Who is Bismark Boateng? Canadian Olympic athlete played soccer before switching to track
Every athlete's biggest dream is to compete in Olympics, for which they begin training at an early age, but for Bismark Boateng it was different
During the semi-finals round of the men's 4x100m relay, Canada secured the second spot after falling behind Italy by two-thousandths of a second. Will the Canadian team come back with a vengeance ready to secure the coveted gold medal during the finals?
With stellar talents like Gavin Smellie, Brendon Rodney, Bolade Ajomale, and Bismark Boateng on the team we wouldn't be surprised if the Canadian team manages to strike gold this time around. If you are curious to know more about these track stars representing Canada at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, then we got you covered. Read on to know all about Bismark Boateng.
Who is Bismark Boateng?
Bismark Boateng is a Canadian track and field athlete who is best known for his sprints. Boateng was born in March 1992, in Accra, Ghana. At the age of 14, he moved to Canada seeking better opportunities in life. He currently resides in Toronto, Ontario. He studied at Monsignor Percy Johnson Catholic Secondary School in Etobicoke. He graduated from York University in 2018 with a degree in kinesiology and wants to be a sports psychologist.
Every athlete's biggest dream is to compete in the Olympics, for which they begin their training from a very early age. However, Boateng didn't start sprinting until later in life. He began running competitively only in 2013. He started his collegiate career at Ryerson University as a soccer player, but after watching the 2012 Olympic Trials he set a goal for himself that one day he would represent Canada, and so he shifted his attention to track from soccer. Ryerson University didn't have a track team at that time, so he transferred to York University and began training very hard. In an interview with CBC, he shared, "I grew up playing soccer my whole life, but deep down I always wanted to do track. In elementary school I did track one time and I beat some guys who were much older than me, so deep down I knew I wanted to do track."
Boateng got his first big break when he represented Canada for the first time at the 2015 Universiade, making the 100m semifinals. His next international appearance was at the 2017 Jeux de la Francophonie where he won bronze in the 100m and silver with the 4x100m relay team. In April 2018, Boateng was sent to the Commonwealth Games as a replacement for the injured Andre De Grasse. He made the semifinals of the 200m and competed in the 4x100m relay. At the 2018 NACAC Championships, Boateng was part of the gold medal 4x100 relay winning team.
It hasn't always been smooth sailing for Boateng. His coach Charles Allen shared some of the hardships and challenges that Boateng had to face in order to make running his first priority. In order to make ends meet financially, Boateng was also working as a personal trainer. However, he had to give that up to avoid any risk of injury. "But we made a pact: you can't sacrifice what we're trying to get done on the track for anything, because one injury or one step backwards really takes away a lot. So he made that commitment to put track first in every way. He made a heck of a sacrifice and I'm glad it's paying off for him," Allen explained. Boateng receives funding from CAN Fund. In an Instagram post he wrote, "Thanks @canfund for supporting athletes like myself during times like these.#canfund #athlete #support."