ATHENS, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) — Greek 26-year-old pole vaulter Katerina Stefanidi, the Rio Olympic champion, hopes to see more Greek children taking up track and field events, after showing them that with hard work and talent they can overcome any obstacles inside the stadium and in life.

“We have many hits in the past years. I hope that more children will keep coming and more talents will be discovered,” Stefanidi said upon her return to Athens from Brazil on Thursday.

Greek sports could not stay unaffected by the severe recession that has hit the country within the last seven years.

Despite slashed state funding and poorly maintained training fields, Greek youth find motives inspired by role models like Stefanidi and the support of their family.

For the Greek champion, a key factor to her win was the support of her husband and coach Mitchell Krier along with the rest of her family.

 

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