The road to Tokyo 2020: A week in quotes

Ireland's Katie Mullan (in green) with Sara McManus of Canada at the Women's FIH Olympic Hockey Qualifier Second Leg
Ireland's Katie Mullan (in green) with Sara McManus of Canada at the Women's FIH Olympic Hockey Qualifier Second Leg

Athletes around the world have been busying themselves with less than a year to go, with some nations allowing training complexes to open and others even giving the green light for competitive action to start.

Tokyo 2020 has been speaking to several athletes whose journey to the Olympic and Paralympic Games is slowly gathering pace.

Katie Mullan: "We're seeing the next twelve months as an opportunity for us. It's a blessing."

Captain Katie Mullan atop the Irish teammates who celebrate after qualifying for Tokyo 2020 at the 2019 Women's FIH Olympic Hockey Qualifier in Dublin.
Captain Katie Mullan atop the Irish teammates who celebrate after qualifying for Tokyo 2020 at the 2019 Women's FIH Olympic Hockey Qualifier in Dublin.
©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

I think we have to set our targets at medal in Tokyo,

because we will be we will be silly not to.

Team captain Katie Mullan is at the helm of Ireland's women's hockey team and intends to make their first appearance at an Olympic Games historic by going for a coveted Olympic medal.

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Malia Paseka's mission to inspire young Tongans

Malia Paseka won gold in the 67kg at Olympic Qualifier tournament securing Tonga’s second qualification spot in Tokyo
Malia Paseka won gold in the 67kg at Olympic Qualifier tournament securing Tonga’s second qualification spot in Tokyo
World Taekwondo

I really do hope to inspire young Tongan girls as well as many Pacific young women,

not only to take up taekwondo but also any sport.

Earlier this year, Malia Paseka created history when she became the first Tongan women to qualify for taekwondo at the Olympic Games. However, her mission isn't just to stand on the podium at Tokyo 2020 but to also inspire the youth of her home nation.

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The indomitable spirit of Shauna-Kay Hines

Shauna-Kay Hines from Jamaica (blue) fights against Angelica Vargas from Mexico in the Women's K44 -58kg in the bronze medal match at the Parapan American Games Lima 2019.
Shauna-Kay Hines from Jamaica (blue) fights against Angelica Vargas from Mexico in the Women's K44 -58kg in the bronze medal match at the Parapan American Games Lima 2019.
Proyecto Especial Juegos Para Panamericanos Lima 2019

When I entered the ring and when I saw the flag,

I said, ok I am the reason the flag is there.

Para taekwondo athlete Shauna-Kay Hines is on a mission to qualifying for Tokyo 2020, bring Paralympic glory to Jamaica and also develop para sports worldwide.

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Maïva Hamadouche: 'I want to become the first professional world champion to win Olympic gold'

Thi Vuong (Red) of Vietnam fights against Maiva Hamadouche (Blue) of France in the Women's 57kg preliminary match during the 2012 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships (a London Olympic qualifying event) in People's Republic of China (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)
Thi Vuong (Red) of Vietnam fights against Maiva Hamadouche (Blue) of France in the Women's 57kg preliminary match during the 2012 AIBA Women's World Boxing Championships (a London Olympic qualifying event) in People's Republic of China (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)
2012 Getty Images

Of course, there is a lot of adversity and it’s true anything can happen in nine minutes.

But I can’t see who could beat me.

Maïva Hamadouche wants to become the first boxer to hold both a professional world championship belt and an Olympic gold medal. It's no easy feat but the French athlete is up to the challenge.

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Sherif Osman: A dream only half complete

Sherif Osman of Egypt during a lift at the 2019 World Championships where he took his fourth world title
Sherif Osman of Egypt during a lift at the 2019 World Championships where he took his fourth world title
Hiroki Nishioka/World Para Powerlifting

Everyone has the power to do anything,

it's just starting from your mind.

Sherif Osman has dominated the powerlifting scene for the past 14 years but despite three consecutive Paralympic gold medals and multiple world records, his dream is only half complete.

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One stroke away from ending an 80 year wait

I don't feel that I am under pressure now, but I am motivated to continue my in grandmother's footsteps.

I can make her dream and my dream come true, at the same time.

In 1940, the Olympic Games were cancelled due to the outbreak of World War II and dashed the hopes of Angelika Rädche. Now, 80 years on her granddaughter, Nicole Frank could make her family dream come true.

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