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How iron-girl Ariarne and two Oarsome Foursomes created our finest hour


Australia’s rowers struck dual gold before swimming sensation Ariarne Titmus added to her haul as the country matched its best one-day haul in an incredible hour of Olympic triumph.

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Lucy Stephan, Rosie Popa, Jessica Morrison and Annabelle McIntyre started the spree when they narrowly held off the Netherlands in a thrilling women’s coxless fours victory in Tokyo.

Next up it was Jack Hargreaves, Alex Purnell, Alex Hill and Spencer Turrin who followed in the Oarsome Foursome’s footsteps to win back the men’s coxless fours title in another chaotic finish.

Almost an hour after Australia’s first gold of the day, Titmus powered through a field including Katie Ledecky to add the 200m freestyle gold to the 400m gold she won on Monday.

It is the fifth time Australia has won three gold medals on a single Olympic day and the first since Beijing 2008.

The hat-trick of medals took Australia to fifth on the gold medal tally.

Australia also added two bronze medals in the men’s and women’s quad sculls, all 14 medals won so far involving water sports.

Titmus was forced to dig deep as China’s Hong Kong-based swimmer Siobhan Bernadette Haughey led until the final 20 metres, before the 20-year-old found another gear to continue her breakout Games and consign Ledecky to fifth.

Earlier, the Australian men’s fours crew made it a golden rowing double after the women topped the podium in the same event in the previous race.

Australian won gold in the men’s fours in 1992 and 1996 to earn the Oarsome Foursome tag, but Great Britain had won the event at every Olympics since.

Trailing by a boat length at the halfway point, the Brits pushed so hard their boat veered into the path of the Italians, who held their line to finish third as Romania clinched silver.

Oarsome Foursome member James Tomkins presented the women’s medals while AOC boss and IOC vice-president John Coates had the honour for the men’s ceremony.

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