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‘More than Gold’ released in Theatres, Dame Valerie Adams tells her story, her way !!

Praneeta Mahajan

Praneeta Mahajan

Hamilton, 20 October 2022

More than Gold (Instagram image)

More than Gold- This aptly named feature documentary is a candid and inspirational story of five-time Olympian, and double Olympic gold medallist, Dame Valerie Adams.

“I want people to laugh, I want people to cry, I want people to be with me in the serious moments but then I want people to celebrate. I’ve told my story, my way,” Dame Valerie said.

At a time when sportswomen globally are struggling with pressures beyond the field of play Dame, Valerie Adams is a beacon of hope. Competing at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games required all the shot-putter’s determination and courage.

At 36, following two major surgeries and the birth of her children, she was considered an ‘older’ athlete. Struggling to balance her role as a mum with her job as an elite sportsperson, Valerie was forced to navigate emotions every mother will identify with.

Over the course of 25 years, Valerie has conquered adversity time and time again. Six foot three at 12 years old she was bullied at school. She competed barefoot at her first shotput competition because she couldn’t afford shoes. At just 15 she nursed her dying mother while watching the Sydney 2000 Olympics on TV. That was the moment that inspired her Olympic dream and ignited the fire to aim for the stars.

Many New Zealanders believe they know Dame Valerie Adams, but in a ‘sports’ documentary like no other, she shares her story with honesty and vulnerability exposing herself in a way few sportspeople dare.

Director, Briar March, said there is much more to Dame Valerie’s story than most Kiwis would expect.

“ She has overcome significant challenges to achieve her dreams. A film about what matters most and looks at the strength it takes to look beyond our limitations and circumstances and reach our fullest potential,” March said.

Director Briar March, Dame Valerie Adams and Producer Leanne Pooley (Instagram image)

Adams was born in Rotorua, New Zealand, to a Tongan mother, Lilika Ngauamo and an English father, Sydney Adams. The documentary is said to be a story of a mother, a Tongan leader, a daughter, a sister and a survivor that “will resonate with ordinary New Zealanders in an extraordinarily human way”.

It is stories like these, of determination, perseverance, indomitable spirit and success that are currently needed to inspire the youth and give them role models that create hope about the future.

New Zealand has a huge pool of young athletes, talented individuals, women with great potential and youth coming from multicultural communities, who lack the inspiration to channel their energies towards the right direction. Now, more than ever, there is an urgent need of generating a positive atmosphere and tell tales of what human courage can achieve, with sheer determination.

Dame Valerie Adams and all stories like her need to be told and shared across all platforms and conversations should be encouraged about these stories. It is hence, highly recommended for everyone, young and old to watch this brilliant piece of cinema.

 

Praneeta Mahajan is an Indian Newslink Reporter based in Hamilton.

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