Another day, another hearty helping of #BlackGirlMagic, this time a double dose!
Tamyra Mensah-Stock and Blessing Oborududu are names you need to know. American athlete Tamyra, 28, defeated Nigeria’s Blessing, 32, and became only the second woman — and the first Black woman — to win an Olympic wrestling gold for the United States.
By winning silver, Oborududu became the first Nigerian athlete, male or female, to win an Olympic medal in wrestling.
Tamyra marked their historic wins to The Associated Press and said that she hoped her victory would encourage American Black girls to consider wrestling.
“These young women are going to see themselves in a number of ways and they’re going to look up there and go, I can do that,” she said. “I can see myself.”
I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh, look at us representing,’ ” Mensah-Stock said, according to The Associated Press. “It’s so freaking awesome. You’re making history, I’m making history. We’re making history. So it meant a lot.”
Oborududu added to AP that she stayed focused by keeping her phone on silent.
“After wrestling to get into the final yesterday, I was having a lot of messages, a lot of calls,” Oborududu said. “I locked down my phone, because I don’t want to receive any calls, or anything that was really disturbing me. I switched off my phone so I was not in any kind of pressure. I know that I’ve created the record for my country.”
ESPN reports that Black women have had standout moments in U.S. women’s wrestling. Toccara Montgomery won gold at the Pan-Am Games in 2003, Iris Smith won a world title in 2005 and Randi Miller earned bronze at the 2008 Olympics.
“They paved the way for me,” Mensah-Stock said.
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