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Asimenye Simwaka’s last chance for 2020 Olympics

JOURNEY BE GOOD—Simwaka and Nyasulu before departure

Malawi’s female athlete of the moment Asimenye Simwaka faces her defining moment to qualify for 2020 Tokyo Olympics when she competes in the Cameroon National Championship this weekend.

Simwaka, alongside her coach Pachisi Nyasulu, left the country Wednesday through Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe ahead of the two-day event that starts on Saturday.

Nyasulu confirmed it was a make-or-break point for the multitalented athlete who is also a member of the Malawi Women’s National Football Team.

“We have been invited by Cameroon Athletics Federation. The championship is also an Olympic qualifier.

But Asimenye Simwaka has been training as much as she could,” he said.

“Definitely, it is her final chance to try and qualify. I think she is ready in view of how we have trained. She is ready to take on the challenge.”

Nyasulu was confident that Simwaka would do well despite recently recovering from illness.

“Yes, we had a drawback as she got sick but she has now recovered. She is fit. As I said she is going to compete and definitely she is going for the prize we have been waiting for to try to qualify for the Olympics. Owing to good weather and her good health we hope for the best,” he said.

The coach said they were doing specialised training to enable Simwaka to achieve her mission.

However, it was a blow for another athlete Stern Liffa who has missed the trip due to a hamstring injury.

According to a statement from Malawi Olympic Committee (Moc), Liffa is yet to recover from the injury he sustained in Zambia.

Both Liffa and Simwaka qualified for the 22nd Senior Africa Championships which were then put on hold due to lack of a hosting country due to Covid cases and restrictions.

This was the first time for Malawi to qualify for the senior championships, having been sending athletes on solidarity.

The two were part of the five-member team at the All-Comers Track and Field event at Heroes Stadium in Lusaka, Zambia, in April.

Last month, Simwaka won gold in 400-metres (m) after finishing in 53.31 seconds during track and field event held in Lusaka, Zambia.

Simwaka run for 23:74 seconds to break her own record of 23:91 seconds.

However, it was at this event where Liffa sustained an injury.

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