Olympics Live: Katie Ledecky, Events Schedule and Latest Medal Count


Here’s what you need to know:

Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

Katie Ledecky goes for gold medal No. 1 in the 400-meter freestyle on Monday morning in Tokyo. While she is dominant in the longer events, at this distance she faces a significant challenge from Ariarne Titmus of Australia.

The United States also could get its first relay gold in the 4×100 freestyle. Swimming starts at 10:30 a.m. in Tokyo (9:30 p.m. Eastern).

After the debut of skateboarding on Sunday, the women get to compete in street, and two Brazilians will be in the spotlight. The favorite is probably Pamela Rosa. But her countrywoman Rayssa Leal is a strong contender as well, at just 13 years old.

Russia, China and Japan will vie for the top spots at the men’s team gymnastics competition.

And it was an early start for the male triathletes, who to avoid the heat of the day began at 6:30 a.m. in Tokyo (5:30 p.m. Eastern).

The Ariake Urban Sports Park, the site of all skateboarding events at the Tokyo Games. The women’s street qualification airs Sunday on NBC starting at 7:30 p.m. Eastern.Credit…James Hill for The New York Times

Here are some highlights of U.S. broadcast coverage for Sunday evening and overnight, including women’s swimming, taekwondo and the next game for the seemingly unstoppable softball team. All times are Eastern.

  • Skateboarding: Nyjah Huston, the biggest name in contest skateboarding, stumbled this weekend with a seventh-place finish. On Sunday, the women’s street qualification and final begins at 7:30 p.m. on CNBC.

  • Surfing: Carissa Moore of the U.S., who has four world titles, is among the 16 surfers competing to advance to the women’s quarterfinals. Coverage begins at 6 p.m. on the NBC Sports app and NBCOlympics.com.

  • Swimming: How will Katie Ledecky, 24, respond to Ariarne Titmus of Australia, a rare true challenger in the 400-meter freestyle? NBC’s coverage continues at 9:30 p.m.

  • Softball: The United States faces off with Japan at 9 p.m. on USA Network.

  • Rugby: The men’s and women’s U.S. teams were ranked second in the world before the pandemic and are eager for a medal in Tokyo. CNBC will carry the first rounds of pool play in the men’s tournament beginning at 8 p.m.

  • Taekwondo: Athletes compete in the women’s 67 kg and the men’s 80 kg weight class events on Sunday. Competition begins streaming at 9 p.m. on NBCOlympics.com.

  • Judo: Coverage of Day 3 competition starts at 10 p.m. on NBCOlympics.com.

Katie Ledecky in a training session in Tokyo.Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

The U.S. swimmer Katie Ledecky’s domination is so routine that her surname has become a verb, synonymous with crushing the competition. For nearly a decade, she has ledeckied away in her specialties — distance swims longer than 400 meters — rarely facing a true challenger and certainly nothing resembling a rival.

Now she has one.

Ariarne Titmus of Australia, a fearless Tasmanian who talks big and has the speed in the pool to back it up, is about to ask Ledecky the one question she has never had to answer in her two previous Olympic appearances: How will she respond to a swimmer who has placed a target on her back and taken dead aim at it?

“I’m sure she is going to be fast, and I’m sure she thinks the same of me,” Ledecky, 24, said of Titmus in a pre-Olympic news conference this month.

How fast is Titmus? Lately, when it has counted most, she has been a good bit faster than Ledecky at both 200 and 400 meters, races that Ledecky swept four years ago.

At Australia’s Olympic trials last month, Titmus, 20, missed breaking Ledecky’s world record of 3:56.46 in the 400 by just half a second. At the U.S. trials, also in June, Ledecky swam the distance in 4:01.27.

In the 200, Titmus came within 0.11 of a second of the record, which was set in 2009, when swimmers wore sleek suits that reduced drag, which are now banned. Ledecky swam the 200 freestyle at the U.S. trials in 1:55.11, more than two seconds behind the world record.

Aside from her times, Titmus’s comments after the trials rocketed across the swimming world.

“She’s not going to have it all her own way,” Titmus said of Ledecky after her 400 race.

Simone Biles during the women’s gymnastics qualification round of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

Sunday started with the first gold medal for the United States, won by Chase Kalisz in the men’s 400-meter individual medley. Ahmed Hafnaoui, 18, of Tunisia was the surprise winner of the men’s 400 free. Australia swam away with the women’s 4×100 relay, and the United States, with Simone Manuel swimming the anchor leg, won the bronze medal.

Simone Biles made her debut, but the American women’s gymnastics team was overshadowed by Russia. Biles even made some errors, flying out of bounds in the floor exercise and stumbling on her beam dismount.

After a shaky exhibition campaign that included two losses, the American men’s basketball team faltered again in its Olympic opener against France, 83-76.

After lighting the cauldron at the opening ceremony, Naomi Osaka dispatched Zheng Saisai in her first tennis match, 6-1, 6-4.

For the first time ever, there was skateboarding at the Olympics, with the men’s street competition, and the gold medal went to Yuto Horigome of Japan.

The United States won just its third gold medal in women’s fencing as Lee Kiefer won the foil event with a 15-13 victory over top-ranked Inna Deriglazova of Russia. The two previous golds were both in saber by Mariel Zagunis in 2004 and 2008.

Anastasija Zolotic won the first women’s taekwondo gold medal ever for the United States.

Credit…Doug Mills/The New York TimesCredit…Chang W. Lee/The New York TimesCredit…Chang W. Lee/The New York TimesCredit…James Hill for The New York TimesCredit…Hiroko Masuike/The New York TimesSimone Biles made several errors during qualifying.Credit…Doug Mills/The New York Times

TOKYO — Simone Biles rolled her eyes. She shrugged her shoulders. She scrunched up her face and winced.

One look at her revealed all that you needed to know about how the U.S. women’s team fared on Sunday during qualifying at the Tokyo Games. And none of it was good for the team that had dominated the sport for more than a decade.

With uncharacteristic mistakes, including many by Biles, the best gymnast in history, the United States team finished behind Russia in qualifying. It wasn’t close, either, with more than a point’s difference between the countries.

Disappointing Dismount

It was a rare day of mistakes for Simone Biles, including on her beam routine, where she took several steps to gain control after her dismount.

Photographs by Bedel Saget/The New York Times; composite image by Jeremy White

The Americans can still come back on Tuesday in the final to win the gold medal because the slate is wiped clean for that event. In that competition, the U.S. will try to keep its winning streak alive. The team has not lost a world championship or an Olympics team event since 2010, and is trying to win its fourth straight Olympic gold medal.

“This might be a great awakening for us, and we’ll take advantage of it,” Tom Forster, the women’s national team coordinator, said after congratulating Russia for its performance. He said the Russians edged the Americans because they were “cleaner and had more depth,” and that the U.S. team made mental mistakes because of nerves.

Moustapha Fall of France dunks the ball over JaVale McGee.Credit…Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

SAITAMA, Japan — The United States men’s basketball team fell to France, 83-76, in its opening game of the Olympics on Sunday night at Saitama Super Arena, remaining on unsteady footing after taking a rocky path to Tokyo.

The Americans shot only 36 percent and were outscored badly in the third quarter, 25-11, when they blew an 8-point halftime lead and fell behind for good.

Evan Fournier, who played for the Boston Celtics last season, led France with 28 points. Jrue Holiday, fresh off winning the N.B.A. title with the Milwaukee Bucks, scored 18 for the United States less than 24 hours after landing in Tokyo.

Since late June, when their 12-man roster was announced, the Americans have experienced multiple waves of upheaval.

Bradley Beal was removed from the roster and ruled out of the Olympics on July 15 after testing positive for the coronavirus. The next day, the team lost Kevin Love, who was struggling with a leg injury. Last week, Zach LaVine was forced to miss the team’s flight to Tokyo and had to join the group later in the week after being placed in virus-related protocols himself.

And the three players who appeared in the N.B.A. finals — Devin Booker, Khris Middleton and Holiday — did not join the team at their hotel in Tokyo until early in the morning on Sunday. U.S. Coach Gregg Popovich had indicated leading into the tournament that he would have to be ready to adjust playing time based on how players were dealing with jet lag and fatigue.

Personnel issues aside, the team had not looked great on the floor. It lost two consecutive exhibition games in Las Vegas, falling to Nigeria and Australia in a three-day span. Before those losses, the men’s national team had lost only two games in total out of 56 played since 1992.

Still, the United States remains the heavy favorite to win the tournament and collect the 16th gold medal in the program’s history.

When the contingent of Olympic athletes from Italy entered Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium for the parade of nations, the broadcaster MBC aired a photo of a pizza.

As the contingent of Olympic athletes from Italy entered Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium for the parade of nations on Friday, a South Korean broadcaster, MBC, aired a photo of a pizza.

For Norway? A piece of salmon.

Then there was Ukraine, which the broadcaster reminded viewers was where the Chernobyl nuclear disaster happened in 1986, complete with a photo of the doomed power station.

The images drew criticism from viewers, who said they were offensive or had perpetuated stereotypes, and MBC soon apologized for its choice of “inappropriate” photos.

“The images and captions are intended to make it easier for the viewers to understand the entering countries quickly during the opening ceremony,” MBC said in a statement in English, published Saturday on Twitter. “However, we admit there was a lack of consideration for the countries concerned, and inspection was not thorough enough. It is an inexcusable mistake.”

For Romania, the broadcaster had used an image of Count Dracula. And for the Marshall Islands, it had noted that it had once been a nuclear test site for the United States.

When it was Malaysia’s turn in the parade of nations, MBC showed a graphic with that country’s coronavirus vaccination rate, along with its gross domestic product.

In its statement, MBC said that it would investigate the process of how the images, and the captions that accompanied them, had been chosen and vetted.

“Furthermore, we will fundamentally re-examine the production system of sports programs to avoid any similar accidents in the future,” the broadcaster said.

Players on the U.S.A. rugby men’s sevens team practiced this month at the Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Center in San Diego.Credit…Ariana Drehsler for The New York Times

CHULA VISTA, Calif. — The American men’s and women’s rugby sevens teams know something about momentum in sports. It’s a funny thing, because it can crystallize seemingly out of nowhere and vanish just as easily.

Both squads turned lackluster performances at the 2018 World Cup into fabulous 2019 campaigns, finishing second in the world, their highest rankings ever. They hoped that success would catapult them into medal contention at the Tokyo Games in 2020.

The coronavirus pandemic forced the teams to slam on the brakes. After more than a year with only a handful of matches during the global crisis, they will try to regain their magic at the Olympics on Monday, the first day of the rugby sevens tournament.

“Losing the 15 months has certainly hurt us in terms of momentum and the trajectory we were moving on,” Mike Friday, coach of the men’s team, said this month at the team’s training camp. “But we’re not alone. A lot of teams will feel undercooked going in. There’ll be a little bit of trepidation, anticipation, anxiety.”

At the Olympics this year, the men’s side has been drawn from the so-called group of death that includes a perennial powerhouse in South Africa, up-and-coming Ireland and a hard-hitting squad from Kenya.

Compounding matters, several of the American men’s team’s top players are coming back from injury, including team captain Madison Hughes and Folau Niua.

On paper, the women’s team has an easier path to a medal. It should beat China and Japan in the group stage, and perhaps knock off the Australians. In the knock out stage, Canada and New Zealand are among the toughest marks.