After a first day of rowing and archery, African athletes at the Olympic Games in Tokyo played 23 disciplines yesterday. Who are the African hopes of these Olympics?
With the withdrawal of Algerian judoka Fethi Nourine, who refused to face an Israeli opponent, and the untimely elimination of South African champion Caster Semenya for her refusal to be subjected to a hormonal test, Africa has diminished its chances of a new Olympic medal record . Nevertheless, the continent hopes for a maximum of podiums: the majority of the best African athletes have joined Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics. After the 45 African medals at the Rio Olympics, can African delegations do even better this year? ?
Between the Nigerian basketball team, Ivorian and Burkinabe athletes, Egyptian karatekas and hundreds of other champions, Africa is aiming for dozens of charms. The African countries which sent the most athletes for this edition are, in order, South Africa, Egypt, Kenya, Tunisia, Nigeria, Morocco, Algeria, Ethiopia and Ivory Coast. But it will also be necessary to count on Botswana, Burkina Faso or Niger which, if they bet less on team sports, have real chances of medals. With the Tunisian Mohamed Khalil Jendoubi, Africa also collected its first medal, in silver, in taekwondo.
The opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Tokyo 🏙 pic.twitter.com/rHF8a1eezp
— Views (@viewsfrance) July 23th, 2021
Aim for gold medals
In men's football, South Africa and Egypt are among the favorites of the competition. While in terms of women's football, the formidable Zambia has already been eliminated against Holland. Yet team captain Barbra Banda had declared her medal ambitions. When it comes to basketball, these are the D-Tigers of Nigeria which are already the surprise of the year. After a victory against the United States in the preparation matches, this Nigerian team is well on its way to winning an Olympic gold medal, if they play at their best.
But it is on the side of athletics that African viewers will have their eyes riveted. It is in athletics events that the Olympic Games Commission accepts the most competitors: a total of 48 countries will compete for hundreds of medals in the three major athletics families. Kenyan runners are the best in the world. Among men, Eliud Kipchoge still holds the world record for the marathon and half-marathon, as well as that of the 5 meters. Kipchoge was chosen by World Athletics athlete of the year in 000. For women, his compatriot Faith Kipyegon wants to keep her 1-meter record, which seems feasible since the elimination of Caster Semenya.
Still in athletics, the Burkinabé triple-jumper Hugues Zango, bronze medalist in Rio, is looking to beat his own world record that he set indoors in January 2021. Also, the Ivorian Marie-Josée Ta Lou will be looking for the However, this time, after coming second in the 100 meters in Rio, a thousandth of a second behind. Africa's fastest sprinter, South African Akani Simbine, will also have to light up the 100 meters. He will also be looking for his first Olympic medal, after coming 4th in Rio.
Finally, African swimming will be represented by South Africans Chad Le Clos and his teammate Tatjana Shoenmaker in the majority of the races. For the 1 meters, the holder of the world and Olympic record, the Tunisian Oussama Mellouli will finally make his return, as fourth swimmer in history to participate in six Olympic Games. Her compatriot, the tenniswoman Ons Jabeur will also play a podium brazenly. A last Tunisian, fencer Inès Boubakri, will finally seek her first gold medal in foil or saber, hoping to become the first African Olympic champion in the discipline, men and women alike.
🎉 Let's go for the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games #Tokyo2020 !#RTISPORT pic.twitter.com/IJfNwZCDEG
- Official RTI (@RTIOfficiel) July 23th, 2021