Sailing: Tokyo Olympic Games 2020 |18 October 2019
Designated Minister Mondon congratulates Govinden on Olympic qualification
2020 Tokyo Olympics qualifier Rodney Govinden has been congratulated on his achievement by Designated Minister Macsuzy Mondon who also holds the sports portfolio.
Designated Minister Mondon was joined in yesterday afternoon’s meeting at her office at the Designated Minister’s conference room at Independence House annex by National Sports Council (NSC) board chairperson Eddie Micock, youth and sports principal secretary Fabian Palmrye and NSC board member Allan Julie who also took part in the qualifiers – the 2019 African Champions RSX and Laser in Algiers, Algeria last week.
Laser sailor Govinden won the gold medal and qualification for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games after finishing first out of 15 sailors in the Laser class with a nett score of 22 after his two worst finishes – 10th and 11th places – were discarded. He had three first places, five second places and one third place finish.
Despite his achievement, Govinden did not receive the welcome he deserves upon his return to the country on Monday morning.
And when he congratulated Govinden on his feat yesterday morning, NSC board chairman Micock apologised for not meeting him at the airport as, according to him, there was no communication from the Seychelles Yachting Association about his return date.
Designated Minister Mondon also congratulated Govinden for this great achievement, saying “you have not only made yourself and your family proud, but the country is also very proud of you.”
Mrs Mondon said she recognises the personal sacrifices that one has to make to achieve such great result amidst all the obstacles that may come their way.
She has also requested for his training plan until the games so that government alongside the NSC can see where they can help him.
This is the second time Govinden will perform at the Olympics. The first time was in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil where he was also the flag bearer. He finished 45th overall.
An overjoyed Govinden said he has been literally fighting for the title of African champion for a while. He once came out third in 2017, was second in 2018 and first in 2019. “I am proud of myself,” he said.
In an interview with the Seychelles NATION newspaper earlier this week, Govinden said his immediate plan is to sit down with his coach and the sports authority to set up a training plan, based on the available budget, prior to the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.
Govinden also noted that his achievement involved a lot of hard work and sacrifices and that he has been training since the last Olympic Games in Rio, especially during the off-season period.
“This helps to maintain a solid physical base,” said Govinden.
His preparations for the 2019 African Championship RSX and Laser started two years ago, after he got an Olympic Solidarity scholarship and it involved local training, as well as international training camps which included skill sharpening techniques, as well as competitions.
As for his goal for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Govinden again said he needs to sit down with his coach to discuss and set up a realistic one.
“It should be in the top 25,” he added.