Emmanuel Appah became the first Nigerian athlete to win three gold medals at the 2019 African Games in Rabat, Morocco, after snatching victory in the 61 kg category of the men’s Weightlifting event at the Games.
In this interview, Appah, an undergraduate student at the University of Minna, said winning the medals has boosted his morale to go for more laurels and to bring honours to the country.
How does it feel winning three gold medals for the country?
I feel happy and excited because it was a dream come true for me.
Did you come to Morocco expecting to win three gold medals?
My aim has always been to win medals, and not to come back empty handed. I always make sure I train very hard whenever I am going out to represent Nigeria. That’s why I always have that belief that I will come back with medals.
What has winning three gold medals done to your career as an athlete?
It has boosted my morale to work harder and set more records. I am now going to be aiming at the world record after setting an African record. I want to make Nigeria proud.
Do you think you can repeat this performance at next year’s Olympic Games?
I believe I can achieve that. All I need now is to get all the support for me to perform better.
What has the training been like for you back home in Nigeria?
It has not been easy for me; schooling and training at the same time. I spent just one month in camp to achieve this record. Imagine if I was in camp for longer period of time, I would have done more than I did. If one month in camp could give me these three gold, then more time will bring more honour.