Filipina marathoner Mary Joy Tabal has given up on her bid to qualify for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.
Tabal, who competed in the 2016 Rio Olympics, said she has to let go of her desire to join this year’s Olympics, as the events that will give her points to qualify for the Games are still on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I let go of my Tokyo Olympics bid, if ever it pushes through this year, since all my postponed races from 2020 to 2021 are still on hold,” Tabal told PTV Sports on Friday.
“There are no confirmed competitions that I can join and earn points to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics.”
With this, Tabal, the first-ever Olympic marathoner from the Philippines, now turns her attention to the 2024 Olympics in Paris.
“For the coming years, I look forward to, hopefully, get another slot for the Paris Olympics if I can still do it and still be on track. We’ll work on it,” said the 31 year-old.
“It’s still one of my goals to compete in the six major marathons in the world and in the Paris Olympics.”
Tabal, a four-time champion in the National Milo Marathon and a 2017 Southeast Asian Games gold medalist, added in a Facebook post on Friday:
“I cannot predict the future. I cannot change the past. I can only live in the now. Letting go of some things would mean giving opportunities to some because we cannot control everything!
“My dream might be on hold for now but running and my goals are not. I will keep digging deep and will keep pushing forward. One step at a time. One foot in front of the other!”