Moon and Kennedy share pole vault gold at world championships

By AFP   August 24, 2023 | 12:43 am PT
Moon and Kennedy share pole vault gold at world championships
Nina Kennedy of Australia and the USA's Katie Moon agreed to share the gold medal in the women's pole vault. Photo by AFP/Ben Stansall
Olympic champion Katie Moon of the U.S. and Australian Nina Kennedy shared gold after tying in a nail-biting women's world pole vault final in Budapest on Wednesday.

Kennedy and Moon, who won Olympic gold in Tokyo two years ago and took the 2022 world title in Eugene under her maiden name of Nageotte, both vaulted a best of 4.90m and could not be separated on countback as both had one failure at that height.

After a brief chat between the two competitors and the officials, it was decided that both would be world champions rather than having a jump-off.

The vaulters embraced, surrounded by photographers, and to roars of approval from the near-capacity crowd at the National Athletics Centre in the Hungarian capital.

The outcome echoed the men's high jump at the Tokyo Olympics when Qatar's Mutaz Essa Barshim and Gianmarco Tamberi of Italy were allowed to share the gold medal with the same height of 2.37m.

Moon said: "When the final started I didn't think about sharing a gold medal would work for me but now I am completely satisfied.

"What a battle it was, oh my. When it became obvious that only Nina and I were still standing, the show had just started.

"What an amazing night, I hope everyone enjoyed that one. We did."

An overjoyed Kennedy said: "I think a miracle happened tonight... to win a gold medal, it is just a dream come true.

"I jumped out of my skin tonight. It was super crazy. I felt like the whole stadium was watching every single jump, they were all around us tonight, it was really incredible."

Wilma Murto of Finland claimed the bronze medal.

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