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Weightlifters tie the knot after Commonwealth Games

Last updated 05:00 28/08/2014
Richie Patterson and Pip Hale
LAWRENCE SMITH/Fairfax NZ

GAMES WEDDING: Weightlifters Richie Patterson and Pip Hale tied the knot in Glasgow after competing in the Commonwealth Games.

Gay Hale
PROUD MUM: Gay Hale Tindalls Bay.

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Weightlifter Pip Hale was thrilled to have her parents present when she married her gold medal winning trainer Richie Patterson in Scotland during the Commonwealth Games.

Hale, 29, competed in the 53kg women's category and moved up a place to fifth when gold medallist Chaka Amalaha of Nigeria failed a doping test and was stripped of her award.

She also broke the New Zealand record and had cause for double celebration when fiancee and trainer Richie Patterson won a gold medal in his 85kg weightlifting class.

The wedding - two days later in Glasgow - was the icing on the cake.

Even more so because Hale's parents, Gay and Rob of Tindalls Bay, were there to celebrate it with them.

Hale and Patterson met through training and the relationship quickly moved from professional to personal.

A proposal followed last Valentine's Day and the couple initially planned to keep their nuptials secret because they didn't want to pull attention away from athletes still competing at the games.

But Hale's mother said Patterson let the cat out of the bag.

"He was a bit excited when he got the gold and something popped out at an interview."

The pair got media attention from around the world but blocked attempts from journalists to be at the wedding. It is understood they have a deal with a women's magazine.

They had an intimate ceremony with 21 guests at Pollok House, one of Scotland's grandest Edwardian homes in Glasgow.

Patterson chose the venue because his forefathers came from the ancient village of Pollokshaws in the same area of Glasgow, Hale's mother said.

"That meant something to him and he knew it would really mean something to his dad."

She said the day was magical and Hale was welcomed on to the grounds by a bagpiper who then escorted her, her father and a bridesmaid down the aisle.

"As they walked through the house it got louder and louder so you knew exactly where they were."

Guests enjoyed bubbles and canapes while exploring Pollok House before heading to dinner at Sherbrooke Castle where the newlyweds spent their first night as man and wife.

The couple have settled in Rothesay Bay and run their gym Functional Strength in Rosedale.

The ANZ bank supplied 1000 tickets for competitors' families to attend events in Scotland, ensuring Hale's parents got to watch their daughter compete.

Otherwise the pair would have gone in a ticket ballot which didn't guarantee them entry to the weightlifting.

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