…as athletics begins today
lessing Okagbare, Divine Oduduru, and other top Nigerian stars will be in action at the ongoing African Games in Rabat, Morocco, as the track and field event of the championship takes centre stage from Monday, August 26 (today).
Queen of the track, Okagbare, has been in an impeccable form this season and will be fighting against rivals, Cote d’Ivoire duo of Marie Ta Lou and Claude Ahoure.
With Okagbare listed for the women’s 100m, she will hope to lead two other Nigerians to the final of the race as she will be joined by former junior international, Joy Udo-Gabriel and Aniekeme Alphonsus.
Alphonsus will be competing in the colours of the country after moving to the US and she is expected to get to the final alongside others.
Despite finishing sixth in men’s 200m at the Paris Diamond League over the weekend, Oduduru will be one of the stars expected to win gold for Nigeria in the men’s 100m.
Since the start of the year, the profile of the Delta-born star has increased after running sub-10secs more than three times.
He became the second fastest African man in history after running a new Personal Best of 9.86secs and will hope to replicate his form as he takes to the track on Monday.
Another athlete expected to shine for the country in the 100m for men is Raymond Ekevwo who in May ran an impressive 10.02secs, as well as Ese Itsekiri who has been consistent this season.
Oyeniyi Abejoye will be hoping to progress in the men’s 110m hurdles while Patience Okon-George, Jecinta Obi and Favour Ofili will be competing in the women’s 400m with Chidi Okezie, Ifeanyi Ojeli and Samson Nathanie, fighting others for a final finish in the men’s 400m.
African champions in women’s Triple Jump, Grace Anigbata, will be hoping to win Nigeria’s first gold in track and field as she goes to the final of the event on Monday.
With the start of the track and field events, Team Nigeria are expected to climb up the medal table as they battle for honours in some of the country’s stronghold.