For the first time in more than a century, two athletes shared a gold medal
After two hours of arduous competition, Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim and Italy's Gianmarco Tamberi finished in a tie with 2.37 meter high jumps.
Tokyo 2020 surprised again with one of the most moving moments of the Olympics during the athletics competition on Sunday, Aug. 1. Two athletes won the gold medal in the men's high jump.
After two hours of arduous competition, Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim and Italy's Gianmarco Tamberi finished in a tie with 2.37 meter high jumps. To try to tiebreak, the players had to exceed 2.39 meters. Neither of them managed to achieve that mark, so an Olympic official offered them to share the gold.
"Can we have two golds?" was the only thing Barshim asked.
The official nodded and the two athletes decided to waive the tiebreaker and agree to share the gold medal and the title of Olympic champions in Tokyo 2020.
"History, my friend!", were the words that Barshim told Tamberi before he started his run around the stadium with a face filled with joy.
Barshim and Tamberi's friendship began 11 years ago, during a World Youth Championship in Canada, where both competed for the first time.
In 2016, Tamberi suffered an ankle injury that left him out of competition at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.
"They told me I would not compete again," recalled the Italian.
A year later, he returned to the track, but did not have a good showing, so he did not want to see any of his teammates that night.
Barshim was the only one who insisted to get into his room to comfort him and chat for a while. Tamberi cried while they talked, and his friend told him: “Don't try to rush things. You had a serious injury. You are back, although nobody expected it. You just need to take your time.”
What these friends did not imagine is that almost four years after that conversation they would be sharing the Olympic podium in first place.
“I know I deserve the gold. Gianmarco too. This goes beyond sports, this is a message for the new generations,” said Barshim.
Mutaz Essa Barshim y Gianmarco Tamberi llegaron a lo más alto del podio luego de empatar en la final de la disciplina y ponerse de acuerdo en no definir un único ganador en una instancia de desempate https://t.co/XuvsI9RzsA#DeportesF24 pic.twitter.com/uqO6GHzg2y
— FRANCE 24 Español (@France24_es) August 2, 2021