Gold for Chloe Kim and Marcel Hirscher as first doping case rocks Pyeongchang Olympics

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Pyeongchang: American teenager Chloe Kim and Austrian ski ace Marcel Hirscher lit up the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics on a day of drama that included the first doping scandal of the Games.

Snowboarder Kim, 17, snatched the first of Tuesday’s eight gold medals in the women’s halfpipe, while World Cup maestro Hirscher ended his long wait for a debut Olympic title.

But Japan’s short-track speed skater Kei Saito, 21, was at the centre of the first doping scandal in Pyeongchang after testing positive for a banned diuretic.

Saito, who has left the athletes’ village, was provisionally suspended pending an investigation. He protested his innocence and vowed to clear his name.

“I want to fight to prove my innocence because I don’t remember (taking the drug) and it’s incomprehensible,” he said in a statement.

While Kim’s brilliant run in the halfpipe stole the show, gold medals also went to Sweden and Norway in cross country skiing, and Italy in short-track speedskating.

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