NewslettersSign inAPP
spainSPAINargentinaARGENTINAchileCHILEcolombiaCOLOMBIAusaUSAmexicoMEXICOperuPERUlatin usaLATIN USAamericaAMERICA

WINTER OLYMPICS 2022

Winter Olympics: Day 9 in Beijing as Netherlands eye short-track speed skating gold

Norway look well placed to pick up several more medals on Sunday, and emotions are bound to be running high in the Dutch team.

Update:
Winter Olympics: Day 9 in Beijing as Netherlands eye short-track speed skating gold
International Skating Union via Getty Images

Marte Olsbu Roeiseland and Johannes Hoesflot Klaebo have already struck gold in Beijing, and the Norwegians go into Sunday's programme with designs on adding to their hauls.

There could be a stirring success for the Netherlands in short track speed skating, where the Dutch 3,000m relay women will have late former team-mate Lara van Ruijven not far from their thoughts.

The United States and Germany clash in men's ice hockey qualification, while the men's giant slalom promises to be another highlight of the day.

Here's a preview of Sunday's medal events.

USA's players celebrate after scoring a goal during the men's preliminary round group A match of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games ice hockey competition between Canada and USA, at the National Indoor Stadium in Beijing on February 12, 2022. (Photo by
Full screen
USA's players celebrate after scoring a goal during the men's preliminary round group A match of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games ice hockey competition between Canada and USA, at the National Indoor Stadium in Beijing on February 12, 2022. (Photo byKIRILL KUDRYAVTSEVAFP

Alpine skiing

Switzerland's Marco Odermatt should be the man to beat in the giant slalom, having won four of five races this season to top the World Cup standings, finishing runner-up on the other occasion.

There has been a pattern in this event, however, that has seen the last three Olympic gold medals go to the reigning world champion. France's Mathieu Faivre won the world title last year, but has not been having the best season.

Another likely contender is Norway's Henrik Kristoffersen, who has one World Cup win this year and took Olympic silver in 2018 at Pyeongchang. Norway last won men's giant slalom Olympic gold in 1952.

Biathlon

Roeiseland has two golds and a bronze already in Beijing, and it would be brave to back against her in the 10km pursuit, given she has won four of the six World Cup races this season.

Perhaps the big threat will come from another Norwegian, world champion Tiril Eckhoff, who won seven of 10 races last season. Roeiseland and Eckhoff were team-mates in Norway's mixed relay triumph on the first Saturday of the Games.

The men's 12.5km pursuit is also on Sunday's schedule.

Cross-country

Klaebo has a gold and a bronze for his endeavours in China so far, and opportunity knocks again in the men's 4x10km relay.

He and Norway won gold in this event in Pyeongchang and at the last two editions of the World Championships, and a repeat is a distinct possibility, although Russia are also strong.

Klaebo is savouring another Games experience, saying this week: "In Norway we have this culture of a lot of people watching the Olympic Games, especially the cross-country. It's been for sure a lot of pressure about it and for us athletes it has been challenging sometimes. But I think we have managed to do it right, and I hope they are satisfied back home."

Short track speed skating

The death of Van Ruijven from the sudden onset of an autoimmune illness in July 2020 naturally hit the Dutch team hard. She was already a world champion in the 500m and would doubtless have competed in Beijing.

Coach Jeroen Otter spoke of his continuing sorrow ahead of Sunday's relay, where the Dutch will be firm gold medal favourites.

Otter said: "For me, Lara was a very special person. With my age, they could be my daughters, sometimes it feels like that.

"We lost her in a few days. We brought her to the hospital and I came to visit her. She was happy because she saw someone that spoke Dutch, in this strange hospital in Perpignan. Then a day and a half later, you get the message that she is having an operation. And then, it was over.

"Her team-mates are young athletes, and they bounce back. It's good that they are young. But I'm an old guy. It's easier for them to place it. Every coach wants their team to win, but it will be very special for me if they can do this one.

"For years, we've been dreaming about this team with Lara."

The 1,000m gold medallist Suzanne Schulting will anchor that team, while the men's 500m is also on Sunday's bill.

2022 Beijing Olympics - Short Track Speed Skating - Women's 1000m - Final A - Capital Indoor Stadium, Beijing, China - February 11, 2022. Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands reacts as she crosses the line to win gold ahead of silver medallist Choi Min-je
Full screen
2022 Beijing Olympics - Short Track Speed Skating - Women's 1000m - Final A - Capital Indoor Stadium, Beijing, China - February 11, 2022. Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands reacts as she crosses the line to win gold ahead of silver medallist Choi Min-jeALEKSANDRA SZMIGIELREUTERS

Speed skating

American Erin Jackson used to be a roller derby star, a wheeled wonder in that riotously exciting world, and a high-level racer on those skates too. Once she discovered blades and ice, a whole new sporting challenge opened up, and on Sunday the 29-year-old Floridian will be aiming to top the podium in the 500m.

She is bidding to become the first American woman to triumph over that short distance in the Olympics since Bonnie Blair in 1994 and brings strong form to the rink, having won four of this season's eight World Cup races in the discipline.

Rules

To be able to comment you must be registered and logged in. Forgot password?