STANDING TALL. Gabriel Moreno stands next to teammate Li Jiaman of China as they receive their gold medals. Photo from press release
NANJING, China – Young Filipino archer Gabriel Moreno made history on Sunday as he won a gold medal in the mixed team event of archery in the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games
Gabriel Moreno made history on Sunday, August 24, as he won a gold medal in the mixed team event of archery in the Nanjing Youth Olympic Games (YOG).
The 16-year-old teamed up with Chinese archer Li Jiaman and beat Cynthia Freywald (Germany) and Mohamad Zolkepeli (Malaysia) with a total score of 113-105.
This is the first time the Philippines won a gold medal in an Olympic event. The last time the Philippines placed a medal in the Olympics was in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, where Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco won a silver medal.
Moreno earlier said that he was hopeful for a gold medal given the effort he has put in in his training.
“I want to make my country proud. I want to give the Philippine my very best,” Moreno said.
Fellow archer Bianca Gotuaco was eliminated in the elimination round of the women’s individual event on Saturday, August 23. She competed in the mixed team event with Prennoy Murong (Bangladesh) but got eliminated Friday, August 22.
GOLDEN BOY. Archer Gabriel Moreno won the Philippines' first ever Olympic gold medal. Photo from Moreno
Moreno started archery when he was 6 years old. At the age of 12, he competed in his first international archery event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. His medals have been piling up since then.
In 2013, Moreno bested other Filipino archers in the Philippine National Games and Palarong Pambansa (National Youth Olympic Event). In the same year, he and fellow YOG delegate Bianca Gotuaco qualified in the Nanjing YOG after winning in the Taipei qualifiers.
Moreno was also the country’s flag-bearer during the Games’ opening ceremonies on August 16.
The Nanjing YOG will run until Thursday, August 28. – Rappler.com