Seven sporting events that rocked last week

Segun Toriola

It was a week of records. From Nigeria’s table-tennis legend, Segun Toriola to Lionel Messi and the supreme running gazelle, Genzebe Dibaba.

These were the events that made us stand to attention last week.

Toriola qualifies for record 7th Olympic games
Nigeria Table Tennis international player, Segun Toriola, is now a legend because he braved all odds to qualify for the Olympic games for the seventh time. The 41-year-old defeated Mawussi Agbetoglo of Togo by four straight sets of 11-7, 12-10, 11-9, and 11-6. Toriola’s impending appearance at the 2016 Olympic games in Brazil will be the most by an African athlete.

Messi sets another La Liga record
The records just keep falling. This time, inside a raucous El Molinon, with its usual electric atmosphere in big games, Lionel Messi was again the star of the show as he scored a brace that sent him past 300 career La Liga goals.

Four away wins on the NPFL opening day
Things are definitely improving in the Nigeria Professional Football League as four away wins were witnessed on the opening day of the 2016 season. And most impressive was the away by Lagos-based MFM, over Nasarawa United. The newly promoted team has shown that preparation will matter in this season.

Dibaba breaks 26-year indoor record
If there is someone to be called a gazelle, then look no further than Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba. Last week Wednesday in Stockholm, she destroyed a record that had stood for 26 years in the 1mile indoor race. She came in in 4 minutes 13.31 seconds, eclipsing Doina Melinte of Romania’s standard of 4:17.14, set in 1990. She now has five world records – the indoor and outdoor 1,500 meters, 3,000 meters and 5,000 meters. The final two of those marks were set at the Stockholm track in 2014 and 2015, respectively.

Mccullum sets fastest batting century
New Zealand’s Brendon McCullum batted the fastest Test century. The New Zealand captain scored 145 runs from 100 balls as Australia were dismissed for 370 at the Hagley Oval in Christchurch

Martin del Potro wins for the first time in 12 months
Juan Martin del Potro thrust his arms into the air, blew a kiss skyward and began tossing his sweat-soaked wristbands into the crowd. This was one sweet victory for the Argentine as he beat American Denis Kudla 6-1, 6-4 in the first round of the Delray Beach Open on Tuesday in his first ATP match in 11 months following a left wrist injury. Del Potro’s win was a relief to tournament organizers after their top two seeds each had a quick exit.

And finally…
Manu has rethink but loses out
Former U-17 and U-20 coach, Manu Garba, was asked to take up the U-17 national team but the FIFA U-17 winning coach was miffed at being ‘demoted’ and he sniffed at the appointment. But he later had a rethink and told the Nigeria Football Federation bosses that he had rethought the appointment and that he would now gladly take it up to which the NFF replied that there was no more vacancy. Wisdom should have told him that he could have taken a few days before giving his decision instead of rejecting it in a haste.

Have a wisdom-filled week.

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