“It’s is a dream come true” said a beaming Adams after the fight. “It’s what I’ve wanted all my life.”

In a slight understatement, she added: “It’s made my day!”

Adams has sworn to bring an Olympic gold medal back to her native Leeds and tonight her home town will be celebrating the history-making win.

Adams, 29, had a tough opponent in China’s Ren Cancan for today’s final, but her boxing coach kept the faith, saying yesterday she was “buzzing” and would win gold.

Nicola Adams has changed the face of women’s boxing, along with Ireland’s Katie Taylor and British boxer Amanda Coulson, bringing the sport into new repute.

Adams took up boxing when she was 12, winning her first bout at 13. She became the first woman boxer ever to represent England in 2001, English amateur champion in 2003 and as of today, the country’s first boxing gold medal winner.

 The London 2012 Games is the first Olympics to feature women’s boxing and it is an epic victory for the home country to take a gold. The triumph takes Team GB’s gold medal count to 24.