Rio Olympics 2016: French Gymnast Snaps Leg, Can He Ever Compete Again?
In spite of his fractured leg operated upon, Samir Ait Said, a French artistic gymnast is on his road to recovery. Though his recovery process may be long, he has not let that dampen his spirit.Advertisement
The 26-year-old wants to compete in Tokyo 2020. The young gymnast suffered a gruesome double break of his leg at Rio Olympics 2016.
Samir Ait Said snapped the lower part of his left leg landing badly from the vault in the men’s qualifying round on Saturday, Daily Mail reports. He fell on the mat in agony clutching the back of his knee and his leg, with his leg left at an angle that shocked the audience.
“I want to thank you all for your messages of support, it really heartened me, it felt good, it really boosted my morale,” said Ait Said in a video posted after his emergency surgery in Rio from the hospital bed.
According to the French delegation Ait Said suffered a double tibia and fibula fracture, Independent reports. The gymnast said that the surgery went very well and he hoped to be back on his feet “not very long.”
Samir Ait Said will now concentrate on encouraging his teammates. He wants to return to the venue to cheer on Axel Augis and Cyril Tommasone, who qualified for all-around and pommel horse finals respectively.
The very next day of his surgery, the brave gymnast Samir Ait Said was pictured walking on the corridors of the hospital supported by a Zimmer frame. He seemed to be in high spirits as the Federation Internationale de Gymnastique president Bruno Grandi came to meet him.
Ait Said was all praise for Augis and Tommasone, who he said managed to keep their act together. Samir Ait Said was one of France’s leading medal hopes.
However, Samir Ait Said is still starry eyed about his return to Tokyo 2020. He wants to do his country proud and win gold.
He said that he would start his training as soon as he is back on his feet. “I’ve gotten into the spirit of things with my blue-white-red plaster, allez la France!” said Samir Ait-Said of the French national colors of his plaster.
The rings and vault artistic gymnast won his first senior medals at the 2010 European Men’s Artistic Gymnastics Championships.
He got silver on the rings and a bronze with Team France.
Samir Ait Said broke his right leg while landing the vault at the 2012 European Championships.
He was forced to bow out of the 2012 Summer Olympics in London due to his fractured right leg.
At the 2013 European Championships, Samir Ait Said won gold on the rings.