Nigerian athletes shine at Warri Relays/ CAA Grand Prix

Team Nigeria athletes

The senior athletes had stiff challenge from junior athletes.

Nigerian athletes were on Friday at their best as they cruised to victory in virtually all the events at the 2nd edition of the Warri Relays/CAA Grand Prix held in Warri, Delta State.

The Meet held inside the Warri City Stadium had athletes from the United States, United Kingdom, Fiji Island, St. Vincent and a couple of other African countries all on parade for the second major event on the athletics calendar in Nigeria.

In the curtain raiser, fast improving junior athlete, Aminat Olowora, continued her dominance in the 5,000m Women’s event as she raced to a time of 17.48.25sec ahead of her compatriots to give Nigeria a dream start.

From then it was Nigeria all the way as the country dominated on the tracks as well on the field.

In the high jump men event, Saviour Okpara cleared a night of 2.10m to beat highly experienced Obiora Arinze who cleared 2.05m for second position.

African champion Doreen Amata also cleared a height of 1.90m to win the Women’s high jump event but will need to go a little bit higher to make the 1.95 or 1.92m A and B standards of the World Championships.

In the women’s Hammer event, Queen Obisesan’s throw of 62.98m could not be matched by any of the competitors on ground.

Back to the tracks, home boy Ogho Oghene Egwero who ran in the premium 100m race, outpaced Nigeria junior athlete Harry Chukwudike.

This is the first time since the outdoor season started that Egwero will post such a remarkable time of 10.16secs that equals the IAAF B standard for the World Championship in August.

Junior athlete, Harry, took the second the position with his 10. 47secs while U.S. Matthew Pritchest returned in 10.50secs.

In the 100m women, Nigeria’s U.S. base Gloria Asumnu (11.34 secs) beat junior athlete, Peace Ukoh (11.41secs); while Mariam Bassey (11.60 secs) took the third position.

In the 400m women, U.S. based Nigerian athlete, Regina George, beat a strong field which comprised Patience Ukoh and Bukola Abogunloko to win the race in 51. 62 secs while second and third placed Ukoh and Abogunloko returned 51.95secs and 52.18secs respectively.

There would have been an upset in the women’s 400m huddles event as Africa champion and U.S. based Ajoke Odumosu had to press hard to beat Nigeria junior athlete, Oluwakemi Adedayo.

Ajoke returned 55.10secs as Adedayo posted 55.30secs to place second.

What would have been a sweet victory for Nigeria’s senior team in the 4x100m women relay was squandered by poor baton exchange between US based athletes Rigina George and Gloria Asumnu thereby denying Nigeria senior team a medal as the event was won by Nigeria’s junior team.

In the men’s 4x100m, Nigeria’s senior team won the race after a stiff challenge from the junior team who took the second position.

Meanwhile, invited athletes from Ghana, US, Benin Republic, Fiji, and Jamaica could not live up to expectation as they presented mostly junior athletes in some of the events.

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