Terence Saramandif (Mauritius) – Nominee for 2018 Junior of the Year
Born: 2002, Represents: Mauritius, Sport: Canoe Slalom
- Gold - 2018 Summer Youth Olympics in C1 Obstacle Slalom, Argentina
- Gold - 2018 African Youth Games in C1 Slalom
- Bronze - 2018 African Youth Games in C1 Sprint
When Terence Saramandif topped the podium at the 2018 Summer Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires, Argentina, he entered the history books as the first-ever Olympic champion in the history of Mauritian sport.
Mauritius, population 1.2 million, has had a sprinkling of world class athletes during its sporting history, but Saramandif did his country proud with its first gold medal in an Olympic competition.
The 16-year-old Canoe Slalom specialist took it all in stride, commenting that he was really happy to have the race behind him. “I worked hard during the summer, and all year, so I’m really happy to have this medal,” he said.
A graduate of the International Canoe Federation’s Talent Identification Program (TIP), Saramandif was too strong in the final for New Zealand’s Finn Anderson, who picked up the silver, while Spain’s Yoel Becerra Bernardez took the bronze. Not surprisingly, he was given a hero’s welcome upon his return to Mauritius. He plans to use his success to try and grow the sport of canoeing on the island “I think this medal can be the beginning of the development of my sport in Mauritius,” he said. “Maybe some children will have seen me and will want to do the same.”
“One of my dreams is to develop canoeing in Mauritius, to try and create a stadium. Why not?’ - Terence Saramandif
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