Botswana middle-distance runner who specializes in the 800 metres discipline, Nijel Amos, aged 24 has bolstered his international stay in the United States’ (US) Eugene Oregon where he is coached by coach, Mark Rowland. This is despite mounting pressure from several sport pundits that the 2012 Summer Olympics silver medalist – being Botswana’s first ever Olympic medal must perhaps consider returning home and engage the services of a local coach.
The Marobela native rendered many speechless when he won silver at the 2012 Olympics and further beating Kenya’s David Rudisha in the 2014 Commonwealth games. However, post 2014 Amos’ career was marred by recurring injuries that saw his stardom shrinking into an abyss where it seemed like the odds were stacked against him.
Recently, Amos secured himself position two (2) at the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) Diamond League in Prefontaine Classic – an Oregon Track Club event, one of the premier track and field meets in the United States, held in Eugene, Oregon (US), which marked his first victorious race after a disappointing Gold Coast’s Commonwealth Games showing.
“It all comes down to what I desired and making the most count. I cherish the fact that I held a strong desire to do it. If God declares, who can stop it? In the past injury took the best out of my race. You’d recall that two weeks before the Gold Coast challenge I had raced my first 800m of the year and clocked my best opener time of the year so far at 1:44:65, and further proving I was in good shape in the heats at the Commonwealth games where I smoothly clocked 1:45:12,” said Amos.
Quizzed about the prospects of returning home to join other athletes who continue to shine and fly the nation’s flag unperturbed, Amos said he intends to spend at least three (3) more years in US to nurture his career further. The Nike endorsed athlete said he will then prepare to reach the Olympics and other international competitions from his base in US.
“I only have five years left in my pro career. I ranked world no.1 twice (2014 & 2017) number two in 2015, 2013 and 2016 was the only time when I wasn’t in those brackets because of injuries.
Mind you, I have won three diamond league trophies, commonwealth games, twice African champ in a row and continental cup representing team Africa. I guess with those ticks it truly shows I’m doing something right and we both know it can’t always be smooth sailing. Hard times don’t seem to last forever in anything in the world and they do pass ultimately,” said Amos.
“I don’t know much about me losing form since I moved to the US. I moved down here to US last year and ended the year ranking world no.1. It’s my second season here which just started so let’s leave that room open. I had a plan in place and I’m on my plan with four years remaining. I met with my coach two years here in Eugene. When I came to race here, I told him I will be interested to come over here to work on a four year plan which started this year with my main goal of the year making sure I’m total healed from all injuries I have had. I’ve learnt that my injuries are not new but rather recurring ones, which means I was just treating them and not doing what’s needed for strength and conditioning,” added Amos.
Amos who many continue to condemn his over-the-top lifestyle said he has learnt to accommodate people’s criticism on his life noting that it all comes with being a public figure and being in the limelight. The once wannabe DJ added that even his 800m tactics were once criticized.
“They’re so many voices in the world that talk to and against me and I have learnt to be able to hear mine and respect it among all those voices. I will stick to my tactics as advised by my coach. It may seem like I am a target however I don’t think so; it’s just how 800m it is – that’s what makes it a very special event,” added Amos.
Meanwhile, the ever busy grinding rumour mill alleged that an undisclosed production company is busy working on Amos’ television documentary, slated to air soon, even though the athlete claimed ignorance.