Craven eyes Birmingham Games after missing Tokyo

By Michael Uugwanga

HAVING missed out on the Tokyo Olympic Games set to start tomorrow after testing positive for Covid-19 while in Spain, Namibia’s top male road racing cyclist, Dan Craven has said that he is hoping to compete at next year’s Commonwealth Games that are set to take place in Birmingham, UK.
Craven was replaced by Tristan de Lange after a second positive test last week Friday.
Craven (38) who was heading to probably his last Olympics is now looking forward to the Birmingham Games which he reckons as a chance for Namibian cyclists to make a bigger impact.
Speaking to Confidente Sport, the six-time National Road Race Champion also revealed how he has been fighting to get a Covid-19 vaccine in Spain.
“Well I am still very much interested in racing at the Commonwealth Games next year since it is only one year away and the games are always beautiful …more beautiful than the Olympic Games in certain ways because Namibia always have a bigger team, so we actually have much more team spirit in the men road race unlike at the Olympic Games that we always have one-man team.
“The thing that I am mostly upset about is the fact that for three months I have been fighting to get the vaccine and the registration system in Spain has been difficult that we were just unable to get in and we tried every trick in the book and I wanted to fly back into Namibia to get the vaccine but because so many people in Namibia did not take the vaccine, so the Covid cases in Namibia are bad now, as a result it was so dangerous for me to fly back to Namibia.
“And two hours later after testing positive I got a phone call to come in for my vaccine and you know this could have been avoided. I mean obviously if I had taken a vaccine I could have still got Covid but the chance of getting Covid was less,” he said.
But for now Craven is focusing on recovering from Covid-19 before even thinking about competing at other international events and is throwing his weight behind De Lange.
“I told the Namibia Cycling Federation (NCF) that they have my full support on De Lange because I was happy with the decision because when I raced against him he was the most impressive competitor.”
Craven was the National Road Race Champion in 2005, 2006, 2008, 2015, 2016 and 2020.
He was previously at the 2016 Olympics Games in Rio, Brazil and at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Scotland.
Below is Team Namibia at the Tokyo Olympic Games:
Athletics: Beatrice Masilingi, Christine Mboma, Helalia Johannes and Rainhold Thomas
Cycling: Tristan de Lange, Alex Miller, Michelle Vorster and Versa Looser
Rowing: Maike Diekmann
Swimming: Phillip Seidler
Boxing: Jonas Junias Jonas