Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Five things to watch at the Olympics on Saturday

By the CNN Wire Staff
updated 1:17 AM EDT, Sat August 11, 2012
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Usain Bolt tries for a 3rd gold medal in London as part of Jamaica's 4x100-meter relay
  • The U.S. women's volleyball and basketball teams try to finish Games undefeated
  • Brazil and Mexico battle in the men's football final at Wembley Stadium

London (CNN) -- Since starting with plenty of pomp, the 2012 London Olympics has been a forum for a number of stunning performances. Yet that won't be the case for much longer, as athletes have just two days left to realize their Olympic dreams. Here are five things to watch for Saturday, when 31 gold medals will be on the line:

1) Men's 4x100-meter relay: Usain Bolt tries to continue his remarkable run

Can Usain Bolt do it again? If he does win his sixth Olympic gold medal on Saturday, the Jamaican won't be doing it alone. He and countryman Yohan Blake -- who beat Bolt in their nation's Olympic trials, but finished right behind him in the 100-meter and 200-meter races in London -- are part of the quartet that is the odds-on favorite entering the 4x100-meter relay. The next fastest qualifier is the U.S. men's squad, which will hope to follow the lead of the U.S. women's 4x100-meter team that won gold Friday. Trinidad and Tobago and Canada are also among those in the mix.

The relay race is set to begin around 9 p.m. London time (4 p.m. ET)

Rio prepares for 2016 Games
Chris Hoy rules out Rio 2016
Olympics final gave us 'goosebumps'
The push for tug-of-war at the Games
How Games losers deal with defeat

2) Women's basketball: Team USA aims to make it five straight golds

While the U.S. men's basketball team, with its NBA-laden roster, gets far more press, the U.S. women's team has been more dominant on the world stage of late. The Americans will shoot for five straight Olympic gold medals when they go up against France. The French can't claim the healthy winning margins of the Americans, nor can they boast the likes of Diana Taurasi, Candace Parker or Maya Moore. But they are no slouches either, having won each of their seven contests thus far this Olympic Games.

The game should tip off at 9 p.m. London time (4 p.m. ET)

3) Men's football: A battle of the Americas on the pitch

Brazil should have plenty of reasons to smile in four years, when it hosts the next edition of the summer Olympics. For now, though, it'll have to get its glory in other ways -- with gold in men's football perhaps the most fitting, given the country's longtime love affair with the sport. The Brazilians have been filling up the goals this Olympic tourney with three goals in each of their five games, all of them wins. Yet they'll have to topple similarly undefeated Mexico at Wembley Stadium to top the podium.

The match begins at 3 p.m. London time (10 a.m. ET)

4) Men's diving: How close to perfect can Qiu Bo be?

China's Qiu Bo is all of 19 years old and already a part of diving history. He notched a remarkable 25 perfect 10s in last year's FINA/Midea Diving World Series 10-meter event. And he enters the Olympic final in that event as a runaway favorite as the top qualifier. So can anyone knock Qiu off his perch atop the platform? That depends on how well his countryman Lin Yue, Germany's Sascha Klein and Martin Wolfram, Mexico's German Sanchez Sanchez and Ivan Garcia Navarro and the rest of the field perform Saturday night.

The finals should start at 8:30 p.m. London time (3:30 p.m. ET).

5) Women's volleyball: A rematch from the Beijing Games

The U.S. women's volleyball team has been on the top of its game in London, losing a mere two sets and winning 21 en route to a perfect 7-0 record. Yet the Americans will have to overcome Brazil, and history, to finish the tournament on a winning note. The Brazilians lost two of their first three matches -- one of them to the United States -- but have won their last four, including a straight-set thrashing of Japan in the semifinals. While most always competitive, the United States has hardly been dominant internationally: It's never won the FIVB World Cup, a competition occurring every four years since 1973, or an Olympic finals. That includes a 2008 Olympic defeat against none other than Brazil.

The contest begins at 6:30 p.m. London time (1:30 p.m. ET)

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 9:53 AM EDT, Mon August 13, 2012
The moment that Team GB's Mo Farah won the 10,000 meters was a wonderful collision of electricity.
updated 11:34 AM EDT, Mon August 13, 2012
His blistering pace and larger-than-life antics made him the king of the track in London, and bolstered his claims to be a "living legend."
updated 5:44 AM EDT, Tue August 14, 2012
Disappointment for Nigeria's Muizat Ajoke Odumosu, who came last in the 400m hurdles final, London 2012 Olympics.
The Olympics are generally won and lost long before the opening ceremony cauldron is touched by fire.
updated 3:38 AM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
Fans of the home side, Team GB, wave Union Jack flags during the Olympic Games
CNN's Richard Quest believes the London Games will be regarded as having brought the Olympics concept home.
updated 12:33 PM EDT, Sat August 11, 2012
Strategist Alastair Campbell says he never imagined London 2012 would be quite the triumph it turned out to be.
updated 4:57 PM EDT, Tue August 14, 2012
Award-winning director Danny Boyle celebrates the best of British music in London 2012's Olympic Closing Ceremony.
updated 9:52 AM EST, Thu January 31, 2013
From Usain Bolt's record-setting achievements to an unexpected Ugandan gold, London 2012 has provided a wide array of highlights.
updated 11:05 PM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
CNN's Amanda Davies recaps the London 2012 Olympics from the opening ceremony on July 27 to the finale on day 16.
updated 1:02 PM EDT, Sun August 12, 2012
Mo Farah and Usain Bolt celebrate their success at the London 2012 Olympic Games by copying each other's
It's been just over two weeks since the Queen parachuted into London's Olympic Stadium, her apricot dress flapping in the breeze.
updated 8:14 AM EDT, Wed August 15, 2012
When the world's top marathon runners bid to win Olympic gold, they would do well to draw inspiration from one of the greatest athletes in the history of track and field.
updated 12:33 PM EDT, Sat August 11, 2012
Team GB supporters with their faces painted in Union Jack designs at the Olympic Stadium in London.
Alastair Campbell always thought London 2012 would be a success, but never imagined it would be quite the triumph it has turned out to be.
updated 6:21 AM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
Adrien Niyonshuti is unlikely to win an Olympic medal, and he will do well to even finish his event, but his story is surely one of the most inspirational.
updated 12:05 PM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
The colors of the Olympic Rings at the Olympic Park in Stratford, east London, August 2012.
Olympic fever has cheered up London and made it a more welcoming place, but will optimism be one of the legacies of the Games?
updated 2:25 PM EDT, Fri August 10, 2012
Wojdan Shaherkani's Olympic debut was short, but sweet -- the Saudi judoka said competing at the Games was
London 2012 is the first Olympics to feature women in every national team, with Jacques Rogge hailing a "major boost for gender equality."
updated 8:40 PM EDT, Thu August 9, 2012
An impoverished South Korean gymnast has not only struck Olympic gold, but also reaped a $444,000 donation in a veritable rags to riches tale.
updated 8:46 PM EDT, Wed August 8, 2012
Britain's hero Jessica Ennis is set to cash in after winning heptathlon gold, but the poster girl of the 2012 Olympics says fame is not her motivation.
updated 3:46 AM EDT, Wed August 8, 2012
China is rallying around fallen hurdler Liu Xiang after he failed to make it past the first-round heat for a second consecutive Olympics.
updated 3:30 PM EDT, Fri August 3, 2012
The first woman to win Olympic gold almost died in a plane crash, but remarkably returned to run again for the U.S. in 1936.
updated 11:04 AM EDT, Tue August 7, 2012
Don Paige could not bear to watch the race he knew he could win. The 1980 Moscow Olympics were the death of a dream for many athletes.
updated 10:21 AM EDT, Sat August 4, 2012
Ricardo Blas Jr
While Michael Phelps and Usain Bolt grab the headlines, little-known athletes from around the world keep alive the original spirit of the Olympics.
Athletes spend years eating the right foods ... and then must resist the free fast food in the Olympic village. How do they do it?
ADVERTISEMENT