RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — The Latest on the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro (all times local):
The U.S. men’s and women’s basketball teams arrived in Rio de Janeiro Wednesday to compete at the Olympic games.
The men’s team was taken to the Port of Rio, where the players boarded a cruise ship, Silver Cloud, their home for the duration of the Olympics.
The new president of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang says: “I assure you our preparations are firmly on track.”
Lee Hee-beom took over the top spot in May — the second leadership change in two years — and told IOC members attending a general assembly meeting that a high-speed train line to serve the resort was on schedule and would be completed in June of 2017.
The head of the coordination commission for the Korean games, Gunilla Lindberg, says $615 million in sponsorships had been lined up, 81 percent of the revenue goal. She said the sponsorships would reach 90 percent of the goal by the end of the year.
Both IOC president Thomas Bach and Lindberg each praised Lee as a “high-energy” leader who would boost preparations.
Lindberg said recent changes at the top “hopefully will help us overcome the remaining hurdles.”
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Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes carried the Olympic torch on Wednesday after an evening of protests forced a change in the path of the torch relay in the neighboring cities of Sao Goncalo and Niteroi.
Paes received the flame from former sailor and Olympic medalist Lars Grael.
On Tuesday a protest involving 50 people stopped the relay in Sao Goncalo, one of the poorest cities of greater Rio.
The protesters were demanding improvements in education and healthcare. The same happened later in Niteroi.
Venus and Serena Williams have arrived in Rio de Janeiro.
The two-time defending Olympic women’s doubles gold medalists got their accreditations processed after flying in Wednesday morning. The sisters have a combined eight golds between them, four apiece. Each has a singles gold, and they teamed up for doubles gold in 2000, 2008 and 2012.
Serena had a Harry Potter book with her for her flight. Venus tried to stifle a few yawns, and there was no fanfare even for superstars like them.
After being processed, the sisters headed off to get their luggage — just like everyone else.
The Olympic flame hitched a ride on a tour boat to finally reach Rio de Janeiro.
The relay from Greece to Brazil reached its final city on Wednesday with plenty of fanfare and much more to come. Sailors, journalists and even viewers live on Periscope watched the flame arrive in the Olympic host city from Niteroi, just across a short channel leading into Guanabara Bay.
The flame will make its way to Maracana Stadium for the opening ceremony on Friday. The relay began with a ceremonial lighting in Ancient Olympia, Greece, on April 21.
The most decorated athlete in Olympic history will carry the United States flag during the opening ceremony for the Rio Games.
Michael Phelps was selected in a vote by members of the U.S. Olympic team. The decision was announced Wednesday morning.
Phelps was a logical choice heading into his fifth Summer Games. He has won 18 golds and 22 medals overall, far more than any other athlete.
Phelps skipped the opening ceremony at the last three Olympics to rest up for the grueling 400-meter individual medley, which is held the next day.
But with that event no longer a part of his program, Phelps is available to carry the flag in Friday night’s ceremony at the Maracana.
Phelps says he is “humbled by the significance of carrying the flag and all that it stands for.”
The International Olympic Committee says it expects total revenue to reach $5.6 billion for the four-year period ending in 2016.
That’s an increase from $5.2 billion during the previous period between 2009 and 2012.
The IOC’s income has climbed steadily since 2000. The total revenue for 2001-2004 was $3 billion, and it increased to $3.9 billion for 2005-2008.
The IOC also reported reserves of $874 million, money that is set aside to keep the IOC running in the event the games cannot be held.
Pope Francis says he hopes the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro will inspire athletes and spectators alike to pursue solidarity.
He told pilgrims Wednesday at his weekly audience at the Vatican that the world is “thirsty for peace, tolerance and reconciliation.”
He is hoping the games, which begin later this week, can inspire everyone to pursue a prize that is “not a medal but something more precious — achieving a civilization in which solidarity reigns, founded on the recognition that we are all members of one human family.”
A delegation from Brazil at the audience cheered when his remarks in Italian were translated into Portuguese.
(Photo Source: AP)