August 7, 2021
By Elaine Lies and Mayu Sakoda
TOKYO (Reuters) – Svetlana Romashina claimed a seventh Olympic gold medal as her Russian team won the synchronised swimming final on Saturday with a high-powered routine to continue a golden run stretching back to the 2000 Sydney Games.
Romashina, a veteran of four Olympics, earlier this week became the most decorated Olympian in synchronised swimming when she won the duet competition. She has said she intends to retire after Tokyo.
The athletes from the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) won the team contest with a combined 196.0979, the country’s sixth successive gold in the event.
China retained their silver from Rio 2016 with 193.5310 points, while Ukraine scooped bronze with 190.3018, having secured the country’s first ever Olympic medal in synchronised swimming – another bronze, in the duet event – earlier this week.
A frustrated Japan, who had hoped to retain their bronze from Rio 2016, and had repeatedly expressed disappointment with their scores during the past week of competition, finished fourth despite a rousing routine to the music of traditional festival drums and flutes.
It is only the second time since synchronised swimming became an Olympic event in 1984 that Japan has not medalled, although they have never won gold. The previous time they were shut out of the podium was at London 2012.
(Reporting by Elaine Lies and Mayu Sakoda; editing by Clare Fallon and Toby Davis)