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Warri Relays & CAA Grand Prix: Okagbare, Egwero Lead Team Nigeria To Victory

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Blessing Okagbare and Ogho-Oghene Egwero both inspired Team Nigeria to victories in the 4X100m Relays event at the 2017 Warri Relays & CAA Grand Prix held on Tuesday at the main bowl of the Delta State Polytechnic Ozoro.
While Okagbare led the female team to a comfortable win in a time of 43.92secs, the men team were stretched by the Botswana quartet who came to Ozoro with the aim of getting a qualifying time for the World Championships in London.
The Nigeria men’s relay team returned a time of 40.17secs while Botswana finished with a time of 40.21secs.
There was more to celebrate for Nigeria in the Women’s 100 Hurdles event as U.S based Tobiloba Amusan continued her impressive run this season; winning the race in a time of 12.97secs while Grace Ayemoba finished a distant second in a time of 13.53secs and Efe Favour third in 13.63secs.
In the Men’s 100m men was won by Egwero came first as he clocked 10.33secs, Keene Motukisi in second position in 10.41secs and Harry Chukwudike 10.47secs in third position.
Isoken Igbinosun finished ahead of national champions, Aniekeme Alphonsus, in women’s 100m as she posted a time of 11.49secs. Alphonsus crossed the line in 11.51secs and Ntia Obong Mercy in 11.66secs.
In the Women’s 800m, Agber Shimenge claimed top position with a time of 2.11.29secs.
Ihekandu Philomena and Oluchi Offoma settled for second and third spot respectively with a time of 2.12.17 and 2.12.20 respectively.
In the 110 Hurdles for men, Martins Ogieriakhi who few days ago won the national title followed up with another winning performance as he breasted the tape in a time of 13.82secs ahead of Abejoye Oyeniyi and Bashiru Abuduliahi who picked second and third spot.
For the 400m Women’s event it was a good day for Yinka Ajayi who not only won the race but also registered a new personal best time of 51.30secs
Abike Ebegniyi and Folashade Olotu were relegated to second and third spot having finished their races in 52.03 and 56.83secs respectively.
Meanwhile, Kelechi Nwanaga on Tuesday broke a 15-year national record in women’s javelin throw, with her 58.15m throw in Ozoro.
The previous record of 55.30 was created by Sorochukwu Ihuefo in 2002.
Nwanaga’s new feat is yet to be officially ratified by the Athletics Federation of Nigeria.

Kunle Solaja is the author of landmark books on sports and journalism as well as being a multiple award-winning journalist and editor of long standing. He is easily Nigeria’s foremost soccer diarist and Africa's most capped FIFA World Cup journalist, having attended all FIFA World Cup finals from Italia ’90 to Qatar 2022. He was honoured at the Qatar 2022 World Cup by FIFA and AIPS.

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Athletics

Nigerian-born Ujah recalled to Britain’s relay squad after serving doping ban

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Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Athletics - Men's 4 x 100m Relay - Medal Ceremony - Olympic Stadium, Tokyo, Japan - August 7, 2021. Silver medallists Chijindu Ujah of Britain, Zharnel Hughes of Britain, Richard Kilty of Britain and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake of Britain pose on the podium REUTERS/Andrew Boyers/File Photo

Chijindu Ujah has been recalled to Britain’s 4x100m squad for the World Athletics Relays in May, 10 months after serving his ban for a doping violation which resulted in his team being stripped of their silver medals at the Tokyo Olympics.

Sprinter Ujah was banned by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) for 22 months in October 2022, which was backdated from August 2021 to June 2023. However, the AIU had cleared Ujah of intentionally taking prohibited substances.

Britain were stripped of the Tokyo silver after the Court of Arbitration for Sport upheld Ujah’s anti-doping rule violation, though former UK Athletics technical director Stephen Maguire had said he would be considered for selection again after his ban.

Ujah’s team mates Richard Kilty, Zharnel Hughes and Nethaneel Mitchell-Blake also had their medals stripped, with Kilty saying they were left “devastated” since they had strictly followed the rules unlike Ujah.

All four sprinters were named in an eight-man 4x100m relay squad for the World Athletics Relays in the Bahamas on May 4-5, giving Ujah another shot to redeem himself before the Olympic Games in Paris from July 26-Aug. 11.

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“They have had their fair share of challenges in recent years,” said Darren Campbell, British Athletics’ head of sprints, hurdles and relays.

“But I have had my own discussions with each and every member of the squad and know they are motivated, committed and focused on working together to reach Paris.”

-Reuters

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Athletics

A clash of two citizens as Tobi Amusan and Ofili compete in US tourney today

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World record holder in women’s 100m hurdles, Tobi Amusan, will later today attempt to surpass her personal best of 11.10 seconds in   the 100m event at the Tom Jones Memorial Invitational hosted by the University of Florida this Friday

The race will feature another Nigerian, Favour Ofili. Both will be competing in a power-packed field that will include world championships finalist Tamari Davis and her compatriot Melissa Jefferson, who’s a former US champion as well as  Jamaican duo Alana Reid and Kemba Nelson and Abby Steiner.

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African Games

Nigeria’s Amusan and Brume shine in athletics

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Nigeria’s Amusan and Brume shine in athletics

The 2023 African Games come to a close on Saturday after two weeks of intense competition in Accra, Ghana, with Egypt emerging as the best team by far and the athletics competition providing a stunning spectacle in the final week.

Accra is hosting a the 2003 African Games from 4-23 March, with a remarkable organisation and Egypt crowned as the best team, just six gold medals short of the astonishing milestone of 100 titles. Will they reach it in the final competitions of the event? 

As is the case with the Olympic Games and in the Panam Games, the final week of competition is time to enjoy with athletics, a sport that usually brings African countries great success at every major event such as the Olympics or the World Athletics Championships. 

Ethiopia, for example, went into the athletics competition with no gold medals after 14 days of the Games and now has five, just like Kenya, which has won five of its six African titles in athletics.

Over the past two days, two world-class stars and big favourites for Accra 2023 have been crowned African champions to raise the level of competition. They will also be competing for Olympic glory at Paris 2024: Tobi Amusan and Ese Brume, both from Nigeria. 

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Nigeria’s Amusan burst onto the scene when she set a new world record in the women’s 110m hurdles with a time of 12.12, eight hundredths better than the old record set by USA’s ‘Keny’ Harrison. She also won gold at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene in 2022.

After a difficult year in 2023, when she missed three anti-doping tests (she didn’t test positive) and received a suspension that was later lifted, and a sixth place at the World Championships in Budapest, Amusan came to Accra as the overwhelming favourite and she didn’t disappoint.

The Nigerian was the fastest in the semi-finals with an easy mark for her (13.03) and won the final in 12.89, almost a second slower than her world record time. It was her fifth African title (three in the 100m hurdles and two in the 4x100m relay) and she will be competing for glory at Paris 2004 against the USA’s Harrison and Nia Ali, and Puerto Rico’s Jasmine Camacho Quinn, the reigning Olympic champion.

Also from Nigeria, Ese Brume is one of the best long jumpers in the world, with a bronze medal at the last Olympic Games, a silver at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene in 2022 and a bronze in Doha in 2019. She also won silver at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade in 2022 and came to Accra as a three-time African champion and two-time Commonwealth champion.

After a disappointing sixth place finish at last year’s World Athletics Championships in Budapest, the Ijebu-Ode native was the most high-profile athlete in the long jump final at Accra 2023, and she didn’t disappoint despite the opposition she faced.

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With the best jump ever at the African Games, surpassing the old record of 6.79 set by South Africa’s Janice Josephs in 2015, Brume jumped 6.92 to show she is ready to take on the likes of USA’s Tori Tara Davis and Jasmine Moore, Serbia’s Ivana Vuleta and Germany’s Malaika Mihambo at the Stade de France in August. Burkina Faso’s Mathe Jasmine Koala took silver with a remarkable jump of 6.81

-insidegames

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