Diamond-class Lavillenie puts Rio tears behind him

Renaud Lavillenie firmly buried memories of being reduced to tears by a hostile home crowd at the Rio Olympics by continuing his domination of the Diamond League.

A weeping Lavillenie became one of the most poignant images from the Games as he struggled with the partisan crowd backing eventual gold medal winner, local hero Thiago Braz.

When the Frenchman, champion at the 2012 London Olympics, was jeered and heckled as he received his silver medal on the podium, tears were seen flowing down his face.

IOC president Thomas Bach, IAAF supremo Sebastian Coe and pole vault legend Sergey Bubka, an IAAF vice president, were among those who rushed to console him.

After leaving the Frenchman, Bach said it was “shocking behaviour for the crowd to boo Renaud Lavillenie on the medal podium. Unacceptable behaviour at the Olympic Games”.

Lavillenie himself said at the time: “It’s disgusting, there is a total lack of fair-play and I want to stress that the Brazilian (Braz) is not involved at all. But I am going to move on.”


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