Team Benin at the Summer Olympics

Summer Olympics Team Benin

Overview

Team Benin representing a small West African country is participating in the Games of the XXXII Olympiad. Also known as the 2020 Summer Olympics, the games are taking place in Tokyo, Japan. As a result, the games are also referred to as Tokyo 2020.  Team Benin at the 2020 Summer Olympics is participating in the Tokyo games for the 12th time since 1972.

The History of Benin at the Summer Olympics started after its first participation in the Games of the XX Olympiad. The Games of the XX Olympiad are also known as the 1972 Summer Olympics games, were held in Munich, West Germany.

However, following the boycott call of the 1976 Summer Olympics by African nations. Summer Olympics Team Benin heeded the call and did not send any participants.  The Montreal 1976, held in is the only Canada edition Benin has so far failed to participate in Summer Olympics since it made its debut in 1972.

Despite participating in the Summer Olympics 11 times, the team has never won any medal so far. We hope that Tokyo 2020 will bring in a new tide. This makes the Summer Olympics Team Benin one of the 27 African nations that have never won any medal in the games so far.

Below is a brief history of Benin at the Summer Olympics.

A Brief History of Team Benin at the Summer Olympics

Benin in the 1972 Summer Olympics

As mentioned earlier, Summer Olympics Team Benin made its debut at the 1972 edition, held in Munich, West Germany. In the 1972 edition, Summer Olympics Team Benin was represented by 3 men. The three participated in only 2 sports. One of the team members participated in Athletics, while 2 participated in boxing.

Team Benin in 1976, 1980, and 1984 Summer Olympics

The 1976 Summer Olympics Games were held in Montreal Canada. They were boycotted by 29 nations mainly from Africa. The boycott was after the International Olympics Committee refused to heed the nations’ call to ban New Zealand from participating. New Zealand Rugby team had toured South Africa after the United Nations had called for a sports embargo due to the country’s apartheid policies.

As an ally of the former Soviet Union, Summer Olympics Team Benin participated in the 1980 Moscow Games. The Moscow Games were boycotted by 69 pro-Western nations.

Despite the call by the Soviet Union to boycott the 1984 Summer Olympics, Benin did not heed, though it was a Marxist regime. They participated in the Games of the XXIII Olympiad, held in Los Angeles, United States. In 1980 and 1984, Summer Olympics Team Benin was represented by a squad of 16 and 3 competitors respectively.

In 1980, Benin at the Summer Olympics was represented by 16 athletes. The team included a woman. Despite such a huge squad, Benin only participated in two sports; Athletics and Boxing. The 1980 squad had nine of its members competing in athletics while seven participated in boxing. However, none of the competitors won any medal.

In Los Angeles, 1984 Summer Olympics, Benin was represented by only three competitors, all males. The three competed in only one sport; Boxing. Similar to 1972 and 1980, Benin did not win any medals.

Benin in 1988, 1992, and 1996 Summer Olympics

Benin participated in the Games of the XXIV Olympiad. The 1988 Summer Olympics were held in Seoul, South Korea, Team Benin was represented by seven athletes.  The seven athletes included one woman. The team had competitors in Athletics and Judo. Like in the previous games, Benin did not win any medal.

Team Benin sent a contingent of six competitors including 2 women to the 1992 Summer Olympics held in Barcelona, Spain. The competitors participated in two sports; Athletics and Cycling. Similar to the previous editions, the team did not win any medal.

Summer Olympics Team Benin was represented by five athletes including one woman in the Games of the XXVI Olympiad held in Atlanta, the United States in 1996. For the first time in Benin Summer Olympics history, the team just participated in one sport; Athletics. In addition, the team did not win any medals.

Team Benin in 2000, 2004, and 2008 Summer Olympics

Benin participated in Sydney 2000. The nation sent a squad of 4 athletes who competed in 3 sports. The three sports were Athletics, Taekwondo and Tennis. In addition, the team included a woman. The women competitors, Laure Isabelle Kuetey had participated in three Sumer Olympics, 1992, 1996, and 2000. In addition, she was the team’s flagbearer in Atlanta and Sydney.  Similar to what had become the team’s trend, Benin did not win any medal.

Team Benin sent 4 competitors to the 2004 Summer Olympics held in Athens Greece. The four included two women. In addition, they competed in two sports; Athletics and Swimming. The performance of the team was not different from the past three of the competitors ending their medal quest in the heat stage. However, Fabienne Feraez, one of the female competitors participating in the athletics, 200 meters event managed to sail past the heats but ended her journey in the quarterfinals. Consequently, Benin did not win any medals.

In the subsequent Summer Olympics; Beijing 2008, Summer Olympics Team Benin was represented by 5 athletes competing in 3 sports. The team included two women. The team participated in Athletics, Swimming, and Taekwondo. However, none of the team members made it to the medal podium. Benin went home for the ninth time without any medal.

Team Benin in 2012 and 2016 Summer Olympics

In the Summer Olympics of 2012, held in London, United Kingdom, Benin sent a contingent of 5 competitors including one woman. The competitors participated in the following 4 sports, Athletics, Boxing, Judo, and Swimming. Team Benin had not participated in Boxing since the 1984 Summer Olympics when its team of three competitors was all composed of boxers. For the tenth time, the team did not end the medals’ dry spell.

In Rio, 2016, Summer Olympics, Team Benin was represented by a squad of 6 athletes, competing in 4 sports. The six competitors included 2 women. In addition, the competitors participated in Athletics, Fencing, Judo, and Swimming. Except for two who went past the preliminary stages, the other four lost early in the completion. Noélie Ditchakou Yarigo, one of the women and competing in athletics 800 metres made it all the way to the semifinals but ranked 5th hence she did not advance. In addition, a judoka; Celtus Dossou Yovo competing in men’s 90 kilograms category made it past the preliminary but lost in the round of 16.

In Summary

The Table below summarises the number of sports and competitors for Summer Olympics Team Benin.

Edition Number of Sports Sports Number of Competitors Number of Women Remark
1972 2 Athletics & Boxing 3 None (0) Did not win any medal
1976 Not Applicable Not Applicable Not Applicable Not Applicable Did Not Participate
1980 2 Athletics & Boxing 16 One (1) Did not win any medal
1984 1 Boxing 3 None (0) Did not win any medal
1988 2 Athletics & Judo 7 One (1) Did not win any medal
1992 2 Athletics & Cycling 6 Two (2) Did not win any medal
1996 1 Athletics 5 One (1) Did not win any medal
2000 3 Athletics, Taekwondo & Tennis 4 One (1) Did not win any medal
2004 2 Athletics & Swimming 4 Two (2) Did not win any medal
2008 3 Athletics, Swimming & Taekwondo 4 Two (2) Did not win any medal
2012 4 Athletics, Boxing, Judo & Swimming 5 Two (2) Did not win any medal
2016 4 Athletics, Fencing, Judo & Swimming 5 One (1) Did not win any medal
2020 3 Athletics, Judo & Rowing 5 Two (2) To be Confirmed