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Musagala shows rare humility ahead of Olympics

By James Bakama

Added 22nd July 2016 03:44 PM

Musagala, who qualified for the games last year, believes he has since also regained full fitness.

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Musagala, who qualified for the games last year, believes he has since also regained full fitness.

Two months ago his Olympic dreams seemed shattered. A serious bout of malaria and typhoid had Ronald Musagala admitted for two weeks.

“That was one of the worst times of my life. It seemed like all my efforts to leave a mark in Rio de Janeiro had gone down the drain,”
recounts Musagala.

“I was in pain and weak. At one stage I almost could not even walk.”

But miraculously after treatment, that included 14 injections at Kibuli and Zziwa Memorial hospital in Bweyogerere, Musagala recovered.

Musagala, who qualified for the games last year, believes he has since also regained full fitness.

He cites recent races he won in Belgium, France and the Netherlands as proof of his full recovery.

On his prospects in Rio, Musagala, previously known to be quite cocky, is today more reserved.

“I am certainly  more experienced today. However I don’t want to repeat my previous utterances that raised expectation only to result in
disappointment.”

At the Glasgow Commonwealth Games an over confident Musagala, after finishing second in the 800 meter semi-finals, assured Ugandathat he was destined for a podium finish.

He indeed got off to an explosive start but by the end of the race, he was a distant eighth.

He had carelessly burnt himself out in the first lap that by the time it got to the decisive final meters he seemed to be in reverse gear.

“I have since learnt my lesson. I now know how to pace myself. I can now tell that my pace is too fast or slow and adjust accordingly,” he
explains.

He has also seriously been working on his final kick. “I have been into a lot of 50 and 60 meter speed acceleration drills. I must say I have been responding well and should be able to make the final in Brazil.”

His training partner Abu Mayanja has been doing the pacing. “I must say he has done some great work in boosting my speed.”

Kenyans Asbel Kiprop and Ronald Kwemoi, Algerian Taoufik Makhloufi and Algeria’s Abdalaati Iguider are some of the big names Musagala
will be battling with.

To make the best of the Namboole stadium facilities, Musagala has together with his team-mates rented a house adjacent to the sports facility.

“We have been having up to three training sessions per day.”

Musagala also qualified in the 5000m but he has chosen to concentrate on the 1500.

“I need to focus this time. I would have gone for two races if I had also qualified in the 800m.”

The 1500m is one event where Uganda hasn’t been very active in the Olympics. One of Uganda’s first appearances in this event was in
1972 with a representation of Vitus Ashaba. He closed 3:43.2 and failed to progress to the final.

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