Italy finished the Summer EYOF with 16 gold medals ©Getty Images

The Summer edition of the European Youth Olympic Festival (EYOF) has concluded with Italy top of the medals table after the Flame of Peace was extinguished at the Closing Ceremony.

The Closing Ceremony took place in the Slovenian city's Trg Svobode Square, which included the lowering of the host nation's flag and a Parade of Nations and featured music from DJ Maynamic

A total of 48 countries participated at the Summer EYOF, with Russia and Belarus remaining excluded due to the war in Ukraine.

Volleyball player Nika Milošič and handball player Mai Marguč for hosts Slovenia, and triple jumper Erika Giorgia Anoeta Saraceni and swimmer Daniele Del Signore for medals table-topping Italy were among the flagbearers.

Georgian judoka Mate Gvelesiani, gold medallist in the men's under-66 kilograms opponent, received the fair play award for helping his opponent Luka Katić of Croatia to the podium when he was injured.

Maribor Mayor Saša Arsenovič addressed the Closing Ceremony, claiming the city "became part of the big Olympic family precisely because of EYOF, thereby confirming Slovenia's reputation for organising major events".

"All the goals we set for ourselves have been achieved, namely the acquisition of knowledge, current economic effects and, of course, future multiplier effects," Arsenovič said.

European Olympic Committees (EOC) President Spyros Capralos praised athletes for their performances in Maribor, and highlighted the successes of the multi-sport event.

"Congratulations to all the athletes who will leave Maribor as EYOF medal winners," the International Olympic Committee member in Greece said.

"You will surely leave Slovenia with good memories.

"Over the past six days, Festival records have been broken over 20 times and your performances have been streamed live with over a million views, far more than any previous EYOF performance.

"In the pool, on the track and in other venues around the city, you have impressed us with your excellent performances.

"The future of European sport is bright."

The EOC flag was then lowered and the Flame of Peace extinguished, with hosting rights for the Summer EYOF handed to North Macedonia's capital Skopje for the 2025 edition.

Competition concluded with Italy leading the medals table with 16 golds.

Tommaso Brugnami added to his men's all-around and floor exercise individual artistic gymnastics golds by triumphing in the vault with a score of 14.100 at Tabor Hall, and Vito Antonio Darderi overcame Austria's Thilo Behrmann 7-5, 6-1 in the men's singles tennis final at the Branik Tennis Club.

Germany were second on the medals table with 11 golds, with France on third with nine golds.

France earned six silvers and nine bronzes, triumphing Romania's six silvers and five bronzes in fourth.

Czech Republic were fifth with nine golds, four silvers and seven bronzes.