Sabrina Simader during the opening ceremony in Pyeongchang ,South Korea. Photo credits:AFP-JIJI

The Winter Olympics got off to a colorful start in Pyeongchang in Gangwon Province of South Korea.

This year  marks the 94th year since the first Winter Olympic games  in 1924 in Chamonix ,France.

The Winter Olympics are held the second year after the more popular Summer Olympic are held and attract a select group of countries whose weather conditions favour winter sports.Africa did not have any country representing the continent until 1960 when South Africa made its debut at the games with an all-white team, we have had  at least one African country taking part in the games since then.

This year is special as  there will be 13 African athletes flying their countries flags , most of the athletes participating in the Winter Olympic games   have been born or trained outside the continent .A major reason for the small number  of African athletes at the Winter Games is the fact that the  tropical climate on the continent does not provide the conditions that would make  conducive training grounds for the type of sports  at the Winter Olympics.

The African countries taking part in the Winter Olympics are Kenya,Nigeria,Eritrea,Morocco,Ghana,Madagascar,Togo and South Africa.

Sabrina Wanjiku Simader, is representing Kenya and she is the first alpine skier to ever represent the country  and   her debut at the Winter Olympics is an exciting opportunity  for her as well as for the country.The 19 year old whose father is Austrian was all smiles  as she carried the Kenyan flag high during the opening ceremony .

A team you will also  want to keep your eyes on as they are also making their debut is Nigeria,which has a bob sled team and a skeleton athlete as well as being all-female.The team’s journey to Pyeongchang started last year in February when they launched a Gofundme campaign to raise funds for what would be Nigeria’s maiden debut at the Winter Olympics.The bob sled team is made up of athletes Akuoma Omeoga, Ngozi Onwumere and Seun Adigun and  the skeleton athlete Simidele Adeagbo.

Hopefully after whis year,we will see an even higher number of African athletes at the Winter Olympics in Beijing,China 2022 and that African governments will see to it that they support these athletes.

Watch the teams on the  Ellen DeGeneres show ,the games are available on satellite Television provider DSTV on SS12,13 and 14 and on Kwese TV the games are live on Olympics HD channel 306.

At Maridadi Lifestyle we would like to send  the African athletes the best of wishes  as they represent the continent.




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