Paralympics: Oliveira ‘hurt’ by Pristorius’ comments

Published: September 4, 2012
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Pistorius said that Oliveira got unfair advantage because of the length of his blades, something he apologised for later.  PHOTO: REUTERS

Pistorius said that Oliveira got unfair advantage because of the length of his blades, something he apologised for later. PHOTO: REUTERS

Paralympic T44 200m gold medallist Alan Oliveira said he has more incentive than ever to beat Oscar Pistorius in the 100m and 400m finals following the South African’s comments after his 200m final defeat.

Pistorius said that Oliveira got unfair advantage because of the length of his blades, something he apologised for later. However, Oliveira was not impressed by the comments.

“I do think he tried to take the shine off my gold,” said Oliveira. “I was really shaken and upset by what he said but I don’t have to explain anything. I’m going to train harder now to beat him again. He was obviously upset by his defeat. I’m happy that he apologised but it’s a bit sad and the atmosphere now between us is strained.”

Blinded Nepali soldier battles on

Nepal athlete Bikram Bahadur Rana set a new personal best at the Paralympics, capping an extraordinary journey to the British capital from the Himalayan nation where he was blinded by Maoist rebels.

Aided by a guide runner, the former warrant officer came fourth out of four in his T11 200m heat, clocking 26.95 seconds, more than four seconds behind the quickest qualifier.

Nine years ago he and his foot patrol triggered two roadside bombs left by Maoist rebels hiding in the forest. The explosion forced Rana to the ground, blinded and with blood pouring from an open wound in his neck. Now 31, Rana is proud to have survived the horrific incident, and to represent his country at the Games.

“I feel very proud of my accomplishments,” said Rana. “Despite being blind, I will be able to compete carrying the flag of my country. I think the opportunity I have received being a blind athlete has made the country proud.”

Published in The Express Tribune, September 5th, 2012.

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