Olympics Day 5 sees scandal, joy and controversy
POSTED: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 11:45am
UPDATED: Wednesday, August 1, 2012 - 3:39pm
LONDON (CNN) — Wednesday saw scandal at the Olympics as eight athletes were disqualified for not trying to win matches, joy as the host nation finally won its first gold, and controversy as the chair of the Games organizing committee declined to call Michael Phelps the greatest Olympian of all time.
The disqualifications came in badminton, following two matches Tuesday night in which female athletes were accused of playing to lose so they could face easier opponents in future matches.
Two Chinese pairs -- including the world No. 1 women's pair of Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang -- a South Korean duo and an Indonesian pair played so badly they were booed by the crowd.
The Badminton World Federation disqualified all four pairs, but the South Koreans and Indonesians are appealing.
Another pair of female athletes got happier results on Wednesday, as rowers Helen Glover and Heather Stanning brought Great Britain its first gold medal of the 2012 Games.
The British rowing men's eight took bronze, a crushing disappointment to a team that had expected gold.
Britain claimed another two medals soon after, with cyclist Bradley Wiggins taking gold and Chris Froome capturing bronze in the men's time trial.
The victory makes Wiggins the most decorated British Olympian, with seven medals, hot on the heels of his becoming the first British man to win the Tour de France.
Swimmer Michael Phelps became not only the most decorated American on Tuesday, but the most decorated Olympian of all time.
Many, including CNN partner Sports Illustrated, hailed Phelps Wednesday as "Simply the Greatest."
But Sebastian Coe, chairman of the London Olympic Games Organizing Committee, distinguished between "most medals" and "greatest."
"You can say by medal tally he is the most successful, but I'm not sure if he's the greatest. But he's the most successful athlete, that goes without saying," said Coe, himself a multiple gold winning Olympic runner.
-- CNN's Zayn Nabbi in London contributed to this report.