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Shot from the heart causes Adams pain

NZN 13/08/2016 Sean Martin

It came from out of nowhere.

For so long in the women's shot put final Valerie Adams was in complete control.

A 20.42m effort - her best of the year - had the field in her wake.

No one was close. Her nearest challenger was almost 60cm shy of her.

And then, like a bolt from the blue, Michelle Carter summoned all of her reserves and produced something special with her final throw.

So special that it was the furthest ever throw for an American.

It was a shot to the heart.

Adams, who had appeared to have one hand on gold, suddenly had to take off her tracksuit and go again.

Filled with adrenaline she wasted no time in trying to find something better.

She came up short.

Her attempt to become the first shot putter to win gold at three Olympics had been snatched from her grasp.

But she could console herself that it had taken something exceptional and not exceptional drugs like in London four years ago to beat her.

"I'm disappointed at not winning but you can never under-estimate anyone, especially Michelle. She's capable of popping one out and that's the great thing about sport," she said.

Adams was not the only Kiwi looking for a little more distance in Rio on Friday.

Women's rowing pair Rebecca Scown and Genevieve Behrent were eating up the gap between themselves and the British pair at such a rate over the closing stages that gold was nearly in their grasp.

"If there was another 200m, who knows what might have happened?" Behrent told NZ Newswire.

They get a chance to go one better than their silver medal in Saturday's women's eight final.

World champion double scullers Julia Edward and Sophie Mackenzie missed out on a medal but both hockey teams remain in the hunt.

The men saved their best until last and when it mattered most to end Belgium's unbeaten record and seal their spot in the quarter-finals while the women drew with world No.1 Netherlands with the stunning late strike.

Another to strike was the 49er crew of Peter Burling and Blair Tuke after itching to get on the water this week they finally saw action and laid down a marker by winning both races in Guanabara Bay.

"We've been watching all the other classes race now for a few days so we were really keen to get into it," Tuke said.

Danny Lee also roared into contention in golf's Olympic return by birdieing his last four holes to lie sixth after two rounds

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