Haas, Kafelnikov in men's tennis final
Germany's Tommy Haas and Russia's Yevgeny Kafelnikov will clash for the men's tennis gold medal.
In the semi-finals on Tuesday, Kafelnikov beat Arnaud Di Pasquale of France 6-4, 6-4 while Haas accounted for Roger Federer of Switzerland 6-3, 6-2.
A two-hour rain delay did not dilute the enthusiasm of the crowd
nor the players who all waited patiently for the sky to clear before
play could begin.
Has proved too crafty for the former ITF world junior
champion and is now in contention for his nation's first men's
singles medal since compatriot Oskar Kreuzer claimed a bronze in Stockholm in 1912.
Germany has yet to claim gold in the singles event.
Venus Williams set for golden sweep
American Venus Williams will be guaranteed two medals at this
Olympic Games after she teamed with sister Serena to book a
spot in the women's doubles final. The sisters beat the Belgian pair of Els
Callens and Dominique Van Roost 6-4, 6-1 in their semi-final match.
They will meet Dutch pair Kristie Boogert and
Miriam Oremans in the final. The Americans had beaten them in
their only match-up earlier this month at the US Open.
After the fifth seeded Belgians claimed an early break, a potential
contest was on the cards.
"They (Belgians) were up there," Serena said. "They were playing
a good game. It kept us on our toes."
But it was not long before the American duo regrouped to not only
break back, but also claim control of the set and the match.
But in order to claim gold on Thursday, Serena conceded she will
have to improve her game.
"I haven't been playing very well personally," she said. "I could
serve a little better, volley, return a little better. The whole nine
Venus will play Elena Dementieva of Russia in the women's singles final. Should she manage a golden sweep of women's singles and
doubles Olympic medals, she will be emulating a rare feat. The
last woman to achieve this was German (FRG) Helga Niesson in
1968 (Guadalajara, Mexico).
Should she claim two gold medals this week, Williams will replace a long-standing American record, currently held by
Helen Wills who performed the feat at the 1924 Paris Games.
Only two other women have managed to claim gold in both
singles and doubles. In 1900, Briton Charlotte Cooper -- the first
female athlete ever to claim an Olympic medal -- won her singles
and mixed doubles match. At this point, mixed was the only
doubles option for women. Twelve years later, compatriot Edith
Hannam matched the feat.
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