NT News

COLE MISSES CASH WINDFALL

Star just happy over equality with Olympians

- EMMA GREENWOOD

SHE’S the humble champion who shed tears when she found out Australia’s Paralympia­ns would finally be treated equally to the country’s Olympic heroes but Ellie Cole has been dudded hundreds of thousands of dollars due to a delay in the process.

Cole became Australia’s greatest female Paralympia­n in Tokyo when she won her 17th Paralympic medal since her debut in Beijing in 2008.

The 29-year-old will receive $25,000 for her silver and bronze medal-winning efforts in Tokyo.

But she has missed out on more than $200,000 for her efforts in Beijing, London and Rio, where she won six gold, another four silver and five other bronze medals.

But there is no bitterness from Cole. News the federal government had committed to paying Australia’s Paralympia­ns the same funds as the country’s Olympians under the medal incentive scheme run by the Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) brought Cole to tears in an online post.

“I usually would never, ever post anything online of me being emotional but I have found out that Australian Paralympic athletes are finally being seen as equal to our Olympic athletes and I really just wanted to thank Australia so much for watching the Paralympic­s over the last two weeks and fighting for us and for equal rights,” a teary Cole said in an Instagram story post on Thursday less than an hour after the funding announceme­nt.

“This is something that I have been working tirelessly towards for the last 16 years, so this is a very special day for me.

“I just really wanted to thank Australia so much for seeing us as equal.”

Cole, who is among the most popular members of the Australian swim team, trains under Simon Cusack in Sydney alongside Olympic gold medallists Cate and Bronte Campbell.

 ?? Ellie Cole. Picture: Getty Images ??
Ellie Cole. Picture: Getty Images

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