Norway deny Russians first Olympic gold in cross country

Norway denied the Olympic Athletes from Russia their first gold medal of the Winter Olympics with victory in the men's 4x10km cross-country ski relay, securing their fifth gold in eight cross-country skiing competitions at the Pyeongchang Games on Sunday.

Simen Hegstad Krueger seized the lead from the Russians in the third leg before Johannes Hoesflot Klaebo finished in 21min 54.3sec to seal victory over the Russians by 9.4sec.

France took bronze, nearly 37 seconds adrift. The ninth gold medal for Norway -- five of them in cross country -- put them joint top of the medals table alongside Germany.

Russia topped the medals table when they hosted the last Winter Olympics in 2014  Sochi, at what was later revealed as the height of a systemic doping operation.

Halfway through the Pyeongchang Games, the 168 Russian athletes cleared to compete as neutrals have two silver medals and seven bronze between them.