The Tokyo Olympics are finally here and Australia has assembled its largest team for a Games on foreign soil, with 487 athletes to compete across 33 sports.
An extra 16 athletes were brought in last week to bolster Australia's ranks as the nation looks to turn around a disappointing tally in Rio 2016, with the final team eclipsing the 482-total at Athens 2004.
The likes of Ash Barty and the Kookaburras lead the nation's charge for gold, but there's a host of other names also hoping to deliver. Here's a list of Australians you need to know and watch this Olympic Games:
With a London silver and Rio bronze to her name, French-born canoeist Jess Fox is eager to turn those medals into gold at the Tokyo Games. This time 27-year-old Fox will have two chances to stand atop of the podium, with a women's canoe (C1 - single blade) event added to the program alongside the kayak event (K1 - dual blades) that she previously won medals in. Fox, who has claimed 10 World titles, won the double at the 2018 World Championships. On her return to international competition, Fox recently took out World Cup events in the Czech Republic (C1) and Germany (K1).
Canoe Slalom - Women's kayak semi-finals and final: Tuesday, July 27.
Women's canoe heats: Wednesday, July 28. Women's canoe semi-finals and final: Thursday, July 29.
Australia has a real shot of making history in surfing's debut at the Olympic Games, with world No.3 Sally Fitzgibbons entering the tournament in fine form. NSW-born Fitzgibbons will contest the Olympics alongside seven-time world champion and current world No.5 Stephanie Gilmore, while Julian Wilson and Owen Wright feature in the Australian men's team. The 30-year-old took out the World Surfing Games in June, which doubled as the final qualification event for Tokyo. It came after Fitzgibbon won her first WSL event of 2021 at Rottnest Island, which she backed up with a third-place finish at the Surf Ranch Pro.
Surfing heats: Sunday, July 25 - Tuesday, July 27. Surfing final: Wednesday, July 28.
It's known as 'The Race of Truth' and for 31 year old South Australian Rohan Dennis, road cycling's individual time trial is the chance to cement his legacy as one of the era's premier exponents of the race against the clock. It's a third Olympics for Dennis, who has a silver medal from his track days in London, and a 5th place from the Rio TT. The former two time world time trial champion has rediscovered some form after a difficult 2020, with time trial victories in two races so far this year. But the Tokyo competition will be fierce with current world champion Filippo Ganna, Tour de France phenom Wout van Aert and Slovenian Primoz Roglic amongst the favourites.
Cycling Road time trials: Wednesday, July 28
No Horton. No Sun. Enter Elijah Winnington. It's not just his name that has Winnington a chance of taking the 400m freestyle mantle, but rather his red-hot form leading into the Tokyo Games. His time of 3:42.65 at last month's Australian trials makes him the fastest in the world this year, while Jack McLoughlin touched the wall at second. The 21-year-old Queenslander enters the Olympics as the only swimmer in his event to have cracked 3:43, while he also has experience on the world stage having claimed gold at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in the 4x200m freestyle relay. He'll also contest the 200m freestyle in Tokyo.
Swimming - Men's 400m freestyle heats: Saturday, July 24. Final: Sunday, July 25.
Men's 200m freestyle heats: Sunday, July 25. Final: Tuesday, July 27.
At the Australian Swimming Trials last month, 20-year-old Kaylee McKeown announced herself as a medal contender as she beat the 100m backstroke world record by more than a tenth of a second at 57.45. It came after she smashed three national records in one weekend, with triumphs in the 50m, 100m and 200m backstroke. McKeown will contest the 100m and 200m backstroke at the Tokyo Games, having withdrawn from the 200m medley on Thursday to focus her attention on those two races. She's understood to still be involved in the relays.
Swimming - Women's 100m backstroke heats: Saturday, July 25. Semi-finals: Monday, July 26. Final: Tuesday, July 27.
Women's 200m backstroke heats: Thursday, July 29. Semi-finals: Friday, July 30. Final: Saturday, July 31.
Mixed medley relay heats: Thursday, July 29. Final: Saturday, July 31.
Women's medley relay heats: Friday, July 30. Final: Sunday, August 1.
The battle between debutant Ariarne Titmus and American star Katie Ledecky in the 400m freestyle will be one of the races to watch this Olympics. Tasmania's Titmus swam the second fastest times in the women's 200m and 400m at the recent Olympic trials, putting rival Ledecky on notice weeks out of Tokyo. Ledecky set the 400m world record at Rio, but three years later was stunned by the Australian at the 2019 Swimming World Championships. Titmus, nicknamed the Terminator, also boasts a Commonwealth record in the 200m and an Australian record in the 800m.
Swimming - Women's 200m freestyle heats: Monday, July 26. Semi-finals: Tuesday, July 27. Final: Wednesday, July 28.
Women's 400m freestyle heats: Sunday, July 25. Final: Monday, July 26.
Women's 800m freestyle heats: Thursday, July 29. Final: Saturday, July 31.
Tasmanian Stewart McSweyn is on track to end Australia's medal drought in the 1500m, with the distance runner having broken records in the lead into Tokyo. McSweyn beat his own national record at the Monaco Diamond League meet earlier this month, crossing the line at a blistering 3:29.51 to become the first Australian to run 1500m under 3:30. Australia has not won a medal in the 1500m since Herb Elliot in 1960, with 26-year-old McSweyn a red-hot chance to do so with his main focus on that event. He also qualified for the 5000m and 10000m. He also recently broke the Australian mile record with a time of 3:48.37, which was the fastest in the world for seven years.
Athletics - Men's 1500m round one: Tuesday, August 3. Semi-finals: Thursday, August 5. Final: Saturday, August 7.
Just three weeks out from the Tokyo Olympics, high-jumper Nicola McDermott launched herself into medal contention as she cleared the bar at 2.01m with a jump that bettered her own national record. Her silver finish at the Diamonds League event at Stockholm occurred just three months after the 24-year-old became the first Australian female to break the coveted 2-metre barrier in high jump. Given that Spain's Ruth Beitia took home the gold medal in Rio with a leap of 1.97m, McDermott has a red-hot chance to stand atop of the podium. Likewise in the men's high jump, 2018 Commonwealth Games winner Brandon Starc should have claims to medal.
Athletics - Women's high jump qualification: Thursday, August 5. Final: Saturday, August 7.
For the first time in 17 years Australia will have an athlete contest the men's 100m in Rohan Browning, who has his sights set on at least making the Olympic final. The Sydneysider clocked a blistering 10.05s at the Queensland Track Classic to not only become the third-fastest sprinter in Australian history, but also secure qualification for the Tokyo Games. He broke through the coveted 10-second barrier earlier this year to put the world on notice, albeit that time was wind assisted.
Athletics - Men's 100m heats: Saturday, July 31. Semi-finals and final: Sunday, August 1.
She's had a slow start to the season, but a recent return to form will have javelin-thrower Kelsey-Lee Barber in the mix to stand atop of the podium in Tokyo. Canberra-based Barber stunned the world when she claimed the title at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, with a 66.56m throw. It came after a run of fine form, having thrown a massive 67.70 to win the Diamonds League meet in Luzern. Two years on, Barber is eager to claim an elusive Olympics medal in Tokyo, having finished 28th in Rio. In the lead-up to the delayed Games, the 29-year-old claimed gold at the Kuortane Diamond League meet - a week before a bronze finish in Oslo.
Athletics - Women's javelin qualification: Tuesday, August 3. Final: Friday, August 6.
Stepping out of the shadows of retired Australian hurdler Sally Pearson is Liz Clay, who has announced herself as a finals threat with a blistering run of form. Clay enters the Olympic village on the back of an unbeaten domestic season, having claimed the national title and climbed up the Australian all-time rankings. At the ACT Championships in February, Clay crossed the line at 12.72s to become the second-fastest Australian in history - entering a territory where only Pearson has gone before. Since then, Clay has stayed consistent and clocked another five sub-13 times. Her results would have made the Rio finals comparatively, so the New South Wales athlete is in the frame to push all the way in Tokyo.
Athletics - Women's 100m hurdles heats: Saturday, July 31. Semi-finals: Sunday, August 1. Final: Monday, August 2.
Heading into Tokyo as World Champion, Logan Martin is one of Australia's best hopes of claiming gold via the BMX freestyle. The 27-year-old Queenslander took out his second world title in France last month, in what was a perfect way to fine tune his preparations for the new Olympic event. He's no stranger to making history either, having claimed the inaugural BMX freestyle world title in 2017. He leads a strong nine-man field for the event that'll take place on July 31 and August 1.
Cycling - BMX freestyle seeding: Saturday, July 31. Final: Sunday, August 1.
Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho del Solar
They are Australia's most successful pairing on the sand since Nat Cook and Kerri Pottharst two decades ago. Taliqua Clancy and Mariafe Artacho del Solar, the 5th ranked pair, arrive in Tokyo off the back of a gold medal win over their biggest rivals in Cancun in May, the pair's 7th title on the World Tour since 2018. Both competed in Rio with different partners, Clancy, a proud Wulli Wulli and Goreng Goreng woman from Kingaroy, eventually ended up in 5th, but since coming together in 2017 the pair have blazed a trail through the sport with 3 Asian titles, a world Championship bronze and a Commonwealth Games silver.
Beach Volleyball - Women's preliminary rounds: Australia vs. Cuba: Sunday, July 25. Australia vs. Italy: Wednesday, July 28. Australia vs. ROC: Friday, July 30.
Round of 16: Sunday, August 1 - Monday, August 2. Quarter-finals: Tuesday, August 3. Semi-finals: Thursday, August 5. Finals: Friday, August 6.
Entering the Games as Australia's highest-ranked skateboarder, 21-year-old Poppy Olsen has the foundations to create history in the debut Olympic event. The Newcastle native is one of five athletes in Australia's inaugural skating team for the Olympics, joining 17-year-old Kieran Woolley in the park discipline. The event will take place in a concrete bowl, where skaters will have three 45s timed "runs" to execute their best sequence of tricks. Olsen was the first Australian female skateboarder to compete at the X-Games in 2016 and earned bronze the following year. She finished the Olympic qualification period ranked world No.4, with Japan's Misugu Okamoto, Sakura Yosozumi and 13-year-old Brit Sky Brown ahead of her.
Skateboarding - Women's park heats and final: Wednesday, August 4.
As one of the 'Golden Girls' from Australia's 2016 triumph, Charlotte Caslick is back to defend the sevens team's Olympic crown. The 26-year-old Queenslander is one of five players returning for their second Games, joining the likes of skipper Sharni Williams and Shannon Parry. They'll lead five debutants in Tokyo, while star winger Ellia Green was a shock non-selection. Following their historic win over New Zealand in the Rio final, Caslick was named 2016 World Rugby Sevens Player of the Year. In 2018 she went on to claim silver with the team at the Commonwealth Games and bronze at the World Cup in San Francisco. Caslick made the switch to rugby league following the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics and joined the Sydney Roosters' NRLW side. She was ruled out after round two when two small fractures were found in her spine, but following her recovery she re-signed with Rugby Australia for the lead into Tokyo.
Rugby Sevens - Women's pool: Thursday, July 29 - Friday, July 30. Placing and quarterfinals: Friday, July 30. Finals: Saturday, July 31.