Mixed fortune for Team Nigeria athletes at U.S. tour
Only three teams feature in Mixed 4x400m relay
Team Nigeria’s bid to qualify for the relay events of the Tokyo Olympic Games could not materialise at the PVAMU Invitational in Texas on Wednesday due to absence of participating countries. Nigeria participated in only one relay event (Mixed 4x400m), where it competed with only two American clubs. The second country that featured in the PVAMU Invitational, Japan, did not bother to participate in the Mixed 4×400 metres relay since the event is not among those listed for the Tokyo Olympics.
Team Nigeria missed the World Relays in Poland two weeks ago due to visa issues. Their first competition in the U.S. Relay tour, which took place at the Prairie View A& M University, Texas, was more of individual races for the Nigerians.
Nigeria was the only country that featured in the Mixed 4x 400m relay event with two American clubs, as the fourth contestant did not start. Nigeria completed the race at 3:18.53 seconds ahead of the two American clubs, which ran 3:28.66, and 3:30.18 respectively.
However, Team Nigeria dusted six American clubs to make it 1, 2, 3 in the men’s 100m race, with Jerry Jakpa (10.10 seconds), Enoch Adegoke (10.23 seconds) and Godson Oghenebrume (10.30 seconds).
The women’s 100m race also saw Nigeria beating contestants from American clubs, with Grace Nwokocha finishing tops in 11.17 seconds. The other Nigerian, Joy Udo-Gabriel ran 11.48 seconds to place fifth.
Only three competitors featured in the Men’s 400m hurdles, with Nigeria’s Timothy Emoghene finishing tops in 50.78 seconds.
Jerry Jakpa ran 20.91seconds to finish second in the 200m race won by Fulks Kyle of Elite Performance Track Club in 20.89 seconds. Japan’s Dobson Ivy finished eighth position in 22.17 seconds
The trio of Ifeanyi Ojeli, Sikiru Adeyemi and Samson Nathaniel did not start in the men’s 400 metres race in Texas.
Contrary to earlier reports, the duo of Blessing Okagbare and Divine Oduduru did not compete in Nigeria’s mixed relay events in Texas.
MEANWHILE, former AFN president, Chief Solomon Ogba, has arrived in USA, and has promised to be at AP Ranch, Dallas, venue of Team Nigeria’s next outing on May 18.
Nigerian athletes are expected to return to Texas on May 25 for another event, before their last relay event in the tour of U.S. on May 29 in Florida.
While Team Nigeria’s relays tour began in Texas on Wednesday, some Nigerian athletes also listed for the trip were still in their Royal Choice INN hotel in Abuja yesterday alongside coach Deji Aliu awaiting their visas.
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