Saturday, June 19, 2021

He Isaa’c Bad Badman Makwala

Be afraid! Be very very afraid! The Badman himself, Isaac Makwala is back and ready to light up the track.

A day after qualifying for the Olympics in 400m on Saturday, Makwala was back on track to book a starting berth in the 200m at the Tokyo Olympics.

This Sunday was vintage Makwala, a man capable of running against the wind or doing multiple events on a weekend.  

All this despite the athlete still struggling to come to terms with a niggling injury that has been threatening to stop him from making his last bow in Tokyo.

According to sources, with an eye on making his last bow at the Olympics, and perhaps getting the elusive Olympic medal, Makwala has decided to forego operation on his injury.

“He knows if he goes under the knife, he will not make the Olympics, which will be his last. He has decided to take the risk and knows the injury may force him to retire after the Olympics,” the source says.

Perhaps fearing to aggravate the injury, even Makwala himself has made it known that his main target is the 200m event.

But injured or not, if his showing this past weekend is anything to go by, it is safe to say he may finally just get the one medal he yearns for.

His performances over the weekend were a source of great delight for his coach Justice Dipeba.

Speaking in an interview, an elated Dipeba said he is optimistic the athlete will soon hit his peak.

He however said he had to manage him well to ensure he can reach his peak at the right time and hold on until the Olympics.

The coach said this will guard against trying to train and reaching a second peak before the Olympics, which is not always successful. 

Ahead of this past weekend, Dipeba said he had to manage Makwala and cut short his training due to the rate of his speed as he was running to fast. 

“During the week I had to stop him on Wednesday to stop training because he was running very fast,” Dipeba explained.

As such, he said the athlete had to run the weekend races without further training during the week. 

Concerning the qualifying plan, the coach said the initial plan was for Makwala to qualify for both races on Saturday as a way to avoid more strain over two days.

“This was also a plan for him to qualify for both races on Saturday. Unfortunately, his block slid during the 200m event and led to a poor start, which meant we had to try again on Sunday which he nailed it,” Dipeba explained.

RELATED STORIES

Read this week's paper