Vith Chantha has clinched her third gold medal, a feat that brought tears of joy to her eyes. She competed against athletes of all ages from various countries, and her victory pays testament to her hard work and determination.
Chantha emphasized that even though Cambodia is a small country with a big heart, it can still achieve greatness, proving that disabilities cannot hold one back. She continues to compete, defying expectations typically associated with athletes in her 40s.
The triple gold medallist told Kiripost,
"I may be older than athletes from other countries, but I refuse to let age define my abilities. Despite my disability, I have proven that I can rise above and secure medals."
She added, "When I compare my achievements to theirs, it fills me with immense happiness and pride to win three gold medals for the country."
Throughout her speech, Chantha said she has put in tremendous effort, supported by her coach who constantly offers encouraging words, and motivates her to work hard and never give up on life's challenges.
While there were moments when she contemplated quitting, Chantha's determination prevailed, leading her to triumph today. She acknowledges the support of her coach and the government.
"So far, I have put in tremendous effort, fuelled by the unwavering support of my coach. I always carry encouraging words that push me to persevere and work harder. No one can help us more than ourselves," Chantha noted.
"Despite the challenges that come with disabilities, I refuse to let them define my capabilities. Today, I stand successfully because of the guidance and mentorship my coach provided and the chairman's unwavering belief."
The athlete added, "At first, I couldn't even walk, run, and jump. However, I can do it now, and win gold medals for the country."
As the first disabled athlete, Chantha previously won two gold medals and one silver medal in the 11th ASEAN Para Games held in Indonesia in 2022. However, she has now surpassed her own record by securing three gold medals.
The events include the Women's Long Jump in the T64 category, Women's 400m T64, and Women's 200m T64 at Morodok Techo National Stadium.