With the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games less than nine months away, Uganda Olympic Committee (UOC) has zeroed in on nine sports disciplines that they expect to deliver medals.
UOC is leaving nothing to chance in pursuit for success at the 2020 Olympics to be hosted by Japan starting July 24th until 9th August.
Athletics, boxing, swimming, rowing, weightlifting, rugby 7’s, badminton, skating and 3X3 basketball have been highlighted and still within chance to achieve qualification.
Qualification will be in many ways including those with required times while others like badminton and weightlifting, being within the required global ranking is enough.
The universality or wildcard ticket offered by the International Olympic Committee will also count as one of the ways to qualify athletes.
In order to qualify at least 35 athletes, Uganda Olympic Committee (UOC) is offering support in various ways.
“For us to be able to help these athletes, we have opportunities that have been offered including Olympic scholarships which currently have six beneficiaries, one from swimming (Rebecca Ssengozi) and five from athletics (Halimah Nakaayi, Esther Chebet, Joshua Cheptegei, Jacob Kiplimo, Albert Chemutai), then we have the team grant sport that has been handed to the Rugby 7s side, while the recipients of the Continental Athlete support grant include badminton, rowing, weightlifting, cycling, athletics, table tennis,3×3 basketball and swimming,” explained Beatrice Ayikoru,the 2nd vice president UOC.
Five Ugandans including rower Catherine Noble and runners Joshua Cheptegei, Winnie Nanyondo, Peruth Chemutai and Halima Nakaayi have secured their slots at the Tokyo2020 Olympic games next year, with the Rugby 7’s in South Africa for their continental qualifier.
“We now have a deliberate policy to identify athletes, we are zeroing down on particular athletes to know were we will get our Olympic medals and success in future games,” added William Blick UOC President.
“We can’t do all the sports that exist, but with the limited finances that we have as UOC, I think you can give us credit for the list of athletes that are on the scholarship grant, and we have already qualified 70 percent, with two that are world champions,” said Blick.
Uganda Olympic committee has also secured partnership for pre-game training in Japan at Tateshina-Nagano Prefecture and Izumisano –Osaka prefecture.
The qualification pathway continues until April 26th 2020 for all others apart from athletics whose qualification deadline is 29th June 2020.