Sochi 2014 Paralympics Day 1 Getty Images


By Duncan Mackay and Nick Butler
Click refresh for latest updates. All times stated are Russian

And for tomorrow?

22:50 Join us again tomorrow for the action as it happens right here on the insidethegames live blog. We will be beginning as ever at 09:00 (that's 5am GMT)


22:48 Seven more sets of medals to be won on day three in Sochi - with three of them in Alpine skiing, in various women's Super G events, and the remaining four in cross-country classic races. 

As ever, there will also be more action in ice sledge hockey and wheelchair curling as the group and round-robin matches continue.

22:40 At the end of it all, Russia remain at the top of the medals table as they seek to emulate their table-topping success at the Olympic Games last month. 

22:32 We have seen more success for Russia and Ukraine in Nordic skiing, a second gold medal for Akira Kano of Japan and Markus Salcher of Austria in the Alpine events. Not to mention a Russian victory in ice sledge hockey and a good day for Britain, Canada and Slovakia in wheelchair curling. 

Mikhalina Lysova of Russia and guide Alexey Ivanov celebrate their biathlon gold medal yesterday at this evenings medal presentation ©Getty ImagesMikhalina Lysova of Russia and guide Alexey Ivanov celebrate their biathlon gold medal yesterday at this evenings medal presentation ©Getty Images

So, that brings us to a close on day two in Sochi on another compelling day of sporting action.

22:05 Rather like in their first match Italy were solid to begin with but fell apart in the second half. They cannot progress into the latter stages now but will look to restore some pride in their final group game against Korea  - and at the very least score their first goal of the campaign. 

Russia on the other hand, are back on course, but still need to get something out of their match with the US if they are to progress. 

22:02 All over in the Shayba Arena as Russia triumphantly recover from their opening day defeat by beating Italy 7-0. 

21:51 This is getting embarrassing for Italy now as Nikolay Terenteyev scores via a deflection to make it 7-0.

21:42 Take that as a no, as Russia continue where they left off in the second period as Andrey Dvinyaninov scores again to complete his hatrick and put his side 6-0 ahead. 

21:40 Back in the Shayba Arena the final period of the ice sledge hockey has begun. Italy themed thorough demoralised in the second period as Russia cruised into a 5-0 lead. Can Italy fight-back?

Ukraine at Sochi 2014

21:33 Ukraine may be second on the medals table at Sochi 2014 with two gold, one silver and three bronze medals, but after their protest at the Opening Ceremony on Friday, the reaction of biathlon bronze medal winner Luliia Batenkova on the podium today suggests they remain affected by the ongoing political events back home. 

Luliia Batenkova cuts a sombre figure on the medals podium at Sochi 2014 ©Getty ImagesLuliia Batenkova cuts a sombre figure on the medals podium at Sochi 2014
©Getty Images

21:24 The second period has come to an end and it could not have gone much better for Russia. Four goals and they now lead Italy 5-0. 

Dvinyaninov scored two of them but, with one goal and two assists, Ilia Popov has been Russia's outstanding player.

21:18 5-0. Italy have fallen apart now as, rather like the parting of the Red Sea, Vladimir Litivenko finds space open up in front of him and despite having options to his left and right he goes solo and slams the puck home.

Russia are doing their goal difference no harm at all with one period still to go...

21:15 Make that 4-0 as Andrey Dvinyaninov scores his second of the period after driving the puck into the right hand corner of the net from a narrow angle.

Dmitry Lisov of Russia misses one shot at goal...but his team has converted three other chances ©Getty ImagesDmitry Lisov of Russia misses one shot at goal...but his team has converted three other chances ©Getty Images

20:09 Italy seem demoralised at the moment. They are lacking the intensity and aggression of earlier on and further Russian goals seems the more likely than anything else.

21:03 It has just got a whole lot better for the home crowd as Andrey Dvinyaninov scores an outstanding individual goal. He battles his way from the halfway line before powering the puck home from distance. 

That shot was a nail in the coffin of Italy's Sochi 2014 sledge hockey hopes. 

20:58 A big moment in the course of this match you would think that - and the Shayba Arena is well and truly rocking now. After the frustration of last night's loss to South Korea, Russia appear to be back on track in their ice sledge hockey medal bid. 

20:55 Worry averted. It is a goal and Russia take a 2-0 lead. 

20:53 A goal? Or not a goal? Alexey Amosov scores - but the referee wants a video replay. It is fair to say the crowd will not be happy if this is not awarded. 

20:50 Still some big challenges flying in from both teams at the moment as Italy strive to stay in touch in the second period.

20:46 The players are back out on the ice for the second period. This match has a similar feel to Italy's first match against the US at the moment. Italy are a battling team who are difficult to break down - but they seem to find goals difficult to come by...

Russia celebrate taking a 1-0 ice sledge hockey lead over Italy ©Getty ImagesRussia celebrate taking a 1-0 ice sledge hockey lead over Italy ©Getty Images

20:34 Russia almost make it two at the end of the first period - but are denied by a great save by Italian goaltender Santino Stillitano.

But at the end of the first period it remains 1-0 to Russia. 

20:28 Excitement tempered with relief in the Shayba Arena as Ilia Popov drives the puck home and Russia take the lead. They lead Italy 1-0 in the latter stages of the first period. 

20:24 The players are showing that ice sledge hockey, like ice hockey, is not immune to some violence as both teams receive penalties for "roughing"

20:22 Russia are the 2013 world bronze medal winners - but after a shaky start Italy are enjoying the better of the chances at the moment in the first period in the Shayba Arena. 

Five time Paralympian Florian Planker has gone closest having hit the post with one shot. 

20:18 There are lots of medals presentations also going on in the early evening in Sochi. One of the stars of Sochi 2014 so far - Alpine skier Akira Kano of Japan - is among those to receive their medals.

Japan's Akira Kano has won two gold medals in two days so far at Sochi 2014 ©Getty ImagesJapan's Akira Kano has won two gold medals in two days so far at Sochi 2014
©Getty Images

20:09 Russia have made a change in goal as Mikhail Ivanov is replaced by Vladimir Kamantcev. And with the crowd spurring them on it is the host nation enjoying the best of the early stages. 

20:02 Both sides will be looking to bouce back from defeats yesterday. Russia, as we have been mentioning throughout the day, narrowly lost out against South Korea were pulverised 5-1 by the formidable US outfit. 

Both sides will be hovering on the brink in terms of qualification for the latter stages should they lose again today.

19:58 The players are out on the ice for the final ice sledge hockey match of the day - Russia versus Italy in Group B.

19:53 Right, a mid afternoon/early evening snack - depending on where you are in the world - has been consumed and just in time for the return of sporting action at Sochi 2014. 

The snack was a chicken arrabiata panini in case you are wondering, but rather less exciting than my insidethegames colleague Emily Goddard - who enjoyed a beetroot and rice salad. 

One interesting Winter Olympic sporting result to bring you as Sara Takanashi of Japan wins her 13th World Cup event of the season in Oslo today.

When that is considered, her fourth place finish in the inaugural women's Olympic ski jumping event in Sochi was surely one of the shock results of the Games. 

Carina Vogt of Germany won that first gold medal in Sochi last month. She missed the event in Oslo...although compatriot Severin Freund made up for it by winning the men's event. 

Masters is not the only summer sport convert in the US as finishing three places behind her in the same race was wheelchair racing legend Tatyana McFadden.

After only taking up the sport following a phenomenally successful 2013 on the track and road, McFadden was delighted with her finish in the first race in which she has been watched by her Russian birth mother.

Quote marks"It's absolutely wonderful. I got to see them right before my race and so I think that gave me an extra energy, an extra boost and I just raced for my family today,"
Tatyana McFadden after finishing fifth in the women's cross-country skiing 12km sitting event earlier on today.

Before the race McFadden described competing in front of both of her mothers as the "fulfilment of a dream"

19:26 That silver medal for Masters follows the rowing double sculls bronze medal that she won at the London 2012 Summer Games. Scroll down to 13:39 for more information about Ukrainian-born Masters.

Oksana Masters has now won medals at the last two Paralympic Games summer and winter ©AFP/Getty ImagesOksana Masters has now won medals at the last two Paralympic Games summer and winter ©AFP/Getty Images

Who is the third country to have won a medal in cross country skiing in Sochi so far?

Michael Phelps, Barrack Obama, ice sledge hockey success... Ring any bells? The answer, of course, is the United States courtesy of Oksana Masters in the women's 12km sitting event. 

19:14 We saw a Ukrainian victory and a Russian clean sweep on the opening day of cross country action earlier on today in Sochi - but which one other nation won a medal? 

19:10 There is less than an hour until the next action at the Paralympics however  - and it should be a cracker as Russia look to erase the memories of their day one ice sledge hockey defeat and beat Italy in the Shayba Arena. 

Twitter2Come on Wales #believe
Even 11 time Paralympic champion Tanni Grey Thompson is distracted by sporting events elsewhere during the lull in action in Sochi. 

19:01 England and Wales may enjoy one of the oldest rivalries in rugby...but in ice sledge hockey it is all about Canada and the United States. 

The US are the defending champions and Canada are the world champions. Both notched up their second wins of the competition in emphatic style earlier on today...

Canada beat Norway 4-0 while the US dispatched South Korea 3-0.

The US celebrate the second goal in a 3-0 victory over Italy ©Getty ImagesThe US celebrate the second goal in a 3-0 victory over Italy ©Getty Images

18:57 It is also the final day of the World Indoor Athletics Championships in Sopot - with the women's long jump final the current event on the go. 

18:52 Speaking of British sport - and this is the last time for a while I promise - there is a humdinger of a rugby union match about to get underway in London between England and Wales. The 15-a-side version in comparison with the sevens version to be showcased at Rio 2016, that is...

And speaking of rugby, the sport was one of many to mark International Women's Day yesterday. Our article on the celebrations can be found here...

18:48 Almost half a century later there has not been too much else for English football fans to celebrate as far as the national team is concerned...and not too many people seem to think that the 2014 World Cup in Brazil is going to bring any revival of fortunes...

Britain's Olympic and Paralympic success has made up for this however. 

18:43 For those who may be unfamiliar with the significance of the first two sentences of that tweet. "They think it's all over? It is now" is a phrase immortalised in British sporting folklore after it was uttered by commentator Kenneth Wolstenholme as England scored their fourth goal in the 1966 football World Cup final against West Germany. 

TwitterThink it's all over? It is now! GB secure a 8-4 victory over Korea, their second win of the day. Well done team! #GoParalympicsGB
The British Paralympic Association revel in wheelchair curling glory.

18:37 So a blank period for a little while now in Sochi before the final ice sledge hockey clash of the day between Russia and Italy. 

Time to draw breath after another pulsating day of sport. 

Britain on the way to a second curling victory of the day ©Getty ImagesBritain on the way to a second curling victory of the day ©Getty Images

18:27 Meanwhile,over at the Shayba Arena a bad afternoon for South Korea has continued as the the final buzzer goes in their ice sledge hockey clash with the US in a 3-0 defeat. 

Adam Page scored the second and third goals for the US after Taylor Chace netted the opener. 

18:23 Canada and Slovakia are the two unbeaten teams in the competition after three wins from three. 

Although with two wins and only a narrow defeat to the Canadians, Britain and Russia are also looking good at this stage. 

It is still early stages though with four more days of round robin matches to come ahead of the knock out rounds - with the highlight of tomorrow's two rounds of matches set to be an afternoon clash between Britain and Slovakia. 

18:19 And no change the final ends of the curling as Canada beat Sweden 7-4 and Slovakia win 9-6 over Finland. 

18:14 The other two wheelchair curling matches are still ongoing but Canada and Slovakia are closing in on victory over Sweden and Finland respectively. 

18:08 It is looking for the defending champions in ice sledge hockey as the US move 3-0 ahead of South Korea. 

Not going so well for the future Paralympic hosts in the Shayba Arena today then...

18:03 A superb day of wheelchair curling has been concluded for Great Britain after South Korea concede defeat two stone into the final end. Britain thus follow their win over world number two ranked Sweden with another victory over the Vancouver 2010 runners-up South Korea. 

It is fair to say that South Korea have had an up and down Games so far. A 10-0 loss to Norway was followed by a win over the US only for them to slip up again courtesy of that disastrous seventh end against Britain.

Four years to go until Pyeongchang 2018... and a Russia versus South Korea rematch

Speaking of South Korea, an event has been held today to mark four years until the Opening of the next Winter Paralympics in Pyeongchang. 

Predictably much of the talk focused around last night's ice sledge hockey showdown between present and future Paralympic host nations.

Peongchang President Kim Kim Jin-sun admitted that he had lost his voice cheering the South Koreans to victory, while Sochi 2014 counterpart Dmitry Chernyshenko vowed that Russia will avenge their loss in four years time. 

Dmitry Chernyshenko speaking at an event to mark four years until Pyeongchang 2018 ©TwitterDmitry Chernyshenko speaking at an event to mark four years until Pyeongchang 2018 ©Twitter

Scroll down to 09:55 for more reaction on South Korea's overtime victory in front of Russian President Vladimir Putin - the latest episode in Putin's "hockey-curse".

In a real topsy-turvy encounter in the wheelchair curling, Britain have made a huge breakthrough by scoring five unanswered points in the penultimate end to move into an 8-4 lead. 

It has been said before that the lack of sweeping makes the wheelchair discipline slightly more volatile than the Olympic version - with more room for error - and that was shown emphatically in the last end after several erratic shots from the South Koreans.

17:42 There has been some significant changes in the wheelchair curling. South Korea, who were 3-0 down, are now leading Britain 4-3 while Slovakia now lead Finland 7-6. Canada, meanwhile, are 6-4 up against Sweden.

Pavlenko dedicates unexpected gold medal to Ukraine

Ukraine's Lyudmyla Pavlenko was considering retirement until her coach persuaded her to continue to Sochi 2014 where she won the first Paralympic gold medal of her career ©Getty ImagesUkraine's Lyudmyla Pavlenko was considering retirement until her coach persuaded her to continue to Sochi 2014 where she won the first Paralympic gold medal of her career
©Getty Images

17:38 Lyudmyla Pavlenko, winner of the women's 12km sitting cross-country earlier (see 13:24), has dedicated her victory to Ukraine. It was the sixth Paralympic medal of her career, but her first gold. It has helped her country raise to second overall in the medal standings behind only Russia.

"Every slope I was begging God to give me energy, power and speed. This is a miracle for me," said Pavlenko, who revealed afterwards that she had been on the verge of retiring until her coach persuaded her to compete at Sochi 2014.

"I dedicate my medal to the Ukrainian nation and also to the 200th birthday of the famous Ukrainian writer Taras Shevchenko. He wrote about the Ukrainian nation and dreamt about its independence."

Rwanda target Pyeongchang 2018 

17:26 The total of countries competing at the next Paralympic Games, due to take place in Pyeongchang in 2018, could be swelled by the addition of one more nation if ambitious plans by Rwanda to take part come to fruition. They have set their sights on both the Olympics and Paralympics in four years time. "It is a real possibility that Rwandans can participate," said Martin Koonce, executive director of the Rwanda National Olympic and Sport Committee. For the full story click here

Wheelchair curling update

It must be time to feed you the latest wheelchair curling scores. We don't want you to get withdrawal symptoms, do we? Defending champions and favourites Canada have raced into a 5-2 lead over Sweden, Finland are 6-3 up against Slovakia and South Korea have recovered from three down to be drawing 3-3 with Britain. 

President Putin at the super-G

We told you earlier that Vladimir Putin had been at Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre (see 11:19) to watch the super-G where he cheered on Russian teenager Alexey Bugaev winning bronze in the standing category, adding it to the silver he had won in the downhill. Here is the proof.

Vladimir Putin watches the super-G with Russia's Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko ©AFP/Ria Novosti/Getty ImagesVladimir Putin watches the super-G with Russia's Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko
©AFP/Ria Novosti/Getty Images

Adam Page has scored a second goal for the US, who are now 2-0 up against South Korea. But, having seen the way the Koreans came back against Russia yesterday, you can be assured the Americans will not be relaxing quite yet. 

In the ice sledge hockey Taylor Chace's goal has given the US a 1-0 lead over South Korea.

Update on the wheelchair curling. Sweden are drawing 2-2 against Canada, Finland are 3-3 against Slovakia and Britain are 3-0 up against South Korea. 

Quote marks"I have been heading towards this medal for nine years. And today this bronze medal is like a gold one for me. I'm so happy. Today is only the second day of competition and we are on the right path. Russia will show what is is capable of."
Alexander Davidovich, who took the bronze medal in the 15km sitting cross-country just 0.2 ahead of fast-finishing Ukrainian Maxim Yarovyi, to complete a Russian clean sweep. 

Quote marks"I was trying to spread out my efforts carefully because the race is very long and it is important to cover it correctly from a psychological point of view. It is the merit of the coaches that I reached such a great shape. It just can't be the other way - we should win at our homeland and my win is a merit of the whole team."
Russia's Roman Petushkov after adding the 15km sitting cross country gold to the one he had won yesterday in the 7.5km sitting biathlon 

Early days in the latest round robin of the wheelchair curling but Canada lead Sweden 1-0, Finland are 2-0 up against Slovakia and Britain are one-up against South Korea. 

Coming up...

15:27 Attention will be focussed on the Olympic Park for the rest of the day with wheelchair curling and ice sledge hockey taking centre stage.

The next round of matches in the Ice Cube is due to start at 15:30 with Canada taking on Sweden, Finland meeting Slovakia and Britain playing South Korea.

An hour later at the Shayba Arena defending ice sledge hockey champions America will be taking on South Korea, buoyant after their sudden-death penalty shoot-out victory over hosts Russia last night after coming back from two goals down.

Twitter2Sit-sker @CalebBrousseau wins his first Paralympic medal with bronze in super-G! "I'm so excited right now I can hardly breathe!"
Alpine Canada convey the excitement experienced by Caleb Brousseau after winning a bronze medal in the super-G sitting event

From World Cup contender to Paralympic silver medallist

Austria's former World Cup skier Matthias Lanzinger completed a remarkable comeback when he won a silver medal in the super-G standing event ©Getty ImagesAustria's former World Cup skier Matthias Lanzinger completed a remarkable comeback when he won a silver medal in the super-G standing event ©Getty Images

15:13 With a small gap in the programme it is time to reflect on the super-G standing where Austria's Matthias Lanzinger won the silver medal (see 11:44). Lanzinger was formerly a world-class skier on the World Cup circuit until 2008 when he lost his leg following a horrific crash at an event in Kvitfjell. He broke his leg in two places, and after circulation could not be stabilised, doctors were forced to amputate his left leg below the knee.

He returned to Para-skiing in 2011 and was last year crowned world champion in the super-combined event. Maybe it's a little bit more fun now," said Lanzinger. "Three years ago as I decided to do a comeback. I knew how the disabled sport works."It's very professional and I have to give my best skiing, and I also know that it's very hard [to win] a medal."

To read more about his remarkable story click here

Canada have completed their second consecutive victory in the ice sledge hockey with a 4-0 victory over Norway with Mark Dorion adding the fourth a few seconds the end of the match. It was revenge for Vancouver 2010 when the Norwegians beat the Canadians in the bronze medal playoff. 

Sochi 2014 already a record-breaker

The International Paralympic Committee have already declared Sochi 2014 the most successful Winter Games in history. 

Sochi 2014 has sold 287,000 tickets, beating the previous record set in Vancouver by 57,000 sales.

Yesterday 45,000 people visited the Olympic Park in the coastal cluster and more than 2,000 people attended the evening medals ceremony in Rosa Khutor.

The Games are also proving an online success with more people visiting the IPC's website in the first 24 hours of the Games, than the whole of the Vancouver 2010 Paralympic Winter Games which spanned 10 days.

By 13:00 today, nearly 85 per cent more people had visited the IPC's website than they did four years ago.

"We are delighted to break two significant records so early during Sochi 2014," said Craig Spence, the IPC's director of media and communications. The Organising Committee has done a great job in raising Paralympic awareness which has helped ticket sales reach their record levels.

"The IPC website appears to be growing in popularity all the time. During London 2012 we had the same number of visitors each day as we did during the whole of the Beijing Games and this looks to be repeating itself here in Sochi when compared to Vancouver. Although the visitor numbers for Sochi are slightly lower than what we experienced during London 2012, they are record breaking for a winter Games."

Any hopes of a Norway comeback in the manner of South Korea against Russia last night are surely extinguished at the start of the third period as Dixon puts Canada 3-0 up.

Adam Dixon puts Canada 2-0 against Norway

But Canada will have high hopes of a gold medal in the ice sledge hockey and they have just taken a lead in the second period against Norway thanks to Afghanistan war veteran Dominic Larocque.

Ukraine second in the medals table behind Russia

With all the medals for day two now distributed it means that Ukraine have moved up to second overall with six medals, including two gold. Japan are up in third and Slovakia fourth. Russia have strengthened their position at the top and now have 17 medals, five of them gold. But Canada, third at Vancouver 2010, are still awaiting their first gold medal, as are the United States. To see the full medal table click here

Back in the coastal cluster at Shayba Arena Canada are taking on Norway in the ice sledge hockey. It is currently 0-0 in the first period. 

Silver medallist Masters was also born in Ukraine. The 24-year-old had to have both of her legs removed as a result of the effects of growing up near the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. The first amputation occurred at age nine and the second at age 14. She spent several years in an orphanage in Ukraine before she was adopted at age seven and moved to Louisville, Kentucky, in the United States.

Pavlenko is a 32-year-old from Kharkov who was born with cerebral palsy. She took up cross-country skiing in 2002 after Ukrainian national Mykola Vorchak identified her talent and predicted she would be a success. 

Second gold medal for Ukraine

Sochi 2014 Paralympic gold medal13:24 Lyudmyla Pavlenko wins the women's 12km sitting cross-country event to claim Ukraine's second gold medal of the Winter Paralympics.

America's Oksana Masters wins the silver and Russia's Svetlana Konovalova the bronze.

McFadden finished fifth.

Pavlenko has crossed the line in 38min 54.3sec, a Paralympic record which has absolutely shattered the rest of the field. Ukraine can start celebrating their second gold medal of these Games. 

McFadden has crossed the line in third place in 40min 38.2sec but with several rivals still out on the course it is unlikely she will stay there. 

The biggest surprise has been the decision by Germany's world number one Andrea Eskau to drop out. The 42-year-old from Magdeburg, winner of the 6km biathlon yesterday and a double London 2012 gold medallist in hand cycling, appeared to be suffering from exhaustion.

At 9km Ukraine's Lyudmyla Pavlenko is leading while McFadden has had a fall and lost valuable time. 

Time for a quick cup of tea and make sure you are back for Tanya McFadden

The relentless Sochi 2014 schedule continues over at the Laura Biathlon & Ski Complex where the women's 12km sitting cross-country event is well underway. The biggest name is in this event is Tanya McFadden, a track and field star who has taken up cross-country this winter and could be in medal contention today.

Whatever happens the event will be particularly poignant for McFadden, who spent her early years in a Russian orphanage before being adopted by an American couple. Both her birth and adopted mothers will be in the crowd to cheer her on. To read more about her remarkable story click here

Japan clinch gold and silver in super-G sitting

Akira Kano added the super-G title to the downhill he had won yesterday as Japan claimed gold and silver ©Getty ImagesAkira Kano added the super-G title to the downhill he had won yesterday as Japan claimed gold and silver ©Getty Images

Sochi 2014 Paralympic gold medal13:04
Japan have claimed gold and silver in the super-G thanks to Akira Kano and Taiki Morii.

Canada's Caleb Brousseau took the bronze medal in an event where only 13 skiers out of 31 completed the course. 

Kano had won the downhill yesterday, making him the second athlete today to complete the double following Austria's Markus Salcher, who had won the downhill and Super-G standing events.

Approaching end of super-G sitting competition and only 11 competitors have finished the course. It is looking like gold and silver for Japan. 

Interesting statistic on the super-G sitting event. The top speed reached so far is 107.9 kilometres per hour which equates to 67 miles

Twitter2Lots of DNFs but best guys getting it done. Aus boys really gutted today. Time to grab the data and reset for tomorrow.
Australian Paralympic Committee chief executive Jason Hellwig tries to put a positive spin on a disappointing day for his country's skiers 

It looked like Josh Dueck was about to gatecrash the medal positions, perhaps even challenging for gold when he loses control two gates from the finishes and skis off the course. 

It's a Japanese 1-2 in the super-G sitting at the moment. Akira Kano leads from team-mate Taiki Morii with Canada's Caleb Brousseau in bronze medal position. 

Kano is bidding to add this title to the downhill gold medal he won yesterday. 

Sweden have not had a good morning as they have just lost 6-4 to Britain in the wheelchair curling

In the ice sledge hockey the Czech Republic have recorded their first victory of the tournament, beating Sweden 2-1 in a penalty shoot-out.

The US have beaten Norway 8-5 in the wheelchair curling. The only match still in progress is Britain versus Sweden, which the Britons are leading 5-4.

We resume in the super-G sitting and Japan's Kenji Natsume looks set to record a fast time and take the lead only to crash out with the finish gate in site.

11:59 Russia have beaten Finland 7-4 in the wheelchair curling. 

Back at the Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre the super-G sitting event is already underway, although there is currently a delay following a crash involving Germany's Georg Kreiter, who has crashed into the netting and is currently awaiting medical assistance. 

Slovakia have beaten China 8-4 in the wheelchair curling. Norway have come back to make it 7-5 against the US, Britain are now 5-4 ahead against Sweden while Russia are beating FInland 7-4.

Markus Salcher on his way to his second gold medal of Sochi 2014 in the super-G ©Getty ImagesMarkus Salcher on his way to his second gold medal of Sochi 2014 in the super-G
©Getty Images

11:51 Salcher completed the treacherous course in 1min 20.92sec, ahead of Lanzinger in 1:21:33 and Bugaev in 1:22.30.

The 22-year-old, who was born with the right side of his body paralysed, is now on course to repeat the hat-trick of titles he won at last year's World Championships in Molina. 

His father was a coach of the Austrian Alpine skiing team at the 2006 Paralympic Winter Games in Turin.

Second gold for Salcher

Sochi 2014 Paralympic gold medal11:44 Austria's Markus Salcher has added the super-G standing to the downhill title he won yesterday.

He finished ahead of team-mate Matthias Lanzinger and Russia's Alexey Bugaev.

Australian flag bearer forced out of Sochi 2014 by injury

Carrying Australia's flag at the Opening Ceremony is going to be the extent of Cameron Rahles-Rahbula's participation at Sochi 2014 after injury forced him to withdraw ©Getty ImagesCarrying Australia's flag at the Opening Ceremony is going to be the extent of Cameron Rahles-Rahbula's participation at Sochi 2014 after injury forced him to withdraw ©Getty Images

11:37 Australian flag bearer Cameron Rahles-Rahbula has withdrawn from the Games after suffering a small fracture in his leg during a practice-session crash last week, it has been announced.

Rahles-Rahbula, who lost his left leg to cancer, was set to compete in this fourth Paralympics after he reversed a decision to retire last September but was forced to withdraw from his first three races after the crash on the first downhill training session last Wednesday.

The double Vancouver 2010 silver medallist was carried from the snow in a sled and taken to hospital where scans showed he had chipped his tibia near his right knee. He also suffered bruising to his right ankle as well as facial injuries.

Even though 30-year-old Rahles-Rahbula managed to carry the flag at the Opening Ceremony on Friday with the aid of crutches, his injury would not improve enough for him to compete in the technical events, slalom and giant slalom.

"I've seen the doctor and unfortunately I've been ruled out for the remainder of the Games," said Rahles-Rahbula in a statement. "It's just the high risk to the knee. With the damage to the knee already, if I do race there's the potential to make it much worse.

"Aside from that it's still quite sore so there's also the risk of injuring something else if you're not skiing the right way.So that's the end of my Games from an athlete point of view."

The wheelchair curling matches are reaching the business end now. The US look safe as they are 7-3 up against Norway but the other matches are on a knife-edge. China have pulled it back to 4-3 against Slovakia, hosts Russia have rallied to lead Finland 4-2, while Britain are drawing 4-4 with Sweden. 

Real disappointment for New Zealand's Adam Hall. He is fastest down the course until he crashes out and loses his chance to add this title to the slalom gold medal he had won at Vancouver 2010. 

First glimpse today of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is at the Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre to watch the downhill events. He applauds as 16-year-old Alexey Bugaev moves into the bronze medal position. 

There is hardly time to catch your breath as we are already well into the men's super-G standing. At the moment Austrians Markus Salcher and Matthias Lanzinger are in gold and silver positions ahead of France's Vincent Gauthier-Manuel.

Petushkov, who is 36, had finished second in this event at Vancouver 2010 when Zaripov had won. It is his second gold medal of these Games, having won the men's 7.5-km sitting biathlon event yesterday. 

Clean sweep for Russians in 15km sitting cross-country

Sochi 2014 Paralympic gold medal11:00
There has been a clean-sweep in the men's 15km sitting cross country for home nation Russia. They were led by Roman Petushkov, who was followed by Irek Zaripov and Aleksandr Davidovich. 

Fourth gold medal for Slovakian Krako

Jakub Krako celebrates his victory in the super-G for visually impaired, the fourth gold medal of his Paralympic career ©Getty ImagesJakub Krako celebrates his victory in the super-G for visually impaired, the fourth gold medal of his Paralympic career ©Getty Images

10:57 That is the fourth Paralympic gold medal of Krako's career, having won three at Vancouver 2010 when he crossed the line first in the super combined, giant slalom and slalom. The event he had missed out on was the super-G, where he took the silver. 

This victory also helped make up for yesterday's disappointment when the 23-year-old had narrowly missed out on a medal in the downhill, finishing fourth. 

Sochi 2014 Paralympic gold medal10:46 Slovakia's Jakub Krako wins the super-G for visually impaired. 

American Mark Bathum wins the silver and Canada's Mac Marcoux the bronze.

10:43 Meanwhile, in the men's 15km sitting cross-country Russia's Roman Petushkov is leading after 6km in 16min 04sec.

Three skiers left to go in the super-G for visually impaired and it looks like the medal places may already have been decided. 

Another wheelchair curling update. Russia had equalised against Finland but are now 2-1 down. The US are thrashing Norway 4-1, the same score Slovakia are beating China by. Britain and Sweden are level at 1-1.

Canada's 16-year-old Mac Marcoux finishes in 1min 20.77sec to put himself in bronze medal position, the same position he came in yesterday's downhill. 

America's Mark Bathum moves into second place in the super-G for visually impaired with a time of 1min 20.71sec.

Among those to have crashed out in the super-G is Slovakia's Miroslav Haraus, silver medallist in the downhill yesterday. He crashed at high-speed and took out much of the safety net as he flew into it. Thankfully, he seems to be okay. 

More than a third of the field have so far gone in the men's super-G visually impaired race and only half of them have finished as the difficult course continues to claim victims. Early leader is Slovakia's Jakub Krako, who finished in 1min 20.58sec. He is ahead of Spain's Jon Santacana Maizteguia, winner of the downhill yesterday, and another Slovakian, Michal Beladic. 

10:08 Early update on the wheelchair curling. The US are leading Norway 2-1, Britain are 1-0 up against Sweden, Slovakia are 2-1 ahead against China and hosts Russia are trailing Finland 1-0.

We have now started the skiing events and underway are the men's super-G visually impaired and the men's 15km cross-country sitting.

"Putin's hockey curse"

Russian President Vladimir Putin, seen here enjoying a joke with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, was not laughing later as his hockey curse struck again ©Getty ImagesRussian President Vladimir Putin, seen here enjoying a joke with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, was not laughing later as his hockey curse struck again ©Getty Images

09:55 The sledge hockey was one of the few disappointments for Russia yesterday after they blew a 2-0 lead against South Korea and were eventually beaten in a sudden-death penalty shoot-out. It brought back painful memories of the ice hockey team's sudden-death penalty defeat against the United States during the Olympics. They recovered from that but were eventually beaten 3-1 in the quarter-final by Finland. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin was among the spectators at the Shayba Arena last night leaving some to wonder if he is some sort of unlucky charm for his country's hockey teams. "Putin's hockey curse" has been dismissed by some of a coincidence but we wonder who he will blame for this latest defeat.

After they were beaten by Finland in the Olympics he claimed US President Barack Obama was responsible. "This is Obama's legacy, his curse. It is the obvious conclusion," Putin was overheard saying to onlookers. "Merely the presence of Obama, in any form, real or televised, will contaminate the onlooker with his power of failure. I have seen him on TV screens here, on CNN, and we should have taken steps to prevent this. He menaces the basic concept of success."

Meanwhile, in the sledge hockey the Czech Republic are playing Sweden, who will be looking to restore some pride after they were crushed 10-1 by Canada yesterday. The Czechs, meanwhile, suffered a narrow 2-1 defeat to Norway. 

09:41 As you will know by now if you have followed any of our previous blogs on Sochi 2014, either yesterday or during last month's Olympics, then curling is a staple part of our early morning diet. 

There are four matches up and running already today. The United States are taking on Norway, Sweden are playing Britain, China meet Slovakia and Finland are up against hosts Russia. 

 The American has also posted a note on Twitter to reassure everyone that he is recovering. "I'm ok! I don't remember crashing but I didn't break anything. Thanks so much for all the support," he wrote. He also posted this picture on Facebook.

Tyler Walker has taken to social media to let everyone know he is okay after his crash yesterday ©FacebookTyler Walker has taken to social media to let everyone know he is okay after his crash yesterday ©Facebook

American skier "stable and conscious" after horror crash

Before we look ahead to today's action let us first bring you an update on American sit-skier Tyler Walker who suffered a serious injury during yesterday's men's sitting downhill competition at Rosa Khutor Alpine Centre.

The 27-year-old cartwheeled several times at high speed and lay motionless on the snow before receiving attention from medical staff.

"#TeamUSA's Tyler Walker (@tbone_walker) is stable and conscious after crash in men's downhill (sitting) at #Paralympics," US Paralympics tweeted.

Competition was stopped several times as nine athletes of the men's 22-person sitting class crashed out.

American sit-skier Tyler Walker was airlifted off the course following a crash yesterday ©AFP/Getty ImagesAmerican sit-skier Tyler Walker was airlifted off the course following a crash yesterday ©AFP/Getty Images

 Well, these Games certainly hit the ground running yesterday with drama, emotion, excitement and controversy. 

Russian President was in Sochi, along with Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev and Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko, to watch the home side win a total of 12 medals, including four gold, as they surged to the top of the overall table.

But perhaps the most popular winner of this opening day - at least outside the host country - was Ukraine's Vitaliy Lukyanenko, who won the 7.5km visually impaired biathlon, beating Russia's five-time world champion Nikolay Polukhin, the pre-race favourite, by 11 seconds. It was one of five medals won by Ukraine as they moved to third overall. 

To catch up with everything that happened yesterday click here to see our live blog. 

Good morning and welcome to the second day of the 2014 Winter Parlaympics in Sochi.