On Friday, July 25, 2014, Chika Amalaha lived in a moment she had dreamt about all her life. This Nigerian is no run-of-the-mill. She is the 2014 Commonwealth Women’s 53kg gold medalist.
Amalaha started her journey as a wrestler at age 12 but like many other athletes like herself, she received severe backlash from her parents for engaging in the sport.
Their discontent continued until Amalaha got a female coach who was able to make her parents understand her love for wrestling.
Fast forward to 2014, she had fully honed her skill and would represent Nigeria in the Women’s 53kg event, at the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. She surely did not anticipate the outcome of the event, as her plan was only to prove herself since it was her first time at the Commonwealth Games. Clearly, her plan was good enough to seize the gold medal.
Amalaha pulled in a best of 85kg to set a new games record before she lifted 111kg in the clean and jerk for a total of 196kg to win Nigeria’s first gold medal at Glasgow 2014.
Papua New Guinea’s Dika Toua, won the silver at the Clyde Auditorium with 193kg (82+111), while India’s Santoshi Matsa, settled for the bronze medal with 188kg (83+105).
Team Nigeria concluded their run at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland, in 8th position, with a total of 36 (11 gold, 11 silver, and 14 bronze) medals. Nigeria’s most successful athlete at the games was sprint queen, Blessing Okagbare, who completed a sprint double in the 100m and 200m events, becoming the 11th woman in history, and the first Nigerian to ever accomplish the feat.
Featured image source: nigerianmonitor.com