Although Olympic sailor Pavlos Kontides failed to win a medal for Cyprus in Tokyo after coming so close, he was heralded by President Nicos Anastasiades as a role model for others to follow.
Kontides finishing fourth is still Cyprus’ second-best performance at any Olympics after the silver medal he won at the 2012 London Games.
“Congratulations, Pavlos Kontides, for the great effort! Keep raising the bar and making us proud. You are a shining example for every Cypriot,” tweeted Anastasiades on Monday.
Kontides, 31, missed standing on the medal podium at the Tokyo Olympics by only three penalty points, finishing fourth in the men’s Laser sailing category.
He finished sixth in the medal race and took fourth place in the final standings with 88 penalty points.
He had secured participation in the final by coming fourth in the overall standings after ten races.
Australian Matt Wearn won the men’s laser gold, Croatian Tonci Stipanovic won the silver medal and Norway’s Hermann Tomasgaard the bronze.
After Sunday’s race, Kontides said the fourth place was a “great result”; however, “it hurts” as he was so close to winning a second Olympic medal in his fourth Games.