NBA stars win basketball gold as the US tops medals table at Rio

Source:Xinhua Published: 2016/8/22 10:47:31

A US collection of NBA stars won its third consecutive Olympic gold medal as it beat Serbia 96-66 in the men's basketball final at the Rio Olympics on Sunday.

The basketball gold, which is the last one up for grabs at these Games, has improved the US' medals tally to 46 gold, 37 silver and 38 bronze medals.

After the runaway leader, Britain finished second on 27 gold, 23 silver and 17 bronze medals.

China finished out of top two for the first time since 2004 Athens Games, bagging 26 gold, 18 silver and 26 bronze medals for the third place.

The US beat Serbia in the preliminary round, but proved it was a different story when the gold medal was at stake.

"We played a great game today. It was a total team effort. Everybody knew what was at stake. We only beat these guys by three last time. We just raised the level of intensity and it was a great game," Clay Thompson said.

An organized Serbian team produced enough trouble for the US, as they did in the previous encounter, when the lead was exchanged five times and the game was tied four times in the first quarter.

But solid defence of the Americans shattered the confidence of the Europeans, who were hammered on one-on-one situation. The US used a 24-7 run, initiated by Kevin Durant who scored 18 points in the second quarter, to take a comfortable lead on 43-22.

Serbia, which missed the 2008 and 2012 Games, never found their rhythm of typical teamwork and failed to pose real threat in the remaining time.

Host Brazil has more reason to cheer on the last day of the Games by winning the men's volleyball gold. Less than 24 hours ago, the host got soccer gold it has long been craving.

The Brazilian men volleyballers defeated Italy to win their third gold medal in the sport and cap their country's best Olympic performance with a total of seven golds in the Rio Games.

The Brazilians had lost to the Italians in a pool match but won the final in straight sets, handing Italy its third silver medal in men'svolleyball.

Brazil struggled in the pool stage, losing two matches, to the US and Italy, and only making it into the knockout rounds after a tense victory over France in the last game.

But having emerged from the pool, Brazil began to show its class and fueled by raucous home support, dropped just one set between the quarterfinals and clinching gold.

In men's marathon, Eliud Kipchoge stormed to a runaway gold medal under wet and cold conditions.

The Kenyan broke away at the 35km mark and romped home to win in a time of two hours, eight minutes, 44 seconds - over a minute quicker than Ethiopia's Feyisa Lilesa, who took silver.

American Galen Rupp, the 10,000m silver medalist in London four years ago, claimed bronze in 2:10:05.

After the US, Britain and China on the medals table, Russia came fourth with 19 golds, followed by Germany, Japan and France with 17, 12 and 10 golds respectively.

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