Thursday, 15 September 2016

Nigeria's Nollywood winner and other Paralympic surprises

Nigeria's Paralympic team is grabbing medals left, right and centre.
At the half-way point through the Games, here are five things you may not know about the team.


1. A gold medal has been won by a Nollywood actress

When Lauritta Onye threw a shot put 8.40m she not only won gold but broke a word record.
The Nigerian Paralympic gold medallist is also known as…. Laury White.
Under that name she starred in the Nollywood film Lords of Money in 2015.
Her performance skills were put to good use on Sunday night when she celebrated her victory in acrobatic style in front of the cameras.


Image copyright Getty Imageshttp://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/3F50/production/_91180261_01bfc559-9a00-4350-920b-62eab6273c41.jpg
Image copyright PAhttp://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/17437/production/_91178259_laurettapahi035237283.jpg


2. More medals than the Olympic team

Nigeria's Paralympians already have six golds, two silvers and one bronze medal.
That's compared to Nigeria's Olympic team which only took home one bronze for football last month.
At the half-way point Nigeria's Paralympic team is 10th in the medal table and top among African countries, whereas the Olympians were joint 78th by the end.

3. It's not the first time

At London 2012 the country won 13 medals at the Paralympic Games and not one single medal in the Olympics.
And again they came home with more medals in 2008, 2004, 2000 and 1996http://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/173E8/production/_91180259_gettyimages-600114368.jpg

4 Serial record breaker

Weightlifter Lucy Ejike broke a world record on Sunday to win gold with a lift of 142kg in the women's under-61kg event.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Lucy Ejike was also Nigeria's flag bearer during the opening ceremony
It is the third time she has broken a world record - in Beijing in 2008 she broke two during the under-48kg event.
The 38-year-old wheelchair user has won three gold medals since she started competing in 2000.

5. Powerlifting dominates

Only one of Nigeria's nine medals is not in powerlifting - so far it has five Paralympic powerlifting golds, two silvers and one bronze.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Paul Kehinde won gold in the men's 65kg powerlifting
That's added to 15 other powerlifting gold medals since Nigeria started competing in 1992.
But then the numbers are against the other Paralympians - 14 of the 23 Nigerian competitors are powerlifters.http://ichef-1.bbci.co.uk/news/624/cpsprodpb/8E4C/production/_91182463_paulkehindepahi035213605.jpg
This doesn't appear to be by accident.