Ghana’s only medallist at the just ended Commonwealth Games, Jessie Lartey says he had to save Ghana’s image by making sure Ghana was represented on the medal table.
He said Team Ghana promised to return with at least five medals but when things were not going as planned, he had to step up to the challenge and make a name for Ghana.
Lartey who is a member of the national boxing team, Black Bombers, made this point in an interview with The Finder after winning Ghana’s only medal at the games.
He won his first fight in the 64kg Round of 16 bout against Louis Colin from Mauritius and met Sinethemba Blom from South Africa in the quarter finals where he defeated the South African.
He was later paired with Canada’s Thomas Blumenfeld in the semi-finals where he lost by a unanimous decision but was still able to get a bronze medal for Ghana.
All of Ghana’s medal hopefuls did not live to expectation and that sent a wrong signal to Ghana’s sports fraternity as they were hoping to achieve the five medal target.
Abdul Wahid Omar, a bronze medallist in the 2014 games in Glasgow, who was Ghana’s flagbearer at the opening ceremony of the Gold Coast Games, lost his fight in the preliminary stage.
This was a big blow to the Black Bombers but head coach, Ofori Asare earlier told the paper that he was not perturbed about the outcome of his first two bouts and noted that one of his boxers could spring a surprise at the games.
He insisted that Ghana’s chances in boxing were still bright and to walk his talk, he and his team of boxers managed to get Ghana’s only medal at the multi-sport event.
“I was hopeful that we were going to do well because in Glasgow, Wahid was an underdog for a medal but he came from nowhere to win a medal and I think history has repeated itself in Gold Coast too because Jessie was not one of our medal targets but he has proven us wrong, so I am proud of my boys,” Coach Asare said.
Source: The Finder