With gold medals around his neck and the Greek flag wrapped around his back, Militadis Tentoglou stood high and proud this year as he won two gold medals for the Men’s Long Jump category in the World Athletics Championships and Zurich Diamond League 2023. In an interview with Olympics.com, Tentoglou disclosed his motivation for his winning streaks this year.

On Aug 24, the spectators in Budapest witnessed Tentoglou win in the Men’s Long Jump category with the greatest leap of the evening. Jamaica’s Wayne Pinnock, who initially led the competition, couldn’t believe it as Tentoglou even recorded a foul in his second attempt. But in one single leap in the final round, Tentoglou managed to turn the tables when he soared to 8.52 m, brushing past Pinnock’s record and taking home the gold medal for Greece. 

Tentoglou calls his last jumps as “miracle jumps”:

“I always believe that the last jump is special for every jumper because it’s all the emotions and the adrenaline and it’s your last chance to do something. I like to call it the miracle jump and I believe that every athlete can do a big one or their best one in the last attempt,”

Just a week after his win in Budapest, Tentoglou went on to compete in the Zurich Diamond League to achieve another gold medal. With a stunning jump of 8.20 m, the greek athlete defeated Jamaica’s Tajay Gayle with 8.07 m and USA’s Jarrion Lawson with 8.05 m.

Tentoglou revealed that aside from his fierce competitors, there was one other thing that pushed him to do his best:

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“I think losing gives motivation. It happened to me also last year. I lost, and it gave me motivation to be better, to not do a competition like this again,” Tentoglou told us. “Of course I lose every year I lose. It’s impossible to win every single thing, and no one is undefeated. It gives you motivation, and that’s important.”

It turned out that losing to China’s Wang Jianan by a margin of four centimeters last year at the World Athletics Championships 2022 ignited his ambition. His failure to win first place at that time may have marked a major setback for him, but it definitely served as the driving force behind his success this year.

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