Ten years on from the Sydney Olympics, volleyball player Natalie Cook is celebrating the anniversary of her gold medal win.
Cook’s victory at Bondi Beach is still considered one of the most significant events in the history of Australian sport.
Kate Boston reports.
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A nostalgic Natalie Cook looked back over her long and successful career which has so far peaked with her gold medal winning performance against Brazil in the 2000 Olympics.
The event was fraught with controversy before it had even begun with locals protesting the construction of a stadium on their beach.
But after Cook and her teammate Kerri Pottharst got a few wins of the board, Australians got right behind their bronzed, bikini-wearing heroes and helped lead the girls straight to their history making win.
Natalie Cook, Olympic Volleyballer: “You looked at the lines person. I looked at the referee to make sure everything was legitimate and when it was called as ours it was just the most amazing experience.”
“Team Nat” will be right behind the 35-year-old Olympic veteran in her future campaigns but for now no one could be prouder than dad.
Brian Cook, Natalie’s Dad: “It’s certainly opened up alot for her and she’s been a great inspiration to not only us but to lots of other people that have been associated with her.”
Cook now has her mind set on competing in London in 2012, if she makes the team she will be the first Australian woman to compete in five summer Olympics.
The Queensland Minister for Women says Cook’s achievements revolutionised the way we view women in sport but there’s still a way to go.
Karen Struthers, Minister for Women: “Women’s sport just doesn’t get the same level of sponsorship and support and prominence that men’s sport does but Natalie;s trying really hard to change that around.”
Kate Boston, QUT News.