Day 16 of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics

By Helen Regan and Sofia Mitra-Thakur CNN

Updated 8:37 PM ET, Sun February 20, 2022
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4:39 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Food poisoning no barrier to cross-country silver for Team USA's Jessie Diggins

From CNN's Jack Bantock

American cross-country skier Jessie Diggins lies on the snow after crossing the finish line of the 30-kilometer mass start event on Sunday. She won the silver, finishing behind Norway's Therese Johaug.
American cross-country skier Jessie Diggins lies on the snow after crossing the finish line of the 30-kilometer mass start event on Sunday. She won the silver, finishing behind Norway's Therese Johaug. (Aaron Favila/AP)

As if competing on an empty stomach was bad enough, Jessie Diggins faced the prospect of trekking 30km through the snow in below freezing temperatures on a recently poisoned one.

The American cross-country skier revealed that just 30 hours before the mass start event on Sunday, she had been suffering from food poisoning.

Yet Diggins powered through to win silver, becoming the first American ever to win multiple cross-country skiing medals in the same Olympics after her previous bronze in the free sprint event.

"One of the hardest things I've ever done in my whole life," said Diggins. "I felt like I was dying in the finish.

"We had so much cheering out there. When it got really hard everyone was just breathing with me."

6:24 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

German bobsled winner Francesco Friedrich says "we are extremely lucky this is our job"

German bobsledder Francesco Friedrich holds up his gold medals from the two- and four-man events on February 20.
German bobsledder Francesco Friedrich holds up his gold medals from the two- and four-man events on February 20. (Robert Michael/picture alliance/Getty Images)

Germany's Francesco Friedrich, who led his four-man bobsled team to victory on Sunday and became the first man ever to win the double-double, said he will continue to bobsleigh for as long as he can.

Friedrich's win was history making — it's the first time a driver has won the two- and four-man gold at multiple Olympics.

“We really enjoy doing what we do," he said. "We are extremely lucky that this is our job and we have such a passion for it. It’s not something that’s given to everyone in life. So every year and every competition we give it our utmost, and as long as we can do this, we will continue to do this.”

Friedrich beat the fellow German team led by Johannes Lochner, which took silver.

Lochner said they needed to be more powerful to win gold.

“By and large I’m very happy. We were too far off in the start zone, so it’s our own fault really. We made it only for the silver; for the gold we needed to be more powerful. But raking in a silver at the Olympic Games is just great, it’s awesome.”

On whether he will continue to 2026, Lochner said he'll have to see.

“Another Olympic Games, that’s not on my agenda really. I need to talk to my family at home and my parents to see where we’re going. I don’t have a plan yet," he said. “I’ll be looking at the world championships at St. Moritz, that would be a nice end to my career.”
2:38 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Great Britain's Eve Muirhead says it's a "dream come true" to win curling gold

Eve Muirhead guides her team during the women's curling gold medal match between Japan and Great Britain.
Eve Muirhead guides her team during the women's curling gold medal match between Japan and Great Britain. (Jeff Pachoud/AFP/Getty Images)

Team GB's Eve Muirhead said it felt like a "dream come true" after her team won the country's first Olympic gold in women's curling since 2002.

Britain's Muirhead, Vicky Wright, Jennifer Dodds and Hailey Duff beat Japan 10-3 in the curling final, claiming their country's first gold at Beijing 2022.

"We fought very hard as a team to get it. We have come so far from the beginning of this season," said Muirhead. “Without these girls being so strong, this dream would not have come true. They helped me become a better curler, and a better person. Together we are a very, very strong unit and I think today we proved that.”

On what it means for GB, 20 years after Rhona Martin won gold at Salt Lake City, Muirhead said it "is something very, very special."

“I think Team Great Britain have been strong at the Olympic Games since Rhona won, but we just haven’t crossed the line," she said. “To have this moment now and know that I followed in Rhona’s footsteps and have this gold medal around my neck, is something very, very special."

Teammate Wright, who was working full time as a nurse during the pandemic while training for Beijing, said she was "really lucky to do both."

“To have the support of the girls at work to make everything here possible, I am really lucky. I can’t wait to show them this medal because it is just as much theirs as it is mine," she said.

 Dodds said of the gold medal match: "dreams come true."

"When you see us relaxed and having fun, that is when we play our best. I think we showed that today," she said.
2:13 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Analysis: The Olympics was a success inside China. And that's the audience Beijing cares about

Analysis from CNN's Beijing Bureau

Heading into the Winter Olympics, there was much talk of two host cities -- one inside a tightly-sealed bubble where the Games would be held, and one outside, where daily life would go on as normal.

But the past two weeks have also shown the world two very different Games: For China, Beijing 2022 was a resounding success that exceeded all expectations.

To the rest of the world, it remained a deeply polarizing event, that projected not only China's rising power but also its growing assertiveness, ready to defy and challenge its critics.

Covid: In its meticulously managed "closed loop," the ubiquitous face masks, spraying of disinfectant and daily testing have paid-off. Infections brought into the country were swiftly identified and contained, allowing the Games to run largely free of Covid.

Medals: In the medal tables, Team China claimed nine golds and a total of 15 medals, delivering its best ever result at a Winter Olympics -- and ranking above the United States. The stellar performances of its new Olympic stars -- from freeski sensation Eileen Gu to snowboard prodigy Su Yiming -- captivated fans, drawing an outpouring of pride.

Avoiding embarrassment: But for the Chinese government, part of the domestic success also comes from the avoidance of major political scandal or embarrassment. While the doping saga surrounding a teenage Russian figure skater has cast a shadow over the Olympics, it was downplayed inside China. The same was true of criticism of the Games in general, most of which was censored and blocked.

And much to the relief of government officials in Beijing, not a single athlete attempted to use the event to publicly protest China's human rights record -- a hot-button issue in the lead-up to the Olympics.

Read the full analysis:

1:55 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Norway finishes Beijing 2022 with most golds won at a Winter Olympics

From CNN's Kevin Dotson

Norway won 16 gold medals which represents the most ever won at a single Winter Games.
Norway won 16 gold medals which represents the most ever won at a single Winter Games. (Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

With the final medal event of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics in the books, Norway finishes the Games with a dominant lead in the medal count. 

Norway tallied the most gold medals, 16, and the highest total number of medals, 37, of all the countries competing in Beijing.  

Norway’s 16 gold medals represent the most ever won at a single Winter Games.

Here’s a look at the top 5 nations on the medal table:

  1. Norway won 16 gold, eight silver and 13 bronze for a total of 37 medals.
  2. Germany won 12 gold, 10 silver and five bronze, for a total of 27.
  3. Host China won nine gold, four silver and two bronze, for a total of 15.
  4. USA won eight gold, 10 silver and seven bronze, for a total of 25.
  5. Sweden won eight gold, five silver and five bronze, for a total of 18.

Netherlands also finished with eight gold medals, but placed sixth by virtue of having one less bronze medal than Sweden.

Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) collected 32 total medals, the second highest of any team competing in these Games.

Standings could still change: However, there is still a question mark over the medals in the figure skating team event. The medal ceremony was postponed and the results could change depending on the outcome of an investigation into the failed drug test of ROC figure skater Kamila Valieva.

1:38 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Finland beat ROC to win gold in men's ice hockey

Team Finland defeats Team ROC to win gold in men's ice hockey final on Sunday.
Team Finland defeats Team ROC to win gold in men's ice hockey final on Sunday. (Wang Zhao/AFP/Getty Images)

Finland claimed victory in the men's ice hockey final on Sunday, beating Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) 2-1, to win their first ever men's Winter Olympics ice hockey gold medal.

ROC failed to defend their Olympic title won at Pyeongchang 2018, when the team went by the name Olympic Athletes from Russia. They picked up the silver.

The ROC team scored first in the game’s opening period but Finland leveled with a second period goal, sending the game to the third period tied 1-1.

Finland’s Hannes Bjorninen scored the go-ahead goal for his team just 31 seconds into the third period, and the Finns held on to win the game.

Finland have made regular appearances on the podium, returning home with an ice hockey medal from five of the previous seven Games, but it's the first time the team has reached the top step. 

It's also the last gold medal of the Beijing Games.

Slovakia earlier beat Sweden to take the bronze.

12:42 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Beijing says no Covid-19 spread from Olympics’ closed loop to community

From CNN’s Teele Rebane and Sophie Jeong

There has been no spread of Covid-19 infections from the Olympics’ "closed loop" system to the community in Beijing, officials said.

Han Zirong, vice president and secretary-general of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Olympic Games (BOCOG) made the announcement during a press conference on Sunday.

“According to President (Thomas) Bach and some reporters, the closed loop system is one of the safest places on this planet, if not the safest,” Cai Qi, president of the BOCOG added.

The Beijing Olympic Committee identified one new Covid-19 case among Olympics-related personnel on Saturday, it said.

The new case involves an athlete or team official inside the closed loop, which separates Olympic athletes, stakeholders and staff from the public.

Since Jan. 23, a total of 437 Covid-19 cases have been found among Olympics-related personnel, 185 of which involved athletes and team officials.

12:37 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

There is only one more gold medal left to win at the Beijing Winter Olympics

Team ROC and Team Finland compete for the last gold medal in the men's ice hockey final on Sunday.
Team ROC and Team Finland compete for the last gold medal in the men's ice hockey final on Sunday. (Anthony Wallace/AFP/Getty Images)

Following Therese Johaug's victory in the women's cross-country skiing, there remains only one gold medal up for grabs at the Beijing Winter Olympics.

That final event is underway, with Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) leading Finland 1-0 in the men's ice hockey.

12:06 a.m. ET, February 20, 2022

Norway's Therese Johaug wins women's 30km cross-country skiing

Norway's Therese Johaug wins women's 30km cross-country skiing.
Norway's Therese Johaug wins women's 30km cross-country skiing. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

Norway's Therese Johaug won the women's 30km cross-country skiing mass start on Sunday, with a time of 1:24:54.

This is Johaug’s third gold medal of these Games, having also won the women’s 10km classic and the 7.5km + 7.5km skiathlon.

In the home stretch, Johaug grabbed a Norwegian flag and waved it as she skied across the finish line.

Her gold adds to Norway's domination in the medal standings, with the country’s 16th gold and 37th total medal in Beijing.

It is also the penultimate gold medal to be won at the Olympics.

Team USA's Jessie Diggins claimed silver and Finland's Kerttu Niskanen took bronze.

Diggins becomes the first American ever to win multiple cross-country skiing medals in the same Olympics. Diggins previously won the bronze medal in the women’s free sprint event.