9 Heartwarming moments of the Tokyo 2020


Olympic friends, friends for life

Japan’s Misugu Okamoto qualified for the women’s park skateboarding olympic final with the highest score.

The 15-year-old world number one was last to compete in the final, but suffered heartache when she fell off her board after attempting an indie flip on her final run.

She slipped off her board and down to fourth in the rankings, meaning GB’s Sky Brown secured the bronze medal.

As Okamoto lay on the ground in tears, her fellow finalists, who had an average age of 17, rushed over to console her, lifting her on to their shoulders and clapping her out of the bowl.

Talk about sportsmanship at its finest.


There was barely a dry eye when Tom Daley ended his long wait for an Olympic gold medal, with his superb performance alongside Matty Lee in the synchronised 10m platform.

Daley has lived most of his life in the public eye after making his Olympic debut in 2008, aged 13.

Sixteen years later his dream was finally achieved and he was crowned Olympic champion.

His reaction says it all.


Why have one Olympic champion when you can have two?

After an exhausting two-hour men’s high jump final, Qatar’s Mutaz Barshim and Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy couldn’t be split, having recorded best clearances of 2.37m.

They were offered an opportunity to take part in a jump-off, but quickly decided to share the gold.

Cue wild celebrations.

The image of the two sharing the podium will be an iconic reminder of the Games.


A back garden in Maidenhead was the place to be for the men’s 200m freestyle final.

With no family or friends allowed to travel to Tokyo to watch their loved ones, GB swimmer Tom Dean’s mum had a plan B.

Though her son entered the race as an outsider, Jackie Hughes wasn’t missing the chance to make an occasion of his Olympic debut, and it’s a good job she didn’t.

Keen to not upset the neighbours, she invited them round to watch the race along with about 70 of Dean’s family, former coaches and friends as he claimed a stunning gold ahead of GB team-mate Duncan Scott.


The Olympics is all about seeing the world’s best athletes go head-to-head on the global stage.

So it was a real shame that US gymnast Simone Biles pulled out of the all-around, vault, floor and uneven bars after suffering with the ‘twisties’.

The four-time Olympic champion returned for the beam on the final day of artistic gymnastics action in Tokyo, and bounced back in style to earn a place on the podium.


Team GB had never won an Olympic BMX medal, then Kye Whyte and Bethany Shriever claimed two within a few minutes.

Whyte’s silver in the men’s race came first, before Shriever held off two-time champion Mariana Pajon to win the women’s event.

Shriever, who needed crowdfunding to be able to go to Japan, was lifted into the air by Whyte as the pair celebrated their historic achievements.

You love to see it.


Jill Douglas’ post-match chat with New Zealand rugby sevens star Ruby Tui will go down as one of the greatest interviews of Tokyo 2020.

The Black Ferns centre won us all over after her side thrashed The Russian Olympic Committee to reach the last four.

They went on to win gold.
Watch it HERE.


Galal Yafai won Team GB’s first gold in the boxing ring in Tokyo.

The new Olympic flyweight champion is the younger brother of boxers Kal and Gamal, who both competed at the 2008 Games before turning professional.

After receiving his gold medal on the podium, emotions ran high as Galal was reunited with Kal over the phone, live on the BBC.

Galal’s first question to his brother?

“How did I box?”


There was a brilliant moment at the Tokyo Aquatics Centre when South Africa’s Tatjana Schoenmaker realised she had won gold and broken the 200m breaststroke world record.

As she clocked the big screen clearly in shock, Schoenmaker broke down in tears as the record which stood for eight years was finally broken.

Schoenmaker’s compatriot Kaylene Corbett, plus the USA’s Lilly King and Annie Lazor were quick to congratulate her and the four embraced in the pool as the news sunk in.

Team GB did stunningly well after more than 12 months of lockdowns and interrupted training across all sports. Not only that, there were no supporters allowed so the athletes travelled without any family or fans, and made us so proud. These moments highlight the amazing tenacity of the human spirit. 

#TeamGB #itsbetterbyair

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