BEST MOMENTS OF DAY 16

It's curling home

It’s a day we thought may never arrive: Eve Muirhead is Olympic champion!
Beijing 2022
IOC 'strongly condemns' Russia for breaking Olympic Truce
24/02/2022 AT 14:57
Twenty years after Rhona Martin shipped down the ‘stone of destiny’ in Salt Lake City, Muirhead’s rink signed off a rollercoaster Games with a dominant win over Japan.
We know the focus will rightly be on Muirhead after her four outings as skip from Vancouver to Beijing, via Sochi and PyeongChang. She calls the shots and plays the most decisive stones. But it would be remiss to reduce her Scottish support cast of Vicky Wright, Jen Dodds and Hailey Duff to footnotes.
So a big shout out to third Wright, who returned to the frontline as a surgical ward nurse during the Covid pandemic. A big shout out to second Dodds, who bounced back from medal heartbreak in the mixed doubles. And a big shout out to lead Duff, who overcame adversity to fulfil her Olympic dream having been just yards away from the Manchester bomb attack at the Ariane Grande concert in 2017.
What a journey for the quartet, plus alternate Mili Smith. They didn’t qualify for the Games automatically at the World Championships. Had a team reshuffle. Won the Europeans. Almost bowed out in Beijing during the round-robin phase. Fell 4-0 behind in the semi-final, then blew an 11-8 in the last end. After all that drama, you can forgive them for cruising across the line in the gold medal showdown.
There is something magical about curling’s ability to suck us in every four years. Suddenly we’re screaming at a stranger to brush harder, assassinating someone’s character because they failed to make a draw shot, bemoaning the fact there really isn’t that much curling in curling. It shouldn’t work – but it does. And thanks to Duff, Dodds, Wright and Muirhead, it is ours again.

‘GB have surely won the Olympic title’ – Watch moment Muirhead delivers key blow in final

Drama galore on final day

Mikaela Shiffrin signed off a difficult Games with her "favourite memory" despite missing out on a medal in the mixed team parallel event. Shiffrin and Team USA finished fourth after losing the small final to Norway, but the two-time Olympic champion was all smiles after bouncing back from disappointment.
Germany made it NINE sliding gold medals from a possible 10 – seriously, when will they introduce a separate podium for athletes not in black, red and gold? – after triumphing in the men’s four-man bobsleigh, with Team GB’s crew piloted by Brad Hall finishing a commendable sixth.
It was 11th time lucky for Finland in the ice hockey as they clinched the last gold medal of the Games – having lost all their previous 10 Olympic finals across men’s and women’s competition.
And a spectacular Olympic Figure Skating Gala, an invitation-only event where athletes don fancy costumes and perform without fear of being marked down for a failed triple lutz, saw a host of big names star.
Alexandra Trusova, fresh from declaring she would never state again, appeared as Wonder Woman, while Yuzuru Hanyu dropped an “unreal” routine – sadly without the quadruple axel we all wanted to see.

'Pure artist in every sense of the word!' – Hanyu signs off with ‘unreal’ routine

Farewell!

Beijing 2022: the end. A vibrant Closing Ceremony, featuring an astonishingly high fireworks bill, signed off an action-packed fortnight (and a bit) in the Chinese capital.
IOC president Thomas Bach’s speeches usually follow a simple pattern – thank everyone, introduce the next host city, pause for applause after every six words – but he used this one to remind the world’s leaders of their responsibilities.

'Going out with a bang!' - Spectacular fireworks bring Beijing 2022 to an end

“This unifying power of the Olympic Games is stronger than the forces that want to divide us: you give peace a chance. May the political leaders around the world be inspired by your example of solidarity and peace,” he said.
He added: “If we want to finally overcome this pandemic, we must be faster, we must aim higher, we must be stronger – we must stand together. In this Olympic spirit of solidarity, we call on the international community: give equal access to vaccines for everybody around the world.”
And you know what, we couldn’t agree more.

IN OTHER NEWS

Deep down, we all know the real hero of Beijing 2022 was Bing Dwen Dwen.
But not everyone has been impressed with how the lovable panda mascot has stolen the limelight…

‘Oops! All over the place!’ – Skater cleans out mascot at figure skating gala

COMING UP

Set your alarms for 00:01 on July 26, 2024. The Paris Games are coming, with the Opening Ceremony set to take place on the River Seine.
Watch the below video and tell us you’re not already excited!

'See you 2024' – Excitement builds as Paris readies itself for an Olympics 100 years on

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The Olympic Games will return with Paris 2024, live on Eurosport and discovery+
Beijing 2022
Refs getting clobbered, mascots getting cleaned out & misbehaving flags – the best funny moments
23/02/2022 AT 15:12
Beijing 2022
‘What a story’ – Watch Eurosport’s commentators erupt with joy at another unmissable Olympics
23/02/2022 AT 14:52