Rowing: Five African Nations Qualify Boats to the Olympics

Egypt led all nations at the 2015 African Olympic Qualification Regatta. The top 4 nations in the single sculls and the winner of the lightweight double sculls were given spots to compete. The African Olympic Qualification Regatta was held in Tunis, Tunisia from October 5th to October 7th 2015.

In the men’s single sculls it was Algeria’s Sid Ali Boudina whom led all boats after the heats, but it was Egypt’s Abdelkhalek which took the best time in the semifinals and was able to win the competition in the finals with a time of 7:06.01 over Tunsia’s Mohamed Taieb. Boudina won the bronze medal while Zimbabwe’s Peter Purcell Gilpin finished fourth and received the final quota.

The women’s single sculls was led by Micheen Thornycroft of Zimbabwe from start to finish. She was able to dominate the field as she finished almost 13 seconds ahead of Algeria’s Amina Rouba in the final with a time of 7:49.73. The bronze medal went to Chierika Ukogu of Nigeria while Egypt’s Heba Ahmed was given the final Olympic quota by finishing in fourth.

Both Egypt and Algeria were given byes to the final after they each respectively won their heats in the men’s lightweight double sculls. In the repechage it was Tunisia that won it as they and three other nations advance to the finals. The final was won by Egypt as they secured the only Olympic quota by defeating Angola by 4.05 seconds with a time of 6:46.18. Tunisia won the bronze with a time of 7:00.74.

Despite four initial entrants in the women’s lightweight double sculls only two nations actually competed. It was Tunisia that easily won the heat in a race that ultimately did not matter as both they and Egypt qualified to the finals. In the finals it was Tunisia again that easily won the duel as they finished over 30 seconds ahead of Egypt with a time of 7:44.32.

However since a nation can only qualify 1 male and 1 female boat at the continental championships it means Egypt must select between their single or lightweight double sculls. The boat that they don’t select will be reallocated to Libya or Angola respectively. This was the final opportunity for African nations to qualify in these four boat classes. African nations can still qualify in the other ten boats classes at the final Olympic qualification regatta to be held in 2016.

Boats by Nation

  • Egypt – 3
  • Algeria – 2
  • Tunisia – 2
  • Zimbabwe – 2
  • Nigeria – 1

Athletes by Nation

  • Egypt – 4
  • Tunisia – 3
  • Algeria – 2
  • Zimbabwe – 2
  • Nigeria – 1

References

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