Evgeny Rylov turned the primary Russian in 25 years to win an Olympic gold medal within the pool as he powered to victory within the 100m backstroke remaining in Tokyo, edging out countryman Kliment Kolesnikov by simply 0.002 seconds.
Rylov set a brand new European document on his solution to successful gold with a time of 51.98 seconds on the Tokyo Aquatics Middle, the primary time a Russian has received an Olympic swimming occasion because the 1996 Video games in Atlanta.
Teammate Kolesnikov – the world document holder within the 50m backstroke – completed only a fraction behind in a time of 52.00.
Their pair’s heroics imply Russians occupied the highest two positions on an Olympic swimming podium for the primary time because the Moscow Video games in 1980.
Rylov’s victory can also be the primary ever for a Russian swimmer within the historical past of the boys’s 100m backstroke on the Olympics.
America’s Ryan Murphy – Olympic champion on this occasion in Rio de Janeiro 5 years in the past – needed to accept bronze with a time of 52.19 seconds.
Rylov, 24, provides to his spectacular medal haul of world championship titles and 4 European crowns, having additionally claimed bronze within the 200m backstroke in Rio in 2016.
Maybe his solely disappointment of the day in Tokyo got here when organizers refused to permit him to put on his favourite cat-themed facemask for the medal ceremony, though he had emerged for the race with it on.
“I wish to cry. They did not let me put on my cat masks. They instructed me, ‘sorry, it isn’t allowed’. However I am not going to argue with the organizers,” Rylov mentioned of the masks, which had been given to him by his girlfriend.
The silver for teammate Kolesnikov, 21, is a primary medal at Olympic degree for the teen however he has already loved a bunch of success at world and European degree, together with six European titles.
The medals added to Russia’s haul on the Tokyo Video games, the place the group is competing below the banner of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) as a result of WADA sanctions.
The Russian group is fourth within the general medal desk with 5 gold, seven silver and three bronze medals. The US prepared the ground, adopted by Japan and China.