Olympics: Power couples in love with Games

Brianne Theisen Eaton is congratulated by her husband and US decathlete Ashton Eaton after placing third in the Heptathlon event on Aug 13, 2016.
Brianne Theisen Eaton is congratulated by her husband and US decathlete Ashton Eaton after placing third in the Heptathlon event on Aug 13, 2016. PHOTO: EPA

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Ashton Eaton and Brianne Theisen-Eaton are the power couple of the Olympics, a gold and bronze medal to their names, but they have little to talk about.

American star Eaton, who retained his decathlon crown in Rio, and his Canadian heptathlon bronze medallist wife, married in 2013.

They met as students at the University of Oregon and they are one of a number of medal winning couples in Rio.

But living in each other's pockets, training and living together, makes them just a normal couple.

"I feel like we've put these goals ahead of everything else, including our marriage," Theisen-Eaton admitted to AFP.

"We don't go on dates, and we don't really spend time together because we spend so much time together. So when we get home we just want our own time to do what we want to do by ourselves.

"And we don't really have anything to talk about. We're the couple that goes out to eat, and we sit at the table at a restaurant and look on our phones all the time." Ashton, 28, says he and his 27-year-old college sweetheart are a perfect match.

Success and failure makes them appreciate the struggles that go into their athletics careers.

"Our relationship helps us because we understand what each other are doing, like physically and mentally," said the American who is the world record holder and two-time world champion.

"So because we do the same workouts and have the same coach, when she is struggling I can know exactly why, know exactly the things to say, and I think her likewise for me. That's where it's really good."

The pair are not the only couple with medals from Rio to adorn their walls and shelves when they get home. Ines Boubakri, won a bronze medal in the women's foil for Tunisia, while her husband Erwann Le Pechoux was in the French foil team that lost to Russian in the men's final.

"He has always supported me but I'm a bit jealous because he got silver and mine is team." Boubakri told RFI radio.

British pair Kate Richardson-Walsh and Helen claimed a gold medal each in women's hockey.

It was the first time the British had won gold in the event while the two women were the first married gay couple to compete at an Olympics.

Britain downed two-time champions the Netherlands 2-0 in a shoot-out after the final had been tied 3-3 in normal time.

Helen, 34, scored a penalty stroke in the shoot-out.

"To win an Olympic medal is special," said Kate.

"To win an Olympic medal with your wife standing next to you, taking the penalty stroke in the pressure moments, is so special and we will cherish this for the rest of our lives."

Kate and Helen, 34, married in 2013 and now that their international careers are over, they will move to the Netherlands to take up relatively lucrative club contracts.

British cyclists Jason Kenny and Laura Trott aren't married yet, but they are engaged.

Kenny took his career track haul of golds to six in Rio while Trott has four.

"It's amazing, I'm really happy for Laura, I know how hard she works and how much she wants to win," said Kenny.

"I'm really proud of her, but I'd be proud of her even if she didn't win."

Out on the dressage arena, love was also in the air...and on a guy's clothes. Britain's Charlotte Dujardin won her third Olympic dressage gold, watched by her fiance who made good on a longstanding marriage proposal by scrawling 'Can we get married now?' on his shirt.

As she performed her victory lap, Dean Golding pointed at his declaration of love flashed across the front of his shirt as he stood to cheer in the front row.

"He actually asked me just before the London Games, and I said yes," said Dujardin.

"But I don't think he has believed it is going to happen, so now he has gone and made it so public that I definitely have got to do it."

"He is just such a.... banana."