Top-ranked Egyptian tennis player Mohamed Safwat is delighted to finally be in Tokyo for the Olympics.
Safwat, ranked at No. 171 in the world, is set to make his Olympic debut at the age of 30.
Safwat, who reached a career-high ranking of No. 130 in the world in early 2020, secured a spot for the Tokyo Olympics in 2019 at the African Games in Rabat.
“Finally we are here,” Safwat told the ITF website.
“It’s been on hold for a while now. I can’t really say if I would have preferred to play the Olympics last year or not because you never really know what would have happened, even though I was playing well at the time.”
Safwat hopes for a positive Tokyo campaign
Safwat has spent the majority of the 2021 season on the Challenger Tour but unfortunately he hasn’t had much success there this year.
Safwat’s best result of the year came in January, when he made the Istanbul Challenger semifinal.
“In my journey since qualification two years ago, I learned a lot,” Safwat said.
“It was ups and downs, I think it was more down than up, in terms of results. But I’m looking at the bigger picture; I think a lot of things have changed in me. I see it and I feel it. Maybe not many people can see it the way the people who work with me can see it. But I feel things will turn much better soon, way better than I expect.”
Safwat was drawn to meet Colombia’s Daniel Elahi Galan Riveros in the Tokyo Olympics first round.
“I don’t want to just come to the Olympics, spend a couple of days and leave. I really want to do something,” Safwat noted.
Safwat is currently the highest-ranked Arab man and it remains to be seen how far can he go at the Tokyo Olympics.