Sawe departs for Olympics with a high ambition


Sawe departs for Olympics with a high ambition
Mathew Sawe competes in Men High Jump during the World athletics continental tour Gold Nairobi meeting dubbed the Kip Keino Classic on October 3, 2020 at the Nyayo National Stadium in Nairobi , Kenya. PHOTO/Kelly Ayodi/Sportpicha

In Summary

  • Sawe is among 15 high jumpers who qualified for the Olympics via World Rankings position after placing 24th in the world by end of the entry period on June 29 and will be making his debut at the Games
  • As the 33-year-old leaves for Tokyo on Friday evening, he has his work cut out for him being the only Kenyan to compete in high jump at the Olympics

Two-time Africa high jump champion Mathew Sawe has set his sights on reaching the finals at the Tokyo Olympics that officially kicks off on Friday.

Sawe is among 15 high jumpers who qualified for the Olympics via World Rankings position after placing 24th in the world by end of the entry period on June 29 and will be making his debut at the Games.

As the 33-year-old leaves for Tokyo on Friday evening, he has his work cut out for him being the only Kenyan to compete in high jump at the Olympics.

“Of course it feels good to compete at the Olympics. My preparations have gone well and I can say I am ready to do my best in Tokyo.

My target is to make it to the finals first then from there we will see what happens” said Sawe.

With a personal best of 2.30m, Sawe is also eyeing Kenyan record at the Summer Games.

“If I can manage at least 2.31m then I will be happy,” he said.

Having competed at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Sawe said he learnt from the experience as he seeks to leave a mark at the global extravaganza.

“During the (2019) Championships, It was unfortunate that I had an injury that really affected my performance then. I am happy that I have recovered well ahead of the Olympics,” added Sawe.

With Sawe set to get into action on July 30, he is brimming with confidence despite the cancellation of sporting events last year due to Covid-19.

“For sure the effects of the pandemic hit us hard last year as we could not find championships to compete in but on my part I went on with my training and I think I am in a good shape despite being out of competition for quite a long time,” he said.

The high jumper and Olympic javelin silver medallist Julius Yego are the only field events athletes in the Kenyan athletics team for Tokyo Games.

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Story By Gilbert Kiprotich
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