Joe Choong completes golden modern pentathlon double for Team GB

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Photo: Team GB

Joe Choong followed the lead of women’s winner Kate French as he claimed men’s modern pentathlon gold with a gun-to-tape victory in Tokyo.

Choong led the field from the fencing ranking round and then kept rivals at bay through the swim, bonus fencing round and ride, meaning he started the laser run with a 12-second advantage.

Out of the shooting range and into the final 800m, he was stride for stride with Egypt’s Ahmed Elgendy but finally sprung away in the last 200m, crossing the line five seconds ahead.

Great Britain had won two golds, two silvers and two bronzes in this sport since Sydney 2000 – all of which were delivered by the women’s team.

And that put the pressure on world number one Choong to become the first man to win a modern pentathlon Olympic medal since Jim Fox, Danny Nightingale and Adrian Parker won team gold in 1976.

No nation in Olympic history had ever won medals in both the men’s and women’s competition in the same Games.

Now French and Choong have rewritten history with double gold.

Choong, 26, from Orpington, said:

“I’m in shock. I was thinking down the last straight that he [Elgendy] wasn’t going to catch me and I was there swearing in my head.

“There were a couple of heavy jumps on the ride but, compared to a lot of the boys out there, I could be pleased with that.

“The swim was good, fencing was good. The run was quite tactical, I saved myself for the last two laps as people were closing.

“Shooting was a bit sketchy again, I thought I was going to lose it after taking eight shots on the first shoot. But I’ve nailed it.

“I’ve been thinking of the moment ever since I can remember. I was five when watching Sydney, then Kelly Holmes in Athens. I’ve always said I’ve wanted to be the best in the world at something. This is a dream come true.

“Kate and I always seem to match each other’s results so I was feeling the pressure to keep up with her.” 

Source: Team GB

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