Noah Lyles and Orla Kharlan: Athletes Poised to Make History at the Paris Olympics

PARIS (AFP) – With the Paris Olympics just around the corner, the world is eagerly anticipating the performances of these five Olympic stars who are expected to shine in the City of Lights:

1. Simone Biles (USA, gymnastics):
Simone Biles, the four-time Olympic gold medallist, is set to make a triumphant return to the Olympic stage after a two-year hiatus. Despite facing setbacks in Tokyo due to a temporary spatial awareness condition known as ‘the twisties’, Biles showcased her brilliance at the world gymnastics championships last year, winning four gold medals. With her incredible talent and a strong social media following, fans worldwide are eagerly anticipating her return to the top of the podium in Paris.

2. Faith Kipyegon (Kenya, athletics):
Faith Kipyegon had an exceptional year in 2023, setting world records at three different distances and winning two gold medals at the world championships. As the reigning Olympic champion in the women’s 1500m event, Kipyegon aims to defend her title in Paris. Her success is crucial for Kenya, a country that has faced doping scandals in recent years, as she has become a symbol of hope and integrity in athletics.

3. Teddy Riner (France, judo):
French judoka Teddy Riner is a national hero and a strong contender for another Olympic gold medal. With an impressive record of winning gold in the last three Olympics, Riner has established himself as one of the greatest judokas of all time. Despite being 35 years old, he showed no signs of slowing down, winning his 11th world championship title last year. As the host nation’s star athlete, Riner aims to contribute to France’s goal of finishing in the top five in the medals table.

4. Naomi Osaka (Japan, tennis):
As a tennis superstar and four-time Grand Slam champion, Naomi Osaka is set to capture the attention of the home crowd in Paris. Born in Japan to a Japanese mother and a Haitian father, Osaka became a symbol of diversity and empowerment in the sports world. With her powerful game and strong mental resilience, she has the potential to make a deep run in the Olympic tennis tournament and inspire a new generation of athletes.

5. Caeleb Dressel (USA, swimming):
Caeleb Dressel, the American swimmer, is expected to dominate the pool in Paris. With multiple world records and an impressive collection of Olympic gold medals, Dressel has established himself as one of the greatest swimmers of his generation. Known for his explosive speed and versatility in various swimming disciplines, he will be a force to be reckoned with in the sprint events. Fans and experts alike are eager to witness Dressel’s electrifying performances in the water.

As the countdown to the Paris Olympics begins, the world eagerly awaits the performances of these five stars. From Simone Biles’ return to the gymnastics stage to Teddy Riner’s pursuit of a fourth consecutive gold medal, these athletes are poised to captivate audiences and leave a lasting legacy in the history of the Olympic Games.
PARIS (AFP) – As the Paris Olympics draw near, the spotlight shines on these two athletes who have the potential to create history and inspire their nations:

6. Noah Lyles (USA, athletics):
Noah Lyles, the charismatic American sprinter, aims to prove himself as the true successor to Usain Bolt. After a disappointing performance in the 2020 Tokyo Games, where he only managed to secure a bronze medal in the 200m event, Lyles is determined to go one step further in Paris. The 26-year-old has set his sights on an ambitious goal of winning four gold medals – the 100m, 200m, 4x100m relay, and 4x400m relay. With his impressive performances at the world championships last year, where he claimed the sprint double and the 4x100m relay gold, Lyles has shown that he has the potential to achieve his dream and establish himself as a sprinting legend.

7. Orla Kharlan (Ukraine, fencing):
Orla Kharlan, the Ukrainian fencer, carries the hopes and dreams of her nation as she seeks to secure the elusive individual sabre gold. Kharlan’s career has been marked by success, including two individual Olympic bronzes, a team gold, and a team silver. However, it is the current political situation that adds a significant weight to her aspirations. Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in 2022, Kharlan and her compatriots have endured immense suffering. Kharlan’s refusal to shake hands with her Russian opponent at the world championships resulted in disqualification, but an intervention by IOC President Thomas Bach secured her place in the Paris Olympics. Kharlan represents a growing number of Ukrainian athletes who desire to compete against their Russian counterparts rather than boycott the Games. For her, participating in the Olympics is not just a dream but a goal to bring hope and unity to her country, with the ultimate wish for the war to end and her family to be present in Paris to witness her achievements.

As the world eagerly awaits the start of the Paris Olympics, the performances of Noah Lyles and Orla Kharlan will be closely watched. Lyles aims to cement his status as the next sprinting superstar, while Kharlan seeks to overcome personal and political challenges to bring glory to her nation. These athletes embody the spirit of the Olympic Games and serve as inspirations to all who witness their journeys.