BBC News

London Olympics diary: Day Two


The second day of the London 2012 Olympics started with an investigation into empty seats at venues and hopes for Team GB's Rebecca Adlington in the swimming heats.

Here's a look at what else happened while the sport played out.

In a story reminiscent of the Jamaican bobsleigh team and Eric "the eel" Moussambani, comes Djibo Issaka.

The 35-year-old from Niger was given a rapturous reception normally reserved for gold medallists after struggling to the finish line in the men's single sculls at Eton Dorney.

Why? Because he has only been rowing for three months.

media captionNiger rower wins hearts of fans

Niger received a wild card to the Olympics, allocated to ensure all 204 National Olympic Committees can take part even if no athletes have qualified.

Djibo Issaka thinks his performance could mark the start of a new era for rowing in Niger.

"There are many people who want to start rowing because I have come to the Olympic Games," he said.

"We will start when I get back. We just have to wait for the boats to arrive."

Italian fencer Aldo Montano's hairstyle prompted some quizzical looks - he has the words "God Save The Queen" shaved into the back of his head.

He had it done in memory of his grandfather, an Olympic medallist, who died in 1996.

Montano, 33, who took gold in Athens in 2004, said: "He won a silver medal in the team sabre at the London 1948 Games and so this is just my way to honour him and London at the same time."

The woman who unexpectedly appeared in India's Olympic contingent in the opening ceremony has been identified.

The woman, wearing blue trousers and a red top, walked next to India's flag-bearer, wrestler Sushil Kumar.

media captionThe BBC's Clive Myrie reports on the mystery of the ''woman in red''

She stood out in contrast to athletes in yellow saris or blue blazers.

"She didn't just walk in off the street," explained London 2012's Seb Coe. "She was a cast member who got slightly over-excited.

"She shouldn't have been there but she clearly started in that venue."

India's chef de mission, PKM Raja, had told the Times of India he wanted Olympic organisers Locog to apologise. Lord Coe added: "I will be speaking to the Indian delegation."

Read the full story here.

We've heard a lot about the importance of family support for athletes and Rebecca Adlington has plenty of that from her relatives.

She had to work hard to get into the 400m freestyle final and here's a picture of "Team Adlington" who were cheering her on.

Sister Laura is third left, behind her is mum Kay, sister Chloe is fourth from the right and dad Steve is far right.

image captionTeam Adlington: Bursting with pride. Pic by Mark Shardlow, BBC

Spectators from New Zealand and Australia have been enjoying festivities at the Olympic Park.

Natalie Whittaker made an Olympic fascinator, Peter Kelly has brought his friend "Skippy" and Stephanie Whittaker has been wearing New Zealand sunglasses.

image captionSpectators from around the world have been getting in the spirit for the Games

Australia's Cate Campbell, who won gold in the in the women's swimming 4 x 100 metre freestyle relay final, said: "I think this is one of the first things that ran through my head when I touched the wall. I get to be on a stamp and I get to fly home business class.

"Terrible I know. It's just one of those exciting things that comes with being a gold medallist."

Former Formula 1 World Champion and Indy 500 winner Emerson Fittipaldi tweeted his delight at Brazil's medals for judo and swimming: "Congratulations to our three Brazilian medalists yesterday @ the London Olympic Games, historic 1st day for #Brazil -best ever-good job #BRASIL!"

Isles of Wonder, the album of music from the Olympic opening ceremony, which featured stars including Dizzee Rascal and Underworld, has already sold more than 10,000 copies within 24 hours of going on sale. It is number one in the iTunes Store album chart in the UK, France, Belgium and Spain, and it reached number five in the US.

More on this story

  • London Olympics diary: Day One