The world record-holder Dayron Robles of Cuba swept to victory in the Olympic 110 metres hurdles to take the athletics gold medal hosts China had been craving for one of their own.
The bespectacled 21-year-old combined pace and sublime technique to cross the line a metre clear of the field in 12.93 seconds and win the title China's injured Liu Xiang claimed in Athens four years ago.
The confident Robles was the only runner to go under 13 seconds.
The American David Payne won silver in 13.17, just edging his compatriot David Oliver, who claimed bronze in 13.18.
Liu Xiang withdrew from the event with injury.