The tracks in Rio were literally set on fire early Monday morning with breathtaking performances from athletes all jostling for medals in the 2016 Olympic Games which is gradually winding down.
Two stand-out performances came from Jamaica’s Usain Bolt and South African Wayde Van Niekerk who shocked the world with his record performance in the men’s 400m men’s final race.
Van Niekerk, who is the reigning 400m World and African Champion, added the Olympic title to his tally as he erased Michael Johnson’s 17-year old World Record to set a new mark of 43.03s, becoming the first ever African in Olympic history to win the 400m.
Though awkwardly drawn in Lane 8, Van Niekerk was by no means deterred; running the race of his life and at the end he won gold in spectacular fashion also obliterating Johnson’s 20-year Olympic Record (OR) of 43.48s,.
The 400m race put the fans in the mood for what was to come in the eagerly anticipated 100m men’s final race where Usain Bolt never disappointed with another confident win ahead of all his rivals.
The Jamaican, who posted a time of 9.81s, became the first man in history to win three successive Olympic titles in the 100m, once again cementing his legendary status as one of the greatest athletes ever.
Sadly, Nigeria was missing in all of the glamour of Day nine as it was more of a day to forget for the country’s athletes in Rio.
On the track, the duo of Margaret Bamgbose and Patience Okon George ran in the 400m semis but couldn’t make the final cut .
Bamgbose finished 7th in heat 1 with a time of 51.92s and Okon George 2nd in heat 3 clocking 52.52s
Away from the tracks, Maryam Usman, who was the sole Weightlifter representing Nigeria at the Olympics finished 9th in the women’s +75kg category, lifting a cumulative total of 263kg in the event.
Officials say the Nigerian lifter struggled with an injury all through.