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Tokyo Games qualifier believes decision to push event was inevitable,

By Amos Abuga
Wednesday, April 1st, 2020
Team Kenya captain Nick Okoth after securing his Olympics ticket in Dakar, Senegal, on Wednesday. Photo/PD/FILE

African Boxing Championships gold medallist Nick ‘Commander’ Okoth does not want to appear as though he is opposing the decision by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to postpone this year’s Games to 2021.

Okoth is in agreement that  the decision to postpone the Games by a year was taken in good faith and aimed  at protecting  the health of the athletes and everyone involved and ultimately to support the containment of Covid-19 virus.

On a personal front, Okoth who turned 37-years-old on March 3  conducts self-awareness and is awake to the fact age is not on his side  more so given that he could be almost midway his 38th year year by the time he returns to the Olympics for an historic second time.

Besides that, Okoth married to Rachel Ouko, recalls on the kind of sacrifices he had to endure to return to the Games for the first time since 2008 , coincidentally in Asia also,  Beijing, China.

“It was alot of sacrifices not only from me but everyone else involved; my wife, kids, coaching team, and generally my training regime.

It is not something that happens overnight,” shared the father to Kevin and Delhi.

“ It is not as easy as it looks. From a  fans’ perspective, it can appear extremely easy.

I mean that is what they see on television or even live bouts, but alot of work happens behind the scenes, that is where fights are won. It needs hard work and alot of determination,” Okoth added.

The pugilist who features for the Kenya Defence Forces team in the National Boxing League calls himself a  realist, which is why he thinks Olympics could have been better for him in 2020 than a year later.

“I am not throwing in the towel. When I can I will continue to train as hard as possible for the Olympics.

But, realistically, I don’t subscribe to the theory that with age comes experience and prowess. I think speed is also needed in boxing, that doesn’t come with age, “ he disclosed.

Okoth who settled for silver during the African Olympic qualifiers held in Dakar, Senegal  in February says the most important thing for now is the well being of citizens while urging them to adhere to government directive of staying at home while also respecting social distance.

“Everyone is feeling the pain not just sportspersons. But I agree, all the measures are meant for our own well-being.

As citizens we have role to play as opposed to what the government will do for us,” concluded featherweight boxer.

Okoth and Commonwealth Games flyweight bronze medalist Christine Ongare are the two Kenyan boxers who qualified for the Olympics Games which have since been rescheduled but will be held in Tokyo Japan.

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