Chiangrai Times – Weightlifter Pimsiri Sirikaew, Thailand’s only medalist at the London Games so far, returned home Sunday to a warm welcome. Pimsiri, who won silver in the women’s 58kg division, was greeted at Suvarnabhumi airport by her father Kampoon and mother Amornrat as well as hundreds of well-wishers who included relatives from Khon Kaen and classmates from Chon Buri Physical Education Institute.
”I dedicate this medal to all Thais,” a tearful Pimsiri said.
”It is a present for my mother for National Mother Day [Aug 12].”
She thanked all concerned parties including Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra who ordered the country’s sporting authorities to help the Thai Amateur Weightlifting Association pay a fine of around 10 million baht.
The International Weightlifting Federation punished the TAWA with the fine after seven Thai liftters tested positive last year.
The TAWA had to pay the fine before the London Olympics or its athletes would have been kicked out of the Games.
The TAWA could only pay the fine after Yingluck asked the country’s sporting authorities to assist the association.
Pimsiri said the silver medal would not change her life and that she would train harder for further success.
However, she said it was too early to say if she would win gold at the 2016 Olympics or not.
Pimsiri is expected to receive more than 13 million baht in financial rewards from the government and private companies.
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