Tuesday night in the fourth and final men’s quarterfinal.

Australia gave up 22 points in the first 10 minutes; it allowed 26 points in the next 25 minutes, remaining unbeaten at these Olympics and possibly closing the international career of Argentina’s Luis Scola. The 41-year-old Scola, a five-time Olympian, hasn’t said if he’s going to continue playing for the national team.

He finished with seven points, checking out with 51.4 seconds left and getting a lengthy ovation – even from the Australian players. Scola waved in acknowledgement as blue-and-white spotlights in a nod to Argentina’s colors flashed in the arena, and the ovation continued until he waved again.

Scola’s apparent final performance for Argentina came hours after Pau and Marc Gasol played together for the last time for Spain, leaving holes to fill for countries who became champions through their brilliance.

“It’s time for new faces to show up,” Scola said. “It’s time for us to go.”

• Rudy Gobert scored 22 points, Evan Fournier had 21 and France advanced to the men’s basketball semifinals in the Olympics for the first time since 2000 by beating Italy 84-75 on Tuesday.

Thomas Heurtel made the tiebreaking 3-pointer with 2:18 remaining after Italy had erased a 14-point deficit and Gobert had a couple of late buckets to finish it out, including a spinning slam for the final basket.

The French will play Luka Doncic and Slovenia on Thursday in the semifinals.

BASEBALL: José Bautista had just gotten his first Olympic hit, extending the Dominican Republic’s tournament with a walkoff single that capped a ninth-inning rally and eliminated surprising Israel.

Of course, that bat was going to get flipped.

“It’s part of this New Age baseball thing that’s happening,” the 40-year-old said after Tuesday night’s 7-6 victory. “It started in winter ball a few years ago. It’s just kind of giving a little bit of your own flavor to the game, a little bit of celebrating the excitement of getting a hit.”

And what excitement. Israel overcame a 2-0 fifth-inning deficit, wasted a 4-2, sixth-inning lead, fell behind 5-4 when Jeison Guzman homered in the seventh off Zack Weiss and surged ahead 6-5 in the eighth when Danny Valencia hit his third home run of the tournament, a two-run drive off Jumbo Diaz.

Weiss (1-1) had relieved with one out in the sixth, and Israel manager Eric Holtz was reluctant to reach deeper into his bullpen.

Red Sox minor leaguer Johan Mieses led off the ninth with a shot that nearly cleared the left-field seats and left the ballpark, the fourth homer of the Olympics allowed by Weiss. Melky Cabrera singled, Roldani Baldwin sacrificed pinch-runner Yefri Pérez to second, Guzman was intentionally walked and D.J. Sharabi relieved.

Gustavo Núñez grounded into a forceout that left runners at the corners, bringing up Bautista. The six-time All-Star had been left out of the starting lineup by manager Hector Borg after going 0 for 8, then entered in the fourth inning after Emilio Bonifacio injured a hamstring. Bautista had walked and flied out before batting in a key spot nearly three years after his last big league plate appearance.

With three infielders on the left side, Bautista took a 1-2 breaking ball that just missed the outside corner, then reached out and grounded another curve that was way outside. The ball bounced between second baseman Ian Kinsler, shifted to the left side of second, and shortstop Scotty Burcham, and into left field for a single.

Bautista took two steps toward first and gave the bat a gentle end-over-end toss – just two full rotations, nothing like the epic flip that followed his three-run homer for Toronto off Texas’ Sam Dyson in Game 5 of the 2015 AL Division Series. He was mobbed by teammates in the middle of the infield.

The Dominicans (2-2) earned a matchup against the United States (2-1) just 14 hours later on Wednesday. Under the double-elimination format, the winner of that game will play for a gold medal game berth against the loser of Wednesday night’s Japan-South Korea semifinal.

TRACK AND FIELD: When brash Norwegian hurdler Karsten Warholm led the field to the starting line on a steamy afternoon at Olympic Stadium, he and his seven opponents had every reason to expect they’d be part of something special. It turned out to be more than that.

This gathering of the world’s best 400-meter hurdlers Tuesday produced a gold medal for Warholm, a world record, a masterpiece and slice of history. It also might have been one of the best races ever run.

“I never thought in my wildest imagination that this would be possible,” Warholm said after smashing his own world record in a time of 45.94 seconds.

In deciding where the race stands in the annals of Olympic history, there is a lot to consider. First, the man who finished behind Warholm, Rai Benjamin, ran more than half a second faster than any other hurdler in history: 46.17. Had anyone dared tell him he would run that fast and finish second, Benjamin said, “I would probably beat you up and tell you to get out of my room.”

Second, the third-place finisher, Alison dos Santos of Brazil, finished in 46.72, which would’ve been a world record five weeks earlier.  And third, the man who finished seventh in the eight-man field, Rasmus Magi of Estonia, was barely in the frame of photos taken from behind the finish line. But he was one of six to set either a world, continental or national record.

“It’s a lot to process,” Benjamin said.

• Elaine Thompson-Herah blew away a much-decorated field in the 200 meters Tuesday night. The latest sprint star from Usain Bolt’s island country of Jamaica completed her second straight Olympic sprint sweep in 21.53 seconds, the second-fastest time in history.

“It means a lot to me to be in that history, to be in that work-hard book,” said Thompson-Herah, who spent much of 2021 ailing with an Achilles injury and didn’t reach top form until she got to Japan.

It marked the second time in four nights that Thompson-Herah has won a sprint and recorded a time that fell short of only the late Florence Griffith Joyner’s hallowed, 33-year-old world records. The 200 record is 21.34. In the 100 meters, Thompson-Herah started pointing at the clock a few steps before the finish line and finished in 10.61, which was good for the Olympic record but not Flo Jo’s overall mark of 10.49.

In the 200, Thompson-Herah ran hard all the way through and stuck her tongue out as she pushed her chest forward at the line. No questions this time about what would’ve happened if she’d left it all on the track. Both finishes, of course, equaled gold medals, and now Thompson-Herah will have at least four when she gets back to Jamaica. There’s a chance for a fifth if she competes in the women’s 4×100-meter relay this weekend.

“By the Olympic finish, I’ll probably see what I’ve done,” said the 29-year-old, who grew up in Banana Ground on the southern side of the island. “At this moment, I’m just a normal girl.”

• American Noah Lyles, after building a comfortable lead in the 200-meter semifinals, put things on cruise control with about 15 meters left, only to be stunned to see Canada’s Aaron Brown and Liberia’s Joseph Fahnbulleh busting it to the line to edge him out in a photo finish.

Lyles had to wait a while to find out if he would earn one of two wild-card spots in the final. His run of 19.99 seconds was fast enough, and he insisted nothing was amiss. “No. I went to plan,” Lyles said.

There will be no cruise control when he lines up Wednesday night in a field that will include Andre DeGrasse and 17-year-old American Erriyon Knighton, who played to the cameras and ran his hands across his nametag when he qualified.

• In pole vault, Sweden’s Armand Duplantis had the win wrapped up, but hadn’t missed, so he got three chances at the world record of 6.19 meters. He couldn’t clear it, and so made due with a gold medal and a jump of 6.02.

• The women’s long jump title went to Malaika Mihambo, who jumped 7 meters flat on her last try to surpass America’s Brittney Reese.

• Not heading to the podium is Gwen Berry. The outspoken American hammer thrower finished 11th in the final that went to Anita Wlodarczyk of Poland, who took gold for the third straight Olympics.

EQUESTRIAN: Jessica Springsteen, the daughter of famed rocker Bruce Springsteen, failed to qualify for the Olympic individual jumping finals at Tokyo’s Equestrian Park on Tuesday night.

The 29-year-old’s Olympic debut was off to a strong start on the 14-jump course before her horse got uneasy around the 11th obstacle, and the pair earned four penalty points for knocking down a rail. That put her on the bubble of the 73-horse field for one of 30 spots in the final. She was formally eliminated about an hour after riding.

WOMEN’S VOLLEYBALL: The U.S. women’s volleyball team will likely be without two starters when the Americans face the Dominican Republic in the Olympic quarterfinals.

Setter Jordyn Poulter and opposite Jordan Thompson were limited at practice on Tuesday after rolling their right ankles during pool play and aren’t expected to be available in the quarterfinals. The Americans are still holding out hope that both could return later in the tournament if the U.S. wins on Wednesday.

Poulter got hurt when she landed on a teammate’s foot during a win over Italy on Monday that helped the U.S. clinch the top spot in Pool B. Thompson got hurt in similar fashion on Saturday in a loss to the Russians, sidelining one of the top scorers in the tournament.

The Americans have been able to overcome those injuries so far thanks to the play of backup setter Micah Hancock and opposite Annie Drews.

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