SIX MEMBERS of Nicola White’s immediate family booked last-minute fights to Rio to watch her win a gold medal for Great Britain in the women’s hockey.
Mother Gill had been in Brazil for the duration of the Olympic Games and she was joined last week by Nicola’s boyfriend Edward and his parents.
After reaching the final, Nicola’s father Paul and his partner Carol, brothers Daniel and Thomas, Daniel’s wife Lauren, and Thomas’ girlfriend Kerry also headed for Brazil.
After managing to arrange travel, they left on Thursday night and only arrived in Rio hours before the final.
“It is something that had to be done. It has been expensive, but worth every penny to see Nicola win gold,” explained Lauren.
Reflecting on the triumph that followed an incident-filled final, Gill said: “It was an amazing match and there were lots of highs and lows. The Dutch were hard to beat and wear down.
“They had chances and didn’t put them away and Maddie (Hinch, goalkeeper) was player of the match and kept us in the game from saving the penalty stroke at the start and that shuffle (save) at the end.
“When it went to shuffles (shootout) we were confident having beaten Holland that way to win European gold and we were hoping and praying it would work again.
“I am very proud of Nicola who has worked so hard. She is a double Olympian with a bronze in London and gold here. You cannot get any better than that.
“It has been a massive team effort and everything has been right from the management down to the players, and it has been spot on.”
Nicola added that her grandparents Pamela and Neville, who live in Delph, couldn’t make it.
“I’m pretty sure they will have been watching and will be over the moon,” she explained.