Beijing:The United States and China renew their duel at the top of the Olympic medals table on Monday with strong prospects in swimming and diving among 13 golds to be awarded in seven sports.
Zhou Yafei of China and Christine Magnuson of the United States go head to head in the women's 100 butterfly, and the Americans also have legitimate shots in the pool with the men's 4x100-meter relay team, Brendan Hansen in the men's 100 breaststroke and Katie Hoff in the women's 400 freestyle.
Hoff had lost her world record in the women's 400 IM on Sunday that she set at the U.S. Olympic trials by nearly 2 seconds, finishing third as Stephanie Rice of Australia won in 4 minutes, 29.45 seconds at the Water Cube.
Michael Phelps swims in the 200 butterfly heats Monday and the 200 freestyle semifinals as he cranks up his bid to win eight golds five individual events, three relays and surpass Mark Spitz's record seven-gold haul at the 1972 Munich Olympics.
"I'm not downplaying this race by any means, but I have to put that race behind me," Phelps said after Gold No. 1. "I have to act like it never happened because I have so many tough races ahead of me."
Phelps stands to earn a US$1 million bonus from sponsor Nike if he can win all eight events for 14 overall Olympic golds.
In diving, Chinese pair Zhou Luxin and Lin Yue are expected to win the men's synchronized 10-meter platform event.
There will also be gold medals in archery, judo, weightlifting, fencing and shooting on the fourth official day of the Beijing Games.
One day after NBA superstars Kobe Bryant and LeBron James went up against China flag-bearer Yao Ming in men's basketball, the American women take on their Chinese counterparts in a group match.
Australia plays Brazil, Russia meets South Korea and Spain is up against New Zealand in other women's basketball matches.
Rafael Nadal, the No. 1 in waiting in men's tennis, opens his Olympic tournament against Potito Starace of Italy. In men's field hockey, favorites and defending champions Australia plays Spain in a pool match and Germany takes on China.