Daniela and Moisés, Golden "Marriage" in Table Tennis

Daniela and Moisés, Golden "Marriage" in Table Tennis
Fecha de publicación: 
1 November 2023
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Daniela Fonseca and Jorge Moisés Campos joined their lives forever. They did not need to sign any paper because the complicity of great couples, the hunger for glory and the mastery chiseled with a lot of effort was enough to win the mixed doubles of table tennis at the 19th Pan American Games.

A few hours after sealing the tickets that will take them to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games, it seemed that there was no room for no more glory. Perhaps in a more private circle, that of the Cuban team, it could be thought that they had the strength and conviction necessary to gild their names in the history of this event.

The doubts were fair taking into consideration the very high level of their rivals in the final match, Brazilians Bruna Takahashi and Vitor Ishiy, who even after being swept, they still remain favorite to any competition in the region.

However, Cubans had their day. One of the most prolific days for the delegation. The Olympic Training Center had witnessed the real chances for the gold medal for Daniela and Moisés, 28 years after the last gold medal achieved by Cuba in table tennis. And it ended up as the magical setting for a crown that had not happened since the distant Indianapolis 1987.

"This is crazy. We are very happy with a gold medal after 36 years," Bárbaro Oliva, president of the Cuban Federation of table tennis, said to everyone referring to the title won by Carmen Miranda and Marisel Ramírez.

If the final result was actually unexpected, the road to the final was even more surprising. The scores of 11-8, 11-6, 11-7 and 11-7 show an easier game played by the Cuban couple than that of the semifinals, when they turned predictions around and beat locals Paulina Vega and Nicolás Burgos. They felt the Olympic ticket was not enough and went for the gold medal.

“I am super happy and grateful to my team, and to everyone who has followed us. Happy to have qualified in the morning and with this gold medal after more than 30 years," confessed Moisés, who still has other challenges left in this tournament.

“We tried to have the initiative in the game and played according to what had been planned beforehand and things really worked out. They were very erratic and we knew how to take advantage of it," added Moisés when referring to a victory that brought us good memories of the one achieved in the pre-Olympic tournament towards Tokyo 2020.

The feat ended up embroidered with their names, but the list of protagonists is broader. All the staff needs to be recognized: coaches, doctors, psychologists. All of them have been pushing hard along with Oliva to make the dream come true.

Both players have a long way to go and who knows if there is more glory ahead, but two consecutive Olympic participations are good enough.

However, as if it were the date of their marriage, Daniela and Moisés will not forget this day. Year after year, every October 30, they will remember how they overcame difficulties and make a nation vibrate. At the end of the day, that's what sport is about.

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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