By: Muhammed Lamin Drammeh
Talent taekwondo athletes, Alasan Ann and Maria Sainabou Marchlinaki are set to represent The Gambia in the African Taekwondo Championship in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on the 5th and 6th of November.
The competition is set to witness a thrilling showcase of talent from the Gambians in the competition which is expected to be a tight and thrilling taekwondo championship competition.
Seventeen-year-old Maria Sainabou Marchlinski who ditched the United States for The Gambia is a highly rated talent in the game. She will be representing The Gambia for the first time in the international competition after switching her nationality.
Having nurtured her passion for taekwondo under the guidance of her supportive parents residing in the United States, Maria’s journey to the African Taekwondo Championship reflects her unwavering commitment to representing The Gambia at prestigious global competitions.
Maria, a 1st Dan Black belt holder and a Kukkiwon Belt Rank (1st Poom), has consistently demonstrated exceptional strength and prowess in her previous endeavours, earning her a reputation for her remarkable fighting techniques.
Thrilled and impressed about the upcoming championship, Maria is determined to maintain her winning streak and emerge victorious in the -57kg Senior category. Her recent triumphs at the 2022 USATKD Grand Prix Finals, 2022 USATKD National Championship, 2023 USATKD State Championship, and the 2023 USATKD Grand Prix Central have further solidified her position as a force to be reckoned with in the sport.
Alongside Maria, the renowned Alasan Ann, affectionately known as the Gambian Goliath, is poised to leave a lasting impression at the championship, marking his second representation of The Gambia following his commendable performance in last year’s African Championship, where he secured the bronze medal. Alasan, competing in the +87 kg senior category, brings a wealth of experience and skill to the ring, with his formidable presence and remarkable technique captivating audiences in past competitions.
Both athletes, known for their unwavering dedication and pride in representing The Gambia, are determined to make their nation proud once again by clinching further accolades at the African Taekwondo Championship.