Taking the top spot in Men’s Discus Throw, Ali becomes the first Pakistani to ever win a gold medal at the Paralympic Games
Haider Ali on Friday became the first Pakistani to ever win a gold medal in the Paralympic Games.
The 36-year-old from Gujranwala, who suffers from cerebral palsy, achieved the feat in the Men’s Discus Throw, reaching a toss of 55.26 meters to secure the top post. His 55.26m throw was a personal best and reached 3 meters further than the best throw of second-place finisher Mykola Zhabnyak of Ukraine. The bronze medal went to Jao Victor Teixeira de Souza Silva of Brazil with a throw of 51.86m.
This isn’t the first time Ali has made history. He was also the first Pakistani to ever win a Paralympic Games medal at the 2008 Summer Paralympic Games in China, securing a silver in that competition. He also won two medals at the 2010 Asian Para Games—a gold in the long jump event, and a bronze in the 100m dash.
Ali’s victory few accolades from across Pakistan. Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain, in a post on Twitter, thanked him for his accomplishment. “We are all proud of you,” he added.
The U.S. Embassy in Pakistan also congratulated the Pakistani player on his achievement. “Congratulations to Haider Ali for winning the first-ever Paralympic gold medal for Pakistan!” it posted on Twitter. “Haider is used to creating history having secured Pakistan’s 1st Paralympic games medal (Silver) in 2008. Well done!”