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Taekwondo secures qualification for Paris 2024

By Olimatou Coker

The Gambia National Olympics Committee has expressed delight at the country’s third qualified athlete for these summers, Paris Games. The latest to secure qualification is Taekwondo sensation Alasan Ann. 

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He follows sprinter Gina Bass and Judoka Faye.

The GNOC Secretary General Yoro Njie said Ann is a very promising athlete with lots of prospect and talent and big addition to Gambia’s medal hopes at the Paris Games 

Alasan Ann is the son of former Gambia army commander Pa Modou Ann now based in the United States.

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Philip Mendy, Secretary General of the Gambia Taekwondo Association, said Ann’s momentous qualification was secured after a grueling competition on 11 February in Dakar.

“Alasan’s journey to Olympic qualification began at the African Qualification Tournament, where he showcased his exceptional skills and determination to earn his rightful place in the prestigious event. His success is a testament to his unwavering commitment and relentless pursuit of excellence in the field of Taekwondo,” Mendy said.

Along the way Ann beat formidable opponents from across the continent including Hongbe Frederic of Chad and the 3rd-ranked athlete, Obame Anthony of Gabon, in the Male +80 category.

Meanwhile, another athlete Maria Sainabou Marchlinski, a 17-year-old, too exhibited remarkable skills, defeating opponents like Sierra Leone’s Noble Trinity Aria before facing a valiant battle against Toumi Chaima of Tunisia in the quarterfinals.

S.G Mendy also said Alasan’s achievements and Maria’s good performance highlight the immense potential and talent present in Gambia’s Taekwondo community.

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