Sunday, 4 December 2011

Yana Stadnik: my kind of immigrant

Yana Stadnik: click for the Sunday Telegraph articleWomen’s wrestling is in turmoil as the Olympics approach: foreign athletes have replaced the entire British team, which now only comprises two Ukranian women. This is yet another indictment of our tick-box culture, where the means both justify and are subservient to the ends.

But it’s not always that simple. Yana Stadnik, originally flown in to spar with British wrestlers, is now the best in her category and has grown to love this country that has adopted her. She says: "I wrestle for GB. On my back it is written Great Britain and it is in my heart too".

It would, of course, be best to have British athletes performing for us at the Olympics, but what do we do when we have a non-Briton who is the best at what she does, and is raring to be our champion? And how would we explain her exclusion to an audience that wants to see Team GB win medals, especially when high-performing British football clubs are full of foreign names?

read about John Lennon's deportation orderHowever, since Stadnik has no agenda to remake our country in the image of the one she left, "multiculturalists" will see no need to keep their race-hate in the cupboard. Watch out for vitriol as they parade spurious patriotic credentials. And yet, hope exists: in 1975, John Lennon gained a US Red Card after a 4-year battle which provided "testimony to his faith in this American dream".

It’s not Stadnik’s fault she became the best. Her story is like those fairy tales where an understudy proves better than the actress she covers and lands the leading part. However things turn out, my hope for this particular tale is that Yana Stadnik will have the chance to be united with "this blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England".

Gerry Dorrian
300 words


  1. I dont see a problem as long as she is proud to be British and speaks English and understands the Culture in this country im fine with that there is many people coming to this country taking benifits and sitting on there butts but she is doing well for this country and winning medals in European championships and increasing funding for the sport and GB Team and she likes the Uk which is a great country and for a small sport of wrestling im sure they need all the help they can get because no one has got an olympic medal for over 20 years so somethink needs to change and dont forget there is many athletes competing for Team Gb that wasnt born here for e example MO FARAH and we all loved his european and world medals because he proud to be British

  2. Another big thing in her favour - she married a British man, one of her fellow wrestlers - and has actually tried to keep it quiet and not use it for leverage for the passport - it would have been easier for her just to talk about that and use it to get a spouse exception; but she didn't want the cynics to question her marriage, or her sincerity as a new Brit, so she is getting on with married life, and going for the passport on her own merits instead. Good luck to her.