Tokyo 2020 Olympics track cycling day four: First British gold, women's Keirin and more match sprints

Matt Walls nailed the tactics in the Omnium to take Team GB's first gold medal on the track

Matt Walls wins Team GB's first track cycling gold of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games
(Image credit: Getty Images)

The fourth day of track racing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games was dominated by fast men and bunch racing with the men's Omnium and match sprints as well as the women's Keirin.

It was the Omnium that will get the most attention from British fans as Matt Walls pulled off Team GB's first gold medal of the Games after a perfect tactical display, winning the first event and taking a podium in the next four to pull off a near-perfect ride to take him to gold. 

Campbell Stewart of New Zealand stole silver away from defending champion Elia Viviani of Italy in the final couple of laps of the points race thanks to stealing a lap, leaving the Italian disappointed with the bronze.

>>> Britain’s Matt Walls wins gold in Tokyo 2020 Olympic Omnium, Elia Viviani claims bronze

In the women's Keirin, it was the deciding rounds and the final with Katy Marchant looking to put in a big ride. A crash in her first round of the day however saw her miss out on the qualification spots after looking strong the day before.

She wasn't the only big gun to miss out on the final with former world champion Lee Wai Sze of Hong Kong, Kaarle McCulloch of Australia and current world champion Emma Hinze of Germany also all losing out in later rounds.

It was a surprising looking final with Canada and Ukraine getting two riders each in Olena Starikova, Liubov Basova (both Ukraine) and Kelsey Mitchell (Canada). The bronze medal went to Lauriane Genest (Canada), silver went to New Zealand with Ellesse Andrews taking that, but the gold went to the Netherlands again with Shanne Braspennincx head and shoulders above the rest in the final dash for the line.

The women's keirin final at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The other event in today's schedule was the men's match sprint. The heats headed into the quarter-finals to decide who would be riding in the semi-finals and medal finals tomorrow.

It wasn't meant to be for double defending champion Jason Kenny; the joint-most successful British Olympian failed to beat super-fast Dutch rider Harrie Lavreysen. The flying Dutchman didn't need the full best of three rides as he took the win in the first two to progress to the semi-finals. 

It wasn't all doom and gloom in the event for Britain as Jack Carlin knocked out experienced German rider Max Levy in two sprints with the Scottish rider looking very strong heading into the next round.

Joining those two is the favourite for the gold Jeffrey Hoogland as well as Russian Olympic Committee rider Denis Dmitriev, both of whom came through their heats successfully. Only Dmitriev needed to go the full three races with his opponent Nicholas Paul of Trinidad & Tobago.

The fifth day of riding sees the finals of the men's match sprints, the women's match sprint qualifying gets underway and the first-ever Olympic women's Madison.

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Tim Bonville-Ginn

Hi, I'm one of Cycling Weekly's content writers for the web team responsible for writing stories on racing, tech, updating evergreen pages as well as the weekly email newsletter. Proud Yorkshireman from the UK's answer to Flanders, Calderdale, go check out the cobbled climbs!

I started watching cycling back in 2010, before all the hype around London 2012 and Bradley Wiggins at the Tour de France. In fact, it was Alberto Contador and Andy Schleck's battle in the fog up the Tourmalet on stage 17 of the Tour de France.

It took me a few more years to get into the journalism side of things, but I had a good idea I wanted to get into cycling journalism by the end of year nine at school and started doing voluntary work soon after. This got me a chance to go to the London Six Days, Tour de Yorkshire and the Tour of Britain to name a few before eventually joining Eurosport's online team while I was at uni, where I studied journalism. Eurosport gave me the opportunity to work at the world championships in Harrogate back in the awful weather.

After various bar jobs, I managed to get my way into Cycling Weekly in late February of 2020 where I mostly write about racing and everything around that as it's what I specialise in but don't be surprised to see my name on other news stories.

When not writing stories for the site, I don't really switch off my cycling side as I watch every race that is televised as well as being a rider myself and a regular user of the game Pro Cycling Manager. Maybe too regular.

My bike is a well used Specialized Tarmac SL4 when out on my local roads back in West Yorkshire as well as in northern Hampshire with the hills and mountains being my preferred terrain.