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Nigeria’s fastest woman eyes Olympic gold medal.

As the minutes tick away from the commencement day of the London 2012 Olympics, one Nigerian athlete to watch at the global tourney is Blessing Okagbare, who will compete in

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قديم 07-20-2012, 05:17 PM
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افتراضي Nigeria’s fastest woman eyes Olympic gold medal.

As the minutes tick away from the commencement day of the London 2012 Olympics, one Nigerian athlete to watch at the global tourney is Blessing Okagbare, who will compete in the women’s long jump and in the 100m dash.


The 23-year-old sent warning signals to her potential rivals in London by winning her fourth successive Nigerian women’s 100m title ahead of her Delta State compatriot, Gloria Asumnu at the 66th All Nigeria (Olympic Trials)/Cross-Rivers State Athletics Championships in Calabar, last June.


Okagbare, the reigning African 100m champion from Nairobi 2010, had needed every speed that she could muster for her to outrun Asumnu on the line to win in 11.12 – 11.13 secs. Speaking on the feat of being the first Nigerian to win the event four times consecutively, the bronze medalist at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, said that she hopes to do much better at the London Olympics.


“I am so excited to win this title four times in a row now even though it is not my best performance. I hope to work harder to get something in London. It was a tough race but I thank God I still emerged winner” she said.


Though she settled for a silver medal at the African Championships in Porto Novo, Okagbare also continued to raise Nigeria’s hope of winning a medal in the long jump event in London by jumping 6.9m to win gold at the Benin tourney.


The Sapele-born sprinter, who shocked the world last Saturday at the Samsung Diamond League in Aviva, London, by claiming a gold medal in 100m in 11.01secs, is one of the most reliable athletes that the sports-loving Nigerian fans are ready to stake their money on to win medals at the coming Olympics.


Among her competitors at the London Grand Prix included the likes of the reigning world champion, America’s Carmelita Jeter and Beijing Olympics champion, Jamaica’s Shelly–Anne Fraser-Price who came last in the race.
Nigeria’s track and field queen, Mary Onyali-Omagbemi, reacting to Okagbare’s astonishing performance at the Grand Prix, said that Okagbare’s success was a deserved one.


“I am not surprised Blessing won in London. I have followed her progression all through the season and found her very consistent. It is a big plus for her and Nigeria, with less than two weeks to the Olympics. She added: “I have no doubt that she is capable of running 10.8. If she does that at the Olympics, a medal is sure for her. In fact, she will hit it big at the London Olympics,” said Onyali-Omagbemi.


As the London Games begin later in the month, sports-loving Nigerians expect Okagbare to display the stuff she is made of by getting Nigeria’s name on the medal table. Knowing fully well that the stakes will be raised in London, Okagbare has been working hard in order to do the country proud at the Games when the women’s 100m final and women’s long jump final hold on 4 August and 8 August respectively in East London.

Nigeria’s fastest woman eyes Olympic gold medal.


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