World No. 2 Odunayo Adekuoroye says she is looking forward to competing at international tournaments in order to get her ready to challenge for a medal at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics later this year in Japan.
The 2-time Commonwealth champion returned to competition for the first time in almost a year, impressively claiming gold in the 57kg class at the just-concluded Baraza Champion of Champions wrestling tournament in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital at the weekend.
At the moment, the 27-year-old six-time African champion is the only Nigerian wrestler to have qualified for the Tokyo Olympics, which holds from 23 July to 8 August, 2021, though the Nigeria Wrestling Federation (NWF) is optimistic, at least, seven more wrestlers will join her at the global multisport event.
Despite not showing any signs of rustiness in Yenagoa, Adekuoroye told www.busybuddiesng.com she will need to compete against tougher oppositions abroad to be at her peak prior to the Olympics.
“I think for 10 months now I have not been to international competitions,” the former World No. 1 noted.
“I will love to wrestle, I’ll love to wrestle so that I can fully come back to wrestling, I mean internationally.”
With the Africa/Oceania Olympic qualifiers slated for early April, the wrestling star added that she is expecting the other athletes to join her at the Olympics later this year.
“And I am looking forward to welcoming to rest Olympic weight classes champions to the Olympic club.
The 3-time World Championships medalist, who is aiming to win Nigeria’s first Olympics medal in wrestling, is one of the beneficiaries of the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development’s Adopt An Athlete Initiative, and she is already enjoying financial support from Halogen Security Ltd as a result.