Makwala Begins Diamond League Season In Birmingham This Weekend

Gazette Reporter

Botswana’s most celebrated track runner, Isaac Makwala will begin his Diamond League season this weekend in Birmingham, England alongside other top ranked track and field athletes across the world. The League will be held on the 21st of May, in England’s one of the busiest cities and it will be contested in 15 track and field main events following the season’s opener in Doha, Qatar last week.

Makwala who recently announced his retirement at the end of the season will compete in 400m despite his recent switch to specializing in 100m and 200m. He will be officially starting his preparations for the upcoming World Championships and Commonwealth Games where he qualified for 200m and 400m races. He competed in 200m at the recent Gaborone International Meet (GIM) and the Kip Keno Classic held in Nairobi, Kenya fortnight ago where he finished 3rd in both races (200m). In an exclusive interview with Gazette Sport recently, Makwala said he is fully prepared to compete against the best in the world after a long time which he believes that it is a good platform to ready for the highly anticipated global events.

“I will be in Birmingham this weekend for my first Diamond League race of the year following my subsequent preparatory races I participated in Botswana, South Africa and Kenya recently. I am looking forward to the tight competition from my rivals and we are both wary of the threat that we are all posing to each other simply because 400m is an open race. I like Diamond Leagues because that is where I generate my income from hence the energy I invest in these races, they pay good, and I won’t afford to miss them. I have confirmed a total of 5 races this year and I believe it will be a good platform to say my final goodbyes to my fans across the world,” he said.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics Bronze medallist further stated that he will be competing in 200m and 400m in most races depending on the invitation which automatically comes with the category of participation. “I recently announced that I will be specialising in 200m this year, as it will be my last and I plead with my followers not to be confused because I will be participating according to the invite. However, most of my races this year are in 200m. That’s where I’m putting all the focus on. I have qualified for both 400m and 200m at the upcoming international events such as World Championships and the Commonwealth Games which I intend to give my very best. There is a lot of pressure for me because I am the defending champion of the Commonwealth Games 400m and I also want to retire with a World Champion medal in my cabinet,” Makwala added.

From Birmingham Diamond league he will proceed to Eugene, United States of America on the 28th of May competing in 400m. Makwala has also confirmed his participation in three Diamond League races in June being Rabat, Morocco on the 5th , Rome, Italy on the 9th and finally Oslo, Norway on the 16th before he head to back to the World Championships in Birmingham. He will later be joined by the 800m track runner Nijel Amos who is currently hard at work prior to the World Championships.