Alberto Fernández and Fátima Gálvez, during the final in which they won the gold
Alberto Fernández and Fátima Gálvez, during the final in which they won the gold / . REUTERS

Shooters deliver Spain's first gold medal at the Olympic Games

  • Over the weekend Spanish athletes won two bronze medals, one silver and one gold

Team Spain won four medals over the weekend in Tokyo, including their first gold, bringing the country's medal count up to seven.

Fatima Gálvez and Alberto Fernández delivered their country’s first gold at these Olympics in dramatic fashion on Saturday 31 July, winning the mixed team trap shooting by a single point. After hitting only six of ten targets in the first round, the pair bounced back to beat Alessandra Perilli and Gian Marco Berti of San Marino 41-40, with Fernandez missing only one of his 25 shots throughout the course of the final. Despite narrowly missing out on victory, San Marino will be delighted to have won its first ever silver medal at the Olympic Games.

To great surprise, Spain also took bronze in the men’s singles tennis after Pablo Carreño defeated Serbian icon Novak Djokovic in straight sets. The 20-time major champion made little effort to contain his frustration, as he threw his racket into the empty stands after missing out on a break point and broke another by hitting it against the poles of the net. Carreño fell to the ground upon victory, overwhelmed by his unexpected achievement.

Sunday also proved an emotional day for Spain. The Galician Ana Peleteiro set a new national record in triple jump (14.87) to secure a bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympic Stadium, while 28-year-old Rayderley (Ray) Zapata claimed silver on the men’s floor routine at the Ariake Gymnastics Centre. The Spaniard’s sensational performance earned him a score of 14.933 – the exact same as the gold medallist’s, Artem Dolgopyat, but the Israeli took first place because his routine’s degree of difficulty was 0.1 higher. Zapata sparked moving scenes on the podium by holding up a baby bib emblazoned with the name of his daughter, Olympia.

“I dedicate the medal to her, 100 per cent. She is two months old,” he said.

After the success of this weekend, Spain will hope to push on and claim more medals before the Games end on 8 August. In action today are the Spanish women’s hockey team, who will take on Great Britain, the defending Olympic champions, for a place in the semi-final.