On day 12 of Olympic competition, 16 gold medals will have been decided in sports ranging from beach volleyball to horse jumping and table tennis to taekwondo, but the focus will be on the track when the world's fastest humans do battle. China add one more through team table tennis event and lead the medals table with 35 golds to 30 for the United States, while third-placed Britain are on 22, their best haul for more than a century.
American Ashton Eaton opened his bid to become the best all-round male athlete of the Games with a 10.35-second 100m dash and long jump of 8.03 metres that helped him to a 105-point lead in the decathlon. British favourite Mo Farah, winner of the 10,000 at the weekend, was cheered around the track by 80,000 spectators in a 5,000 heat which he came through comfortably despite clashing legs with several rivals.
Sarah Attar became the first woman from Saudi Arabia to compete in the Olympic athletics, coming last in an 800 heat she ran wearing a white head cover. "It's an incredible experience," Attar, who has dual United States citizenship and is a student at Pepperdine University in Los Angeles, told reporters. "It is the hugest honour to be here to represent the women of Saudi Arabia. It is an historic moment. I hope it will make a difference. It is a huge step forward. It's a really incredible experience."
The women's soccer final between the United States and Japan at Wembley on Thursday is set to break the Olympic attendance record with a crowd of at least 83,000, beating the previous benchmark of 76,489 in 1996 in Athens, Georgia.
On Wednesday, Hungary claimed two canoeing titles - Rudolf Dombi and Roland Kokeny beat Portugal in a photo finish in the men's kayak double, while their women team mates denied Germany a fifth straight Olympic title in the kayak four. The Italian men's volleyball team pulled off a surprise 3-0 quarter-final victory over defending champions the United States to keep alive their dreams of a first Olympic gold. The BMX bike action got underway with a relatively low key time trial seeding phase, and Dutchman Raymon van der Biezen was quickest in 37.779 seconds.