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Monica Puig Wins First Gold Medal For Puerto Rico


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Monica Puig won the first ever gold medal for Puerto Rico in tennis. She beat Germany’s Angelique Kerber in a singles tournament on Saturday. It was a tough match but Puig came up ahead in the end. Puerto Rico, which is a protectorate of the United States, has been sending athletes to the Olympics since 1948 and have won 8 medals in all of that time, but never the gold. It is due in part to Puerto Rico’s odd relationship with the United States that it didn’t happen sooner. Puerto Ricans have always had a choice whether to play on the American team or team PR. They are American citizens, after all. Many played for the American team just because they are better respected.

But not Monica Puig. She wanted to rep Puerto Rico and held its flag aloft after she won. Psychologically, to many Puerto Ricans it was a defining moment. Puerto Rico has lived under the United States’ shadow for over a hundred years and whenever they can pull away an assert their own national identity it is a big friggin’ deal.

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