Mattie Sasser is lifted by Rio experience.

Mattie Langtor Sasser is the flag bearer for the Marshall Islands. Sasser will be competing in the Weightlifting holds the 58Kg Junior and Senior Oceania titles, and is the Oceania Senior Clean and Jerk record holder.

The 19-year-old from the Republic of Marshall Islands in the Pacific can’t wait to experience what will be the most prestigious event she will have competed in during her developing weightlifting career. A sport she became interested in some four and a half years ago.

Her parents, Terry and Amy Sasser, who are currently in Rio, are rightly, “extremely proud” of their Olympian daughter. Adding to their own responsibilities of being Secretary General and Administrator for the National Olympic Committee, then this may well be a memorable few weeks for the family.

Mattie has been putting in the hours in the gym, under the expert eye of dad to make sure she reaches her peak performance in the Brazilian host city. This determination was demonstrated clearly, as Sasser has been training whilst nursing an untimely wrist injury. However, careful planning and the required rehabilitation has seen this pose little threat and certainly hasn’t dampened her enthusiasm for the coming weeks.

The islander has showed some great form this year, beating some of her closest regional competitors including Solomon Islander Jenly Wini and Australian Tia Toomey. During this performance she broke a record every time she stepped up to the bar on her way to winning gold at the Oceania Weightlifting Championships held in Suva, Fiji. Most impressively, Sasser broke the Senior 58Kg Clean and Jerk record despite only being a Junior.

Mattie Sasser competes in the Women’s 58Kg category on August 8th in the Olympic Park at Riocentro (Pavillion 2) where she will once again do battle with Jenly Wini and Tia Toomey.

By Simon Thompson


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