"Video games won't get you anywhere," they said. "Video games are for nerds and babies." Well, you can take those opinions and stuff them right up your HDMI port, because video games just won an Olympic gold medal in gymnastics. Sort of.
After Nina Derwael won gold for Belgium on the women's uneven bars, her coach, Marjorie Heuls, held a little piece of plastic up to the camera — a green-clad figure playing a tiny blue ocarina.
"The doll is Zelda, a figure created by a Japanese author that my son played with as a child," said Heuls in an article from Belgian news site HLN. She received the lucky charm from her children in 2017, when Derwael won bronze at the World Championships in Montreal. "For me it's symbolic," Heuls said. "It's like having my kids with me... And it is clearly also a good luck charm.”
A few people in the replies to Nintendeal's tweet noted that the Zelda figurine is a "brutalised" amiibo, but we're not so sure — it looks quite different, despite the pose being similar. Huels' Zelda is a bit skinnier, and doesn't have his iconic sword and shield, although the green hat is still visible. Compare the two for yourself:
Mostly, though, we're just excited to see Zelda getting into the Olympics after Nintendo pulled out. Congratulations to Huels, Derwael, and most of all, tiny plastic Zelda!