“I am overjoyed at this medal… sometimes I have hated this sport,” Campriani said.
Campriani’s win brought to three the number of Olympic gold medals for Italy after wins for Fabio Basile and Daniele Garozzo in judo and fencing on Sunday, the opening day of the games.
Garozzo’s decisive victory against US fencing prodigy Alexander Massialas, the world’s best foil fencer this season, reduced Massialas to tears.
Italy stood fourth in the medals table on Tuesday, the second day of the games, with three silvers and two bronzes besides its gold wins.
Rossella Fiamingo took silver in the women’s epee – Italy’s first medal of the Rio Olympics. Silver medals also went to Odette Giuffrida in the women’s 52-kilogramme judo division and to divers Tania Cagnotto and Francesca Dallape in the women’s three-meter springboard synchronised event.
Swimmer Emanuele Detti won a bronze medal in the 400 metres freestyle and Elisa Longo Borghini collected one in the women’s road cycling.