In winning the long jump silver medal at the Sydney Olympic Games, ‘Jumping Jai’ Taurima became Australia’s third silver medallist in the event, behind Theodore (Bill) Bruce (London 1948) and Gary Honey (Los Angeles 1964).
Taurima, who finished fourth at the 1999 world championships missing a medal by one centimetre, broke his Australian record twice during the Sydney final and led the multi-world champion, Ivan Pedroza of Cuba, after the penultimate round. Pedroza’s closing jump of 8.55 metres edged out Taurima’s best of 8.49 metres. Peter Burge, the reigning Commonwealth Games champion from Kuala Lumpur, finished sixth thus making it the first time Australia had two long jumpers in the top six of an Olympic Games. Taurima was based at the AIS in Canberra for most of his career and coached by Craig Hilliard.