RIO DE JANEIRO — The Olympics always leave us with lasting images, and Rio held form – Usain Bolt flashing that winning smile, Simone Biles being launched into orbit in her extraordinary floor routine, Katie Ledecky swimming by herself in a demolition of the world record.
But the sounds of the games can be just as distinctive.
The crack of the starting gun at the track. The “en garde” before the clash of swords in fencing. The back-and-forth of a tennis ball. The roar of the crowd as a world record is set.
We captured sound clips from various events during the Olympics, and have presented them here in “name that sport” format. Play each clip and see if you can guess which sport it is before revealing the photo using the slider and reading the description of the audio.
Needham’s Aly Raisman delivered a stunning performance in floor exercise en route to a silver medal in women’s all-around gymnastics. You can hear the crowd clap along to her mix of Russian tunes, including Russian Sailor’s Dance from the ballet “The Red Poppy” and the song Kalinka.
The distinct sneaker squeaks, tennis-ball bounce, and score call after the point make this one easy. Monica Puig of Puerto Rico defeated Petra Kvitova of the Czech Republic, 2-1, in a semifinal women’s singles tennis match. She then became the first gold medalist in her country’s Olympic history when she toppled the second-ranked player in the world, Angelique Kerber of Germany.
You can make out the clear calls of “en garde” and “allez” during this fencing match. The US women’s saber squad of Mariel Zagunis, Dagmara Wozniak, Ibtihaj Muhammad, and Monica Aksamit won the bronze medal in the team event, defeating Italy.
The call for the swimmers to ready on the blocks and the subsequent starting horn point to the pool. And for this race — the 100-meter butterfly — the crowd was raucous at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium, solidly behind Michael Phelps. This has always been Phelps’s toughest race, and he was beaten for gold by Joseph Schooling of Singapore. Phelps finished in a three-way tie for silver.
The starting gun is distinctly track. On a night that featured a race with Usain Bolt, it was South African Wayde van Niekirk who electrified the Olympic Stadium with a world-record run of 43.08 seconds in the 400 meters, breaking Michael Johnson’s mark that had stood for nearly 17 years.
The repeated whistles and the constant splashes are characteristic of water polo. This match between Hungary and Australia turned into an upset when Hungary came away with a 13-11 victory on penalties to advance to a semifinal match with the United States.
Soccer crowds are known for their synchronized and unrelenting cheering. The Olympics are no exception. Here, you hear the Rio crowd chanting “Brazil!” as Neymar and his fellow soccer compatriots captured gold in front of the home crowd, defeating Germany on penalty kicks, 5-4, with Neymar accounting for the game winner.
The announcer signaling a new round. The ding of the bell. In this boxing match, Shakur Stevenson, the best hope for a gold medal for the US, had to settle for silver after dropping a split decision to Cuba’s Robeisy Ramirez Carrazana in the bantamweight final.
You can hear the diver’s plunge into the water followed by cheers, though American David Boudia couldn’t defend his Olympic gold in the men’s 10-meter platform this time. He finished with a bronze medal after receiving his lowest scores on his final dive, a backward 2 ½ somersault, 2 ½ twist, pike.
The tick-tock volley of a doubles table tennis match can be heard despite the raucous crowd at the men’s final between China and Japan — two powers in the sport and fierce rivals. China can claim global supremacy for now.
Rachel G. Bowers of the Globe staff contributed to this report.