2020 Paralympics: 14-year-old becomes Japan’s youngest medalist

2020 Paralympics: 14-year-old becomes Japan’s youngest medalist

14-year-old swimmer, Miyuki Yamada made history Wednesday (25 Aug) at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic games as Japan’s youngest medalist.

Yamada captured the country’s first medal on home turf, taking silver in the women’s 100-meter backstroke S2 class.

“I am so excited, and I am so happy. And mostly, I really enjoyed it,” Yamada, a junior high school student from Niigata Prefecture, said after her race at the Tokyo Aquatics Center. “I was nervous but I tried to shrug that feeling off and just enjoy the moment. Then, I ended up being able to swim like I always do,” she said. “I want to give myself a 100 (out of 100).”

She finished the race in 2 minutes, 26.18 seconds, 9.57 behind Singapore’s Yip Pin Xiu. 10 seconds ahead of Mexico’s Fabiola Ramirez, who was competing in her third Games.

Yamda became the youngest Japanese Paralympic medalist. The previous record at a Summer Paralympics was held by Yoshinori Shimazu who took bronze in the men’s athletics at the 1984 Games, according to the Japanese Paralympic Committee.

She said she did not even know about the historical context of her medal until she was asked about it during one of her post-race interviews.

“I’m so surprised myself,” she said. “I want to say that I will dedicate this to everybody who has supported me along the way, but it’s actually my mom and my coach. They told me to have fun and I want them to know that I did.”


Source: The Japan Times