Olympics: Van Grunsven dominates headlines

Anky van Grunsven’s third dressage gold medal dominates the newspapers Wednesday morning, feeding speculations about her future, ANP reports.

The AD writes on Wednesday that Van Grunsven has become an ‘Olympic legend’, while the Telegraaf opens with the words ‘And that is three!’, referring to her third consecutive gold medal – a unique achievement.
Dutch musician and piano virtuoso Wibi Soerjadi had composed the music for Van Grunsven and her horse Salinero’s winning performance. He is quoted in Wednesday’s AD Sportwereld Pro as saying, ‘Everything was perfect. Anky and Salinero brought my music to life.’
Van Grunsven (40) was hailed as a heroine by hundreds of ecstatic Dutch fans at the Holland Olympic Club in Hong Kong on Tuesday night.
The Dutch horsewoman’s future in the dressage was speculated upon immediately after the final. Van Grunsven, a mother of three, said earlier that the Olympics in Beijing would be her last appearance but her husband and coach Sjef Janssen told NOS on Tuesday night that no decisions have been made. ‘If Salinero is still healthy in four years or if she finds a new horse with which she can reach the same level, she might extend her career’, Janssen said.
Wednesday’s achievements in the Olympics have so far not been spectacular. Open water swimmer Edith van Dijk finished 14th at the 10km final. Van Dijk (35), who restarted her swimming career when it became clear the 10km open water would become an Olympic discipline, was disappointed about her achievement and told ANP news service she was simply out-classed by her competitors. Van Dijk will end her career again later this year, ANP reports.
The Dutch baseball team lost Wednesday’s game against South Korea by 0-10 and finished seventh in the group with one win against China and six losses. The team had aimed to reach the semi-finals.
At the opening day of the BMX cycling event, two Dutchmen reached the semi-finals, which will be held on Thursday. Raymon van der Biezen and Rob van den Wildenberg finished among the top four in the quarter finals, while former world champion Robert de Wilde failed to qualify.
The Dutch sailors in the Tornado class, Mitch Booth and Pim Nieuwenhuis, reached Thursday’s medal race by finishing sixth in the overall classification after ten heats on Wednesday. The duo is fourteen points behind third place Argentina.

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