Diekmann to develop Rowing in Walvis Bay

By Michael Uugwanga

AFTER announcing her retirement from the sport of Rowing, Namibia’s   top female rower, Maike Diekmann, says she will continue to develop the sport in Walvis Bay.

Diekmann (28) announced her retirement a fortnight ago on her social media page, citing financial constraints. Her participation in international rowing competitions was mainly covered by the Namibia National Olympic Committee (NNOC) through a scholarship which ended after the Tokyo Olympic Games last year.

Speaking to Confidente this week, Diekmann said she is not completely staying away from rowing but will continue to plough back her experience.

“My plan is to help develop rowing in Namibia.  In Walvis Bay, we have set up a club as the Federation of Rowing and Canoeing. I would love to see school kids get into the sport and possibly take part in international events. We are currently also organising an international Championship that will take place during December this year in Walvis Bay

“Retiring from professional rowing was a choice I made due to several factors, including financial constraints, as I was not able to compete due to a scholarship that ended. My training system was not sustainable and I did not have a team mate that I trained with on a regular basis,” Dierkmann said

She also said that she has no regret of taking up rowing as a sport.

Dierkmann finished in 18th place in the Women’s single sculls event at the Tokyo Olympic Games.

Her other top international participation was the 2019 African Championship in Morocco.

“I do not have any regrets about my rowing career.  I do think that I could have possibly been able to see faster times if I continued for another Olympic cycle, but that would have depended a lot on my training setup (a team) as well as mindset,” Diekmann added.

She said “I am still heavily involved in giving back to the sport in Namibia by serving our athletes as the Namibia Athletes Commission Chairperson, and therefore representing the athlete’s voices on the NNOC as an executive board member.”