Balinese powerlifter Widiasih takes silver at 2018 Asian Para Games despite shoulder injury

Ni Nengah Widiasih does some reps during a practice in Bali in Sept. 2016. Photo: Coconuts Bali
Ni Nengah Widiasih does some reps during a practice in Bali in Sept. 2016. Photo: Coconuts Bali

Balinese powerlifter Ni Nengah Widiasih earned a silver medal for Indonesia at the 2018 Asian Para Games in the 41kg class in Jakarta on Sunday.

The 25-year-old polio survivor managed to lift 97 kilograms, despite a shoulder injury, only losing out to Chinese athlete Zhe Cui, who pressed 100 kilograms.

“Yes, I was injured,” Widiasih, a Karangasaem native, confirmed with Coconuts Bali.

The injury came from the 2018 World Para Powerlifting Asia-Oceania Open Championships in Japan last month.

Upon receiving her medal in Jakarta over the weekend, Widiasih was hard on herself, apologizing to her fellow Indonesians for failing to take the gold.

“Today, I apologize. I was not able to get a gold medal for Indonesia. I only won the silver,” Widiasih said at the award ceremony.

“Honestly, I am sad, very sad. But perhaps this is the best that God will give me. Thank you to all the Indonesian people, for all their prayers and support,” she said, as quoted by Tribun Bali.

The 2018 Asian Para Games, however, is just one of many competitions for Widiasih, whose career high thus far includes winning the bronze for powerlifting at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.

“The next competition is World Championships in Astana,” Widiasih told us.

For a deeper look into Widiasih’s backstory, how she’s overcome polio and trained with everything she has to become a powerlifting superstar, take a look at our Coconuts TV episode on iFlix featuring the powerlifter:

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