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Willis comfortably into final (and other Olympic News)

Willis comfortably into final

Nick Willis strode confidently into the men’s 1500m final in the Olympic stadium.

Willis, 29, a silver medallist at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, ran within himself and qualified comfortably in third place in the faster of the two semi-finals.

Willis said he was happy with his run.

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Finn and Star finish on a high

NZ’s first medal race competitors finished their 2012 Olympic Sailing regattas on a high note, with both Dan Slater in the Finn and Hamish Pepper with Jim Turner in the Star crossing the final finish line in second.

Both also found improved final standings with these results, Hamish and Jim jumped up from eighth to fifth overall, and Dan moved from ninth to seventh.
After the medal races were done and dusted there was still racing for the kiwis sailing 49er, Women’s 470 and Men’s RS:X .

JP Tobin has qualified for the final double point medal race ranked seventh overall.

Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie had a mixed day with a 10th and 4th and although their Women’s 470 standing has dropped to second, there is only one point keeping them from the lead, and four opening series races are yet to be sailed.
49er sailors Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have held on to their second place standing, and they will attempt to narrow the gap on the leading Australian team in the last two series races.

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Pritchard scores historic first

Auckland boxer Alexis Pritchard scored a historic first for New Zealand sport.

Pritchard, 28, became New Zealand’s first female boxer to win an Olympic bout when she beat tough Tunisian Rim Jouini in a first-round lightweight contest.

She now fights the second seed, Russian Sofya Ochigava, in what looms as a challenging contest.

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Archbold sixth in omnium

New Zealand’s representative in the omnium – the cycling equivalent of track and field’s decathlon – finished a solid sixth in a field of 18, despite not having the rub of the green.

Shane Archbold began the second day of the two-day event placed seventh and turned in more good performances.

Natasha Hansen had a long day of riding in the women’s sprint, but eventually could not make the top eight.

She ended the day in the ride-off for ninth to 12th places, but was unable to make an impression in this race.

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Smith 15th in marathon

Kimberley Smith ran a creditable 15th in the Olympic women’s marathon, but wasn’t entirely happy with how her day panned out.

Smith, 30, was looking for a top-six performance and has the running CV to justify such hopes.

However, it was a difficult day for the 118 starters. They began the race in heavy rain and had to cope with slippery conditions, particularly over the cobblestone section of the course through London.

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Hockey men out of medal hunt

New Zealand bowed out of the running for an Olympic men’s hockey medal.

The Black Sticks drew 1-1 with Belgium, but after previous defeats by Korea and The Netherlands, are now out of contention for a medal.

The New Zealanders final game is against Germany on Tuesday.

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