There are strong indications that not all the athletes that have qualified to represent the country at next year’s Olympic Games in Tokyo will make the event following the decision of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports to reduce the participating events to just 11 sports.
The Sports Minister, Sunday Dare, opined yesterday that the days of jamboree at the Olympics are over as Nigeria would only compete in sports where she has comparative advantage.
According to him, preparing and leveraging on Sports where Nigeria has comparative advantage of excelling at the Olympics will be the focus.
“The Olympic is less than six months away and we have started camping our athletes to get them to full fitness ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.
“We had four camps in Abuja, Port Harcourt, Akure and Lagos. From next year we will commence a more robust camping with some athletes going abroad to train with their foreign- based counterparts.
“The first camping exercise was in Pankshin, Plateau State, while the second phase camping ended on the 24th December, 2020. Lagos, Bayelsa, Port Harcourt and Abuja were the locations for the second phase.
“We started the Pre-Olympics camping early to ensure that the athletes that will be representing the country in the Tokyo Olympics put up podium performances”.
Dare added that Team Nigeria will be going to the Olympics with just 11 sports, unlike in the past when all the sports that qualified went and returned empty handed.
“We need to compete with other nations to win and not to complete the numbers. We have decided to focus on 11 sports where we have comparative advantage,” Dare concluded.