Mete Gazoz has helped Turkey win their first-ever Olympic gold medal in Archery in the ongoing Tokyo Olympics. The 22-year-old archer from Istanbul defeated Mauro Nespoli from Italy in the men’s individual archery final on Saturday, July 31 at the Yumenoshima Park Archery Field. After making history, Gazoz threw punches in the air in sheer delight.
The reigning World Champion won by 6-4 to clinch the gold medal against the gold medallist of the 2012 London Olympics. Nespoli, who’s also a former world and two-European champion, was in the lead in the first two sets and looked good for a victory. However, Gazoz showed nerves of steel and stormed back into the game, having outclassed his opponent.
Mete Gazoz is also the first archer, who’s not from South Korea, to win a medal in the Tokyo Olympics. He was a part of the 2016 Rio Olympics as well. But he couldn’t go beyond his second match where he lost by 3-7 to The Netherlands’ Sjef Van den Berg. In the first game, he got the better of France’s Pierre Pilhon by 6-5. In Tokyo, Gazoz, well and truly, has made amends.
Mete Gazoz racing along
Gazoz started the Tokyo Olympics in style, beating Australia’s Taylor Worth comprehensively by a margin of 7-1. In the quarter-final, the archer went past USA’s Brady Ellison by 7-3. Thereafter, in the semi-final, Gazoz carried on his domination, beating Japan’s Takaharu Furukawa by 7-3. The final against Nespoli turned out to be a nail-biter, but Gazoz held his nerves.
Mete Gazoz isn’t alien to winning medals. Back in 2018, he won the gold medal in the 70m category during the 2018 Mediterranean Games held in Tarragona, Spain. In the same year, he had claimed the silver medal in the Junior Men’s individual event at the World Indoor Archery Championships. However, the Olympic gold medal remains his biggest laurel until now.