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Li Du of China Wins Games' First Gold

Sunday, August 15, 2004; Page E17

No surprises here: China won the first two golds in what is expected to be a rather large haul of medals.

Tian Liang and Yang Jinghui took the men's synchronized 10-meter platform title, and Wu Minxia and Guo Jingjing won the women's synchronized three-meter springboard.

China's Wu Minxia, left, and Guo Jingjing find a springboard to Olympic glory. (Arko Datta -- Reuters)

_____ Day Two _____
Michael Phelps wins his first gold medal in the 400-meter individual medley.
Ian Thorpe wins gold in the 400-meter freestyle Saturday.
Abby Wambach and Mia Hamm lead the U.S. women's soccer team over Brazil, 2-0.
Two athletes considered national icons in Greece face have been pulled off the team.
Jennie Finch leads the U.S. softball team to a 7-0 win over Italy.
The U.S. women's basketball team gets out to a slow start but comes back to dominate New Zealand.
Despite a fall by Blaine Wilson the U.S. men's gymnastics team advances.
The top U.S. saber fencers fall in the round of 16.
Italy's Paolo Bettini wins the cycling road race.
Li Du of China wins the first gold medal of the Games.

_____ More From The Post _____
Michael Wilbon: Australian Cathy Freeman is a credit to her country.
Sally Jenkins: Michael Phelps's talent in the pool will make him an international star.
When Phelps and Thorpe face off in the next couple of days it will be a clash of swimming gods.

_____ On Our Site _____
Athens Snippets: U.S. swimmers looking to dominate.

_____ Saturday's Results _____
Men's 400 individual medley
Men's 400 freestyle
Women's 400 individual medley
Women's 4x100 free relay
Synchronized Diving
Men's 10m platform
Women's 3m springboard
Men's road race
Women's 10m air rifle

Complete results

_____ Photos _____
Day 2
Opening Ceremonies

_____ Live Online _____
The Chat House from Athens with Michael Wilbon, 11 a.m. Monday.
Submit questions.
Triple jumper Tiombe Hurd will take questions at 2 p.m. Monday.
Submit questions.

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While other teams performed a better single round than the Chinese in both the men's and women's events, China was simply more consistent.

Tian and Yang won with a score of 383.88 points. Peter Waterfield and Leon Taylor of Britain took the silver with 371.52, and Australia's reigning world champions Mathew Helm and Robert Newbery repeated their bronze medal from Sydney with 366.84.

Hitting the water at about 34 mph from the highest platform, the Chinese were first or second in each of their five dives, while the British pair started out with a fourth and a sixth before moving into contention in the later rounds.

Wu and Guo took their title by easily beating their only serious rivals -- the Russian team of Vera Ilina and Yulia Pakhalina -- with a score of 336.90 points.

Synchronized diving, in which two divers leap at the same time from adjacent boards, made its Olympic debut in Sydney, doubling the overall number of events in the sport from two to four. Nine judges -- two more than for individual diving -- are broken down into a group of four that inspects individual dives and five that review synchronization.

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