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Jung takes Oly individual eventing title
By John Salvado
04:08 AEST Wed Aug 1 2012

One fence. One lousy fence.

That was all that stood between Sweden's Sara Algotsson Ostholt and the honour of becoming the first woman to be crowned the Olympic individual eventing champion.

Needing to ride a clear round in the final show jumping phase at Greenwich Park to hold off the challenge of Michael Jung from Germany, Algottson Ostholt was seconds from victory when her horse Wega clipped the final barrier.

It wobbled and then fell to the ground, leaving Jung to celebrate the individual and team gold double on his 30th birthday and the Swedish rider to scream out in frustration.

"We all had to ride quite fast," said Algotsson Ostholt.

"I came quite fast into the triple jump (which was the second-last obstacle).

"I told her to be careful but sadly she didn't listen," he said, admitting these things happen.

Equestrian is unique in Olympic sport in that it allows men and women to compete on an even footing.

And the fairer sex more than hold their own.

Eight of the 15 team eventing medallists in London were women, including two of the winning German squad.

Algotsson Ostholt and Germany's Sandra Auffarth also claimed the minor medals in the individual eventing.

Woman riders dominate the top end of world dressage and Australian Edwina Tops-Alexander is considered a legitimate chance to win a show jumping medal in London.

But that one fence ensured - for four more years at least - that the list of Olympic individual eventing champions will remain a men's-only preserve.

Jung knew it had been a close-run thing.

"Sara did a very good job, she is a very good rider, but it was a bad mistake at the end," said Jung, who became the first rider to hold the Olympic, world and European eventing titles at the same time.

"I would have been happy with second place, but first place is better."

A British team including Queen Elizabeth's grand-daughter Zara Phillips was second in the team event and New Zealand pocketed the bronze.

Germany have now won 23 Olympic equestrian titles, six more than any other country.

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Opening Ceremony
Archery
Athletics
Badminton
Basketball
Beach Volleyball
Boxing
BMX
Cycling
Diving
Equestrian
Fencing
Football
Gymnastics
Handball
Hockey
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Modern Pentathlon
Rowing/Canoe/Kayak
Sailing
Shooting
Swimming
Synchro
Table Tennis
Taekwondo
Tennis
Triathlon
Volleyball
Water Polo
Weightlifting
Wrestling
Closing ceremony
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