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Alex Schwazer claims first athletics gold medal for Italy
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13:04, August 22, 2008


Italy's Alex Schwazer crosses the finish line during men's 50km walk final at the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Aug. 22, 2008. Alex Schwazer won the title and set a new Olympic record. (Xinhua/Guo Dayue)

Italian Alex Schwazer won his country's first athletics gold medal at the Beijing Olympics by claiming the men's 50km walk title in Beijing on Friday.

Schwazer timed three hours, 37 minutes and 09 seconds to finish the walking marathon in a new Olympic record. The former record of 3:38:29 was held by Ivanenko Vyacheslav of Soviet Union at Seoul 20 years ago.

Australian Jared Tallent moved a step forward from his bronze medal at men's 50km walk to take the silver medal with 3:39:27, he placed third at men's 50km walk last Saturday.

Denis Nizhegorodov of Russia finished third at 3:40:14.

The 24-year-old Schwazer, bronze medalist at 2007 World Championship at Osaka, Japan, took an early lead from the start and never lost contention in the leading group, he launched the final sprint in the last 5km and rallied to cross the line without any resistance.


Athletes competes during men's 50km walk at the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Aug. 22, 2008. (Xinhua/Guo Dayue)


Germany's Andre Hohne falls down during men's 50km walk at the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Aug. 22, 2008. (Xinhua/Guo Dayue)



Russia's Denis Nizhegorodov (L) competes during men's 50km walk outside the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Aug. 22, 2008. (Xinhua/Liao Yujie)



China's Li Jianbo (R2) competes with Russia's Denis Nizhegorodov (R1) during men's 50km walk at the National Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during Beijing 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China, Aug. 22, 2008. (Xinhua/Liao Yujie)

Source:Xinhua

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