Lehata reveals Olympic preps

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at Hampden Park during day eight of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on July 31, 2014 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.
at Hampden Park during day eight of the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games on July 31, 2014 in Glasgow, United Kingdom.

Mikia Kalati

Star-sprinter Mosito Lehata would run at Germany’s Ellwangen International athletics competition to be held on 14 May.

The race is part of Lehata’s preparations for the 2016 Olympic Games scheduled for the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro in August.

The 25-year-old Mauritius-based athlete told the Lesotho Times he took part in his first race of the year last week and claimed pole position in the 100-metre dash ahead of Babaloki Thebe of Botswana.

Lehata also said he would compete at the 2016 African Athletics Championships set for June in South Africa.

“Everything went well in Germany and I won the race. I was under so much pressure to do well because it was my first race of the year.

“You are always nervous as an athlete in your first race of the year and hoping to do well. I can say it was a good start to the year and gives me confidence ahead of the Olympics.”

Lehata also said he did not want to compete in “too many races” before the Olympics to ensure he is fit for the global showcase and is not exhausted by the time the world showcase roars into life on 5 August. The biennial multisport tournament ends on 21 August and traditionally attracts the best athletes on the planet. Lesotho has never won a medal at the Olympics.

“I made a mistake and took part in too many competitions last year and in the end, paid the prize as I struggled with my fitness and did not perform well at the World Championships in Beijing, as well as the All-Africa Games in Congo-Brazzaville,” said Lehata.

“I will not make the same mistake again, so at the moment, the focus is on Ellwangen and then the African Championships.”

Lehata, who has been at a high-performance training centre in Mauritius since 2011, also said he hoped to be part of a training camp being organized by the Lesotho National Olympic Committee  in Europe ahead of the Brazil showcase.

“I’m awaiting for the full programme on Team Lesotho’s preparations for the Olympics from the Lesotho National Olympic Committee, especially details of that training camp in Europe.

“But as for competing in the month leading to the Olympics, I don’t think I will do it because like I said, I don’t want to be exhausted by the time I go to the Olympics.”

Lehata also rubbished reports he was struggling with injuries once again. The sprinter has battled with injuries in the past which have prevented him from realizing his true potential.

“I’m not injured; I am in good shape for the Olympics. I have been training very hard to prepare for the Games so if there is anyone saying I am injured, this is not true at all,” he said.

“It is never easy to prepare for a big event such as the Olympics, but you have to keep pushing hard and be hopeful. What I can also tell you is I owe my country a big performance after the disappointments of last year.”

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