Australia’s Patrick Tiernan showed just how much an Olympic medal means as he pushed himself to exhaustion during the 10,000m final.
Having kept up with the race leaders throughout the event, the 26-year-old looked certain of a top-10 finish.
But as he approached the home straight the fatigue of his effort became too much, collapsing to the floor just 50 metres out from the finish line.
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Tiernan picked himself up to cross the finish line in 18th place, before being taken off in a wheelchair to receive medical attention.
The Australian Olympic Team later tweeted that Tiernan was recovering well.
They said: “Pat Tiernan did Australia proud in the 10,000m Final.
“Pat was just outside the top 10 on the last lap before the fatigue of his amazing effort became too much.
“He battled on bravely to finish 18th.
He is OK and now is in the medical room receiving treatment.
Tiernan is next due to compete in the 5000m, with the heats on Tuesday.
Commenting on the 10,000m on Tokyo Today, Greg Rutherford highlighted the harsh reality of the event.
He said: “It was the first medal of the day today and to see that win was very, very impressive.
“It is fascinating when you are watching distance events because there's so much going on, there's tactics that are taking place within it, there's people getting hurt as well.
I mean, there's a bit of blood on a few people!
"I don’t mean to be gory, it's such a brutal event - there's people who are literally having to be carted off in wheelchairs.”
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