WITH 96% of the votes counted, the GSLP/Liberal coalition looked on course for their fourth consecutive term as Gibraltar’s government.
It was a long night for people all over the Rock and in particular the candidates themselves after two GBC polls that suggested that the GSD would win.
Although the new digital system took some time to come online, once it did, Gibraltarians were soon furiously refreshing their browsers to find who was in front.
Just past halfway through the count, it seemed more and more that it would be a nine government ministers to eight Opposition members.
From the off, the red GSLP/Liberals took the lead although Liberal leader Joseph Garcia was the most popular candidate and not Picardo.
The quiet unassuming politician seemed to have attracted the attention of the electorate more than the more more energetic Chief Minister for the last 12 years.
The polls that showed Sir Joe Bossano was going to have a nervous night were on the money, with his election hopes in the balance from the beginning.
But he stayed just above newcomer Daniella Tilbury, eventually proving to be the key win that decided the election.
Liberal Vijay Daryanani seemed to be the one candidate that was going to stay out from the start.
“I have given it my all,” he told GBC as he accepted defeat.
On the blue side, Damon Bossino led the GSD line most of the night until party leader Azopardi took over toward the end.
Roy Clinton tailed them followed by the rest of the politicians, with Youssef El Hana seeming certain to stay out from the beginning.
He conceded defeat to the GBC and said he had ‘given it everything’ and he would be ‘humble in defeat’.
Independent candidate Robert Vasquez was the bottom of the pile from the start.
But he got a creditable number of over 3,000 votes to demonstrate his knowledge of the topics that Gibraltarians held close to heart.
All in all, it was turning out to be one of the closest Gibraltar elections since the 2011 poll and one that especially the politicians themselves will not forget in a long time.