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World Taekwondo: Kolade targets medal for Nigeria in Muju

*Igali praises team, wants more

*Opens fight against Piotr Pazinki of Poland on his birthday

Nigeria’s Paul Kolade is on a rescue mission to secure the nation a medal at the ongoing 2017 World Taekwondo Championships in Muju. Just as Nigeria’s Edwin Samson loses (12-33) to Olympic Gold Medallist, China’s Shuai Zhao.

Nigeria's Paul Kolade...eyeing a medal at the World Taekwondo
Nigeria’s Paul Kolade…eyeing a medal at the World Taekwondo

Six of seven Nigerians have crashed out since the tournament began on the 24th June.  2015 All Africa Games silver medallist, Edwin Samson (Male -63kg) lost this morning.  Kolade is the nation’s sole survivor.

President of the Nigeria Wrestling Federation (NWF), Daniel Igali commenting on the outing of the Nigerian team to the current Taekwondo championships said, “Nothing to be ashamed of. Congrats to the lads for even making it to the world championships. Let’s keep exposing them to these major championships yearly till 2020. The story will be different.”

Kolade said, “there are a lot of expectations from the people and they anticipate me achieving something better after some of my previous competitions. This is indeed a nervous time for me aiming to win a medal of any colour” said Kolade.

The Kogi-born, dark-skinned and lanky athlete disclosed that his coach is currently encouraging himself stressing his determination to help Nigeria make a podium appearance in Muju.

“For over three days our coach is having sleepless nights because of our form. He’s been encouraging all of us to support each other in order to come back home with at least a medal. We don’t want to return home barren

“I’m working hard and hopeful on giving Nigeria a medal. I want more prayers, moral support and good wishes from Nigerians to help me make good success,” he assured.

Kolade thanked the people and government of Kogi state as well as the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation for the support given before and during the championships.

Kolade, who will fight on the championship’s final day, 30th June – which is his birthday will open his campaign against Piotr Pazinki of Poland before seeing off other five opponents on his ambitious route to glory.

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