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Olympic Tennis • Belinda Bencic Wins singles Gold Medal for Switzerland, Vondrousova and Svitolina earn Silver and Bronze

Belinda Bencic of Switzerland celebrates on the podium after winning the women’s singles tennis gold medal final match of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Tennis Centre in Tokyo, Japan, 31 July 2021. EPA-EFE/LAURENT GILLIERON

By: Thomas Cluck

It’s been a perfect, some might even say golden, Tokyo 2020/2021 Olympic Games in tennis for Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic, continuing her undefeated run at these games and winning the women’s singles Gold Medal. The Swiss Miss, a much-hyped former junior world number one who struggled with injuries throughout her career so far, claimed the biggest title of her career at the Ariake Coliseum on Saturday night, defeating tricky Czech lefty Marketa Vondrousova, the 2019 French Open finalist, in the Gold Medal match in a compelling, competitive back-and-forth affair 7-5, 2-6, 6-3. 

Bencic has been sublime all week, perfect in her matches here in Japan, giving Switzerland its second medal of these games. She also made some history amidst pretty rarified competition from the tennis greats in her country. No, it wasn’t Roger Federer who won a singles Gold Medal. Nor was it Bencic’s mentor Martina Hingis. Yep, it was Bencic who won Switzerland’s first ever singles gold medal in a country with a storied and illustrious tennis history.

Gold medallist Belinda Bencic of Switzerland poses on the podium after the Women’s singles Gold and Bronze finals during the Tennis events of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan, 31 July 2021. EPA-EFE/RUNGROJ YONGRIT

Bencic will go for another gold on Sunday, the final day of tennis competition here in Tokyo, as she contests the women’s doubles gold medal match alongside partner Viktorija Golubic, who herself has enjoyed a good 2021 as well, facing another Czech team, this time 2021 French Open singles and doubles champion Barbora Krejickova and her partner Katerina Siniakova, also a heralded junior coming up alongside Bencic. 

Could there be any more parallels for the golden week Bencic has enjoyed?!

The women’s singles bronze medal match was earlier in the day and saw Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina hold off Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina, a breakout player the last two seasons on tour, 1-6, 7-6, 6-4, earning herself possibly the greatest achievement in her career so far and a nice wedding gift as well following her wedding to French player Gael Monfils, enjoying an Olympics honeymoon. 

The color of Bencic’s final Tokyo medal- either gold or silver- will be decided tomorrow first on Centre Court at Ariake. It’s a chance to cap an undefeated week and make history with a sweep of both women’s events, a rare feat. Two golds, a gold and a silver. Either way, her week has been golden. So now is her career, forever.