There was a feeling on social media after the closing ceremony that the Mexican delegation attending the Tokyo 2020 Olympics may have won more medals than the four collected during the last competition.
The optimism was not made up of imagination, but rather a phrase that came from the country’s sports director, Anna Guevara, president of Konadi, who predicted 10 medals for the country during the summer fair in Japan, a speech that corresponds to the days. Progress, changed at the time the options were not selected and the fourth places began to exist.
The final number was consistent with the projection made by the AP regarding Mexico’s potential, albeit not in the rankings or in the sports they took into account.
But given the country’s history in previous Olympics, would 10 medals have been possible? Mathematics has a strong answer.
The country’s history quickly shows that thinking 10 medals was a higher number than any delegation in the past. The country has never reached that amount, recording its greatest successes in 1968 with a total of nine medals and in London in 2021 when eight medals were achieved.
In total, Mexico has racked up 73 medals in 22 Olympic Games averaging 3.3 times in the top three in each of those entries. This average was broken 10 times, the two above, as well as in London 1948 (5), Moscow 1980 (4), Los Angeles 1984 (6), Sydney 2000 (6), Athens 2004 (4), Beijing 2008 (4) Rio 2016 (5) and now Tokyo.
Think of gold is not something traditional for the country either, because only 13 minerals of this color were obtained, but 10 of them were obtained outside Mexico. Only in Beijing 2008 and London 2012 was it obtained in successive editions, because since the country appeared in the medal table, there have been intervals from one to three editions without the national anthem being heard in a sports competition of this level.
Bronze is the most occupied medal in the nation’s sporting successes, and Tokyo 2020, along with London 2012, become the only two occasions in which three medals of this color have been surpassed, in both cases by four third places. Sydney 2000, Moscow 1980, Mexico 1968 and Berlin 1936 were the maximum for this mineral with three at each of those sporting meetings.
One piece of information stands out about what happened in Japan. Of the four medals, three have been for sports with at least two medals this century from Sydney 2000 to the Japanese Championships. Only diving was absent from the podium in Athens 2004, while weightlifting took four medals in these 21 years. Football as well as shooting were present in two editions in this period.
The sports harvest of the just-finished version means the country’s lowest result in the medal table, finishing in 84th place out of a total of 86 that appeared on the list of countries with medals, although that doesn’t mean only two countries actually were. bypassing. Eight nations tied for 86th. Prior to that, Atlanta’s 74th place in 1996 marked the first time the nation had been outside the top 50.
But, although Mexico was at the bottom of the ranking, it must be remembered that it was placed with more weight given to the color of the medals obtained, so if a country only got one gold, it could be ahead of the countries with five medals. Not be first place.
The same IOC generates a medal table for total medals, with Mexico going for 47th, along with several countries such as Greece, Romania, Uganda, Venezuela and Portugal, being in the half of countries with at least one medal in their country. returning home.
As is the case every four years (five this time due to delays caused by the pandemic), discussions about the future of sport in Mexico will be the topic of the coming weeks, revitalizing with the Central American and Caribbean Games before reaching Pan-China. American games. However, unlike other occasions, there is no 48 months to progress compared to what was seen in Tokyo, because Paris 2024 will be in just three years, so time is short.
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