Inspirational double amputee swimmer thrills Glasgow

July 27, 2014, 9:26pm

 

Inspirational double amputee swimmer thrills Glasgow

Australia’s Maddison Elliott may have broken the world record to claim the gold in the para-100m S8 swim but the 15-year-old was upstaged by Ann Wacuka of Kenya.

Why? Well, it is athletes like Wacuka who truly embody the motto of these games: Humanity; Equality; Destiny.

The race in which the pair were racing, the S8 class, contains athletes “who have lost either both hands or one arm,” or “athletes with severe restrictions in the joints of the lower limbs”.

While the rest of the field fell into the former category, Wacuka, as can be seen from the picture, fell into the latter.

Elliott’s time of 1:05.32 set a new world record, with England's Stephanie Slater a close second courtesy of a 1:05.73 but it was Wacuka’s swim of 2:04.03 that really drew inspiration from the crowd.

They had just witnessed something very special and the Glasgow crowd roared her home as she came in some 45-odd seconds behind sixth-placed Nikita Howarth.

As if often the case with feats such as this, Twitter was soon awash with praise for the Kenyan - and rightly so!

I saw Ann Wacuka of Kenya in the S8 para-sport 100m freestyle. She's an inspiration to us all about overcoming adversity #commonwealthgames

— Scott Zoidberg (@thefinalmatch) July 26, 2014

Ann Wacuka from Kenya, what an inspiration. Upper body strength of note. All the other girls had legs. Big difference. #CommonwealthGames — Hayley Andrea Levey (@HaylesAndrea) July 25, 2014

#AnnWacuka My #CommonwealthGames hero #ParaSport #Swimming freestyle with no legs. She was 7th out of 7 but so inspiring! #TeamKenya

— Carol Radull (@CarolRadull) July 25, 2014

Ann Wacuka makes Kenya and Africa proud with gusty swim in para commonwealth games

— obioma aguocha (@sportingadvice) July 25, 2014

So there you have it, Elliott won the gold but Wacuka won the hearts of a nation, who showed incredible physical and mental strength to emerge as the true winner in Glasgow.

Source: Eurosport