Israel won its second-ever Olympic gold medal today in the Tokyo Olympics, as artistic gymnast Artem Dolgopyat, 24, bested Spanish and Chinese competitors in the floor exercise competition.
This is Israel’s second Olympic gold medal in history and its first in gymnastics. Gal Fridman won a gold medal in sailboarding in the 2004 Athens Games.
Prime Minister Naftali Bennett congratulated Dolgopyat. “Thank you Artem! You have made blue-and-white history! This is a source of enormous pride and great excitement for the entire people of Israel. ‘Hatikva’ has been played in the gymnastics arena in Tokyo and the flag of Israel is flying high.”
Yesterday, Israel’s judo team won a bronze medal after a successful mixed-team final against the Russian Olympic Committee.
The team consists of six men and five women. The men are Sagi Muki, Peter Paltchik, Baruch Shmailov, Tohar Butbul, Li Kochman and Ori Sasson. The women are Timna Nelson-Levy, Raz Hershko, Inbar Lanir, Shira Rishony and Gili Sharir.
The first medal for Israel in the Tokyo Games was also a bronze, for taekwondo martial artist Avishag Semberg in the women’s under-49kg category.
The running total of Israeli Olympic medals in history now stands at 12, six of them in judo – one silver and five bronze.
Other notable results from the weekend:
• Selamawit Teferi set an Israeli record in the women’s 5,000-meter run, qualifying her to participate in the final on Monday.
• Israel’s national baseball team lost its second match on Saturday but beat Mexico on Sunday morning. On Monday, Team Israel will face either South Korea or Dominican Republic on the Olympic baseball diamond.
• Yoav Cohen won the medal race in men’s RS:X, sailing to fourth place overall – missing a bronze finish by just one point.
• Itay Shanny, thought to have had a shot at a medal for archery, was eliminated in the quarterfinal round.