Athletics: ‘We count on Jhinaoui and Layouni to bring Tunisia’s Olympic contingent to 4’ (technical director)

Tunis: Tunisian athletes Ahmed Jaziri and Mohamed Amine Jhinaoui will compete in the 3,000m steeplechase at the 4th Diamond League meeting of the season scheduled for Sunday in Marrakech, Morocco, Hammadi Ben Said, national technical director of the Tunisian Athletics Federation, told TAP on Tuesday. The Marrakech stage will be an opportunity for Mohamed Amine Jhinaoui to qualify for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games,' Ben Said told TAP. Jhinaoui, ranked 21st in the world, is expected to improve his personal best of 8:18 by three seconds to reach the minimum required for Olympic qualification, he added. We are also counting on Abdessalam Layouni in the 800m to bring the number of Tunisian representatives to four, after Ahmed Jaziri and Maroua Bouzayani qualified in the 3,000m steeplechase a year ago," the technical director further said. He pointed out that Laayouni will be looking to improve his world ranking, which has dropped from 41st to 56th due to an injury that has kept him off the track recently. Laay ouni has been training again for the past month with a view to competing in the national finals on June 9 and the African championships in Cameroon on June 21-26, he added. Ben Said noted that Laayouni must achieve the required minimum time of 1:44.7 (compared to his personal time of 1:44.9) or win the African title to book his ticket to the 2024 Olympic Games. As for Maroua Bouzayani, the national technical director explained that she will take part in the meeting in Poland on Saturday before travelling to the United States to compete in the Diamond League in Oregon on May 25. He added that the athletes who have qualified for the Olympic Games will make their final preparations in Switzerland before travelling to Paris a month before the Games, which will be held from July 26 to August 11. Source: Agence Tunis Afrique Presse