Vows to continue to represent PHL in sports events as long as she could
(Eagle News) – Filipino Olympic gold medalist weightlifter Hidilyn Diaz is confident that the Philippines would get more medals at the Paris 2024 Olympics because more Filipino athletes would be inspired to strive more and enter the world competition.
Diaz, who had won the country’s first Olympic gold medal, said that she is confident in the ability of the country’s athletes, and that with the performance of the current batch of athletes at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, more Filipinos would dream big and achieve their dreams in competing and winning in the Olympics.
“Sa lahat ng mga weightlifter at Philippine athletes, nakaya ni ate. Huwag kayong mawalan ng pag-asa. You really have to work hard on your dreams. Never give up on your dreams,” she said in an interview on Tuesday, Aug. 3, in the NET25 program “Mata ng Agila.”
“Alam ko sa Paris 2024, do-doble ang medal na iuuwi ng Pilipinas, dahil marami ang mag-ka-qualify,” she said.
-Filipino athletes can do it-
The country is so far assured of at least four Olympic medals in the Tokyo Olympics – her gold in weightlifting, boxer Nesthy Petecio’s silver, and two more medals from boxers Carlo Paalam and Eumir Marcial who will both be fighting their semi-final matches on Thursday, Aug. 5, keeping the country’s hopes for more Olympic gold medals alive. More athletes are still competing in various events such as in golf,
Diaz said that the athletes who also competed in Tokyo would get more medals in the next Olympics in Paris. Carlos Yulo, for instance, could still win a gold in the next Olympics, she said. So can Petecio.
“Tiwala po ako sa kanila, kasi alam ko po na ibibigay nila ang lahat ng kaya nila,” she said.
She herself would continue to compete in weightlifting and represent the country as long as she could.
“Itutuloy ko po ang aking pag-eensayo. After winning, di po ako mag-stop. Hanggang kaya ire-representa ko ang Pilipinas, hanggang kaya ng lakas ko, hangga’t kayang mag-sakripisyo,” she said.
-Inspiring other athletes-
Diaz said that her winning a gold medal in Tokyo was still sinking in, and with that the responsibility of training harder for the next sports events, and in inspiring more athletes that they should never give up on their dreams.
“Nung Saturday, doon ko natanggap na nanalo ako ng gold medal. Ito ang responsibilidad after winning the gold medal. Medyo mataas ang responsibilidad. May iimpluwensyahan na mga kabataan ngayon. Level-up din ang responsibility,” she said.
-Thankful to her countrymen-
She is also very thankful for all Filipinos who showed their support, saying she was overwhelmed by it all.
Diaz also thanked President Rodrigo Duterte for greeting her and talking to her in a virtual meeting. She is also thankful to the Philippine Armed Forces for giving her a hero’s welcome.
For now, she still has to plan on what she would do next. She didn’t expect all the monetary pledges, she said, and is also overwhelmed with the millions of pesos that she would be receiving as a result of her win.
Diaz said she plans to hire a financial advisor to guide her, so that the money would be allocated well for her future, as well as to help in the community, including the athletes.
She also plans to continue her studies in business management, and thanked her teachers for understanding her situation. She still has to answer her modules and assignments, she added.
Politics or even showbiz are far from her mind, she said. Diaz said that she might enter the corporate world in the future.
But she promises to always give back to the Philippine weightlifting community, knowing that the Filipino athlete can and will shine in world competitions such as the Olympics.
The Filipino athlete can be a winner in sports which does not discriminate anymore as to one’s gender.
“Nakaya ni ate. Huwag kayong mawalan ng pag-asa,” Diaz added.
(Eagle News Service)