Rathfriland weightlifting coach Timmy Graham has spoken of his pride after Emma Alderdice’s landmark debut performance at the World Championships in America.
Portadown girl Emma stepped out at the International Weightlifting Federation’s global showpiece as the first female from NI to reach the finals.
Years of hard work culminated in a competition personal best on Saturday evening - with her role as the leading female within Northern Ireland’s growing weightlifting community reflected in video viewing figures of over 14,000 across two days.
The national champion recovered from disappointment across her first and second 72-kilos snatch attempts to secure the weight on the third and final attempt.
Timmy, from Rathfriland, said: “Emma really is the forerunner for female Olympic weightlifting and everyone back home was watching on with such pride.
“To even qualify for the World Championships was amazing and the whole experience of America can only help Emma moving forward in her career.
“Emma had to show genuine mental strength to recover from those two setbacks and not many in the sport bounce back in that situation.
“We had been training twice every day from around the summer leading up to the Worlds.
“Emma is setting the standard but has so much potential and can only develop from watching and spending time around the best in the world.”