By: Lamin Fadera
She is fondly called small because of her physical appearance, but she is a genius in track and field.
At 14 years old, Adama Bah conquered the 3000-meter race in the just concluded national youth conference and festival (NAYCONF) in grand style following her successful completion of the women’s 3000-meter race after she emerged 1st position with a timing of 10.35.88.
This dream became a reality for the 14-year-old Adama Bah, a grade eight (8) student from St Charles Lwanga upper school in Fajikunda.
‘This dream became a reality for me; I knew I was going to win the race; in fact, I told some of my colleagues that if I failed to win the race, they should save my hair bald,’ a confident Adama Bah told Alkamba Times.
Competing against people older than you might be a daunting task for anyone without experience, but for ‘small,’ she is not scared to battle against her opponents in the other regions.
One of the secrets Adama ‘small’ has is continuous training, determination, and hard work; this keeps her going against the best athletes in the country.
Winning the race was the key message she promised her mum and the lord Mayor of Kanifing Municipality before the NAYCONF, and she fulfilled that promise.
“I have been training for this year’s competition for a while now, so I did promise my mum and the Lord Mayor Talib that I would win the competition if I failed to do so; I told my mum let her not sponsor me anything that has to do with sports materials,” Small said.
Although her incredible performance at the NAYCONF competition at the independent stadium “small” is inspired by Gina Bass and Ola Buwaro.
The young prodigy wants to represent the Gambia in the future competition when she gets the chance.
“Ola Buwaro and Gina are my role model; I am a young athlete, but if I have the chance, I would love to represent the Gambia in the future and bring medals for the country.”
Adama Jammeh, the captain of the Gambia Athletic team, was in attendance to watch talented youngsters perform during the Athletic competition of the National Youth Conference and Festival.
Jammeh said he was impressed with the talent he saw in the competition.
However, he told the Alkamba Times that the lack of proper infrastructure and partnership is retarding the growth of the athletes. He called on the government and other institutions to extend their arms and help the Athletic association and these athletes for the betterment of the country.
“I see so many good talents coming up; they only need the determination to be that professional athlete in the future, and with the assistance of their coaches, they will excel. The Gambia is blees because we have the climate, but we need a better track here. People are coming to support us, but we need the company’s partnership to sponsor these athletes. We need good infrastructures for them to train and compete better,” Jammeh highlighted.
The president of the Athletic Association, Alhagie Dodou Capi Joof, was excited to see new and emerging talents in the NAYCONF. He said this good scouting for the GAA.
Talent identification is one of the significant targets for the GAA. Through the youth gathering, the GAA boss believes the technical team is taking note of the best-emerging athletes during the NAYCONF, Capi said.
“This is very important for the GAA. One of our objectives last year was a talent identification project where we invited athletes and selected the best to represent the Gambia in the junior athletic championship.
We have seen promising talents, and we will invite them all, and they will come and train with the athletic team,” the GAA boss told Alkamba Times.