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Shock golds for Kiesenhofer & Hafnaoui

International Sports

Ahmed Hafnaoui's gold is only the fifth by a Tunisian athlete at an OlympicsAhmed Hafnaoui's gold is only the fifth by a Tunisian athlete at an OlympicsHUNDREDS of fans came out in the sun to gather along the streets of Fuchu, on the outskirts of Tokyo, to catch a glimpse of the women's cycling road race, going against official advice to avoid gathering because of the pandemic.


What they witnessed was remarkable as 30-year-old Kiesenhofer - who is not part of a professional cycling team and was making her Games debut - became the first Austrian to win an Olympic road race medal after a devastating solo breakaway.

She was at the front of the race from the start, one of an early breakaway pack, before going it alone with 40km to go.

So great was Kiesenhofer's advantage that Van Vleuten did not realise someone had beaten her to the finish, with the Dutchwoman initially celebrating before exclaiming: "I was wrong."

Earlier there had been a huge upset at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre, where 18-year-old Tunisian Ahmed Hafnaoui finished ahead of the Australian and American favourites to win the 400m freestyle.

He said he was surprised to have even made the final that even when he touched the wall, he did not immediately "accept" he had won although it was a dream come true.

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