The Spanish Language Blog donQuijote.org

In July it was time again, the 2012 Olympics. This time held in London. Among other things, Spain is known for its successes with soccer, tennis and basketball. But how did Spain really do?

Prior to the Olympics, high expectations were placed on the Spanish soccer team. Because Spain won the European Championship in 2008 and 2012, and the World Cup in 2010, a lot was expected of the team. Three European Championship players were going with the team to London. The team was named the favorite for the gold medal. Unfortunately, they lost in the first round of play against Japan. The game after that unfortunately also ended with a loss for Spain, against Honduras. After these two games, Spain no longer had a chance of winning.

After a somewhat difficult start, Spain eventually achieved great results with a total of 17 medals. This is one less than at the 2008 Games in Beijing, and only three less than the Netherlands this year. The highest number of medals ever won by Spain at the Games is 22. This was in 1992 when the Games were held in Barcelona.

Gold Spain won three golds. Sailor Marina Alabau Neira brought in the first gold victory. Spain won both gold and silver on the first day of the Olympic taekwondo tournament. The gold medal went to Joel González against South Korea. Success team Tamara Echehoyen, Sofía Toro and Angela Pumariega won first place sailing against Australia. During this sailing race, both countries sailed bow to bow until the Australian team lost control after which the helmswoman fell overboard into the water. This allowed Spain to sail on easily.

Silver
The Spanish athletes managed to bag a total of 10 silver medals. The Olympic basketball tournament had the same final as four years ago: Spain against the USA. Unfortunately, the men lost this game 100-107. Nevertheless, an achievement to be proud of! Further silver medals were won by Spain with the following sports; canoeing, synchronized swimming, taekwando, traitlon, water polo and swimming.

Bronze
Third place was achieved four times. This was with canoeing, synchro swimming, wrestling and handball.

Some big sports names from Spain unfortunately could not compete in the Games. One example is tennis player Rafael Nadal. The top tennis player who was actually chosen to carry the flag on July 27 did not feel fit enough to compete at the Games. “It's one of the saddest moments of my life,” he revealed. Nadal is still dealing with the effects of an injury to his left knee.

Because of the crisis in Spain, the country was forced to buy tenues as cheaply as possible. The Russian company Bosco made them for free, donating another eight million euros to the Spanish Olympic Committee. Unfortunately, there were many comments about this tenue. According to many, the tenue would resemble a canaval suit. The director of the Spanish Olympic Committee, Alejandro Blanco, defends the choice: “If you measure the difference between paying one and a half million from taxpayers' money and free tenues, there is no discussion.”

Sport is very important in Spain. Therefore, the Spaniards can certainly be proud of the results achieved by the athletes at the 2012 Olympics!

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