Three-time Olympian and former technical director of the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation (NTF), Chika Chukwumerije, has reiterated the commitment of the Federation to discover more Olympic-prospect athletes ahead of Paris 2024 Olympics.
Speaking with newsmen in Abuja recently, World Teakwondo certified instructor solicited for support for Elizabeth Anyanacho to enable her gain adequate points and more experience, saying Nigeria stands a chance of qualifying more Taekwondo athletes for Paris Olympics.
“We are going to do a lot of work to ensure that so many Elizabeths are uncovered across the country. There are also so many wonderful coaches across the country doing very well, and we can identify these athletes, expose them and give them good opportunity. Definitely the sport stands to benefit from it.
“Our target this year is for Elizabeth to be in top 30, then by 2022 we want to push it to top 20, by 2023 top 10 and before the final push and these just require the resources to move around.
“We have World championship in about six months, that is another new ranking point, so I don’t think we should rest,” he said.
Meanwhile Tokyo Olympics debutant, Elizabeth Anyanacho, has disclosed that the experience she gathered at the games would propel her for better performance in the future.
She expressed joy over recent global ranking which placed her 28th in the world and 42nd in Olympic ranking.
“The important part of the ranking is to be top six in the world because that will enable me to qualify automatically for the next Olympics… If I could get lots of competitions, I will be able to hit that target of being at the top 30 to enhance my performance within three years to be able to get enough ranking to be in top six that will help me to qualify automatically for Paris 2024.
“Tokyo was very hard for me, I wanted to spring a surprise even though I had lots of encouragements but I really felt I had the skills and and talents to spring the surprise at the recently concluded Olympics but my opponent is very experienced. It is not only the skills that can take you there, you also have to understand the emotional experience, how to manage tension and the anxiety. Tokyo Olympics have made me to understand this better.”