Tekiath Ben Yessouf almost won the third Olympic medal in Niger’s history, on July 25, at the Taekwondo Tournament in Tokyo in 2021. The Nigerian narrowly lost in the battle for bronze.
From our special correspondent in Tokyo,
Tekiath Ben Yessouf experienced a real emotional boost on July 25 at the Taekwondo tournament at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2021. But unfortunately for West Africa, it ended with a brutal descent from the podium where she already saw herself …
“It’s such a disappointment,” she says in a weak voice. I thought I could at least win this bronze medal ”. Tekiath Ben Yessouf lost 10-6 in the battle for third place against Taiwanese Chia-Ling Lo.
“People thought I already had the medal”
However, Tekiath Ben Yessouf made a disastrous appearance. After a beautiful 11-6 victory against the Japanese Mayu Hamada, the reigning African champion lost to Russian Tatiana Minina (10-15). The 29-year-old then left the arena, full of disappointment and already turned to Paris in 2024.
“But the one who beat me qualified for the final and I was then drafted.” Smiling and refreshed, Tekiath Ben Yessouf then dismisses Greek Fani Tzeli, in overtime (2-0).
Those who are civilian police are fighting to keep their grief down. “It simply came to our notice then. Everyone was waiting for this medal from me, she says. People even started congratulating me on thinking that after my third fight I already had the bronze medal ”.
See you in three years
Tekiath Ben Yessouf would then have won the third Olympic charm in Niger’s history, then in bronze by Issaka Daborg in 1972 in boxing, and that in silver by Abdoul Razak Issoufou Alfaga in taekwondo 2016. “It would have been a success … great pleasure for all Nigerians that a woman is a medalist at the Olympics, ”she recalls.
Tekiath Ben Yessouf thinks he lacked some experience to go to the end, in Tokyo. Especially since it was his first Olympic Games. “I’m going back to my gym. I will correct my mistakes to get back in force for Paris 2024, she swears.