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17493-Flora Ugwunwa photo

Flora Ugwunwa

Athletics
1

Biography

Impairment information

Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
F54

Further personal information

Family
Husband Ekurede Charles Osaretin
Residence
Benin City, NGR
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English
Higher education
Business - Nnamdi Azikiwe University: Nigeria

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
She took up Para athletics in 2011 in Edo State, Nigeria.
Why this sport?
"I wanted to prove there is ability in disability."
Club / Team
Edo State Sports Commission: Benin City, NGR
Name of coach
Patrick Anaeto [national], NGR

International debut

Year
2015
Competing for
Nigeria

General interest

Hobbies
Singing, reading, cooking, bread making, travelling. (Facebook profile, 17 Aug 2021; Athlete, 11 Nov 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning gold in the F54 javelin at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (makingofchamps.com, 08 Mar 2021; Athlete, 11 Nov 2019)
Most influential person in career
Her husband. (Facebook profile, 25 Jul 2021; Athlete, 11 Nov 2019)
Hero / Idol
Nigerian sprinter Mary Onyali-Omagbemi. (Athlete, 11 Nov 2019)
Injuries
In the lead-up to the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, she almost lost her place in the Nigerian team for the Games due to a medical issue. "While we were in camp the secretary told them to decamp me because I had a medical challenge and bring someone else. But I kept believing, and when I was finally cleared to compete I gave it my all and that's how I won [in the F54 javelin]. It's one of the best experiences of my career." (brila.net, 12 Feb 2021)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Win them all, never lose hope." (Athlete, 24 Oct 2015)
Ambitions
To win gold and set a world record at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (makingofchamps.com, 08 Mar 2021; brila.net, 12 Feb 2021)
Impairment
She has paraplegia as a result of the effects of polio. (brila.net, 12 Feb 2021; Athlete, 08 Nov 2019, 24 Oct 2015)
Other information
HUSBAND'S SUPPORT
She credits the role of her husband Ekurede Charles Osaretin in her career. He quit his job in order to help her train. "As the saying goes, 'Behind every successful man is a woman', but for me behind every successful woman is a man. My husband did everything for me to be happy. When he noticed the challenges I was facing, as I was being sidelined for athletes I was better than, he quit his job and started training with me. He wasn't into sports but things worked out well when we started working together." (brila.net, 12 Feb 2021)

OUT OF COMPETITION
After the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, where she won gold, she did not compete again at international level until the 2019 Grand Prix event in Tunis, Tunisia. She also did not compete internationally between the 2019 World Championships and 2021, and she says a lack of funding was partly the reason for her time away from competition. "For someone to stay away from international competition for two years is not good. But all this talk of no money isn't helping. The worst part is that there is no endorsement, because if we had endorsements, the companies would be the ones sponsoring us for these competitions." (makingofchamps.com, 08 Mar 2021)

REPRESENTATIVE
In 2019 she began to serve as a female athletes' representative in the Nigeria Paralympic Committee. (brila.net, 12 Feb 2021; guardian.ng, 25 Jan 2019; thetidenewsonline.com, 18 Jan 2019)

Results

Unit Date Rank
IPC Athletics 2015 World Championships (Doha, Qatar)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Women's Discus Throw F55 Final 1 2015-10-28 5
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Women's Javelin F54 Final Round 2016-09-13 1
Women's Discus Throw F55 Final Round 2016-09-17 6