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‘Can we have two golds?’: High jumpers agree to share Olympic gold

By AYIE LICSI Published Aug 02, 2021 3:45 pm

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics had one of its most heartwarming moments yet during its high jump event on Sunday.

Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim and Italy's Gianmarco Tamberi were the last men standing in the final of the men's high jump event. They both successfully cleared the 2.37m mark but both also failed to clear 2.39 meters after three attempts.

With a tie on their hands, the official asked them if they wanted to continue with a jump-off to decide the winner.

Barshim interrupted the official and asked, "Can we have two golds?" The official said it was possible if they came to an agreement.

"History, my friend," Barshim said as he shook Tamberi's hand and brought him in for a hug. The gold medal was then decided to be shared between the two. 

"I look at him, he looks at me and we know it. We just look at each other and we know, that is it, it is done. There is no need," Barshim said, in an interview after the event.

"He is one of my best friends, not only on the track, but outside the track. We work together."

This was the first time since 1912 that two athletes shared a gold medal.

Banner and thumbnail photo: Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy (in blue) and Mutaz Essa Barshim of Qatar agree to share the Olympic gold medal for the men's high jump event. 
Hannah Mckay / Reuters, Christian Petersen / AFP