Special Olympics THE Special Olympics Gibraltar National Games 2017 began with the customary opening ceremony in the heat of the Victoria Stadium with teams from the Isle of Man and Barbate welcomed into the stadium alongside the home athletes.
The athletes were presented to the large stadium crowd as they paraded with the Special Olympics flag, which was raised prior to the arrival of the Olympic Flame from which Sally Anne Mauro lit the Olympic cauldron to declare the Games open.
The opening day of competition featured athletics which concluded on the track with a closely fought relay between the three teams with Gibraltar pulling off an emphatic win to take gold with Barbate second and the Isle of Man third.
The second day saw the kick off of the five-a-side football tournament. Gibraltar welcomed a side from Algeciras to compete in a four-team round robin tournament of six matches of 12 minutes each half.
The Isle of Man got off to a great start with consecutive wins against Barbate and Algeciras, 3-2 an 4-0 respectively.
Gibraltar then scored an emphatic 6-0 victory over Algeciras before beating Barbate 3-0. At this stage the Isle of Man and Gibraltar were in position to compete in the tournament decider, but before that Algeciras and Barbate fought it out for the final medal position. The match result was a draw and enough for Barbate to clinch bronze.
Gibraltar and the Isle of Man fought out an exciting battle for gold and the home side coped better with the conditions and scored four goals to one late consolation goal for the Isle of Man.
The triumphant Gibraltar team were presented with their gold medals by the Governor.