Stephen Mozia of Nigeria has said that he intends to use the World Indoors championship in Portland as preparation for the forthcoming Olympics Games in Rio, Brazil, and would be his first outing at the Games.
“I don’t have much of a target for Portland. Rio is the goal for this year. I am more taking this as a dry run of how I will react against real competition. I am relatively training through this meet. I would rather have a huge outdoor than just ride off a good indoor.”
The 22-year old will be making his second appearance at the World Indoors after competing in Sopot two years ago, where he didn’t make the final. He believes that the experience has made him more grounded ahead of the competition in Portland:
“I don’t feel like a new kid on the block. I felt like I needed to have some huge crazy PR to do anything in Sopot. Now seeing how most major competitions go, if I just do what I did to go there, I will do well”, he said.
Mozia who currently occupies 6th position in the 2016 world rankings, erased his former NR of 20.46m in January, setting a World Lead (WL) of 21.03m in the process. He was back two weeks later, extending the mark to 21.11m.
He identifies the reason for his incredible form, while disclosing that he has his sights set on Janus Robberts’ African Record of 21.97m:
“Just graduating from college has made a world of difference. I was a Mechanical Engineering major at a really hard school. Even though I work full time now, it is so much easier to train, eat the way I want to, and most importantly, sleep.
“I’m always happy to throw far. It still hasn’t hit me that I have the Nigerian Shot put record. It is truly an honour. But hopefully, I can push that to the Nigerian Record being the African Record.”
Mozia says his target for 2016 is to make it to the final of the Shot put and Discus throws in Rio.
“I would like to make the Olympic Final in the Shot put or Discus; I would like to make the Olympics in both. I am just looking forward to the experience. It is not every day that you can perform on the highest level of your sport.
“I am not under any real pressure. I want to do as best as I can to make my country proud, but however God wants it to happen is how it will happen. I’ll definitely put in the work but the rest is up to God.”
Mozia who was born and raised in the US has spent close to four years competing for Nigeria. He says it’s been a mixed grill donning the green and while colours, but is grateful for the opportunity to do so.
“Competing for Nigeria has definitely had its ups and downs. I’m just thankful for the opportunity to do something good for my country.”

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