Japan’s Kohei Uchimura entered London as the man to beat in men’s gymnastics.
He lived up to the expectations Wednesday by winning the men’s all-around title, although he made it close at the end. Uchimura was in control of the competition through five rotations, but made it interesting at the end when he stumbled on his final event, the floor exercise.
Germany’s Marcel Nguyen was second and American Danell Leyva was third.
Uchimura’s teammate Kazuhito Tanaka was in position to take silver heading into the final rotation, but he struggled on the pommel horse, scoring a 13.433 to drop down the standings.
John Orozco of the U.S. finished eighth.
Leyva sat in the middle of the pack for most of the competition, but battled back at the end. He scored a 15.700 on the high bar in his final rotation to move him up the rankings into third position.
Leyva struggled to a 13.500 on the pommel horse, but was solid the rest of the way, tallying a 15.366 on the floor, 14.733 on the rings, 15.566 on the vault and 15.833 on the parallel bars.
Orozco dropped down the standings in the second rotation when he faltered on the pommel horse and recorded a 12.566.
Paul Hamm is the lone American man to ever win a gymnastics all-around crown, a feat he accomplished in 2004.
Uchimura has won the past three consecutive world all-around titles. He also earned a silver medal at the 2008 Beijing Games.
The last Japanese man to win an Olympic gymnastics all-around title was Koji Gushiken in 1984.
Uchimura came into the Olympics seeming almost invincible, but quickly showed that he was beatable when he faltered on the pommel horse in the qualification round and finished ninth overall.
He then claimed silver in the men’s team final with Japan, but struggled again on the pommel horse when he faltered on his dismount.
On Wednesday, Uchimura scored a 15.066 on the pommel horse. He earned 15.333 on the rings and was fourth after two rotations. He performed a huge vault and scored a 16.266 to put him atop the standings at the halfway point. He maintained his lead with a 15.325 on the parallel bars, 15.600 on the high bar and 15.100 on the floor exercise.
Adrianwins 100m Free: American Nathan Adrian took gold in the men’s 100-meter freestyle event Wednesday. He out-touched Australia’s James Magnussen by 0.01 of a second. Canada's Brent Hayden was third in 47.80.
Soni sets WR: American Rebecca Soni set a world record in her semifinal heat of the women’s 200-meter breaststroke on Wednesday. She touched the wall in 2:20.00. The previous mark was 2:20.12.
Phelps, Lochte advance in 200m IM: Swimming in the same semifinal heat, swimming stars Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte easily advanced to Thursday’s final of the men’s 200-meter individual medley. Lochte has the fastest time going into the final at 1:56.13. He held off Phelps in the semi, holding the all-time Olympic medal winner to second place in a time of 1.57.11. Phelps has the third-fastest time going into the final.
Lochte posted a decisive victory in the 400m IM on the first day of competition. Phelps finished fourth in the event.
Phelps won a historic 19th Olympic medal Tuesday night when he and Lochte teamed up to take gold in the 4x200m freestyle relay. Phelps also finished second in the 200-meter butterfly.
Lochte will have a busy Thursday, as he also qualified for the 200-meter backstroke final. Lochte will swim in the 200m back final and then have about 30 minutes before the 200m IM final.