Martin Ponsiluoma became Sweden's first male biathlon world champion since 1958 as he claimed a stunning gold in the 10km sprint in Pokljuka.
The 25-year-old, who had previously earned three World Cup podium places and finished 27th in this event at last year's World Championships, chose an opportune time to claim a first career victory which was built upon a flawless shooting performance.
Ponsiluoma did not miss a single one of his 10 shots, prone or standing, and completed the three-lap course in 24:41.1 to earn top spot.
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"It is hard to believe,â€ he said. "It just feels amazing.
"It is hard to say (that I could hold the lead), I knew there were many strong athletes behind me. I was going really early in the field, so it was hard to know.
"I had a good feeling all day. I did not think about anything in the shooting, just did like I do in training. That is what you have to do.
"You cannot think about needing to hit so-and-so. I just did what I had to do."
France's Simon Desthieux, who also enjoyed a perfect shooting performance, took silver after finishing 11 seconds behind the new champion.
"It feels fantastic," he said, following his first podium finish of the season.
"It is fantastic to get this podium because my beginning of the season was tough.
"I worked very hard to be at my best at these Championships. It was a great day for me.
"When I woke up, I knew this day would be great and I did my best biathlon race in a long time."
Another Frenchman, Emilien Jacquelin, won bronze and could perhaps have had a different coloured medal had it not been for a missed shot in the prone position.
None of Norway's mixed relay gold medal winners from earlier in the week made it on to the podium on Friday, with Johannes Dale finishing fourth and overall World Cup leader Johannes Thingnes Boe in fifth following two shooting errors.
The World Championships continues over the weekend, with the men's 12.5km pursuit taking place on Sunday.
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