The 24-year-old Belinda Bencic claimed the singles gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics, becoming the first Swiss singles champion at the Olympic event since Marc Rosset in 1992. The 9th seed defeated Marketa Vondrousova 7-5, 2-6, 6-3 in two hours and 30 minutes in the title match to celebrate one of her most proud moments in a career and earn Olympic glory.
Roger Federer couldn't compete in Tokyo, but he supported Belinda from home, texting his compatriot before her final clash and saying that she can make her dreams true. Belinda did that after an epic fight with Marketa, rattling off the last three games at 3-3 in the decider to cross the finish line and start a massive celebration.
After the match, Bencic dedicated the victory to Roger Federer and Martina Hingis, praising their compatriots who never claimed the singles Olympic gold. Also, Belinda will seek the second gold medal in the women's double on Sunday alongside Viktorija Golubic, hoping to bring the second gold medal for her country and leave Tokyo as the most decorated tennis player.
Belinda Bencic claimed the singles gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics.
"I could no longer think and walk properly in the closing stages; I was just hoping to get the ball to the other side. But I had this dream, and that's why I played like it was the last match of my life.
Even if I had lost, I would have felt like a winner because I gave my all. That makes me incredibly proud. But I still need time to digest it after the double final on Sunday; I'll give it my all again for Vicky. These are memories that will last forever.
Roger wrote me a message this morning that today is a good day to make my dreams come true. That made me very happy. I did it for Martina and Roger too, they achieved so much, and I will never be able to accomplish that. That's why this victory is also for her, for Martina and Roger.
Giving up wasn't an option. I knew that only medals count at the Olympic Games, but it's a dream that I can be here at all. That gave me energy, and now I'm thrilled that it is all over and that I made it," Belinda Bencic said.