USA based Ghanaian female sprinter Flings Joyner Owusu-Agyapong who held the flag of Ghana at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and took park in the Women’s 100m dash as well as 100m x 4 relay believes she has what it takes to become the “Flying Queen of Africa”.
Speaking to Yours Truly in an exclusive interview in Accra during the 2017 Ghana Olympic Committee (GOC) Congress, she hinted her desire to become the fastest female in Africa and for now her target is the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast Australia next year and the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.
According to Owusu-Agyapong, running at the Rio Games had taught her many lessons and her hopes to better her times and represent Ghana again.
She had been running good times a bit above 11.30seconds, but want to run 10 seconds or below to become a champion.
According to the sprinter, it is not easy competing against fellow West Africans especially Nigerians who are very good athletes and then the Americans and Jamaicans.
“I really have to work very hard to be among the best in Ghana, Africa, the Commonwealth and the world” she said.
Flings who has successfully completed her first degree in Health Care at an American university said she wants to continue with education and athletics for now, then move into full health practice or sports management.
She expressed that there are lots o opportunities for sports lovers and advises the youth of Ghana to take to sports and be running, jumping or kicking the global leather as if one does it well, one is assured of hitting a jackpot.
“Combing education and sports is just amazing, and that is what I think every youth or student should do. There are many sports disciplines and one can join to run, play soccer, basketball, tennis, volleyball, handball, hockey or baseball” she said.
The Olympian who wants to try another opportunity said sports makes one famous and rich, so the youth must take to sports and could become like her or Jamaica’s Ulsan Bolt.
She urged the media to support sportsmen and women, especially the rising stars, so that their moral and passion can rise.
She commended Prof. Francis Dodoo for supporting athletics by organizing scholarships for some students who are gradually picking up in American Universities.
She also wished that Ghana Sports can rise higher with the new leadership of the GOC.
She was supposed to represent the Athletes Commission together with swimmer Abeiku Jackson, however Congress refused to allow them to vote until their Commission had been accepted by Congress as one of the recognised eligible consistencies under the GOC.
Flings Owusu-Agyapong was born in Kumasi, Ghana to parents Kwadwo Agyapong and Adwoa Akomaa and moved to Toronto, Canada when she was 9 years old. She started training with the Flying Angels athletics club after her sophomore year of high school. In 2006 and 2007 she made the Ontario provincial team for the National Scholastic Indoor Championships.
Owusu-Agyapong attended Syracuse University on an athletic scholarship. While at Syracuse she broke the school records for the 55, 60, and 100 metres and was a two-time 2nd team All-American. She graduated from Syracuse with a Bachelor of Science in Public Health.
By Sammy Heywood Okine