Zoe Smith has become the first English woman ever to win a weightlifting medal at the Commonwealth Games.

The 16-year-old student from London, who won a bronze in the women’s 58kg category, was lifting in her first major senior international.

Smith said nerves got the better of her on her first attempt but, reassured by coach Andy Callard, she came through to lift 85kg in the snatch and 103kg in the clean and jerk, not quite reaching her personal bests of 86kg and 110kg.

Smith said: “I had high expectations, there’s no point turning up otherwise, and I was so nervous I was shaking. It’s not the gold but I don’t care, I’ve won a medal at the Commonwealth Games, it’s still amazing and it hasn’t really sunk in yet.”

Her coach, multi-Commonwealth medallist Andy Callard, said: “She was nervous, it was her first major championship and people were expecting a lot from her.

“We are very happy that we ended up getting a result. We’ve got a young team and Zoe’s done really well for us.”

Callard said the next goal for Zoe was London 2012. “She’ll be a lot more mature, a lot stronger,” he said.

In the same event, Helen Jewel came ninth, lifting 77kg in the snatch and 90kg in the clean and jerk.

Former British schoolboy champion Halil Zorba came fourth in the men’s 69kg group B and will have to wait until group A finishes later this evening to know where he placed overall.