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Sports

Norway top medals tally as Winter Olympics draws to a close

media Gold medallist Marit Bjoergen of Norway celebrates victory with her national flag. REUTERS/Carlos Barria

Marit Bjoergen won her 15th Winter Olympics medal after triumphing in the 30km cross country on Sunday. The gold-medal winning performance by the 37-year-old put Norway on top of the medals tally.

Norway and Germany both have 14 gold medals but the Norwegians won 39 medals overall, compared to Germany's 31.

Bjoergen, the most successful Winter Olympian of all time earlier in the Games, won 1min 49.5 seconds ahead of Finland’s Krista Parmakoski, while Stina Nilsson of Sweden took bronze. Bjoergen is also the second most successful woman at either the Summer or Winter Games, trailing only Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina with 18 medals.

Norway broke the United States’ 2010 record of 37 medals at a single Winter Games.

The other highlight of the final day was the men’s ice hockey final featuring Russia and Germany. Russia prevailed 4-3 in sudden-death in extra time to end a 26-year wait to reclaim the title.

Meanwhile, unlike the opening ceremony, the two Koreas marched behind their own flags during the closing ceremony of the two-week long competition. The ceremony, attended by US President Donald Trump’s daughter Ivanka, also saw Russian competitors trooping in without their banned flag.

International Olympics Committee chief Thomas Bach denied the Pyeongchang Games had been tainted by the Russian doping scandal.

Bach said Russia's ban from Olympic participation will automatically be lifted if anti-doping officials do not find any more Russian drug cases at Pyeongchang, where two Russians tested positive.

“I don’t think, quite frankly, that these Olympic Winter Games have been tainted by the Russian affair because we had no Russian team here. This was a clear message,” Bach said.

Bach also said that the Pyeongchang Olympics are the Games of new horizons.

“You have shown how sport brings people together in our fragile world; you have shown how sport builds bridges,” Bach told the Korean athletes.

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