20 July 2019 Pacific Games Apia Samoa. Powerlifter Oliva Kirisome won another Pacific Games gold medal after lifting a total of 330 kg to set a new Pacific Games record.
The Digicel Samoa Facilities Coordinator broke his record of 327kg to also set a new record for Oceania.
With tears in his eyes, Mr. Kirisome dedicated his achievement to Samoa.
“This gold medal is for you Samoa,” he said.
“These are tears of joy because despite my injuries, I did not want that to hold me back because I have already promised that I will get this gold medal;
“So no injury was going to hold me back from fulfilling that promise I had made to my family, my workplace and especially my country.”
Mr. Kirisome is the youngest of Tamatoa and Uputaua Keresome’s five children.
He comes from the village of Siusega and has roots in Aopo Savaii as well as Sa’anapu through his parents.
This is Kirisome’s third Pacific Games and third medal to add to his collection.
He won gold in New Caledonia in 2011, and a silver medal in Papua New Guinea in 2015.
Samoa Global News spoke to him about his passion for Powerlifting, and the 33 year old said his interest in the sport goes way back when he saw bulky people playing.
“I was always very big, and known as the bulky kid at school, so many encouraged me to be a rubgy player,” said Oliva.
“But as I grew older my interests switched to Powerlifting, and ai have enjoyed being an ambassador for the sport in the past six years.”
He currently holds various records in Powerlifting for Oceania, Asia and the Pacific Games.
Oliva says Digicel Samoa has given him tremendous support to be able to pursue his passion and balance his work duties with his sporting career.
“Digicel provides a very supportive environment for me as a powerlifter for Samoa; they allow me to go after my goals and provide flexi hours for my national training;
“I also make use of the gym membership that isnprovided for all staff. I’m grateful to Digicel and also really proud that they are the major sponsors for the Pacific Games,” said Oliva.
He thanked his family, friends, and Samoa for the ongoing support as he worked his way to the gold medal.