Qatar athletics stars arrived in the Olympic Village in Tokyo on Wednesday after their training camp in Takasaki, Japan. Qatar’s athletics squad is spearheaded by world high jump champion Mutaz Barshim and 400m hurdles world bronze medallist Abderrahman Samba. The team also includes Femi Ogunode, Ashraf El Saifi, Abubaker Hayder, Musab Adam, Abdulrhaman Saieed and Bashayer al-Mnawari.
Samba will head to the Japanese capital alongside a handful of arch-rivals. But the 25-year-old, however, is confident of a podium finish. “I will fight tooth and nail to honour the country in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. Nothing is easy in these games, but I will put all efforts to run faster, turn my dream into reality and step up the Olympic podium,” Samba said.
Mohamed Essa al-Fadalah, Assistant Secretary General of Qatar Athletics Federation confirmed that the training camp in Takasaki has kept the athletes in good shape. “Despite the tough restrictions being imposed due to the pandemic to keep the athletes safe and protected, our athletes are fully satisfied with the outcome they had from Takasaki camp” added al-Fadalah.
Qatar’s challenge at Tokyo Games is led by Barshim, who will be in action tomorrow (3:15am Qatar time).
The 28-year-old holds the second highest jump in history of 2.43m, a mere two centimetres short of Cuban Javier Sotomayor. Barshim, who is London 2012 Olympic bronze medallist and Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallist, will return to his third Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020 looking for the top Olympic glory. Samba too will be in action on Friday (5:25am Qatar time).
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