JUBILANT Jazz Carlin swept to Wales' first swimming gold medal at Glasgow 2014 as she broke her own Commonwealth Games record in the 800 metres freestyle.
Carlin, who won a silver and bronze in Delhi four years ago, came home more than two seconds ahead of Australian Lauren Boyle in eight minutes 18.11 seconds. Canada's Brittany MacLean took bronze.
Scots Hannah Miley and Camilla Hattersley could not mount a serious medal challenge, finishing fifth and seventh respectively.
“I did not see myself as the favourite because a lot of those swimmers have had a strong year,” said a delighted Carlin after wiping away tears on the podium.
“It was always going to be a tough race.
“It was always going to be a tactical race with 16 laps and I knew I had to time it tight.
“I knew I had strong finish and I had to use my strength to the best of my ability.
“I would have liked to have gone a bit quicker but it was all about race.
The medal was the third gold of the Games for Team Wales and the 21st in total.
“That is amazing and it’s not sunk in,” said Carlin.
“Hearing the Welsh national anthem was amazing.
“I was trying to sing it but I was way too emotional.
“Seeing my family and everyone who has come along to watch and support me has been amazing.
“I saw my nieces on the lap of honour and they were wearing the t-shirts which said go Jazz.
“They were my little mascots.
“I wanted the gold medal and left no stone unturned and that is even better when you are on top of the podium,” she added.
“Last year I got pipped for the podium and finished in fourth place.
“So this year every race I have competed in I made sure I was strongest in the last 50m in the pool.
“So I knew nobody would have the same amount of fight as me in the last 50.
“It has been a long and amazing journey.
“It’s only when you come to events like this that you realise what you have been through.
“It feels so much better you have overcome some real lows and hard tough times.
“It was so emotional and that’s why I cried so much.”
Also tonight, Alys Thomas and Jemma Lowe just missed out on medals in the 200m fly final with Thomas finishing fourth and Lowe fifth.
But Georgia Davies broke the Games record for a second time to put herself comfortably into the 50m backstroke final.
Now she wants to emulate former training partner Carlin by winning a second gold in the pool.
“I stayed out and watched the national anthem when Jazz was presented with her medal and that inspired me,” said Davies.
“We have trained together for most of our careers since we were 16 and she is a real gutsy performer.
“She thoroughly deserves it. She had had to overcome disappointments in the past but they have only served to make her stronger.
“Hopefully I can do the same the other night but I think I will have to go faster.”
Meanwhile, in the athletics at Hampden Park, Welsh para-sport sprinter Rhys Thomas won an unexpected bronze medal in the T37 100m.
"I'm so happy to be here after goodness knows how many injuries. It's a privilege running with some good people,” said the 20-year-old from Church Village, who has cerebral palsy.
That took Wales to 22 medals in total at the end of day five of comepetition with three golds, nine silvers and ten bronze.