China's Fan Yilin shares amazing four-way tie for gold at world gymnastics championships
Beijing 16-year-old claims first major title in battle with American Madison Kocian and Russian duo Viktoria Komova and Daria Spiridonova on the uneven bars: all scored 15.366 points
China grabbed their first gold at the world gymnastics championships on the penultimate day of competition as Fan Yilin shared an unprecedented four-way tie on the uneven bars.
The 16-year-old from Beijing claimed her first major title but shared the glory with three other gymnasts - American Madison Kocian and Russian duo Viktoria Komova and Daria Spiridonova - after all scored 15.366 points to the amazement of spectators at the Hydro Arena in Glasgow.
It is the first time that more than three gymnasts have shared a world title in the 112-year history of the championships, although five shared parallel bars silver back in 1922.
"I was nervous when I was waiting for their scores," admitted Fan, who had completed her acrobatic routine between the bars first of the four and had a tense although amusing wait for the scores. She was followed by 2011 champion Komova, who had fallen off her signature apparatus during the women's team final in which Russia finished fourth.
This time the 20-year-old made no mistake, dismounting cleanly as intended only to see she had earned the same score as Fan. Both then stood side by side watching expectantly as next Kocian and then Spiridonova performed only to see the same mark appear on the scoreboard to gasps of disbelief and laughter.
"I am personally shocked," said Komova. "It's the first time judges had such a hard time deciding on the champion on bars."
The scores are divided into difficulty and execution. Fan's performance was the most difficult while Kocian and Komova scored highest for execution. But when the scores were added together they all came to the same mark.
"It made me laugh to see four gymnasts with the same score, but I'm happy for all of the other gold medallists," said Fan.