Poland's 'queen of the hammer' makes history with third Olympic gold

By: AFP      Published: 07:20 PM, 3 Aug, 2021
Poland's 'queen of the hammer' makes history with third Olympic gold
Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk competes in the women's hammer throw qualification during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

Poland's Anita Wlodarczyk became the first female athlete to win the same Olympic track and field event three times in a row with victory in the hammer on Tuesday.

The 35-year-old Pole, who won golds at the 2012 and 2016 Games in London and Rio, dominated the field with a best throw of 78.48 metres.

It was a massive 1.45m clear of silver medallist Wang Zheng of China (77.03m), with Malwina Kopron, also of Poland, taking bronze (75.49m).

"I feel good," said Wlodarczyk. "I was dreaming of becoming the queen of the hammer throw.

"I have been injured and came right back from it and won an Olympic medal."

After hitting the net on her first effort, Wlodarczyk took control from the second with 76.01, increasing to 77.44 and her winning distance on her fourth attempt.

It was fourth time lucky in Tokyo for the triple gold tally after the failure of Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (100m in 2008 and 2012), New Zealander Valerie Adams (shot put in 2008 and 2012) and Croatia's Sandra Perkovic (discus in 2012 and 2016) to seal a third individual Olympic title.

Wang snatched silver from Kopron with a last-gasp effort on her sixth and final throw.