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Eritrea Gets Its First Winter Olympian

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Shannon-Ogbani Abeda will soon don a ski suit hued with the vibrant colors of the Eritrean flag as the country makes its Winter Olympic debut this February.

Born and raised in Alberta by immigrant parents from the East African nation, the 21-year-old has spent most of his life nestled in the Rocky Mountains and grew up barreling down its powder-white slopes.

Although oceans away from the native land his father and mother fled in the early 1980s when they came to Canada as refugees, the computer science student says he wears both national identities with pride.


“I have grown up here with a lot of friends who are Canadian but I also have that connection inside to who I am as an Eritrean,” says the Calgary-based Abeda, who made the decision to compete for his parents’ birth country in 2011. “I’ve been very humbled by the response and support I’ve received, especially from the Eritrean-Canadian community. They look up to me and I never imaged myself being in that position.”

It has been an arduous journey for the second-generation Canadian, who first came onto the world stage at 16 years old, representing Eritrea at the 2012 Youth Olympics in Innsbruck, Austria. He says that event opened his eyes to the level of international competition he’d be facing.

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Egypt Is Confirmed As Host for The 2019 African Cup Of Nations After Cameroon Loses Its Spot

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Egypt beat South Africa, the only other nation to bid, by 16 votes to one with one abstention at a CAF executive committee vote in Senegal to become the 2019 hosts of the tournament in Cameroon’s place.

Cameroon team players hold up the winner’s trophy as they celebrate beating Egypt 2-1 to win the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations final football match between Egypt and Cameroon at the Stade de l’Amitie Sino-Gabonaise in Libreville on February 5, 2017. (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP)

ALSO READ: Egypt Lands Top Spot For Where To Invest In Africa

Since stripping Cameroon of this year’s event, Caf has offered the country the chance to stage the finals in two years’ time, which has meant that the original hosts for both the 2021 and 2023 finals have been asked to delay their tournaments.

Ivory Coast, which was set to host the 2021, has protested against the decision at the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Guinea’s football federation announced on Monday that it has agreed to move its staging of the Nations Cup from 2023 to 2025.

The Cup of Nations will take place from June 15 to July 13 and Egypt is hosting the competition for a fifth time, having also done so in 1957, 1974, 1986 and 2006.

Egypt has just six months to prepare for the expanded 24-team finals, which kick off in June.

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👌🏾Kenyan Shatters Marathon World Record By 78 Seconds

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Kenya’s Olympic champion Eliud Kipchoge pulverized the marathon world record with a blistering run on Sunday, slicing a staggering 78 seconds off the previous best to land the one major running crown that had eluded him.

The 33-year-old, widely seen as the greatest marathon runner of the modern era, ran an official time of two hours, one minute and 39 seconds on a sunny day along the flat inner-city course, smashing Dennis Kimetto’s previous record that had stood since 2014.

Fellow Kenyan Gladys Cherono won the women’s race with a course record and best time of the year of 2:18:11, leaving Ethiopians Ruti Aga and pre-race favorite Tirunesh Dibaba in second and third place respectively.

Kipchoge’s run was the biggest improvement on the marathon mark since Australian Derek Clayton took almost two and a half minutes off the record in 1967.

“I lack words to describe this day,” said a beaming Kipchoge, a former world champion over 5,000 meters and marathon gold medalist at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016. “I am really grateful, happy to smash the world record.”

“They say you can miss it twice but not a third time. So I want to thank everyone who has helped me,” said Kipchoge, who had won in Berlin in 2015 and 2017.

“I am just so incredibly happy to have finally run the world record as I never stopped having belief in myself. Running a sub two hours two minutes was simply amazing and I believe I can still go below that with such good conditions.”

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Egypt Wins Six New Medals in Africa Fencing Championship in Lagos

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Egypt’s fencing team continued securing more medals in the 8th Cadet and Junior African Fencing Championship, which kicked off on March 1.

On the fourth day of the contest, the Egyptian fencers won six new medals; two gold, three bronze and one silver.

Fencer Mohamed Hamza won a gold medal after beating his South African rival in the final while fencers Youssef Sanaa and Yahia Madi secured two bronze medals.

Also, female fencer Lama Yasser secured a gold medal after defeating her Algerian contender in the final match while fencers Sherwet Gaber got a bronze and Yassmin Ali won a silver.

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