On September 13, Tuesday, another Filipina brought honor to the Philippines as she won an Olympic medal in the Rio Games.
Josephine Medina, 46, secured the bronze medal in the women’s individual table tennis – Class 8 at the 2016 Rio Paralympics in Brazil.
Medina, the country’s flagbearer won against Juliane Wolf of Germany with a score of 11-5, 11-6, 11-7 to finish at third place. She was also the country’s representative for the 2012 London Paralympics and won fourth place.
She said, “I have been praying to God that one day, the Philippines would win a medal. The last time in London, I came so close, I finished in fourth place. Here, the competition is really tough, but when I beat Aida Dahlen and qualified for the main draw, for God nothing is impossible.”
Medina dedicated his victory to his late father who also played for the national team and coached Royal Saudi Air Force before passing away in 2004.
As she spoke, “My father was in the national team. I was sick as I was a polio victim and table tennis is my therapy. I used to compete with able-bodied athletes and qualified for the national team, but they told me you cannot be in the national team for the able-bodied as you are disabled. The rejection has become my inspiration and I train hard and I just want to prove that disability is not a hindrance in achieving your goal. It’s just an instrument in reaching success in your life.”
She added, “I dedicate this to my father. I didn’t have the chance to tell my papa that I was playing internationally. It is quite sad, but I know he believed in me. I know he is still near me.”
Class 8 athletes for table tennis are suffering from physical impairments in their arms or legs.