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Ulina, 15, wins gold

July 13
10:04 2013

By SITERI NAVUTOVUTO

Ulina Tinaiadivila Sagone is the latest young female to do Fiji proud in the international sporting arena.
The 15-year-old weightlifter won three gold medals at the Oceania Weightlifting Championships currently underway in Brisbane, Australia.
The Levuka, Lomaiviti, lass lifted a total of 110 kg, with a 48kg for snatch and 62kg for clean & jerk.
This was 7kg ahead of the silver medalist and other competitors from Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and Marshall Islands.
The young weightlifter also won gold medals in the Oceania Youth Champs, Oceania Junior Champs and Oceania Senior Champs and this made her the Oceania Open Champion for 2013.
Sagone is the sole competitor from Fiji at the competition and is accompanied by national coach, Joe Vueti.
The former national weightlifting champion said it was quite surprising to note young Sagone’s brilliant performance since Levuka lifters are currently concentrating more on the construction of their new gym.
He said the new gym will boost raw weightlifting talents in Levuka and produce more achievements on the world stage.
“She is one of the targeted athletes preparing for the Youth Olympic Games, in Nanjing, China in 2014,” Vueti said.
Her trip was funded by Youth Olympic Games grant by FASANOC and came at a very critical moment.
Weightlifting Fiji president Sharlene Nand said weightlifting, Fiji’s number one performing sport for the past two years had to cut back on its team, because of delays in applying for visas and funding.
“Fortunately, for Ulina, the faith, effort and timely support made by FASANOC’s CEO Lorraine Mar and Sports Development Manager, Lyndall Fisher, towards getting her across to Brisbane, couldn’t have come any sooner,” Nand said.
“It is hoped that Ulina’s performance and success will inspire the athletes who were left behind, as they prepare for Pacific Mini Games and 2014 Youth Olympic Games and Oceania Championships, where Fiji is expected to field strong teams.

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