Mark Otieno still on Olympic qualification vibe as focus shifts to Africa Senior Championships

Mark Otieno still on Olympic qualification vibe as focus shifts to Africa Senior Championships

Abigael Wafula 07:00 - 05.06.2024

Former national champion Mark Otieno has opened up about taking baby steps as he maintains focus on qualifying for the Olympic Games at the upcoming Africa Senior Athletics Championships.

Former national champion Mark Otieno is not giving up on his Olympic dream as he chases qualification at the Africa Senior Athletics Championships scheduled for scheduled for Douala, Cameroon on June 15 to 25.

Otieno qualified for the event after he finished second in the men’s 100m final at the trials for continental showpiece held at the Ulinzi Sports Complex. He stopped the clock at 10.37 behind Kenya Defense Forces officer Meshack Babu who clocked an impressive 10.34.

If Otieno is selected to go and represent the country in Cameroon, he will have yet another presented chance to try and qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympics and also get crowned as the African Champion if he wins the race.

As per the International Olympic Committee, the qualification and ranking period for all individual events - other than the 10,000m, marathon, combined events and race walks - will be between 1 July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024.

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“It’s been long since I have been out due to a suspension and I’m just coming out and walking step by step as I look for Olympic qualification.

“I’m really looking to make the cut in the next few weeks and right now, I’m sharpening my skills from where I stand and just looking forward to racing in Cameroon and if I also get the title, that will be well and good,” Otieno said in an interview.

The talented sprinter has enjoyed a great start to his season, making the cut to his first national team after his doping ban ended. He got the chance to represent the country at the World Athletics Relays in the Bahamas where the 4x100m team finished third in the final.

He also started his season with indoor races, where he competed in the Elite Indoor Track Miramas Meeting and the Belgrade Indoor Meeting.