When Majlinda Kelmendi fights, an entire nation stands still. Thus began the article (with attached video) of CNN dedicated to Majlinda Kelmendi, Kosovo's biggest sporting icon
Her face adorns billboards all over her home city of Peja, where locals speak in hushed tones about their country's first ever Olympic champion.
"Through judo I became somebody. I don't do it because of money, I don't do it because I wanted to get famous. I do judo because I feel it, I love it -- it makes me feel good, makes me feel special."
"It means a lot," said Kelmendi, who broke into tears as she left the mat. "People, especially kids in Kosovo, look to me as a hero.
"I just proved to them that even after the war, even after we survived a war, if they want something they can have it.
"If they want to be Olympic champions, they can be -- even if we come from a small country, a poor country." - Kelmendi told CNN ahead of Rio 2016
The CNN video
CNN: When Majlinda Kelmendi fights, a whole nation stops https: //www.albanianews.it/diaspora/majlinda-kelmendi
Posted by ALBANIA NEWS on Monday, March 12, 2018
"She is Majlinda Kelmendi, a Kosovar sport heroine and one of the best judokas in the world in the Under 52 kg category. Kelmendi began practicing judo at the age of eight in his hometown, Peja.
At the age of 18 years, in the 2009, he won the gold medal at the youth world championships in Paris. But it was his first big triumph among the seniors to bring it to glory: at the 2013 World Cup in Rio, Kelmendi won the gold medal and became the first ever Kosovo world champion. He repeated himself at the world championships in Chelyabinsk, Russia.
In the 2016 Olympics, when he took home the gold medal, Kelmendi became the first Kosovar athlete ever to win an Olympic medal. But this is only the beginning of his resume.
Majlinda Kelmendi also won 13 grand prizes and big slam titles along with the 2013 World Masters. Furthermore, Kosovo is a three-time European champion (2014, 2016, 2017). Majlinda Kelmendi, the Kosovar heroine and judoka legend. "
"Through judo I became somebody," Kelmendi told CNN ahead of Rio XNUMX. "I don't do it because of money, I don't do it because I wanted to get famous. I do judo because I feel it, I love it -- it makes me feel good, makes me feel special." Majlinda Kelmendi
The list of winners among Majlinda Kelmendi's seniors
- 25 gold medals among Olympics, world championships, European, grand prizes and big slams
- 5 silver medals among world championships, grand prizes and great slams
- 6 bronze medals among world championships, European, grand prizes and great slams
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