Jamaican sprinter is excited to be in Namibia

22 Sep 2015 17:20pm
WINDHOEK, 22 SEP (NAMPA) - Two-time Olympic champion in the 100 metre (m), Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, touched down in Windhoek on Tuesday for an eight-day visit.
“I’m really excited to be here in Namibia. I’m excited to visit the different places, I’m excited to speak to the children and the athletes,” she said during a media briefing at the Hosea Kutako International Airport, east of the capital.
Fraser-Pryce and her entourage were received by the Deputy Minister of Sport, Youth and National Service, Agnes Tjongarero and the Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Maureen Hinda.
Over 100 learners and teachers also welcomed the Jamaican sprinter at the airport, where she was entertained by cultural dances from the Kavango and Aawambo people.
Sporting long black braids and dressed casually in blue jeans, white T-shirt and white Converse All Star tekkies, the ‘pocket rocket,’ as she is referred to because of a diminutive frame, joined in the cultural dances inside the airport terminal.
“I’m excited to visit everywhere in Namibia. I hope and I wish that my stay was very long but of course I have to get back to practice,” she said.
The sprinter became the first woman from Jamaica to win the 100m Olympic gold medal in 2008. She won her second straight 100m Olympic gold medal at the 2012 Summer Olympics.
She is the only female to be crowned world champion over 100m three times (2009, 2013, 2015).
In her welcoming remarks, Tjongarero said Namibians could learn a lot from Fraser-Pryce, as she is a true inspiration.
“What we want is to learn from her. We want to know how it happened for her, so that she inspires those who want to become great sprinters,” she said.
The deputy minister mentioned some world-class athletes that Namibia has produced such as Frank Fredericks, Luketz Swartbooi, Agnes Samaria, Johanna Benson, Johannes Nambala and Annanias Shikongo.
She further said the Namibian nation was proud to have seen its athletes perform admirably well at the just-ended All Africa Games in Congo-Brazaville, where they won a record 15 medals.
Tjongarero said being a World and Olympic champion takes a lot of commitment, sacrifice, hard work and dedication, and she thus hopes that some of Namibia’s aspiring athletes can learn from what Fraser-Pryce will demonstrate in the next few days of her stay.
Fraser-Pryser's visit to Namibia is part of a bilateral programme between the two countries, which resulted in Namibian athletes being placed at Jamaican University of Technology (Utech) to improve their performances.
She is in Namibia to experience the country’s environment and motivate local athletes; in particular the marginalised youth of Namibia, as she also hails from a previously disadvantaged background.
Fraser-Pryce is ranked fourth on the list of the fastest 100m female sprinters of all time, with a personal best of 10.70 seconds.