Kuwait athletes “ready” as Tokyo Olympic Games get underway

Kuwait’s contingent of athletes participating in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games said on Saturday they are fully “ready” to represent their country just as the marquee event overshadowed by the COVID pandemic opened in a city under a state of emergency because of a resurgence of new cases.

Men’s Skeet shooter Abdullah Al-Reshidi, making his seventh appearance at the Olympic Games, said his participation this year came by mere happenstance as he was chosen to replace his fellow athlete Saud Al-Kanderi, who pulled out of the event for personal reasons, seeing the incident as a silver lining that would allow him to chalk up more accomplishments in his Olympic career.

Al-Rashidi, who won bronze in the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, promised to do everything in his power to propel his country to prominence in an event of such magnitude, simultaneously reaching another highlight of what has been a prolific Olympic odyssey.

Making his Olympic debut, Mansour Al-Rashidi, another Kuwaiti Men’s Skeet shooter, said “concentration” is key to excel in a precision sport such as shooting, adding that his recent participation in similar events, which include a pan-Arab contest in Egypt, had prepared him well for the showdown on Monday.

Expecting “stiff competition” ahead of the contest, Al-Rashidi said he looked forward to delighting Kuwaiti fans and giving them a reason to celebrate, pointing out that he was ready to prove his mettle with some of the world’s best Olympic shooters.

Swimmers Lara Dashti and Abbas Qali, with the former being the first Kuwaiti female athlete to have lifted the national flag at an Olympic opening ceremony just a day earlier, both said they were equally prepared for their respective competitions on July 29-30.

The Kuwaiti athletes haven been “well taken care of” ahead of the spectator-free Games in a bid to encourage them to put on career-defining performances, according to the country’s Olympic committee member Sheikh Jaber Al-Sabah.

Source: Kuwait News Agency