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Fiji Time: 9:39 AM on Friday 1 August

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The lucky blue dress

Rashneel Kumar
Sunday, February 23, 2014

SEINIMILI Turner didn't believe in luck until Friday night.

The 60-year-old powerlifting "queen" dressed up elegantly for the 2013 Fiji Sports Awards and was looking forward to meeting her friends from the sporting fraternity.

While getting off the cab upon arriving at the Vodafone Arena in Laucala Bay, she accidently ripped her beautiful dress that she put on for the occasion.

Turner hurried back home and, as her fingers raced through her wardrobe, the flowery designed blue dress caught her attention. It was her special dress.

She wore the same one when she won her first Sportswoman of the Year award in 2005.

Seated with her fellow nominees during the 2013 Fiji Sports Awards that night, Turner was relaxed and had no idea at all of what was to enfold in the next couple hours.

When the master of ceremonies, Inoke Bainimarama, called her name for the 2013 Sportswoman of the Year, she became nervous.

Turner didn't see that coming.

She knew that blue dress had worked its magic.

"This is my lucky dress," Turner said pointing to the dress she wore that night.

"I wore this when I won the 2005 award and I won the 2013 award with the same dress. It's luck and I thank God for this."

Turner faced strong competition in her category with the likes of Milika Tuivanuavou (athletics), Hilda Vukikomoala (chess) and Seruwaia Malani (weightlifting) also nominated in the same category. But it was the feat of the "Iron Lady" that impressed the judges the most.

Turner won the gold medal in the 2013 Commonwealth and Oceania Powerlifting and Bench Press Championships in New Zealand last year.

She also set an Oceania record in the squat bench press in a dead lift total of 395kilograms in the Masters III division.

Turner did well in many other events including the 2009 World Powerlifting Masters in the US where she won the silver medal.

"I'm doing this for my country. I want to thank all our sponsors for their support and helping grow the sport in the country."

And if you think two Sportswoman of the Year awards and the medals from regional and international events will satisfy Turner, then you are wrong.

For her, this is the beginning of many more great things to come in the near future.

"I'm looking forward to competing in the world champs in South Africa in June," she added confidently.

And for that blues dress, call it a coincidence or pure luck, for Turner it doesn't matter much.

All that matters now is more hard work and more medals.


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