Check out these top athletes from around the world at the 2012 Olympics.
Brazil’s Alison Cerutti will be making his Olympic debut in London with beach volleyball star Emanual Rego. Named the FIVB’s Best Offensive Player, Best Hitter, and Best Blocker in 2011, Cerutti has big potential.
After clocking the second fastest 200m time and winning the 100m at the 2011 World Championships, Yohan Blake will make his debut at the 2012 Olympics. As he trains alongside gold-medal winner, Usain Bolt, many wonder if this Jamaican athlete will serve as a threat to the defending Olympic champ.
Despite suffering a series of injuries since the 2008 Beijing Games, Usain Bolt enters the 2012 London Games as one of the sprinters to beat. In London he will attempt to repeat as the gold medalist in the 100m and 200m.
Representing her hometown of Clarendon, Jamaica, Veronica Campbell-Brown will make her fourth Olympic appearance when she competes in London this summer. The decorated sprinter is a two-time defending Olympic champion in the 200m.
After losing to U.S. gold-medal winner Michael Phelps in Beijing by .01 of a second, Milorad Cavic is back for more. Despite having a much-needed back surgery in 2010, Milorad Cavic is once again going for the gold.
The all-time leader in international tournament titles, Emanuel Rego will become the first male to compete in every Olympic beach volleyball tournament after competing in the London Games. He is a two-time Olympic medal winner, taking gold in 2004 and bronze in 2008 with then-partner Ricardo Santos. He will play with Alison Ceruti in London.
Although injuries slow many athletes down, an ankle operation did not stop Russian athlete Viktoria Komova. After winning the all-around competition at the inaugural Summer Youth Olympic Games in 2010, and finishing second in the all-around final at 2011 Worlds in Tokyo, Komova will be competing for the all-around Olympic gold medal in women’s gymnastics.
Despite his Achilles tendon injury at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Chinese track and field star Liu Xiang will be returning to the Games this year. Making his third Olympic appearance, Liu will be striving for gold in the 110m hurdles.
James Magnussen, also known as “The Missle,” will be taking a shot at winning an Olympic title in London. Magnussen recorded the fastest textile suit time in the 100m freestyle at the 2012 Australian Championships, and won the 100m freestyle gold at the 2011 World Championships.
Brazilian women’s soccer player Marta will be attending the 2012 Olympics. She has been named FIFA World Player of the Year five times and has been a member of two silver-medal winning teams at the Olympics
After giving birth to her second child on Sept. 29, 2010, and suffering from a tear in a disc in her back, Paula Radcliffe will be returning to the Olympic stage on her home turf. The British athlete is making her fifth appearance at the Games and is still eying her first Olympic medal.
Australian swimmer Stephanie Rice made the trip to Sydney in 2000 to watch the Olympic swimming competition. She then made it her goal to win an Olympic medal. Three gold medals later, Rice has far exceeded that goal. She will be competing at the London Games in hopes of winning gold medal No. 4.
Listed among CNN’s 30 sexiest athletes in Asia in 2010, there is much more to Olympic beach volleyball player Xue Chen then just a pretty face. Named the youngest Olympic beach volleyball medalist when she won bronze in 2008, Chen will again be competing for China in the Olympic Games.
Weighing in at 77 pounds and measuring 4 feet, 9 inches, Yao Jinnan has taken home some huge awards. This petite Chinese gymnast is the reigning all-around bronze medalist from the 2011 World Championships, where she took home three medals in her debut.
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