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The Other Side of The Medal

Reversul Medaliei

The Sydney 2000 Olympic Games is considered the most successful presence of Romanian gymnastics team in Olympic history. But it has also remained in the mind and soul of the girls that made history then as the place where their friendship broke apart. The memory of trauma, injustice, lies, and one gold medal.

During the last sixteen years, there was hardly a day when Andrea Răducan's thoughts would not take her back to Sydney, where she was disqualified after winning Olympic gold medal for doping with a substance found in a flu pill that her doctor had given her before competing. Andreea was just a 16-year-old kid back then. Now, a grown up, she has finally decided to fight for her medal one more time.

Meanwhile, Simona Amanar, her teammate and best friend throughout all the training and Olympics, is also dealing with the deep trauma. She lives a simple life, happily married with three children. But although she and Andreea remained good friends and speak on a weekly basis, these past 16 years they’ve never talked about what happened in Sydney. Nor has Simona ever showed again to Andreea the gold medal that, somehow, they share.

The 2000 Sydney Games was the only time Andreea took part in an Olympic competition. One filled with so many mistakes, that caused injuries and pain. Organized by a committee that didn’t correct its own mistakes and wouldn’t admit its
faults. One that, for them, did nothing but kill the excellence, break a friendship, and treat its athletes with lack of respect.
This is the other side of the medal.
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