KYLE Greaux believes the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games could be his time. After suffering a major knee injury last year, the 200m runner wants to maintain his health and show his quality when the Games begin in July.

Greaux, 31, who was born in Manzanilla and moved to Sangre Grande as a young child, started athletics when he was seven. However, he stopped at 12 for more than ten years and during that time he dabbled in other sports such as table tennis, tennis, basketball and football. His desire and passion for track and field did not die and in 2012 he returned to the sport.

Greaux, who is currently suffering with degenerated cartilage in his left knee, spoke with Newsday before one of his physical therapy sessions. Reflecting on his decision to return to athletics Greaux said, “I was working in the airport for a bit and I always had an interest in going back to my first love which was athletics and I started training a little bit in 2012, started training with Silver Bullets, in Arima, but I would work some night shifts as well and train.” Although 2012 was an Olympic year, Greaux did not think about making the trip to London with the TT team. However, when he saw the success that the TT athletes accomplished in 2012 – four medals (one gold, one silver, two bronze) – he knew he wanted to be a part of that.

“I would say the success of the team in 2012 inspired me. No one knew who Keshorn Walcott was at the point in time...Lalonde Gordon, nobody really knew who he was and he won bronze in the individual 400m and bronze in the men’s 4x4 as well and the men’s 4x1 got a medal as well. It was inspirational.”

The off season of 2012 leading into 2013 he switched from Silver Bullets to Abilene Wildcats and stepped up his training regime and he started seeing an improvement in his times.

His mind was set on making the team for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games and he made the Olympic standard. Competing in the men’s 200m event, Greaux finished fourth in heat nine of round one in 20.61 seconds and did not advance.

Greaux kept on training and competed at the 2017 World Championships and most recently at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru where he suffered a knee injury that had a huge impact on his performance. Greaux, who said he will be competing in meets from May 2020, said he knew he would have had a strong performance in Lima if he was healthier. “At the point in time I was dealing with the knee injury, I knew I was in good shape and I knew in terms of competition I stood a chance of medalling, but because of the injury it was just disappointing that I was unable to compete (at a high level).” Greaux did not get past the semifinals as his knee injury hampered him.

Greaux believes the 2020 Tokyo Games could be his time. “Yes definitely I believe I am capable of having a top two finish.

“The Olympic gold medal is the highest medal an athlete under the IOC (International Olympic Committee) can achieve. For any athlete including myself it would be a dream come true for my country first and foremost and for myself secondly.”

Greaux said the TT team will be competitive. “I believe Team TTO will compete well. This time around we should have a stronger team in terms of swimming and cycling. Our local swimmers and cyclists have been doing well. As far as athletics goes I think it is possible to get two or three medals. I think it will be a difficult goal to get the four medals (like 2012), but maybe three. We can only hope and have optimism and just go for it – train for it and compete for it.”

Greaux will be competing in the men’s 200m and the men’s 4x100m in Rio.