The 470 brought a 25th medal to the French team, overwhelmed by the success of basketball and women’s hand.
Special envoy to Tokyo
● The 470 goes through all colors
Second before the final regatta, the French Camille Lecointre and Aloïse Retornaz have, at the end of a confused epilogue, landed on the third step of the podium after long minutes of uncertainty and palaver. Believing that the British had voluntarily let the Poles pass in the last few meters, the French women filed a protest. The classification finally remained as it was. The British Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre ahead of the Poles and the French. Frustrated, disappointed, then carried away by emotion.
As in Rio, in 2016, Camille Lecointre (then with Hélène Defrance) won a bronze medal in the 470 double dinghy event. The Lecointre-Retornaz duo offered the third medal of these Olympic sailing games (after the medals of silver in windsurfing from Charline Picon and Thomas Goyard), the 25th medal of the French team. Aloïse Retornaz retains: “It’s the joy that prevails. An Olympic podium is too good. It’s too good to end our duo like this. I dreamed so much about this moment. ” Camille Lecointre completes: “I am super happy, I was very moved on the podium, this is where we realize, that we savor the moment.”
● Blue in all the team sports semi-finals
With the exception of football (eliminated in the first round), the French teams are at the semi-finals. A group shot that must have appreciated Jean Quiquampoix, the gold medalist of the pistol at 25 m. The French women’s basketball team, at the end of a tense end of the match, took the best of Spain (67-64) and will find in the semi-finals on Friday (1 p.m.), the Japanese team who had surprised her when she entered the competition (the other semi-final will pit the United States against Serbia).
The handball Bleues got rid of the doubts that had bound them since a start in the shadow of their ambition (two defeats, one draw) and shattered the defense of the Dutch world champions (32-22). A success based on the performance of goalkeeper Amandine Leynaud (22 saves) who said: “We met the basketball players (who were leaving for their semi-final, Editor’s note) on the sidewalk opposite by taking the bus. We told them “Come on girls”. We met the basketball boys and I said to myself “In France, we are still quite a part of co-sports”. We encouraged each other. ” Olivier Krumbholz’s players will return to the last four and challenge Sweden on Friday (10 a.m.). The other semi-final will pit Norway against Russia.
● Volleyball like “Rocky”, basketball against the new “Magic”
In contention, this Thursday (2 p.m.), the French volleyball team which plays on the thread of emotion, the one which binds it to its coach for nine years, Laurent Tillie, wants to prolong the euphoria. The long years of campaigns, titles and trials (elimination in the group stages at the Rio Olympics remains a painful wound) have forged its capacity for resistance and resilience. The Olympic adventure almost came to an end, but the group, carried by its legendary carelessness, in the quarter-finals against Poland, double reigning world champion, cashed “A bit like the boxer who takes blows, blows and we went until the last round to go and win it”, underlines Laurent Tillie.
These Blues version “Rocky” Balboa will experience the first Olympic semi-final of French volleyball against Argentina. An open match. In the first round, the Argentines had won 3-2 (15-13 in the tie-break). “It will be complicated because it is the surprise of the Games, even if in Rio they had a good course. We will have to hold on. They’re Argentines, with the “grinta”, they don’t give up either. This is going to be a great poster ”, summarizes Jenia Grebennikov, the libero of the Blues.
The basketball players find themselves in the Olympic semi-finals for the first time since Sydney in 2000. That year, Laurent Sciarra and his band had pushed the door of the final with wide-eyed and long rivaled the Americans. Nicolas Batum and his partners will challenge Slovenia which, carried by its strategist, Luka Doncic (22 years old, 2.01 m, 104 kg), is experiencing a dream first Olympic tournament. The Dallas Mavericks magician is a phenomenon. His strength does not lie in his speed but in his ability to bewitch the ball. He delivers dazzling blind passes, invents dribbles, tries impossible shots, captures rebounds. Like “Magic” Johnson, the legend of the Los Angeles Lakers, sublime leader of the Dream Team in 1992 at the Barcelona Games. For his debut in the tournament, Luka Doncic stunned Argentina with 48 points. In his wake, he leads a playful, rough and talented Slovenian team.
To complete the picture of the quintet without false note of the French “indoor” teams, the Blues of handball play this Thursday (10 hours) their semi-final against Egypt.
● Mayer, the first half of pain and emotion
The world record holder suffered, cried, screamed. And made an appointment (the second day started last night) after a day of the chameleon decathlon. The world record holder, successively knocked down by a back pain, then relaunched after a magnificent high jump competition (2.08 m), was far (5th at 382 points) from the leader, the Canadian Damian Warner, but ensured : “Everything is open. I’m going to stretch my guts out on the track and we’ll see… ”
● Skateboarding, the young peril
Madeleine Larcheron (15), the youngest of the France team, did not manage to grab a place in the final of the Park event which, as in the street event with the gold medal for the Japanese Momiji Nishiya (13 years old), smiled at young athletes: the Japanese Sakura Yosozumi (19 years old), gold medalist in front of her compatriot Kokona Hiraki (12 years, 11 months and 9 days old) and the Briton Sky Brown (13 years and 28 days).