Mon, 13 Mar 2023 Athletics

Asafa Powell reveals secret for winning 100m dash as he gets more vim from Ghanaians

By Sammy Heywood Okine
Asafa Powell reveals secret for winning 100m dash as he gets more vim from Ghanaians

"My brother Donovan was an athlete who went to the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, he inspired me. We are a family of 6 boys. Two have passed on, and they were the ones who inspired and gingered me to run faster and better than anyone in my school " Asafa Powell told Yours Truly in an exclusive interview.

According to the former fastest man in the world, talent abounds in Ghana and in Africa generally, but they need to be mentored and motivated with modern scientific techniques.

" People didn't know they can make a lifestyle or financial gains from Track and Field, but now they are making it big and bigger. There are many benefits in Athletics just like Football and Cricket, but I chose Track and Field because that is where my talent is and I had the interest" he expressed.

Asafa Powell who is one of the best four fastest men in the world said he has not run his best in the 100m most of the time due to injuries.

"I know am the best, but Usain Bolt beating my record is no big deal because we are all Jamaicans, there is no rivalry between us, and our rivals are the Americans. We are often tested, we are the most tested athletes but we are still the best"

He revealed that definitely he will be going into coaching, to teach the younger ones. The Asafa Powell Foundation is already doing well in supporting athletes, managers and media in Jamaica.

His wife Alyshia was born in the Central Region of Ghana, specifically Esikuma at Cape Coast.

But Why did he come to Ghana? Slaves were taken from Africa to the Caribbean and he wanted to see where the slaves were taken from, also he was in Ghana to share his experience and knowledge with the children and strengthen the relations between Ghana and Jamaica.

"Am from a humble beginning, a normal person and I have achieved my desire which means others too can make it. My dad was a Taxi Driver and my mum sold at the market, Accra, Ghana is just like Kingston, Jamaica. We are all one person. Jamaicans have their roots in Africa," he noted.

"My Foundation is in Jamaica and I am going to open a branch in Ghana, we must work hard for this project. My brother is a musician and I grew up learning how to play music, like love music very much and I love to dance with my wife and kids.."

He advised young athletes never to give up because where he grew up is not classic or expensive, but he was determined and trained in Jamaica to become the best, Jamaicans never give up.

I have no choice but I have to come back to invest in Ghana.

"I will sell the idea to my colleagues in Jamaica to see if they will be interested in coming to Ghana. Definitely, I will be in Paris for the 2024 Olympic Games" he stressed.

Asafa was sad not to see a running track, since he was in Ghana for ten days, and advised "guys should not limit yourself to football, you should give other opportunities to young guys to grow their talents".

"It's been 8 years since we wanted to come to the motherland, but Covid and other programmes prevented us, and now we are here. Thanks to the Ghana Olympic Committee President, Ben Nunoo Mensah and his board as well as Federation heads, the athletes and the media who made our trip exciting and was heard all over due to social media, now Jamaica is jealous."

Powell lowered the 100m world record to 9.77 seconds on June 14, 2005. He held the mark until Bolt broke it on May 31, 2008. He also ran 9.74 seconds. His personal best of 9.72 s ranking fourth on the all-time list of men's 100-metre athletes. As of 1 September 2016, Powell has broken the ten-second barrier more times than anyone else—97 times.

Makqash, of Landlord and Get Vim fame said the visit of the Powells to Ghana is not only historic and influential, but an eye opener for the Athletics Federation to find answers to their petty problems because in the 1960s Ghana was among the best nations in Track and Field.

"It is true, not everyone loves football, some love basketball, table tennis, and athletics," he emphasized.