EDITORIAL BOARD (EB): What is your name and what do you do for Valco Hall (VH)?
THUNDER (T): I do athletics and some ball games. Ball games like soccer, handball, volley ball, etc. But I play handball and volley ball the most.
EB: Have you won any medals for VH pertaining to handball and volley ball?
T: Yes, I won the men’s handball and volleyball during the inter-hall games. We took the gold medal.
EB: Were you the captain of the side that took the medal?
T: I was not the captain of the side but was part of the winning team though.
EB: How many goals did you score for the team?
T: I can’t tell the exact number of goals because I think we played four matches and I am not certain whether I scored five goals or fifteen goals.
EB: But is it like football, whereby when you score a goal, you become aware of the goal you scored?
T: But you know with handball, it involves a lot of goals. With one match, you can score I think twenty, thirty to forty goals. So with the whole tournament, I can’t tell the exact number of goals I scored unless I sit down and calculate the goals.
EB: But then, your field is actually not in handball but athletics instead. Before we ask any further questions, how many medals or awards have you won for VH?
T: Right from level 100 or 200?
EB: Your entire time
T: With athletics 100m, I won three (3) gold medals. When it comes to high jump-110 hurdles, 400 hurdles and 4 by 1, so in level 100, I won 4 gold medals in athletics.
EB: Let’s take the volley ball or ball games out and deal with athletics. You won four medals for VH in level 100.
T: I was also the best male athlete in UCC.
EB: Did you further go into other Uni-games or the GUNSA games? And what was your performance there too?
thunderT: I won two (2) gold medals for UCC as well.
EB: So you have won two (2) national medals and four (4) local medals? Wow! That’s nice! Let’s come to level 200.
T: I have won five (5) gold medals for VH already and then two (2) gold medals for UCC again.
EB: So six (6) plus seven (7) gold medals gives you thirteen (13) gold medals. The five (5) gold medals you won for VH should be left out for now but the two (2) gold medals you won for UCC, what categories of games were they for during the GUNSA games?
T: They were high jump and 110 hurdles for athletics.
EB: Let’s deal more personal with you here. Since when did it start for you here?
T: I started athletics back at SHS.
EB: What school did you attend?
T: I schooled at Osei kyekywere Senior High, that’s OKESS for short.
EB: And at OKESS, did you win several medals for them?
T: For OKESS, I can’t count the medals because they are countless. Pertaining to athletics, we have so many events; we have field and track. When I was at OKESS, I was participating in almost all of the events.
EB: What name did they call you by back at OKESS?
T: I was called THUNDER and that name; my school father gave it to me. He was called THUNDER so he transferred the name to me.
EB: So did your parents know that you did run in school?
T: Yes, they were aware.
EB: That means that back at JHS; did you know you could run?
T: No, I didn’t know I could run because I could only play volley ball but I was not playing it perfectly as with athletics. So while I entered SHS, before I realised I would do something in athletics.
EB: How did you know you are good in volley ball, handball and athletics? How did it all start?
T: It started back at SHS during the inter-houses competition. Back in my school, there was something called “House dues”. If you won something for the school, you were not allowed to pay the house dues. So that factor urged me on to play more games in order to avoid paying the house dues. I started with high jump.
EB: What moved you or drove you to involve yourself in sports in UCC?
T: UCC scouted me at SHS and brought me to this very campus through sports.
EB: So you came here not through normal admission?
T: Yes, through the sports, UCC made it possible for me getting admission.
EB: What programme are you reading here?
T: I am reading B.A. SOCIAL SCIENCE.
EB: What is your assessment of VH sports so far? Do you think it is up to the standard?
T: I think VH sports is the best if I am to compare other sister halls to VH in terms of the sporting discipline, I think VH is on top. I think we won the athletics both male and female categories, handball and volley ball games to both male and female.
EB: So if we are to follow your assessment, what is the secret behind your success?
T: My secret is training and with every sports person, you need to train a lot in order to become a champion.
EB: We know sports personalities are more particular or careful about their nutrition, do you have any specific nutritional plan or procedure you follow as opposed how the non-sporting people do?
T: As a sportsman, I need to take some food but not all foods that I will have to take in. You don’t have to take in some food that will reduce your energy or performance levels. I think fruits are good for sporting men and women but starchy foods are not good for us.
EB: So is it appropriate for you to take food just before you go to run or do you have to set some interval between your eating and running?
T: You can’t eat and immediately engage in a game. You have to allow the food to digest for like 1 hour, 30 minutes or 2 hours.
EB: Do you dope or have you ever tried running under the influence of alcohol, heroin, cocaine, etc.?
T: Never in my life have I attempted such an illicit act.
EB: What have been your challenges in UCC so far?
T: UCC is the school of choice with regard to quizzes and lectures. Combining the sporting activities with lectures and quizzes is a tough task but we are still coping with such difficult situations.
EB: But in your initial submission, you stated that UCC facilitated your admission through sports. How do you relate that to “UCC being a school of choice”?
T: I made a choice by coming to UCC because there were other universities who had also wished to admit me due to my sporting background. So I made the choice.
EB: We have learnt that sports guys are rich, how true is that?
T: Yes, that is somehow true.
EB: Did University of Ghana, Legon and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology come after you and why did you choose UCC over them?
T: Yes, I chose UCC because the other universities wanted me to go and pursue distance education so that they could utilize more of my time.
EB: “Sports guys being rich”, is that a myth? Because you mentioned a number of gold medals and each of them are with something.
T: Yeah that’s very true; I think UCC is one of the best institutions when it comes to monetary matters in sports. Every gold medal goes with GH70.00. Silver – 50.00, Bronze -30.00
EB: Is the money a ready cash one?
T: Yeah, in sealed envelope. So I will say UCC sports is better in terms of monetary motivation
EB: Have you ever a missed a quiz, maybe travelling related to sports program?
T: Yeah, for instance, last year I had a trip on a sporting program that clashed with my African studies quiz.
EB: So how did you work it out?
T: I went to the sports section of UCC and they gave me a letter that was to be given to my lecturer. So I wrote the quiz after I came back from the sports trip.
EB: Do you have a girlfriend, if yes; please were you still in a relationship with her throughout the sports’ discipline?
T: Yeah, I have one but not through my sports. She is on campus too and also in Valco hall.
EB: So how do you combine your relationship with your girlfriend, academics and sports?
T: It’s normal because, my girlfriend is like my other friend, so the way I interact with other friends is the same with her. Combining all of them is not a problem.
EB: sports guys have this trait normally during training, they tell you “give me a distance “, do you do that?
T: yeah, I sometimes do that?
EB: You made mention of only gold medals you have won, is there any other medal you have won apart from the gold medal or you have a mindset of running only gold medals and nothing else?
T: No, since I came to UCC, it has always been gold medals.
EB: Do you win gold medals in any competition you participate in?
T: Yes, but that is UCC only. Outside UCC, I have won silver and bronze and sometimes I even become the last in the competition.
EB: That’s really impressive! We are aware that when you are a sports person in UCC, there are certain benefits you enjoy aside the medals and money, how true is that?
T: Yeah, there are benefits in terms of scholarships but a sports person has to apply for the scholarship before he or she can enjoy such benefits.
EB: Have you applied for one yourself?
T: Not yet, but will apply.
EB: So does it imply that you are paying full fees?
T: Yes, because I am not on any scholarship scheme yet.
EB: So would you like to pursue the athletics after school?
T: Yes, and if possible, to becoming a national athlete.