Tokyo: At Olympics, age is no restriction for achieving glory. Monday showed us that as a 57-year-old and a 13-year-old stood tall on the podium.
While Kuwait’s Abdullah Al-Rashidi, who is 57, won a bronze medal in men’s skeet event in the shooting competition, 13-year-old Momiji Nishiya became Japan’s youngest gold medal winner when she won the women’s street skateboarding competition.
Al-Rashidi was donning an Arsenal football team jersey as he won his second successive Olympic medal. It was his first medal for the country as the last time he won a medal, a bronze in Rio in 2016, it was as an independent competitor since the Kuwaiti Olympic body was banned by the International Olympic Committee.
Al-Rashidi, with his moustache and Arsenal jersey, had become quite popular with some Brazilian fans in the previous Olympic Games.
“I am so happy to see my Kuwaiti flag and second Olympic medal,” Al-Rashidi told media after the skeet final. “I didn’t like seeing the Olympic flag. I needed to see my flag, the Kuwaiti flag,” he added.
If the Kuwaiti could keep his wits about him in his moment of glory with national flag, Momiji welled up in tears.
“I burst into tears because I was beyond happy,” said the 13-year-old afterwards.
Momiji fell on her first two attempts in the best trick portion of the finals. But she bounced back to surge into lead.
“I didn’t think I was going to be able to win, halfway through,” she told broadcasters NHK later. “But the other skaters were encouraging me so I felt like I could go on.”