• Chishimba Bwalya

No disappointments at Olympics - Moosa


MOOSA speaking to the media at KKIA

50 METRES Freestyle Swimmer Shaquille Moosa and Featherweight Boxer Evaristo Mulenga have set high targets at the Tokyo Olympic Games.


Speaking to the media shortly before departure for Tokyo on Saturday morning at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport, both athletes said they were targeting good performances during their various competitions.


"My current time is 24 seconds but I will be looking to go to 23 seconds," he said.


Asked about the stiff competition at in Tokyo, Moosa said; "I don’t really focus on other competitors, I just focus on myself and my race.


“Expect no disappointments.”


Mulenga, who also spoke afterwards, revealed his optimism of winning a medal, a feat that Zambia has not achieved since 1996 when Samuel Matete won silver in 400m hurdles at the Atlanta Games.


"My target is just to reach in the medal brackets. Once I get there that's when I will know that even a medal I can win.


"The ranking is giving me motivation, I am feeling happy, even when going into the fights I have the heart of winning a medal.


According to the latest rankings released by International Olympic Committee (IOC) Task Force, Mulenga is placed third among 28 boxers in his category, behind Mirazizbek Mirzakhalow of Uzbekistan while Albert Batyrgaziew of Russia is second.


Mulenga said he was counting on experience from past competitions to help him at the Games.


"It's my first time but I have medals at All Africa Games in, in Senegal I won a gold medal. I have experience and it has gone high.


WHO HAS TRAVELLED SO FAR?


28 athletes have so far travelled to Japan for the Games, including the women’s football team that left on Monday last week.


Three boxers, two swimmers, a judoka, and five coaches left on Saturday in the company Ministry of Sports and National Olympic Committee of Zambia (NOCZ) officials at 13;30hrs aboard Ethiopian airlines.


They are the second group of athletes to depart, with the third and final group of Sydney Siame and Rhoda Njobvu expected to leave on July 24.


Other athletes who travelled on Saturday include swimmer Tilka Paljk, welterweight boxer Stephen Zimba and flyweight Patrick Chinyemba and judoka Steven Mung'andu.


Coaches are Ian Stephenson (Swimming), Wisdom Mudenda and Charles Kangwa (Boxing), Francis Moola (Judo).


The group was seen off at the airport by NOCZ President Alfred Foloko and Secretary General Boniface Kambikambi, and officials from the Zambia Boxing Federation.


JULY 17, 2021: Tokyo-bound athletes and coaches pose for a picture at KKIA shortly before departure. PICTURE: NOCZ Media