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Sport stretched out over Tokyo on Saturday and gold medals rained down as the Olympic Games burst into life, finally casting aside some of the shadow of COVID-19 and controversy that has plagued the global showpiece.

China made an instant statement of intent when Yang Qian grabbed the Games’ first gold, and Japanese judoka Naohisa Takato lifted home hearts with gold on the mat a day after the nation’s global superstar, tennis player Naomi Osaka, had lit the cauldron to officially open the pandemic-delayed Olympics.

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