2021 Year In Sports: Stars of Tokyo Olympics

From Neeraj Chopra winning India's first ever gold medal in athletics to South Korea's An San doing the triple in recurve archery, here is a look at the top stars of Tokyo Olympics.

Neeraj Chopra won India's first-ever athletics gold medal in the javelin throw final in Tokyo. Here's a look at some of the other stars of this edition of the Olympics.

From Neeraj Chopra winning India's first ever gold medal in athletics to South Korea's An San doing the triple in recurve archery, here is a look at the top stars of Tokyo Olympics:


Neeraj Chopra

Neeraj Chopra won India's first-ever athletics gold medal in the javelin throw final with his second throw of 87.58m. With this, India achieved its best-ever medal haul at the Olympics (seven), surpassing the six-medal haul at the London Games in 2012.This was also India's second ever individual Olympic gold medal. Abhinav Bindra had bagged the country's first individual gold at the Beijing Games in 2008.

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Mirabai Chanu

Weightlifter Mirabai Chanu won silver medal in the women's 49 kg category and became the first Indian to win an Olympic medal at the 2020 Tokyo Games. The Manipuri athlete lifted a total of 202 kg with 87 kg in the Snatch and 115 kg in the Clean & Jerk as the Chinese Zhihui Hou lifted 210kg to create a new Olympic Record and clinch the gold. 

P V Sindhu

Indian shuttler P V Sindhu defeated China’s He Bingjiao 21-13, 21-15 in the bronze medal match. Earlier, the top ranked Indian had lost to Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei 18-21, 12-21 in the semifinals of the women’s singles. 

Ravi Kumar Dahiya

Wrestler Ravi Kumar Dahiya won the silver medal after losing 4-7 to world champion Zaur Uguev of Russia in the keenly-fought men’s 57kg freestyle title clash of the Tokyo Olympics. The Indian had won his semifinal bout against Kazakh Nurislam Sanayev ‘by fall’ to reach the finals.

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Lovlina Borgohain

Indian boxer Lovlina Borgohain was defeated by world champion Busenaz Surmeneli of Turkey in the women’s 69kg semifinal 0-5 to ensure India its only medal from the sport at Tokyo Olympics. She became only the second Indian woman pugilist and third overall, after Vijender Singh (bronze in 2008) and Mary Kom (bronze in 2012) to climb the podium. 

Indian men's and women's hockey teams

The Indian men’s hockey team created history after defeating Germany 5-4 to win the bronze medal, the country’s first podium finish in the sport after 41 years. On the other hand, the Indian women’s hockey team lost 3-4 to Great Britain in the closely contested bronze medal match. 

Aditi Ashok

File picture of Aditi Ashok.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Aditi Ashok surpassed expectations, but missed out on a podium finish by the narrowest of margins to finish fourth. The Indian golfer, who came into the Olympic Games ranked 200, missed bronze by one stroke as Nelly Korda of USA took the gold, while Japan's Inami Mone won the silver and Lydia Ko of New Zealand settled for the bronze medal. 

Bajrang Punia

Wrestler Bajrang Punia beat Kazakhstan's Daulet Niyazbekov 8-0 to win the bronze medal in the men's 65kg freestyle category. After Sushil Kumar, Bajrang is the first Indian wrestler to have won medals in both Olympics and the World championships.

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C. A. Bhavani Devi

India’s first-ever Olympic fencer C. A. Bhavani Devi did well to reach the women’s sabre second round, losing to the fourth-seeded Manon Brunet of France. Though the Indian showed her tricks in the second period, she was no match for the 25-year-old Frenchwoman. Bhavani had defeated Tunisia’s Ben Azizi Nadia in the first round.


Ariane Titmus

Ariane Titmus defeated her rival and American swimming great Katie Ledecky in the 200m and 400m women’s freestyle swimming. However, Ledecky took control in the women’s 800m freestyle and defeated the Aussie to ensure she won gold in this event for the third time in a row.

Emma McKeon

Emma McKeon is only the second female Olympian and first female swimmer to win seven medals at a single Olympics. She won four gold medals in the 50m, 100m, 4×100m freestyle relay, 4x100m medley relay and won three bronze medals in the 100m butterfly, 4×200m freestyle relay and 4×100m mixed medley relay.

Chinese women's team in 4x200m freestyle relay

China won the gold medal in the women's 4×200m freestyle relay in a world record time of seven minutes 40.33 secondsThe team of Zhang Yufei, who broke the Olympic record to win the 200m butterfly gold an hour earlier, Yang Junxuan, Tang Muhan and Li Bingjie took an early lead and fought hard to hold it, with Li fighting off a surging Katie Ledecky to keep ahead of the United States and clock a winning time of 7:40.33.

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Tatjana Schoenmaker

The South African swimmer finished with a stunning time of 2:18.95 to set a new world record in the women’s 200m breaststroke event and erased the world record of 2:19.11 set by Denmark’s Rikke Moller Pederson in 2013. The South African broke out into tears even as Lily King and her team-mate Annie Lazor, who won silver and bronze joined together to congratulate the proud winner.

Caeleb Dressel

Caeleb Dressel of United States celebrates after winning the gold medal in the men's 4 x 100m medley relay.   -  Getty Images

USA’s star swimmer won gold medals in five out of the six events he participated in, including the 100m butterfly and 4X100m medley, where he broke the world records. He became the fourth male swimmer to achieve the feat of winning five gold at a single Olympics, joining the greats Mark Spitz, Matt Biondi and Michael Phelps.

Great Britain in 4x100m mixed medley relay

Great Britain won the Olympic debut of the 4×100-meter mixed medley relay in a World Record time of three minutes, 37.58 seconds. The silver went to China, while Australia took the bronze.

Quan Hongchan

China's 14-year-old diving superstar Quan Hongchan claimed gold in the women's 10 metre platform with a near-perfect score, leaving a silver medal for team mate Chen Yuxi. The Chinese teen, who scored a total of 466.20, became the second youngest woman to win gold in the event after compatriot Fu Mingxia who triumphed aged 13 at the Barcelona Games in 1992.

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Thomas Daley

Thomas Daley, two-time Tokyo Olympic medallist was seen knitting as he sat in the audience to watch the diving events. The Briton diver won two medals in the Tokyo Olympics including a gold in the synchronized 10m platform diving with Matty Lee and bronze in the men's10m platform. 

Gianmarco Tamberi and Mutaz Essa Barshim

Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim (left) and Italy's Gianmarco Tamberi (right) shared the gold medal in the men's high jump.   -  GETTY IMAGES

Italian high jumper Gianmarco Tamberi and Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim decided to share the gold as both of them couldn't clear the 2.39m mark. For this gesture, the duo shared the 2021 World Athletics Inspiration Award.

Lamont Marcell Jacobs

Italy's Lamont Marcell Jacobs shocked the world to win the Olympic men's 100 metres in a European record timing of 9.80 seconds with American Fred Kerley winning silver and Canada's Andre de Grasse taking bronze. Jacobs became the first athlete from his nation to win the Olympic 100m crown.

Yulimar Rojas

Yulimar Rojas of Venezuela jumped 15.67 metres, breaking the previous women's triple jump world record of 15.50 metres set by Ukraine’s Inessa Kravets in 1995. The win made Rojas, Venezuela's first woman Olympic champion. Patricia Mamona of Portugal won silver and the bronze went to Spain's Ana Peleteiro.

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Karsten Warholm and Sydney McLaughlin

The Tokyo Olympics saw both the men’s and women’s 400m hurdles World Record being destroyed. Karsten Warholm of Norway stormed away with the gold in a world record time of 45.94 seconds in the men’s 400m hurdles with Rai Benjamin’s 46.17s for silver.

In the women’s 400m hurdles, Sydney McLaughlin of the United States smashed her own world record in 51.46 seconds, with world champion and 2016 Olympic gold medallist Dalilah Muhammad claiming silver in 51.58 seconds.

Armand Duplantis

The Swedish pole vaulter confirmed gold with a winning leap of 6.02 metres. The 21-year-old was the only man to clear the height to land the title just a centimeter lower than the Olympic record Brazil's Thiago Braz set in Rio 2016. 

Italian men's and Jamaican women's 4x100m relay teams

The men’s and women’s 4×100m relay saw the defending champions unable to clinch the titles. The men’s relay saw defending champion Jamaica finish fifth as new champion was crowned when Italy swept the National Record and the gold medal in 37.50 edging the silver medallist Great Britain by 0.01 secs. In the women’s relay, defending champion USA finished second as Jamaica eased past the 2016 Olympic champion with a National Record of 41.02.

Anita Wlodarczyk

Defending champion Anita Wlodarczyk won the Olympic hammer throw title with an immense throw of 78.48m. The current Olympic champion won her third consecutive gold, throwing over a metre more than her nearest rival, People's Republic of China's Wang Zheng who took home the silver medal with 77.03m.

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Elaine Thompson-Herah

Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica crosses the finish line first to win the gold medal in the women's 100m final at the Tokyo Olympics.   -  REUTERS

Elaine Thompson-Herah, now has all three available sprint golds in 100m, 200m and 4×100m medal relay. It was Jamaica's first gold in the women’s 4x100m event since 2004, after back-to-back silvers behind the USA in London and Rio.

Allyson Felix

Allyson Felix won her 11th Olympic medal as the US won its seventh successive gold in the 4×400m relay. She won gold in the event for the fourth time to extend her Olympic medal haul to a remarkable 11, making her the most decorated American athlete, overtaking Carl Lewis.

Ryan Crouser

Ryan Crouser of the United States retained his title as he won gold in the men's shot put breaking his own Olympic record three times in the final and finishing with a mark of 23.30 metres. His compatriot Joe Kovacs took silver, and Tomas Walsh of New Zealand claimed bronze with a season's best mark of 22.47. Surprisingly, the final results mirrored the 2016 Rio Olympics final.

Raven Saunders

Raven Saunders crossed her arms in an "X" gesture during the medal ceremony after claiming silver for the women’s shot-put event. The 25-year-old African-American athlete said she wanted to represent "people all around the world who are fighting and don't have the platform to speak up for themselves."

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Teen skateboarders

Momiji Nishiya, the 13-year-old skateboarding sensation, became the youngest gold medallist from Japan as she won the women's street skateboarding event. The women's skateboard street podium averaged 14 years and 191 days, the youngest individual podium in the history of the Olympic Games. Nishiya upset favourite Rayssa Leal of Brazil and teammate Aori Nishimura, the reigning world champion, in the final.

Teen skaters from Japan and Britain soared to victory in the women's park competition, with hometown heroes Sakura Yosozumi and Kokona Hiraki cinching gold and silver, while Sky Brown of Great Britain took bronze.

Greysia Poli and Apriyani Rahayu

In the women's doubles final in badminton between Indonesia and China, Indonesia's Greysia Polii went off-court mid-rally to change her racquet and came back while her partner Apriyani Rahayu kept the rally alive against China’s Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan. The pair won Indonesia's first gold in badminton after beating the formidable Chinese 21-19, 21-15.

Simone Biles

Simone Biles, of the United States, waves after performing on the balance beam during the artistic gymnastics women's apparatus final at the 2020 Summer Olympics.   -  AP

The American gymnastics superstar won bronze during the balance beam final with a score of 14.000 behind the Chinese duo of gold medalist Guan Chenchen (14.633) and Tang Xijing (14.233). Earlier, she decided not to compete in other events including the team event to focus on her mental health.

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Oksana Chusovitina

After an Olympic career for almost 30 years, Oksana Chusovitina said a tearful farewell to gymnastics and announced her retirement after competing for Uzbekistan in vault qualification. Chusovitina, whose first appearance at an Olympics was in Barcelona in 1992, finished 14th to miss out on a place in the final but said she was "very proud and happy".


An San   -  Getty Images


An San

South Korea' An San rounded off her Tokyo Olympics journey with a gold medal in the women's individual recurve final. The 20-year-old archer also became the first triple Olympic gold-medallist at Tokyo 2020 after her wins in mixed team and women's doubles events.

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