February 18th, 2013
04:02 AM ET

New details emerge in the Oscar Pistorius shooting case

A South African official familiar with the case offered new details Monday about the shooting death of model Reeva Steenkamp at the Pretoria home of her boyfriend, Olympic hero Oscar Pistorius.

Pistorius has been charged with murder in the killing.

The details are:
– Steenkamp was shot four times through the bathroom door
– Pistorius carried her downstairs while she was alive
– There are several indications that Steenkamp was at the house to spend the night. She had an overnight bag and her iPad

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Filed under: Olympics • Sports • World
February 14th, 2013
10:30 AM ET

Oscar Pistorius charged with murder in death of model girlfriend

[Updated 10:30 a.m. ET] Olympic runner Oscar Pistorius has been charged with murder in the death of his girlfriend, model Reeva Steenkamp, at his South Africa home early Thursday.

Pistorius, nicknamed the "Blade Runner," made history when he became the first Paralympian to compete in the able-bodied Olympics last year. Check our full story for the latest.

[Updated 8:03 a.m. ET] The suspect will appear in court Friday rather than today because the public prosecutor needs time to prepare the case, police spokeswoman Katlego Mogale told CNN.

The state will oppose bail, police spokeswoman Denise Beukes told reporters.

[Posted 2:45 a.m.] A woman was found fatally shot in the upscale Pretoria home of South African Olympian Oscar Pistorius, police said Thursday.

The victim was model Reeva Steenkamp, according to Capacity Relations, the agency that represents her. Steenkamp was Pistorius' girlfriend.

Police said they have arrested a 26-year-old man the same age as Pistorius in connection with the shooting, and that he will appear in Pretoria magistrate court sometime Thursday.

Pistorius, nicknamed the "Blade Runner," made history when he became the first Paralympian to compete in the able-bodied Olympics last year.

Police said Pistorius was cooperating with them.

FULL STORY
Wrestling may be cut from Olympic Games
February 12th, 2013
07:01 AM ET

Wrestling may be cut from Olympic Games

The Executive Board of the International Olympic Committee has recommended dropping wrestling as a sport from the Summer Games, it announced Tuesday.

"Wrestling will now join the seven shortlisted sports - baseball/softball, karate, roller sports, sport climbing, squash, wakeboarding and wushu - vying for inclusion in the 2020 Olympic program as an additional sport," the IOC said in a statement.

At a meeting in Russia in May, representatives from those eight sports will make presentations for inclusion in the 2020 Games. The Executive Board will recommend one for inclusion.

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Olympic Committee asks Armstrong to return his 2000 bronze medal
Lance Armstrong is seen with his bronze medal in 2000.
January 17th, 2013
08:13 AM ET

Olympic Committee asks Armstrong to return his 2000 bronze medal

The International Olympic Committee has stripped Armstrong of the bronze medal he won at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia, an IOC spokesman said Thursday. The committee has told Armstrong to return it.

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Tour de France winner hurt in bike crash
Tour de France winner and Olympic gold medalist Bradley Wiggins, pictured at a news conference at the London Olympics
November 8th, 2012
07:43 AM ET

Tour de France winner hurt in bike crash

This year's Tour de France winner spent the night in a hospital with broken ribs after he was knocked off his bike while cycling near his home in northern England, his professional team said.

"We can confirm that Bradley Wiggins was involved in a road traffic accident whilst riding his bike near his home in Lancashire on Wednesday evening," Team Sky said in a statement

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Filed under: Cycling • Olympics
'Fierce Five' gymnasts show off skills
U.S. women's gymnastics team showing off their gold. London 2012 Olympics
August 16th, 2012
11:48 AM ET

'Fierce Five' gymnasts show off skills

The U.S. women’s gymnastics team captured America’s hearts with their gold-medal routines at the 2012 London Games. Gabby Douglas’ "flying squirrel" performance and McKayla Maroney’s near-miss on the vault have us interested in all aspects of their lives. Now they’re back in the U.S. making their news and talk show rounds. Check out these Gotta Watch moments.

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Colbert gives ‘Fierce Five’ task

See what task has the girls doing flips on “The Colbert Report.” Who sticks the best landing?

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McKayla Maroney is ‘not impressed’

McKayla Maroney has tumbled her way to the site tumbler for her signature scowl photo on the medal stand. Watch her react to photo shopped pictures of her next to Justin Bieber.

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Filed under: Gotta Watch • Olympics • Sports
August 15th, 2012
12:42 AM ET

CNN Prime Time: Paul Ryan's first interview; police show how man shot himself

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VP Pick Paul Ryan gives first TV interview

Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan gives his first one-on-one interview since becoming the nominee.

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Police reenact mysterious death

Police say Chavis Carter shot himself in the head when he was handcuffed in the back of a police car. They demonstrate how it may have happened.

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Hope Solo: I have a bad rep

Olympian and U.S. soccer champ Hope Solo talks to Piers Morgan about her reputation in the media.

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Filed under: 2012 Election • Arkansas • Budget • CNN Prime Time • Crime • Drugs • Economy • Finance • Justice • Marijuana • Mitt Romney • Olympics • Politics • Soccer • Sports • TV-Anderson Cooper 360 • TV-Piers Morgan • Uncategorized
August 13th, 2012
01:09 PM ET

What we'll remember about the London Olympics

In the days and weeks leading up to the London 2012 Games, most of the chatter surrounded security planning flaps and looming safety concerns, ticket issues and gridlock around the host city. But as the Olympic torch was extinguished in London on Sunday, marking the end of the XXX Olympiad, those concerns were off in the rearview mirror.

Instead, we were left with heroes who had lifted our spirits for two weeks, ones who defined the Games with record-breaking performances. Michael Phelps became the most decorated Olympian. Usain Bolt solidified his status as the world's greatest sprinter after doubts were heaped upon him before the Games.

When we look back on London's third Olympics, it will likely be remembered for unbelievable performances, the heartbreak of a few, the plethora of firsts for women and countries, and the spirit of London that reverberated around the globe, culminating in a quintessential British rock concert for the closing ceremony.

Those moments will remain etched in the minds of those who participated and those who watched. So as we face our first day of Olympic withdrawal, we take a look back at the moments and themes (as well as theme songs) of London 2012 that we'll likely be talking about in an anticipation of the next Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

'This woman's work'

It'd be hard to even pick out which performance by a woman stood out among the rest. Perhaps that's because women were so dominant and prominent in these Games both for their achievements on the track, pitch and pool, and for symbolic achievements.

The "women's Games" began on the night of the opening ceremony when two women, modestly dressed and veiled, walked proudly alongside the flag of their nation, Saudi Arabia, into London's Olympic stadium at the Games' spectacular opening ceremony.

This understated entrance marked an extraordinary moment for the kingdom and for the Olympics itself, as the first occasion in the history of the Games when all countries participating have had women athletes in their teams.

London 2012: The women's Olympics?

It was a momentous Olympics for U.S. women as well. For the first time Americans sent more female athletes to the Games than men. And boy, did they deliver. While the U.S. led all countries in gold medals and the overall medal count, you can thank the U.S. women for a large part of that. Two-thirds of the times you heard the U.S. national anthem played, it was because  a female had earned the top spot in her event. And 60% of the total medals were nabbed by women. To put that in perspective, if you were to break out the U.S. women into their own country, they'd be ranked third in gold medals won.

And U.S. females put on quite a show in their path to win gold in almost every venue in London.

Missy Franklin, Dana Vollmer, Rebecca Soni and Allison Schmitt each nabbed the gold in her specialty in the pool. They later combined for a wonderful relay for the team to close out their Games. The women's water polo team won for the first time.

In gymnastics, the U.S women proved up to the tough task of bringing gold back to the U.S. for the first time since 1996. Gabby Douglas won the all-around title, the first time an African-American woman had done so. Aly Raisman won a gold medal in the floor routine, a first for the United States.

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings again dominated the sport they have helped make popular by winning a third beach volleyball medal, a fitting end for a team whose members say they have played their last competitive game together. The U.S. women's soccer team added another gold medal to its stash, taking its third straight medal by beating Japan 2-1 in a thrilling rematch of the World Cup final, where Japan took the crown. The women's basketball team also won its fifth straight gold, an unprecedented feat in the Olympics.

FULL POST

August 10th, 2012
07:21 PM ET

How long for women's soccer's latest honeymoon?

Thursday was another banner moment for U.S. women's soccer: A fourth gold medal in five Olympics; waves of fans tweeting their delight at Team USA defeating Japan 2-1; an Olympic women's soccer record 80,203 people, many of them waving U.S. flags, watching at London's Wembley Stadium.

"It's a dream come true," Atlanta resident Lauren Becker, 29, told the Baltimore Sun about seeing the match at Wembley. "I feel like I won gold just being here."

Still unknown, though, is how this kind of euphoria from the world stage will translate into long-term support at home, where yet another women's professional soccer league apparently is in the works.

The Boston Breakers, a survivor of the recently disbanded Women's Professional Soccer league, said that it and three other former WPS teams intend to create a league starting in 2013.

FULL POST

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Redemption! U.S. women beat Japan 2-1 for Olympic soccer gold
U.S. star forward Abby Wambach shows her colors after her squad's gold medal win over Japan.
August 9th, 2012
05:14 PM ET

Redemption! U.S. women beat Japan 2-1 for Olympic soccer gold

Complete coverage and all the conversations surrounding the 2012 London Games are available at CNN's "Aiming for Gold" Olympic blog.

[Posted at 5:16 p.m. ET] Hands on hearts as they close out the ceremony with the "Star-Spangled Banner." The young women on the U.S. team are smiling and singing victoriously with shiny new, gold medals dangling from their necks. That's it for the live blog. We appreciate you stopping in, and we hope you enjoyed the coverage!

[Posted at 5:13 p.m. ET] Sounds like the crowd cheers loudest for Wambach, who at 32, might be standing on that podium for the last time, but who knows?

[Posted at 5:11 p.m. ET] The three-time reigning Olympic champs are up next. As they hold their locked hands aloft in victory, the crowd cheers. Hope Solo gets her gold medal first. She's beaming.

[Posted at 5:07 p.m. ET] The Japanese women are bearing wide grins as well as "Chariots of Fire" plays in the stadium. You wouldn't know they just lost a heartbreaker of a soccer match. They seem thrilled with their silver medals as they show them off for the cameras. They should be proud. They just played one heck of a physical match.

[Posted at 5:04 p.m. ET] Now, the Canadians - decked out in their new silverware, hanging from their necks on purple lanyards - are accepting bouquets. They're all smiles as they lift the bouquets to the cheers of the crowd.

[Posted at 5 p.m. ET] The teams have taken the field for the medal ceremony. The third-place Canadians go first and are receiving their bronze medals.

[Posted at 4:58 p.m. ET] OK, time for some fun. The U.S. Soccer Federation wants to have a little fill in the blank contest. Tweet back at them, or let us know below how the win made you feel:

[Posted at 4:54 p.m. ET] Well, that didn't take long. Nike already has its ad out:

[Posted at 4:51 p.m. ET] U.S. women's national team just tweeted, calling this fine group of soccer players "golden":

[Posted 4:48 p.m. ET] The U.S. women's gold just put the country in a tie with China for most gold medals, at 37. The U.S. is still leading in total medals.

FULL POST

When Olympic athletes succeed but judges fail
Aly Raisman celebrates with her coach after an appeal of her balance beam score earned her a bronze medal.
August 8th, 2012
01:05 PM ET

When Olympic athletes succeed but judges fail

When U.S. gymnast Aly Raisman completed her routine on the balance beam during the individual finals Tuesday, she hugged her coach and stared at the scoreboard, waiting to see whether she had done enough to medal.

When the score finally flashed, a nervous Raisman became disappointed.

"Oh, no!" her coach, Mihai Brestyan, proclaimed as he spotted the eerily familiar results.

She had landed in fourth place – again – and just shy of the medal stand for the second time in the Olympics.

What happened next would again thrust the judges, athletes and coaches into a heated debate over Olympic scoring.

FULL POST

Harrison grabs first U.S. Olympic judo gold
The United States' Kayla Harrison holds a U.S. flag after winning the women's under-78-kilogram Olympic final in London.
August 2nd, 2012
01:40 PM ET

Harrison grabs first U.S. Olympic judo gold

Kayla Harrison says she almost quit judo because of sexual abuse by a coach. Instead, she’s now the first American to win Olympic gold in the sport.

Harrison, 22, won the women’s under-78-kilogram division in London on Thursday, beating the United Kingdom’s Gemma Gibbons in the finals of a 21-woman tournament.

Harrison, a Middletown, Ohio, native training in Massachusetts, became the United States’ only Olympic champion in the sport woman or man. Ranked No. 4 in the world, she had upset top-ranked Brazilian Mayra Aguiar in the semifinals.

She started judo at roughly age 7. But to get to this point, she has said, she needed to overcome sexual abuse starting at age 13 by the person who was then coaching her.

FULL POST

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Badminton disqualifications: Players allegedly tempted by own rules
China's Yu Yang, left, and Wang Xiaoli were two of the eight badminton players disqualified from the Olympics this week.
August 1st, 2012
10:53 PM ET

Badminton disqualifications: Players allegedly tempted by own rules

Until this week, badminton probably wasn’t one of the sports that Americans generally linked to cheating and international scandal. More like backyard cookouts and college fitness classes.

Even the college gym types, though, understand there’s an unspoken agreement between participants: Championship or practice, competition or graduation requirement, you will not intentionally lose to a worthy opponent.

Players might balk at this if they’re rewarded for shunning victory. That’s allegedly what was at play this week when four pairs of female badminton players were disqualified from the Olympics, accused of trying to lose their last qualifying-round matches to face easier opponents in the knockout stage.

The players appear to have denied paying spectators of the competitive matches they’d come to see. The London Olympic organizing committee’s chairman, Sebastian Coe, said the incident was depressing and unacceptable.

But it’s not the first time that this has happened in a tournament’s group stage. And it’s not even the only time in these very Games that a team tried not to win.

The coach of Japan women’s Olympic soccer team acknowledged that it intentionally avoided scoring in its third and final group game, a 0-0 draw with winless South Africa on Wednesday, according to The Independent.

Japan would have won its four-team group with a victory. But a draw put it in second, just enough to qualify for the knockout stage.

Japan’s coach says he did it to ensure the team didn’t travel across the United Kingdom. Second place meant it would start the knockout round in Cardiff, Wales, where the squad already was. The winner of Group F, in contrast, will play its first knockout game in Scotland.

“It was important not to move to Glasgow but to stay here and prepare for the next match,” Japanese coach Norio Sasaki said, according to The Independent.

FULL POST

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Filed under: China • Indonesia • Olympics • South Korea • Sports
August 1st, 2012
01:32 PM ET

If Michael Phelps were a country...

[Updated at 4:02 p.m. ET Saturday]

He would be No. 51 in the all-time medal count, tied with Egypt and Portugal with 22 total medals.

 He'd have more Twitter followers (1,000,497) than Fiji has in total population (890,057).

He'd be making more money than certain entire countries. He is estimated to make $100 million over the course of his lifetime. This is more than twice the estimated GDP of the Tuvalu Islands ($37,470,000).

 He'd be liked on Facebook (5.8 million times) more times than the total number of Internet users in Greece (4,971,000).

Phelps, born in 1985, would be older than several countries including Namibia, Slovakia, Serbia, Kosovo, and South Sudan.

– Phelps, standing 6-foot-4, would be taller than the average Dutch man (6 feet), considered to be the world’s tallest people.

We say this, of course to highlight the legacy of Phelps, who won his 22nd medal on Saturday, extending his record of most Olympic medals won all-time.

Phelps, who began swimming at age 7 to emulate his sisters, set individual world records 29 times, and he still holds records in six events.

He has wrapped up a career as the most decorated Olympian ever, perhaps the greatest ever. Some commentators will argue the cases of track and field's Carl Lewis, who missed an Olympics because of a U.S. boycott, or distance runner Paavo Nurmi, who won 12 medals. Some might argue for Bjorn Daehlie, the Norwegian cross-country skier. And there's gymnast Larisa Latynina, whose 18 medals are now second all time.

Vote in the poll below if you think Michael Phelps should be considered the greatest Olympian ever. We plan to keep adding to this list so let us know in the comments if you have any similar "if Michael Phelps were a country" comparisons and we'll check them out.

8 badminton players thrown out of Olympics for trying to lose
Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang of China are ranked No. 1 in the world.
August 1st, 2012
08:49 AM ET

8 badminton players thrown out of Olympics for trying to lose

Eight female badminton players were thrown out of the Olympics on Wednesday for trying to lose matches the day before, the Badminton World Federation announced after a disciplinary hearing.

"After a hearing this morning before the BWF’s Disciplinary Committee the following pairs were disqualified: Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang (China); Greysia Polii and Meiliana Jauhari (Indonesia); Jung Kyung Eun and Kim Ha Na (Korea); and Ha Jung Eun and Kim Min Jung (Korea)," read a statement from the Badminton World Federation.

The players from China, South Korea and Indonesia were accused of playing to lose to face easier opponents in future matches.

How group stages may tempt athletes to throw games

The Indonesian and South Korean pairs appealed the decision, the BWF said, and a decision on their appeals is expected later on Wednesday.

The eight players concerned had all already qualified for the quarterfinals of the tournament before the final matches of the group stage on Tuesday night.

FULL POST

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Overheard on CNN.com: 'We aren't in the loop for anything' with Olympics tape delay
Readers have lots to say about TV coverage of the Olympics. What do you think?
July 31st, 2012
06:25 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: 'We aren't in the loop for anything' with Olympics tape delay

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

Earlier on this very blog, we posed a question about the NBC Olympics coverage that some have deemed an #NBCFail. Would you prefer to watch the Olympics in real time, or do you prefer the tape delay in prime time? We got a passionate response from our readership, and we posted some on the daily Mash-Up  on Monday. We also wanted to share a few more of the posts that caught our eye.

Live or later: What's your ideal Olympics coverage?

The people preferring a live broadcast seemed to have the edge in the comments, and they totally dominated the very unscientific poll at the bottom of the post.

AmerGrill: "I'd rather have it live. The controversies are late, too. Ye Shiwen story just broke in the U.S. and the race was days ago. Even anti-American Drudge who is always on top of news is only now just twisting the story to make America look bad when the committee, coaches and other swimmers have been questioning this race for days. So far for Americans the whole coverage has been a disaster. We aren't in the loop for anything and there are mixed stories coming in from a variety of sources."

Pebbles Flintstone: "The time difference is not that big. In an age when most work break areas have a TV, there is no reason why it can't be streamed live. Folks can watch during their lunch break and/or catch the rest of it in a prime time recap. Based on the fact that most of us work and can't watch TV all day long – most companies put out TVs for big events anyway. It can be worked around. Not rocket science for NBC."

JayL: "U.S. television always wants to make things fit into their TV schedule ... it has even modified the rules of major games in order to better "present" sports on TV. That's why soccer will never make it in the U.S., guess what, the world doesn't work that way ... other countries show games as they should be, LIVE. So, NBC, do what you have to do and show us the games live."

Ed Bark, former longtime TV critic of The Dallas Morning News, writes in an opinion piece that he believes NBC is being "unfairly eviscerated" about its coverage. FULL POST

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Teen arrested over Twitter abuse of UK diver Tom Daley
Tom Daley, pictured during the Men's Synchronised 10m Platform Diving on July 30, 2012, placed fourth in the dive.
July 31st, 2012
06:41 AM ET

Teen arrested over Twitter abuse of UK diver Tom Daley

British police arrested a teenager suspected of sending an offensive Twitter message to British Olympic diver Tom Daley.

Officers detained a 17-year-old man at a guest house in "the Weymouth area" of the county of Dorset in the early hours of Tuesday morning, they said.

The unnamed teenager is being questioned on "suspicion of malicious communications," a police spokeswoman told CNN.

On Monday, Daley retweeted a message he said he'd received from user "Rileyy_69" shortly after he and his partner Peter Waterfield placed fourth in the men's 10m synchronized dive, failing to win a medal.

FULL STORY


Filed under: Olympics • Sports
July 30th, 2012
12:22 PM ET

Swimming, gymnastics, diving headline Olympics on Monday

The hearts of the host nation were broken Monday when teen diving star Tom Daley failed to bring home a medal in the 10-meter synchronized platform event.

The 18-year-old and his appropriately-named partner Pete Waterfield finished fourth, with favorites Yuan Cao and Yanquan Zhang of China taking gold.

The United States drew level with China for the total number of medals so far, with 13 apiece, but seven of China's are gold, compared with three for Team USA.

American swimmer Ryan Lochte will be hoping to add to the U.S. gold haul with the 200-meter freestyle final later Monday, a day after his anchor leg of the men's 4×100-meter relay fell short to the French - who eliminated Lochte's lead and clinched the gold medal.

FULL STORY


Filed under: Olympics
Live or later: What's your ideal Olympics coverage?
A wartime appeal for Britons to maintain a stiff upper lip has morphed into a myriad of Olympic memes. NBC is the target here.
July 30th, 2012
12:17 PM ET

Live or later: What's your ideal Olympics coverage?

Which Olympic viewer are you? The one who wants to know what happens live when the rest of the world does? Or the one who enjoys NBC's prime-time mashup, with the best event shown in the United States hours after medals have been awarded in Britain?

If you're the latter, you've probably been thrilled with the London 2012 Games coverage.

But if you're the former, you might have been among the thousands railing over the weekend against NBC for not understanding the digital age in which spoilers trickle through every nook of the Internet before the event you've been waiting four years to see finally airs.

As a wired (and wireless) society, now even more so than during the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the tactic of using a tape delay to save the best events for nighttime viewers also the most lucrative audience for NBC has become harder to pull off.

Yes, NBC is airing all the events live online if you have a cable provider. But if you miss that showing, log on to Facebook, check your favorite news site or heaven forbid check social media, you're bound to catch a spoiler. Mostly, that's because NBC does not show many marquee events until about five hours after they've happened.  (We should note this debate occurs regularly when East Coast viewers spoil finales or award shows for the West Coast.)

The tape delay of events on TV and the resulting online spoilers have led to a massive outcry from the Twitterverse and given the aggrieved a place to lodge their complaints. The spoiler problem has also spawned its own hashtag to make the point clear.

In the minds of a growing number of digital users, the Olympics have been a big #NBCfail. And folks online are making sure NBC knows how they feel.

FULL POST

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Overheard on CNN.com: 'Trying to explain what cricket is to my coworkers is fantastic'
The opening ceremony dazzled as the London 2012 Olympic Games kicked off Friday.
July 27th, 2012
07:11 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: 'Trying to explain what cricket is to my coworkers is fantastic'

Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.

And, the Olympics are off! Follow along on the live blog, read about the first day and check out some of the comments that caught our eyes.

London 2012: Live blog

As CNN producers update the live blog with photos and anecdotes, readers are joining right in to the conversation. Here are a couple we saw:

Harry: "Even if people keep saying it, never have I been prouder to call myself British, and a Londoner, even if I currently live in New York. NY has nothing on the Greatest City in the World!!!"

markl: "Proud to be British, even at the other side of the world. Trying to explain what cricket is to my co-workers is fantastic. 'You play for 5 days and it can still end in a tie' ... priceless."

Some of the readers asked about the meaning of things they were seeing from the opening ceremony.

Doubt: "What are the children leading each delegation carrying in their hands?"

Jonathan Stevenson (CNN): "Good question. The copper petals being carried by a child leading each delegation have that country's name inscribed and they will all have a role in the ceremony later. So now you really can't go anywhere, otherwise you'll never find out."

One of the most talked-about aspect of the Olympics on Friday was Mitt Romney’s tough reception in London. FULL POST

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