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10 Sep, 2007 14:11

Kids defy cancer to become Olympic athletes

Russian athletes who took part in the first Olympics for children, who had earlier recovered from cancer and tumours, have returned to Moscow. Around 200 youngsters from Poland, Ukraine and Russia took part in the games in Warsaw this weekend.

The competition supervised by the Polish Olympic Committee and patronised by the country's first lady Maria Kachinskaya, included major events like swimming, table tennis, athletics and football.

The special games were quite a success for the Russian kids – they’ve brought three gold medals home with them. But of course the true victory for them is not beating their peers, and the young athletes seem to understand it: “The biggest victory is that I decided to come. A medal is just a souvenir to remind me of the event. The biggest victory is that I'm alive,” said hammer gold winner Natalya Tsupikova.

Natalya says her next goal is to study oncology. She wants to work at the hospital where doctors saved her life.