Oteng resumes training after injury scare
by Botlhale Koothupile
The Botswana’s Olympic medal hopeful, Oteng Oteng, has resumed training. The athlete, who had to break his intensive training overseas following an injury scare, resumed training again last week Wednesday following consultations with doctors.
Speaking in an interview, Boxing national team coach, Khumiso Ikgopoleng, said the doctors have since made it clear that the pugilist had suffered no broken bones and can therefore resume training.
“The doctors have informed us that Oteng’s injury is minor and if managed well, it must be healed within a few days without him missing training. We started our training again on Wednesday,” Ikgopoleng said.
On how much the injury has disrupted the athlete’s Olympic preparations, Ikgopoleng said Oteng has not missed much training as he has been doing a lot of physical training as contact is not yet allowed until the doctors give a go ahead for such training. He said as such, the boxer will continue his training until he leaves for another intensive training camp in France this coming Friday.
‘The Terrible OT,’ as Oteng is affectionately known in local boxing circles, is the only boxer to make it into Botswana’s Olympic team this year.
Asked whether the boxer’s injury scare has not affected him psychologically, Ikgopoleng said there are no signs from the boxer that he is psychologically affected by the injury.
“He has shown no signs that he fears contact at training or that he is fearful of incurring another injury. There is no difference in the way he has applied himself in training prior to his injury or after the injury,” Ikgopoleng added. The coach has expressed delight at the progress made by his protégé, saying that Oteng can do better at the Olympics and surpass his (Ikgopoleng’s) achievements at the games.
“While in training in Cuba, he has shown no fear when facing more experienced boxers who are ranked higher than him,” the coach added. Ikgopoleng says Oteng knows that the Olympics will be an opportunity for him to make a name for himself, adding that he always talks to the boxer to prepare him.
“When I went to the Olympics, I was nobody. I was not known. When I came back from there, I was ranked in the top five and was a known athlete. Oteng has the opportunity to surpass my achievement and we are working towards him achieving what I have not achieved, winning a medal at the Olympics,” Ikgopoleng said, adding that a win for Oteng will also mean much for him as a coach as he would have ‘also won a medal.’