Fatimo Bello eyes maiden Olympics ticket in Kigali


Fatimo Bello came to international reckoning in 2022 when she defied all odds to reach the final of the African Cup, where she eventually lost to Egypt’s Hana Goda.

This performance contributed to her world ranking fortunes, as she became the third-best player in Africa and the highest-ranked Nigerian female player in the world.

After the 2022 feat, Bello moved to Italy to continue her professional career, but her inability to repeat the 2022 feat affected her ranking, as she dropped in the pecking order in Africa.

Now that she has been listed as one of Nigeria’s flagbearers at the African Olympics qualification tournament in Kigali, Rwanda, the Lagos State-born athlete believes this is her time to join the league of elite players heading to Paris in July.

“It has not been easy since 2022, but I am still a work in progress with the hope that I will get back to my form. My African Games’ experience was not impressive at all, and I have left that behind me with the hope that I can re-enact my form in Kigali,” she said.

The three-time Nigerian champion admitted that she expects tough challenges from other players, adding, however, that she is poised to fight for one of the three tickets at stake.

Bello will be joined by Offiong Edem in the women’s category of the Olympic qualifiers, which will hold from May 16 to 18, while Quadri Aruna and Olajide Omotayo will compete in the men’s category.

The three top players will secure automatic tickets to the Paris 2024 Olympic Games in France.

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