Paralympic Games
24 August - 5 September 2021

Day 7: Paralympic Games preview

Action includes more than 20 finals in athletics and beginning of road cycling competitions 30 Aug 2021
mcfadden running
American Tatyana McFadden( right) pursues her third consecutive gold in the women’s 1500m T54
ⒸLintao Zhang / Getty Images

It will be a blockbuster day at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics on Tuesday with 24 finals being contested at the Olympic Stadium. Cycling competitions will move from track to road and will have 19 Paralympic champions being crowned.

Preliminary round action will continue in sitting volleyball, wheelchair basketball, and football 5-a-side. Quarterfinal action will start in various sections of boccia, goalball, wheelchair basketball, and wheelchair tennis.

Table tennis will see preliminary rounds in team competitions for men and women.


Timing: 9:00 to 13:35 JST and 17:30 - 20:42 JST

Competitions will conclude in two categories -- the Men’s compound Open and the Women’s Individual - W1 -- with matches from pre-quarterfinals onwards till the final. 

In Women’s Individual W1 watch out for Elena Krutova of the Russian Paralympic Committee (RPC), who has made stable progress since making her international debut in archery in 2014. The RPC athlete moved up from fifth place in the women’s W1 at the 2017 World Championships in Beijing to the top spot at the 2019 edition of the tournament. Her gold in ’s-Hertogenbosch, where she beat South Korea’s Kim Ok Geum with a convincing 130-107 score in the final, was her first major individual title. To make the victory sweeter, it also helped to bump her to the world's No.1 ranking in the women's W1. 

She may face some tough challenges from the two Chinese in the fray, Chen Minyi, and Lij Jing, and also from Turkey’s Fatma Danabas. Aiko Okazaki will carry Japan’s hopes in the home Paralympics.

In the Men’s Individual Compound Open, keep an eye on China’s Ai Xinliang and He Zihao and the Turkish duo of Murat Turan and Butent Korkmaz, Iran’s Ramezan Biabani, and India’s Rakesh Kumar. He Zihao, Biabani, and Kumar had finished 1-2-3 in the ranking round a few days back.


Timing: 9:30 - 12:54 JST and 19:00 - 22:07 JST

The National Olympic Stadium will see 24 Paralympic Games champions being crowned on what will be the busiest day in track and field.

Eleven medal events will take place in the morning session with the women’s javelin F56 first on the list. 

Latvia’s Diana Daditze will be targeting back-to-back Paralympic gold medals. She is also the world champion from London 2017 and Dubai 2019.

Germany’s Martina Willing is the world record holder and travelled to Tokyo with a confidence boost following her gold at the Bydgoszcz 2021 Euros.

Another throw event will come next with Italy’s world champion Assunta Legnante in search of Paralympic gold in the women’s discus throw F11.

But to do that, the Italian will have to repeat Dubai 2019 and beat China’s Liangmin Zhang, the world record holder and two-time Paralympic champion (London 2012 and Rio 2016).

The first two track events of the day will see other Dubai 2019 gold medallist champions aiming for Paralympic glory. 

Brazil’s Julio Cesar Agripino is the current world champion in the men’s 1500m T11 but only managed 12th place in his first Paralympic final five years ago in Rio.

Peru’s Rosbill Guillen is another South American medal hopeful as the Lima 2019 Parapan American champion. 

Kenya’s Wilson Bii was the bronze medallist at Rio 2016 and is another name who can join Agripino on the podium. 

The men’s 400m T36 also has a clear favourite in Australia’s James Turner. He is the two-time world champion from London 2017 and Dubai 2019.

Ukraine’s Roman Pavlyk will be targeting the gold that eluded him five years ago in Rio while RPC’s Evgenii Shvetsov is the silver medallist from Dubai 2019 and won the European title in June.

Next on the track will be Omara Durand against her own limits in the women’s 400m T12. The Cuban Paralympic legend is the world record holder, a three-time world champion, and will be defending her Paralympic gold from Rio 2016. Ukraine’s Oksana Boturchuk is the silver medallist from Rio 2016 and the last World Championships at Dubai 2019.

The last final in the morning session will be the men’s 1500m T54 in which Switzerland’s Marcel Hug and Thailand’s Prawat Wahoram lead the pack as favourites to gold. Wahoram is the current world champion and will be defending his Rio 2016 gold. Hug is the silver medallist from the last Games and the London 2017 world champion. Thailand’s Saichon Konjen, Tunisia’s Yassine Gharbi, and Canada’s Brent Lakatos are other ones to watch.

Switzerland's Marcel Hug is a clear favourite in the men's 1500m T54

The second session of the day will see 13 finals on the roster.

The women’s long jump T38 will have Hungary’s Luca Ekler going for gold in her Games debut in her main event. She is the current world champion, the world record holder, and won her second European title in June at Bydgoszcz 2021.

Malaysia’s Muhammad Ziyad Zolkefli will be targeting a second consecutive Paralympic gold in the men’s shot put F20. The world record holder and a two-time world champion he was beaten by Ukraine’s Maksym Koval in the last World Championships in Dubai two years ago.

Greece will have three strong throwers in the event, with Rio 2016 silver medallist Dimitrios Senikidis and Dubai 2019 bronze medallist Efstratios Nikolaidis. Newcomer Leontios Stefanidis is the only athlete in Para athletics whose father is also competing at the Games. Lazaros Stefanidis will take part in the men’s shot put F33.

The world record holder and three-time world champion Daniel Martins from Brazil will be defending his Paralympic title in the men’s 400m T20 final. 

The last World Championships in Dubai saw a South American podium with Ecuador’s Anderson Mina finishing second and Venezuela’s Luis Felipe Bolivar third.

The men’s shot put F32 will be the next event in the programme and one likely to see a new Paralympic champion. China’s Li Liu will make his Paralympic debut as the world record holder and reigning world champion.

Algeria’s Lahouari Bahlaz finished second behind Liu in Dubai 2019 and is also a Rio 2016 Paralympic silver medallist. Rio 2016 champion Athanasios Konstantinidis will also be in action.

Day five evening session will also see one of the most popular events in Para athletics, the men’s high jump T63. 

India’s Mariyappan Thangavelu will be defending his Rio 2016 gold against USA’s Sam Grewe, the Rio 2016 silver who beat Thangavelu in at the Dubai 2019 World Championships.

India has other two strong competitors with Dubai 2019 silver medallist Sharad Kumar and Rio 2016 bronze Varun Singh Bhati.

Colombia’s Dixon Hooker and South Africa’s Dyan Buis will be battling next for the men’s 400m T38 gold. Buis is the reigning Paralympic champion and the world champion from London 2017.

The Colombian who finished sixth in Rio has since then taken silver at the London 2017 Worlds and gold at the Dubai 2019 Worlds.

The women’s 200m T64 will see Germany’s Irmgard Bensusan in her quest for Paralympic gold. The sprinter made her Games debut at Rio 2016 taking three silver medals. 

But Dubai 2019 saw her bag two World Championships gold, one of them in the 200m. Her rivals then and now will be two Dutch sprinters, European champion Marlene van Gansewinkel and Dubai 2019 silver medallist Kimberly Alkemade.

The women’s 100m T11 will crown the world’s fastest female vision-impaired sprinter. Brazil’s Jerusa Geber is the world record holder and Dubai 2019 world champion targeting her first Paralympic gold.

She will be facing Brazilian rivals Thalita Simplicio and Lorena Spoladore, as well as China’s Liu Cuiqing.

Fast vision-impaired runners will also be in action in the women’s 100m T13 final. Ukraine’s Leilia Adzhametova is a two-time world champion and reigning Paralympic champion but an emerging Spanish star beat her for European gold in June in Poland. Watch out for Adiaratou Iglesias.

Speaking of fast female sprinters, the next final in the programme will see plenty of them in the women’s 100m T47. 

USA’s Deja Young and Brittni Mason are the stars of the event. Young took gold at Rio 2016, followed by more victories at the London 2017 Worlds. But she finished second behind Mason at the Dubai 2019 Worlds and saw her rival break the world record. 

Three more track finals will conclude the programme on 31 August. Another USA sprinter is the name to beat in the women’s 400m T20. Breanna Clark is the world record holder and the defending Paralympic champion. Her impressive CV also includes the London 2017 and the Dubai 2019 World Championships titles. 

The last event on day five will be packed with wheelchair racing stars. USA’s Para athletics legend Tatyana McFadden will be targeting her third Paralympic gold in a row in the women’s 1500m T54. 

But to defend her title she will have to beat the likes of China’s Zou Lihong, Australia’s Madison de Rozario, Switzerland’s Manuela Schaer, USA’s Susannah Scaroni, and Germany’s Merle Menje.


Timing: 8:00 to 15:37 JST 

All 19 finals will be conducted on an action-packed day in road cycling.


Carol Cooke (AUS): who will turn 60 this year but she is aiming to add a Paralympic medal to the three golds won at London 2012 (mixed time trial) and Rio 2016 (road race and time trial T2). Her journey in Para sports began in 2006 in Para rowing. Cooke narrowly missed out on being part of the Australian team at the 2008 Beijing Paralympics. This led to cycling, which saw her go on a winning streak on the road until 2018. She needs to be in top form ahead of Tokyo, where she will face USA’s Jill Walsh, who beat her in both the women’s time trial and road race T2 at the 2019 World Championships.

Carol Cooke

Luca Mazzone (ITA) will be the favourite in the Men’s H2 Time Trial. 

Tokyo 2020 will be Mazzone’s fifth Paralympics but second as a cyclist. He won Paralympic medals in swimming but his first golds came in cycling at Rio 2016, where he won the time trial and silver in the road race H2. He also helped Italy celebrate gold in the team relay, and the Italian is not slowing down, having won a pair of world titles in 2019. 


Timing: 9:30 - 12:00 JST and 14:00 to 15:30 JST

Two finals -- Women’s 10mAir Pistol SH1 and Men’s 10m Air Pistol SH1 -- will be conducted on the second day of shooting competitions in Tokyo.

In the fray are two with Paralympic legends Sareh Javanmardi of Iran and China’s Yang Chao to be the biggest stars in action at the Asaka Shooting Range. The P2 - women's 10m air pistol SH1 will open the day’s action with Javanmardi looking to defend her Rio 2016 title. 

Following her Rio show where the Iranian also set the Paralympic record, she has clinched the gold at the Cheongju Worlds in South Korea and the Asian Para Games in Indonesia both in 2018. She also picked up a silver at the Sydney 2019 World Shooting Para Sport Championships.

However, Ukraine’s Iryna Liakhu and Aysegul Pehlivanlar of Turkey are expected to pose strong challenges in Javanmardi’s road to glory. While Liakhu is a Sydney 2019 world champion and silver medallist at Cheongju 2018, Pehlivanlar is the bronze medallist from the Rio 2016 Paralympics and Sydney 2019 Worlds. 

Watch out for Rubina Francis of India, the current world record holder in the Women’s 10m Air Pistol SH1. She had shot 238.1 in the World Cup in Lima in June this year. Sareh Javanmardi, who set the Paralympic Games record of 193.4 at Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Chinese star Yang Chao is the title favourite in P1 - men's 10m air pistol SH1, the last event of the day. He is a Rio 2016 Paralympics gold medallist with a Paralympic record and Cheongju 2018 world champion.

Yang Chao (left) defends his Rio 2016 title in the P1 -men's 10m air pistol SH1

Meanwhile, Uzbekistan’s Server Ibragimov would be hoping to improve his Rio 2016 medal colour after his bronze medal show last time. He is also a Cheongju 2018 Worlds silver medallist. 

RPC’s Sergey Malyshev would also be keen to go one step better after his silver medal at the Beijing 2008 Paralympics, Sydney 2019, and Suhl 2014 World Championships.

India would look to make a mark through another promising star Manish Narwal who is an Indonesia 2018 Asian Para Games gold medallist and Sydney 2019 Worlds bronze medallist.


Timing: 9:00 10:42 JST and 17:00 to 19:34 JST

A total of 14 finals will be held on the day with heats being held in the morning session.

First, up will be the longest race of the day, the men’s 400m freestyle S8. RPC’s Andrei Nikolaev is the man to beat as the reigning world and European champion from the London 2019 World Championships and the Madeira 2020 European Championships.

He is the second-fastest Para swimmer of the year behind the USA’s Matthew Torres who set his season-best at the US National Trials in Minneapolis in June. His compatriot Robert Griswold is another candidate for a medal in Tokyo as the silver medallist from the last two World Championships. He is the fourth-fastest man in the event in 2021. Italian Alberto Amodeo squeezed in third place a month and a half ago at a competition in Naples.

Jessica Long will be the favourite in the women’s 400m freestyle S8. At the last World Championships in London Long took bronze. She is the second-fastest in 2021 behind her compatriot Morgan Stickney who won the race at the Lewisville World Series in April.

Italy’s Xenia Francesca Palazzo is the silver medallist from London 2019 and reigning back-to-back European champion. She set the third-fastest time in the event this year at the Euros in Madeira in May.

Ukraine’s Yaroslav Denysenko and Azerbaijan’s Raman Salei are leading the pack in the men’s 100m freestyle S12. Denysenko set the fastest time in 2021 at the Berlin World Series in June, while Salei sits in second place with the season-best set at the Euros in Madeira in May. He won the title there, as well as the bronze medal at the Worlds in 2019.

In the women’s 100m freestyle S12, Maria Gomes Santiago is one of the favourites for the gold medal as the reigning world champion from London 2019 and the fastest Para swimmer in 2021. The Brazilian set her fastest time of the year at the National Trials in Sao Paulo in June.

RPC’s Daria Pikalova is the second in the rankings this year. She has had an amazing year so far winning the European Championships in Madeira in May. The silver medal went to Italy’s Alessia Berra who had to settle for the same medal three years ago at the Euros in Dublin.

Great Britain’s Hannah Russell won the gold back then. This year, Russell is the fourth-fastest Para swimmer setting her season-best at the first World Series of the season in Sheffield.

The women’s 200m individual medley SM14 is also packed with quality entries. Great Britain’s Bethany Firth is the defending Paralympic champion. She also set the fastest time in the event this year in Dublin in April. At the last World Championships in London in 2019, she took silver.

British Bettany Firth aims to defend her title in the 200m individual medley SM14

Australia’s Paige Leonhardt is the second-fastest this year. She set her best result in Adelaide in June at the National Trials. Sweden's Pernilla Lindberg comes next in the rankings. She is the reigning European champion from Madeira in May and a world champion from Mexico City 2017.

Another medal hopeful is Great Britain’s, Louise Fiddes. The 20-year-old won bronze at the Dublin 2018 Euros and London 2019 Worlds. Her best result of the year from Manchester in February is the fifth-best in the season.


Timing: 9:00 - 20:45 JST

The United States will take on neighbours Canada while China will meet Great Britain in top action in the women’s section on the day. Two of the semifinals have been rescheduled.


Timing: Matches start from 11:00 JST

Netherlands’ Diede de Groot will take her chase of the Golden Slam into the quarterfinals. She will take on Japan’s Momoko Ohtani in the women’s singles quarterfinals.

Dylan Alcott, who is also chasing a Golden Slam having won all the Grand Slam titles, will meet Dutch player Niels Vink in the Quad Singles semifinals.

Australia's Dylan Alcott is the favourite in the quad singles