The Australian and international news stories you need to know today, Monday August 2.

Australia makes Olympic history with four golds in one day.  

Australia has shone in the pool, on the open water and at the skate park to make history at the Tokyo Olympics on Sunday.

When sailor Matt Wearn clinched his win in the sailing on Sunday afternoon, it became the first time Australia had won four Olympic gold medals in one day.

Earlier, swimmer Emma McKeon won the 50m freestyle and then combined with Kaylee McKeown, Chelsea Hodges and Cate Campbell to take out the 4x100m medley relay. McKeon's career total of 11 Olympic medals is more than any other Australian, eclipsing the nine of Ian Thorpe and Leisel Jones.

Kaylee McKeown, Chelsea Hodges, Emma McKeon and Cate Campbell during the medal ceremony of the Women's 4 x 100m Medley Relay Final on day nine of the swimming competition of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. Image: Getty. 


Logan Martin then dominated the men's BMX freestyle in the sport's riveting Olympic debut.

Sunday's brace of gold medals took Australia to 14 gold in Tokyo, equalling its haul at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Only Sydney (16) and Athens (17) have been more prolific - and there are seven days of competition left.

But given the swimming and rowing programs are now over, Australia's gold rush will slow in the last week at Tokyo.

Mathew Belcher and Will Ryan hold a commanding lead in sailing's 470 class, while the Kookaburras and Hockeyroos are at the pointy end of the hockey and the Matildas have reached the semi-finals in women's soccer.

Track cycling is an unknown, given the lack of competition due to the pandemic, with the men's team pursuit probably the best Australian chance. 

Concern COVID-19 has spreads beyond south-east Queensland.

People are seen walking near the Brisbane CBD after lockdown on July 31, 2021 in Brisbane, Australia. Image: Getty. 


Health authorities are racing to track down the close contacts of a COVID case who flew from Brisbane to Rockhampton late last week, as Queensland enters their second day of a snap three-day lockdown.

The woman was an external contractor at the Rookwood Weir project west of Rockhampton and tested positive on July 31.

It's believed she was infectious when she took a Qantas flight from Brisbane to Rockhampton on July 28 and a return flight on July 30.

Authorities are contacting people who were on QF2362 at 8.30am on July 28 and QF2365 at 6.40pm on 30 July.

The case means the potential exposure sites linked to the Queensland outbreak have spread well beyond the state's southeast.


Queensland reported nine new local COVID-19 cases on Sunday, the highest number in almost a year.

There are more than 80 exposure sites linked to the outbreak, with about 20 new sites of concern listed on Sunday.

Also on Sunday, Deputy Premier Steven Miles said implored more Queenslanders to seek virus testing, with fewer than 12,000 tests conducted on Saturday.

Authorities hope to see at least 40,000 daily tests.

The local government areas of Brisbane, Ipswich, Logan City, Moreton Bay, Redlands, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Noosa, Somerset, Lockyer Valley and Scenic Rim went into the lockdown on Saturday afternoon.

August needs to see a record high of vaccinations for NSW.

People wear face masks as they exercise in Parramatta Park on July 31, 2021 in Sydney, Australia. Image: Getty. 


To secure NSW's "ticket to freedom", Premier Gladys Berejiklian believes August will need to be a record month for vaccinations.

Half a million NSW residents can be vaccinated against COVID-19 per week based on current rates, the premier said.

More than 82,000 people in NSW received the jab in the 24 hours to Saturday evening and with lockdown proving "damn hard", vaccination was the way forward, she explained.

"One dose itself reduces your chance of spreading the virus but it also keeps you out of hospital," Ms Berejiklian said on Sunday.

"We know that vaccination is working against this terrible Delta strain."

Greater Sydney and surrounding regions are in lockdown until at least August 28.


NSW reported 449 locally acquired cases over the weekend, 239 of them on Sunday, as infections continue to spread across households, around workplaces and into aged care facilities. 

Of the latest, 115 are linked to a known case or cluster while 92 are household contacts and 23 are close contacts. The source of infection for 124 cases is under investigation.

Late on Sunday, there were reports that a dozen residents at a nursing home in Sydney's inner west had tested positive for COVID and been taken to hospital as a precaution.

A staff member at the Hardi aged care home in Summer Hill had tested positive for the virus last week, according to media reports.

Belarus athlete says she was taken to airport against her wishes, before rescued by Japanese police.

Krystsina Tsimanouskay from Belarus says she was taken to the airport against her wishes in Tokyo. Image: Getty. 


A Belarusian sprinter, who was due to compete at the Olympic Games on Monday, says she was taken to the airport against her wishes following her complaints about national coaches at the Olympic Games. 

Krystsina Tsimanouskaya told Reuters she had sought the protection of Japanese police at Tokyo's Haneda airport so she would not have to board the flight.

"I will not return to Belarus," she told Reuters.


She said she had been removed from the team due "to the fact that I spoke on my Instagram about the negligence of our coaches".

The 24-year-old said coaching staff had come to her room on Sunday and told her to pack. She said she was taken to the airport by representatives of the Belarusian Olympic team.

The Belarusian Olympic Committee said in a statement that coaches had decided to withdraw Tsimanouskaya from the Games on doctors' advice about her "emotional, psychological state". 

A source at the Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation, which supports athletes jailed or sidelined for their political views, said Tsimanouskaya planned to request asylum in Germany or Austria on Monday.

Belarus, a former Soviet state, is run with a tight grip by President Alexander Lukashenko. In power since 1994, he faced a wave of protests last year, which some athletes joined.

Unusually in a country where elite athletes often rely on government funding, some prominent Belarusian athletes joined the protests. 

Several were jailed, including Olympic basketball player Yelena Leuchanka and decathlete Andrei Krauchanka.

Tsimanouskaya ran in the women's 100 metres heats on Friday and was scheduled to run in the 200 metres heats on Monday, along with the 4x400 metres relay on Thursday.

- With AAP.

Feature image: Getty.