Wales are playing at their first major tournament since the World Cup in 1958 and Bale carries a great deal of his nation’s hopes on his shoulders.
The Real Madrid man was given a free, roaming role from attacking midfield by manager Chris Coleman and he sent his nation into raptures by handing them the lead.
Bale struck in the tenth minute with a typical dipping free-kick as Wales made the early running despite needing a goal-line clearance from Ben Davies to deny Marek Hamsik an opener for Slovakia.
Most of the big players have failed to deliver in the opening matches but not Bale.
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