Targets a podium finish at the World Champs
The 2012 London Olympics 800m silver medalist Nijel Amos is busy plotting to be a force to be reckoned with in the 800m race this year. The Marobela born athlete has gone through mesmerizing highs and lows over the years since he burst onto the world athletics stage in 2012.
On a fine day in 2012, Zorro as Amos is affectionately known to his legion of fans sent spasms of elation and joy to Botswana, all the way from London after earning a 800 meters silver medal at the Olympics, the country’s first ever podium honour at the global sporting showpiece.
This is after the then 18 year old lad, emerged from the callow and left the world awe struck after finishing second behind Kenyan, David Rudisha, in a blistering 800m final, recording a time of 1:41.73. This was the third fastest time in history. Considering the time recorded coupled with his age, many people thought Amos would dominate the 800m race year in and year out but that was not to be as he started dishing mixed results.
Fast forward to 2019, Amos is yet to earn a podium finish at the IAAF Worlds Championships something which he intends to make history this year. “My aim is to record a podium finish, and if I do my dream would have come true,” said Amos in a telephone interview with Gazette Sport from his base in the United States of America. “I would have won a medal from one of the biggest competitions in athletics something which I believe will give me confidence heading into Tokyo 2020 Olympics.”
The 24 year old athlete has already qualified for the World Championships by the virtue of winning a gold in 800m during the African Athletics Championships which were held at Asaba, Nigeria. The World Championships are scheduled to be held between 27 September and 6 October in Doha, Qatar.
Ironically dubbed Botswana’s golden boy, Amos believes that the fact that he is working with a good coach in Mark Rowland will aid to turn around fortunes this year. “I came to USA two years ago a broken athlete. I was broken physically and mentally but Coach Rowland has worked on that and I’m now in a better place to say I’m in a good physical shape something which has been my problem over the years,” he said. “I have turned to be a better athlete who knows how to balance his races.”
Last year saw Amos showing glimpses of his return by recording a time of 1:42.14 during the Monaco Diamond League the fastest time achieved by anyone since that epic Olympic final in London six years ago. “We tested my championships ability last season in the diamond league circuit where I did 1:42.14 and 1:43.27 in 48 hours. That gives me confidence heading to the World Championships, I believe I would do better to win the biggest medal lacking in my cabinet.” Moreover Amos said he is injury free and will only engage in competitive races in May.