After a year-long delay due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Tokyo Olympics will finally get underway from July 23. The Olympics has always been the pinnacle of sporting excellence, where some athletes attain immortal fame while a few are kept from greatness only by tantalising milliseconds and inches.
Sportstar takes a look at the athletes who have won the most medals in individual Olympic events.
1. Michael Phelps, aquatics (USA, 2004-2016)
The most decorated Olympian of all time, Phelps has bagged 28 medals at the quadrennial showpiece. A whopping 16 of those have come from individual events; 13 of them gold.
Between Athens 2004 and Rio 2016, Phelps won four medals each in 200m butterfly, 200m medley, and 100m butterfly. He also won two medals in 400m medley and as many in 200m freestyle.
2. Larisa Latynina (URS, 1956-1964)
Former Soviet artistic gymnast Latynina won 18 Olympic medals in her career spanning from 1956-1964. She won 14 of these medals in individual events - all-around (three), vault (three), floor exercise (three), uneven bars (three) and balance beam (two).
Latynina also holds the record for the most Olympic golds by a gymnast - nine.
3. Nikolay Andrianov, gymnastics (URS, 1972-1980)
Former gymnast Andrianov held the record for winning the most Olympic medals (15) among men until Phelps surpassed him in Beijing in 2008. Half of his 12 individual medals came at the 1976 Summer Games in all-around, floor exercise, rings, vault, parallel bars and pommel horse. Besides these events, he also won an individual medal in horizontal bar in Moscow in 1980.
Andrianov also shares the male record for most individual Olympic gold medals in gymnastics (6) with compatriot Boris Shakhlin.
4. Vera Caslavska (TCH, 1960-1964)
Yet another artistic gymnast, Caslavska of Czechoslovakia won eight Olympic medals in individual events; seven of those gold. She took the 1964 and 1968 editions of the Games by storm, winning a combined 10 medals in total (team and individual events).
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