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On July 27, the Summer Olympic torch will ignite for the 30th time. London 2012 is bursting at the seams with remarkable stories, unique personalities and record-breaking possibilities. There are few things more inspirational than watching the greatest athletes in the world challenge the possibilities of human endeavors. Here are 10 reasons to tune in this summer: Widely considered the greatest in history, the two have been an immovable force in women’s beach volleyball. Let’s review the accolades: gold in Athens and Beijing; six-time AVP team of the year; combined six-time AVP player of the year and a record 112 match win streak. Poised to be the most decorated Olympian ever, the 27-year-old plans to make his farewell tour a blaze of glory. His 16 medals (14 golds) is second only to Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina’s 18. Considering his event load (seven) and his prolific success rate, Phelps has all but secured his place in Olympic immortality.   Here we have your classic case of tortoise and hare. At least try to watch the hare. Charming, enigmatic, charismatic, Bolt would be worth watching even if he wasn’t the fastest man in human history. Already owning world record times in the 100m and 200m, Bolt looks to smash his only realistic competition — himself. It’s almost laughable referring to the fastest American marathoner as the “hare.” The new American hope for gold in the marathon, Hall enters London with respectable clout. He owns the American half-marathon record, second-fastest American marathon and Olympic trial marathon record. London 2012 brings us stories of athletes generations apart. At 15, Tunney may not be able to drive on her own in America, but she’s poised to help Great Britain’s medal chances in 2012. In Tokyo 1964, Hiroshi Hoketsu first tasted Olympic competition. Now 48 years later, the 70-year-old is set to be officially named “coolest old guy ever.” Two-time Olympic gold medalist, four-time world champion, and he’s legally blind … One of sport’s best feel-good stories, Im Dong-Hyun is the favorite to take home the gold, yet again, in London. Despite his 20/200 vision, he refuses to use corrective eyewear or have laser corrective surgery.   If there is a name to remember in badminton, it’s Lin Dan. Beijing gold medalist, four-time world champion, and badminton’s only member of the “super grand slam” club (victories in all nine major world tournaments), Lin carries a Michael Jordan level of acclaim in the badminton world. As if there wasn’t already enough pressure, Kobe Bryant made some rather controversial callouts toward the original 1992 Dream Team. If Lebron and company can’t get it done in London, the scrutiny may hang over their careers forever. (Because people definitely needed another excuse to hate Lebron.)   The pressure is on for the 24-year-old swimmer. After winning three golds and breaking three world records in Beijing, a shoulder injury and surgery has since kept her from claiming another single gold. For some, London represents a chance to establish international supremacy. For others, it’s a last chance to prove Olympic legitimacy. Bursting on the scene with a world record 200-meter backstroke and FINA Swimmer of the Year award in 2011, 17-year-old Missy Franklin aims to make a splash in international waters. Gay has spent the majority of his career trying to escape shadows — initially from run ners like Jamaica’s Asafa Powell, and now everyone’s enemy, Usain Bolt. Despite holding a national 100m record, Gay has never medaled at the Olympics. At 30, time is of the essence for the American to claim his first ever spot on the podium. ran’s first ever female taekwondo qualifier hopes to improve from her performance in 2008. A bronze medalist at the 2010 Asian Games, Fekri is a force to be reckoned with in London.
Source: Complete Nutrition

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