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ROC (Russia) Outshines Japan To Take Comprehensive Gymnastics Gold

Russian Olympic Committee's artistic gymnastics men's team, from right,
Russian Olympic Committee's artistic gymnastics men's team, from right, Denis Abliazin, right, Nikita Nagornyy, David Belyavskiy and Artur Dalaloyan celebrate after winning the gold medal at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Monday, July 26, 2021, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

July 26, (THEWILL) – In Monday’s finals of the all-around gymnastics competition in Tokyo, Japan, the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) claimed the men’s gymnastics gold medal after narrowly defeating Japan to finish tops.

The final score of 262.500 for the ROC was only 0.103 ahead of Japan and not even up a point ahead of bronze medalist China, which simply illustrated how tight the competition of the thrilling final was for the top teams.

Outside the podium finishes, athletes of Team Great Britain came in fourth place, while the United States was fifth.

The points of final top five at the end were:

Gold: ROC 262.500

Silver: Japan 262.397

Bronze: China 261.894

4th: Great Britain 255.760

5th: United States 254.594

It is the first time athletes will compete under the ROC banner.

As THEWILL reported in December last year, Russia’s anthem, flag and even its name are banned from major competitions until December 2022 as a result of the nation’s state sanctioned doping program.

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) in December 2020, upheld Russia’s ban from all major sporting events after a doping scandal but halved the duration of the ban from four years to two. Though halved, Russia was precluded from competing in the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics, and football’s 2022 World Cup in Qatar.

Aside from barring Russian government officials from attending any major events, the country also lost the right to host, or even bid, for tournaments as consequences for what was considered to be a state-sponsored doping scheme.

However, to avoid a situation where innocent Russian athletes were punished along with those that actively and wilfully participated in the doping scandal, Russia’s clean athletes are allowed to compete under a different banner.

They therefore formed the Russian Olympic Committee, the ROC banner, and are present in Tokyo under that banner. It does not carry the weight a full Russian contingent could have brought but they are no slouches as they are currently fourth on the medals table behind Olympic hosts Japan and Olympic heavyweights USA and China at this early stage.