Road To The Olympic Games

Rio Olympic 2016

Rosie MacLennan leads Canada into opening ceremony

Rosie MacLennan led Canada into the Maracana Stadium, Russia's Olympic team got a lukewarm reception and Tonga's flag-bearer left quite the impression at the opening ceremony for the 2016 Rio Olympics.

Spectacle at the Maracana Stadium kicks off Rio Olympics

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      By Benjamin Blum, CBC Sports

      Re-live the performances, parade of nations, and lighting of the Olympic cauldron from the Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janeiro with our timeline that chronicled each spectacular moment.

      10:45 p.m. ET: Brazilian tennis great Gustavo "GugaKuerten carried the Olympic torch into the Maracana Stadium. The three-time French Open winner handed the torch to basketball player Hortencia Marcari. Marcari later gave the torch to marathoner Vanderlei Cordeiro de Lima to light the cauldron. De Lima, who was attacked by a spectator but persevered to win bronze at the 2004 Games in Athens, replaced soccer legend Pele, who withdrew due to illness.

      10:21 p.m. ET:  Kipchoge "Kip" Keino, Kenyan sprinter who won four Olympic medals (including two gold), received the inaugural Olympic Laurel award. Keino is currently the chairman of the Kenyan Olympic Committee.

      10:11 p.m. ET: International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach is currently addressing the crowd, saying "we have always believed in you."

      9:54 p.m. ET: Finishing off the parade of nations is host country Brazil. Clad in navy jackets and peacock-patterned shorts, the Brazilian contingent dance their way through the Maracana Stadium.

      9:51 p.m. ET: The loudest cheer so far went to the refugee Olympic team as it entered the stadium. The 10 athletes will compete under the IOC flag.

      9:40 p.m. ET: Tonga's flag-bearer is, well ... shiny to say the least.

      9:25 p.m. ET: For a brief moment, the carnival atmosphere at the Maracana Stadium became uncomfortably subdued when Russia's Olympic team entered to a lukewarm reception from the audience in Rio. Doping scandals have dogged the country in the lead-up to the Games, with nearly one-third of potential Russian competitors banned from the Rio Olympics.

      8:57 p.m. ET: Making sure the athletes' outfits for the opening ceremony complement a country's flag is important. Jamaican sprinter Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce didn't disappoint with her flag-inspired hair. Now that's nationalism at its finest.


      8:43 p.m. ET: Great Britain's flag-bearer, tennis star Andy Murray, led his country in while carrying the Union Jack in one hand. If flag-bearers were competing for medals, he'd win gold.

      Looks like he sorted out any flag-waving issues he experienced in the lead-up to the ceremony. On an unrelated note, Great Britain's double-breasted blue blazers look impeccable.

      8:23 p.m. ET: South Korea's opening ceremony uniforms have a unique design feature: they are supposedly Zika-proof. The uniforms will not be worn in competition, although blazer-clad sporting events would be interesting to watch.

      8:12 p.m. ET: The Canadian contingent, led by 2012 gold medallist Rosie MacLennan, enter the Maracana Stadium. While the team certainly stands out in bright red blazers, the biggest attention-grabber has to be the Dr. Seuss-inspired tricycles leading the athletes from each country.

      7:55 p.m. ET: Countries are now entering the stadium.

      After Greece, countries entered the stadium in alphabetical order following the Portuguese alphabet.

      Canada entered 38th, while the refugee Olympic team is scheduled to enter second-last before the host nation Brazil.

      Each contingent is led in by a performer on a colourful tricycle and a volunteer carrying a tree sapling to reinforce the ceremony's environmentally conscious theme.

      7:14 p.m. ET: The ceremony kicks off with an impressive visual spectacle, including fireworks that spelled out "Rio" above the stadium.

      Performers re-enacted the history of Brazil, from the pre-Columbian era through to modern times, as well as highlighting the culture of the country. Gisele Bundchen, the Brazilian supermodel and wife of New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, entered the stadium during a performance of the ubiquitous Rio anthem The Girl from Ipanema.


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