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Local swimmer stays ready for Olympics

Matt Josa hoping to be in Tokyo in the summer of 2021

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The Olympics Committee in Tokyo is planning is if the summer games in some form or fashion in 2021. But like everything else in this pandemic -- that's not a guarantee. 

Local athletes though are training to stay ready.

When we first caught up with Fort Mill's Matt Josa -- he was cooped up inside -- a swimmer out of water.

But now Josa is back in the pool, training at Starclair Recreation Club in Charlotte.

"We should be in Tokyo right now," said Josa, 25.

Josa is one of the fastest swimmers in the United States in the 100 meter butterfly -- and will also try and make next summer's games in the 100 meter freestyle, 50 freestyle and 200 IM.

Josa remains focused on realizing his Olympic dreams. But the unkowns have not been easy to navigate -- while the fate of the games is fluid.

"It's been very taxing mentally," he said. "It's not the easiest thing not knowing what's going to happen next."

In 2016 -- training Charlotte with stars like Ryan Lochte -- Josa missed the team by tenths of a second. He was *confident* he would have made it this time.

"Given things had gone well I would be in Tokyo," he said, "be at the games awaiting the ceremony, eating at the Tokyo cafeteria, things like that and meeting people."

Even for world-class athletes like Josa, a spot in the Olympic Games is never guaranteed. This time -- the games themselves aren't even guaranteed.

"Things look different in the next year," he said. I don't know what they look like. I'm just going to keep doing me and keep swimming and doing what I love. Regardless of the result I'm just grateful to do what I love."

There was an initial thinking that a final decision on next summer's games would be made in October -- but recent reports say the IOC will wait until the spring to make a decision.

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