Tokyo 2020: High jumper Tom Gale fired up by first Olympics final experience as Bath graduates fall just short of rugby sevens medal

02 August 2021

Team Bath AC high jumper Tom Gale says his first experience of an Olympics final at Tokyo 2020 has fired his ambition to challenge for medals at future Games.

Gale, who is coached by Denis Doyle at the Team Bath Sports Training Village, cleared his first three attempts in Sunday’s final but went out of the competition at 2.27m and had to settle for 11th place overall.

It proved to be an Olympic high jump final for the ages with Mutaz Essa Barshim of Qatar and Italy’s Gianmarco Tamberi choosing to share the gold medal after there was no separating them.

“I’m going to go to the next Olympics and I don’t want to sit there and watch a competition like that ever again and not be part of it,” said Gale, who has trained with his hometown club for the past eight years. “Hopefully I can come out next time and be one of the ones on the podium.

“I did everything I could to get in shape but I just couldn’t do enough. I had a knee operation last year, my knee is in agony, I can’t go up and down stairs right now, and I rolled my ankle on my second jump. It’s just frustrating, it is what it is.”

Gale’s training partner at the STV, Saint Lucia’s Levern Spencer, will begin her fourth Olympic high jump competition on Thursday.

Saturday’s athletics action in the Olympic Stadium saw University of Bath-based Emily Diamond and Sports Performance graduate Cameron Chalmers team up with Nicklas Baker and Nicole Yeargin to finish sixth in the first-ever mixed 4x400m relay Olympic final in 3:12.07.

There was disappointment for the GB women’s rugby sevens squad featuring Bath graduates Deborah Fleming and Natasha Hunt as they were edged out 21-12 by Fiji in the bronze-medal match.


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Twenty sportspeople who train at the Team Bath Sports Training Village are competing at the Tokyo Olympic Games, as well as 12 University of Bath graduates. Click here to follow their progress.

Picture credit: REUTERS/Fabrizio Bensch

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