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Hidilyn Diaz Wins First Olympic Gold Medal; Takes Home At Least P58.5 Million Worth Of Incentives

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Hidilyn Diaz took home the first Olympic gold medal after winning the 55-kg weightlifting event of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics at the Tokyo International Forum on Monday, July 26.

This is a major milestone, as the Philippines had been trying to achieve this for almost 100 years.

 Photo by Edgard Garrido via Reuters

It can be recalled that Hidilyn competed in The Beijing Olympics back in 2008, and once again, made history when she bagged the silver medal in Rio de Janeiro.  The Tokyo Olympics was her fourth attempt in the games.

The weightlifter also received a hefty amount of incentives worth at least P58.5 Million.

  • P14 Million – worth of condo unit in Eastwood City from Megaworld
  • P10 Million – from National Government
  • P10 Million – from Manuel V. Pangilinan
  • P10 Million – from Ramon S. Ang
  • P5 Million – from Dennis Uy’s Phoenix Petroleum
  • P4 Million – worth of house and lot from Century Properties
  • P3 Million – from Deputy speaker Mike Romero
  • P2.5 Million – from the Local Government of Zamboanga
  • Lifetime Free Flights – Air Asia
  • Lifetime Free Flights – Philippine Airlines

However, Hidilyn’s journey was anything but easy, as the  athlete had faced a few stumbling blocks in her career. 

Photo by Vincenzo PINTO from AFP

Born with limited means, Hidilyn had to work hard to make ends meet, and at that time, sports was the only way out of poverty.

Hidilyn shared how stoked she was in an interview with Cignal TV’s  reporter, Gretchen Ho, and the weightlifter said, “Hindi ako makapaniwala. Hindi ako makapaniwala.” 

She continued on and stated, “Sa totoo lang, kinakabahan ako. Baka hindi ko magawa. Pero the whole day, the whole week, sinasabi ko na I believe, I believe. Saka prepared ako.”

Photo by Vincenzo PINTO from AFP

“Na-sorpresa ako na nagawa ko ‘yun. Kakaiba si God,” she added. 

However, more hurdles came her way when COVID-19 cases began to surge worldwide.

In another interview with Tiebreaker Vods’ “So She Did” in 2020, Hidilyn opened up about the anxieties she faced during the pandemic. “​​Syempre natakot ako at may anxiety akong nararamdaman kung anong next. Tapos nalaman ko na yung Olympics napostpone, yung mga laro ko na-cancel so frustrated din ako.” 

Photo by Edgard Garrido via Reuters

“I sacrificed a lot. I wasn’t able to be with my mother and father for how many months and years and then of course, training was excruciating. “But God had a plan.” Hidilyn told The Philippine Daily Inquirer

*Cover Photo/Thumbnail Photo by Edgard Garrido via Reuters 

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