Gold medal on the uneven bars at the Tokyo Olympics


Nina Derwael was crowned Olympic champion in the artistic gymnastics on the uneven bars. Belgium won its first gold medal in these Olympic Games in Tokyo, following silver and bronze medals in other disciplines.

The 21-year-old gymnast from Sint-Truiden did not start out as a favourite for this competition, as her preparation was so disrupted by injuries, forcing her to withdraw from the European Championships in Basel at the end of April. When she arrived in Tokyo, there were serious doubts about her ability to add to a list of achievements that already includes two world championship titles (in 2018 in Doha and 2019 in Stuttgart). Particularly since she decided at the last minute not to compete in other events (vault, beam, floor, etc.) to concentrate only on the uneven bars.

Contrary to all the predictions that an American would finish on top of the podium, Nina Derwael surpassed herself in the final and easily dominated all her opponents. At the end of the competition, she obtained a score of 15.200 points (6.7 difficulty, 8.5 execution) ahead of the Russian Anatasia Ilyankova (14.833) and the American Sunisa Lee (14.500), who joined her on the podium.

This is the third medal won by a Belgian athlete at the Tokyo Olympics, after Wout van Aert's silver medal in the cycling road race and Matthias Casse's bronze medal in judo (-81 kg).

Never before in the history of the Olympic Games has the Belgian national anthem been sung to celebrate a Belgian gold medal in an artistic gymnastics event.