Beautiful moment Australia’s Olympic athletes took to the stands to cheer on Peter Bol as he finished fourth in the 800m – as he thanked the whole country ‘and even the village’ for their support
The new Australian circuit hero had no shortage of supporters as he lined up for the race of life at the Tokyo Olympics.
Peter Bol led the field halfway through the men’s 800m final, before fading in the final 60m to finish fourth, one place off the medals.
With his close family and friends back home in Perth, Australian athletes made sure Bol had a crowd behind them in a heartwarming show of support.
The cheerleaders at Tokyo Stadium on Wednesday night were not missing, all wearing the Australian gold and green uniform and holding banners for Bol.
Australian track and field athletes (pictured) gathered to form a big cheerleading squad for 800m finalist Peter Bol
They included 200m semifinalist Riley Day, hurdler Nicholas Hough, runners Steve Solomon and Jeff Riseley, 1500m finalist Linden Hall, and steeplechasers Georgia Wincup and Amy Cashin.
Bol shared a heartwarming photo of middle-distance runner Georgia Griffith showing the masked crew holding signs of bad puns in the stands.
“Australia, thank you,” he tweeted.
Bol is still coming to terms with the ‘crazy’ week he had in Tokyo as he tries to put behind him the disappointment of being so painfully close to a medal.
“It’s been unreal, the support from home and even the village, it’s all been so unreal and I’m so grateful for it,” Bol told Sunrise on Thursday.
Bol’s race halted the nation after becoming the first Australian man to reach the 800m final since Ralph Doubell won gold at the Mexico Games in 1968.
Peter Bol has been inundated with support in recent days after reaching the 800m final
The Aussies’ cheer squad photo has since gone viral after it was shared by Bol
He said he enjoyed the experience in Tokyo more than Rio five years ago, despite high hopes for a medal.
“It’s probably the calmest I’ve felt all year and although there was so much support behind me, I never really saw it as busy or anything like that,” said Bol.
“I think I raced pretty well, I just tied up and that’s about it, there are no excuses for that.
“Rio was really scary, but Tokyo was so calm. I don’t know if it’s the crowd or if the experience and maturity behind running in these Olympics has been so much more fun than Rio was.”
Bol got the chance to speak to his proud parents Abdalla and Hanan live during the interview and saw his family’s wild parties in Perth.
“The house looks like a party without me, so I can’t wait to be back,” he told his family.
Australian runner Peter Bol (pictured in green and gold) has come painfully close to wrapping up his remarkable fairy tale.