Dina and Arina Averina. Getty Images
Russian twins were out to make history in rhythmic gymnastics in Tokyo 2020. Photo: Getty Images.

The Russian twins who dominate rhythmic gymnastics

Dina and Arina Averina are Russian twins and elite rhythmic gymnasts.


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The Averina twins were born just 20 minutes apart on Aug. 13, 1998. At the age of four, they discovered the world of gymnastics thanks to their mother.

Arina and Dina participated for the first time in an international competition at the 2011 Russian and Chinese Youth Games, in which Dina won the gold medal and Arina took 5th place in the full competition.

Since their debut in gymnastics competitions, the sisters have shown their talents by achieving extraordinary results. Tokyo 2020 is no exception to this trend.

During the last Olympic cycle, the twins dominated the World and European Championships in the rhythmic gymnastics category. However, on Aug. 7, the rivalry came to the Tokyo Olympics. Both lost, but Dina finished second to Israel's Linoy Ashram.

Usually the twins never compete with each other, instead each one chooses a sub-modality of gymnastics to compete, while the other supports her from the stands. “We never compete against each other, we support each other. I am my own rival,” commented Dina during a press conference in Tokyo.

Twins and triplets in Tokyo

Going into the event, Arina and Dina Averina could have been the first sisters to win a gold and a silver medal in the same individual event in any sport of the Olympic Games. They weren't alone in that distinction when considering all the competitions at Tokyo 2020.

In the 3x3 basketball were Russian twins Olga and Yevgeniya Frolkina, who won the silver medal in the tournament.

The cyclists Adam and Simon Yates are also twins that competed in the road biking on July 24. Adam was ninth in the final race and Simon finished in the seventeenth position.

On Britain's side, in boxing, are Pat and Luke McCormack. Pat won the silver medal in welterweight in his second Games. In Rio 2016, he was ninth. His brother Luke fell in the quarterfinals to Cuban Andy Cruz.

Twins' first time at the Olympics

The first pair of twins to win a medal in the history of the Olympic Games were the Swedes Arne and Ake Borg, who won bronze together in the 4x200m swimming in Paris 1924. On his own, Arné hung two silvers in the 1500m freestyle and 400m freestyle, plus a gold in 1500m freestyle and a bronze in 400m in Amsterdam 1928.


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