MAKING OF CHAMPIONS http://www.makingofchamps.com Lifting The Lid On How CHAMPIONS Are Made In Track & Field!!! Fri, 17 Apr 2015 15:36:34 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 African & World Youth Champs: AFN settles for 27 athletes! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/17/african-world-youth-champs-afn-settles-for-27-athletes/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/17/african-world-youth-champs-afn-settles-for-27-athletes/#comments Fri, 17 Apr 2015 15:36:34 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4395 The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has selected 27 athletes to execute Team Nigeria’s campaign at the African Youth Championships holding next week in Mauritius, as well as the World Youth Championships in Colombia in July. The team, comprising of 15 Boys and 12 Girls incidentally has the quartet of Praise Idamadudu, Aniekeme Alphonsus, Abolaji

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The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has selected 27 athletes to execute Team Nigeria’s campaign at the African Youth Championships holding next week in Mauritius, as well as the World Youth Championships in Colombia in July.

The team, comprising of 15 Boys and 12 Girls incidentally has the quartet of Praise Idamadudu, Aniekeme Alphonsus, Abolaji Omotayo and Blessing Adiakerenwa who were medallists at last month’s African Junior Championships in Ethiopia.

Idamadudu is the reigning African Junior Champion in the 200m/4x400m while Alphonsus picked Silver and Bronze in the 100m and 200m respectively, and GOLD in the 4x100m alongside Omotayo, Adiakerenwa and Ese Brume. The pair of Uche Brown (Triple Jump) and Sikiru Adewale (400m) were also in action in Addis Ababa but didn’t make it to the podium.

Owing to the fact that some of the selected athletes are still in school, the Technical Committee has also directed the athletes to continue training at their locations until 20th April 2015 when they would be called up to assemble for the trip to Mauritius. As such, they won’t be invited for closed camping.

However lack of adequate funding has put Nigeria’s participation in dire straits as it is not yet certain if the contingent will make it to the continental championship which commences on April 23rd in Mauritius.

Ironically, Nigeria hosted and won the last edition of the Championship, which took place at the Warri Township Stadium in Delta State where the likes of World Juniors Silver medallist, Divine Oduduru and a host of others came into international reckoning.

GIRLS

100meters

Aniekeme Alphonsus (Akwa-Ibom)
Abolaji Omotayo Oluwaseun (Kwara)

200meters

Idamadudu Praise (Delta)
Aniekeme Alphonsus (Akwa-Ibom)

400meters

Idamadudu Praise (Delta)
Adiakerenwa Blessing (Delta)

100m Hurdles

Vivian Nnena Akunna (Lagos)
Okorhi Mary (Delta)

400m Hurdles

Clifford Fegor (Delta)
Abu Joy (Kwara)

Long Jump

Nwaelehia Peace (Rivers)
Okolosi Oghenekome (Delta)

Triple Jump

Uche Brown (Abia)

Race Walk

Olude Fadakemi Florence (Ogun)

BOYS

100meters

Idjesa Uruemu (Global)
Nwokocha Tobechukwu (Delta)

200meters

Itsekiri Usheoritse (Delta)
Igube ThankGod (Delta)

400meters

Adewale Sikiru Adewale (Kwara )
Afeez Abdulramon (Kwara)

800meters

Okeke Chidi (Anambra)

110m Hurdles

Ojeikere Omon (Edo)
Ayebide Kingsley (Delta)

400m Hurdles

Prior Ochonogor (Edo)
Airen Williams (Lagos)

Javelin

Ezekiel Nyong (Cross-Rivers)

High Jump

Ayebide Kingsley (Delta )

Triple Jump

Pius Nsube Ihezue (Delta)
Emmanuel Effiom (Delta)

Long Jump

Nwokocha Tobechukwu (Delta)
Pius Nsube Ihezue (Delta)

Decathlon

Ayebide Kingsley (Delta)

COACHES

Saheed Akinpelu (Middle Distance)
Mrs Emily Osakwe (Horizontal Jumps)
Abiodun Johnson (Long Sprints)
Endurance Ojokolo (Short Sprints)
Chima Osuagwu (Hurdles)
Oluwole Odunuga (Race Walk)
Olalekan Soetan (Vertical Jumps)
George Obiano (Horizontal Jumps)

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Egwero runs Season’s Best as Erayokan shines at 2nd AFN All-Comers! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/16/egwero-runs-seasons-best-as-erayokan-shines-at-2nd-afn-all-comers/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/16/egwero-runs-seasons-best-as-erayokan-shines-at-2nd-afn-all-comers/#comments Thu, 16 Apr 2015 21:47:32 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4363 It was a full house at the Sports Complex of the Yaba College of Technology in Lagos as over 400 athletes from all parts of the country participated in the African Youth Athletics Championships Trials ‎and Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) 2nd All-Comers Competition, which took place on Wednesday. Some of the athletes churned out

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It was a full house at the Sports Complex of the Yaba College of Technology in Lagos as over 400 athletes from all parts of the country participated in the African Youth Athletics Championships Trials ‎and Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) 2nd All-Comers Competition, which took place on Wednesday.

Some of the athletes churned out good times in their races, but the fastest time for the day was done by former National Champion,Ogho-Oghene Egwero who lowered his time from the last All-Comers championship in Abuja. At the nation’s capital last month, Egwero did a time of 10.28s, but he improved to a Season’s Best (SB) of 10.20s, which won him the race.

Noah Akwu won his final in the men's 400m event.

Noah Akwu won his heat in the men’s 400m event.

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In the different straight finals of the men’s 400m races, reigning National Champion, Isah Salihu emerged winner in his own event, with Orukpe Erayokan, Tobi Ogunmola and Noah Akwu also winning theirs. Salihu clinched his own race in a time of 48.15s while Eko 2012 winner, Erayokan ran the fastest time in the 400m (46.58s.), which was slower than the 46.38s he posted in Abuja.

Daniel Agboola defeated other athletes to win the men’s 800m event in a time of 1min: 53s, while Osuolale Taiwo won the 5000m event with a time of 15min: 19: 61s.

Nkem Ezeala emerged the women's 100m/200m champion.

Nkem Ezeala emerged the women’s 100m/200m champion.

Nkem Ezeala won the double, clinching the women’s 100m event in a time of 11.53s. African Junior Champion, Praise Idamadudu won the 200m women’s youth category, beating other athletes to race to the finish line in a time of 23.71s.

Athletes who were at Top Sprinter Auditions

Some of the athletes who participated in the Top Sprinter Auditions organised by Making of Champions last month, were also part of the All- Comers event in Lagos. From the Top Sprinter Lagos auditions to that of Ibadan and Enugu, some of these athletes came out and rubbed shoulders with some of the best in the country.

Olisakwe Chukwudi put up an impressive performance in his events.

Olisakwe Chukwudi put up an impressive performance in his events.

Of all the athletes who competed at the Top Sprinter auditions, Olisakwe Chukwudi ran the fastest time with 10.64s in his 100m heats. He completed the double when he won the 200m race with a time of 21.99s. His friend, Igube Thankgod placed second in his race in the 100m Youth category, but made amends in the 200m event where he ran a time of 21.89s.

Abdulrahman Afeez was the other athlete who won his race in the Youth’s 400m. The Ilorin-based athlete won his heat in a time of 49.10s and afterwards told Making Of Champions: ” I am disappointed with my time,” he said after the race, adding that: “the curve was unending”, an unhappy Afeez who started in lane 8 said. Meanwhile, double champion at the Ibadan auditions, Emmanuel Arowolo, won his heat in 10.74s.

Thankgod Igube gave a good account of himself at the National Youth Trials.

Thankgod Igube gave a good account of himself at the National Youth Trials.

Olubukola Alagbe who was a double champion in Enugu, twice placed 2nd in her races on the day. Alagbe came second in the 100m heat, finishing with a time of 12.01s.

Trials for next week’s Africa Youth Championship

The AFN used the All-Comers championship to get some of the athletes with the fastest times and best performances to represent the country at the 2nd Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) Youth Championships taking place from April 23 to 26 in Mauritius.

There were competitions in the field events ranging from the hammer throws, Long and Triple Jumps and also the Javelin. The stand-out performance came from Nere Omatsola, who broke the National Youth Record. The SS 3 student of Whitesands School in Lagos scaled the height of 1.85m to emerge tops in the competition.

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Tobi Ogunmola

Jumps

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Nigerian Athletes getting set for the new Athletics season http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/15/nigerian-athletes-getting-set-for-the-new-athletics-season/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/04/15/nigerian-athletes-getting-set-for-the-new-athletics-season/#comments Wed, 15 Apr 2015 05:58:47 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4356 With the new Athletics season set to commence soon, some Nigerian athletes have already begun preparations to get themselves ready for the challenges ahead. This past weekend in the United States of America, Nigeria had good representations in some of the meets held there, putting in good performances to inspire hope of great season to

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With the new Athletics season set to commence soon, some Nigerian athletes have already begun preparations to get themselves ready for the challenges ahead.

This past weekend in the United States of America, Nigeria had good representations in some of the meets held there, putting in good performances to inspire hope of great season to look forward to. Established Nigerian athletes like Regina George and Gloria Asumnu were all in the mix, competing to be in top shape.

George, one of Nigeria’s elite athletes resident in USA, won her 400m event in Austin, Texas on Saturday in a time of 51.89s. Her compatriot Ibukun Mayungbe was also in action as she came fifth in the same 400m race, with a time of 53.97s. George followed up her 400m performance with a fifth place finish in the 200m, after running a time of 23.59s.

Meanwhile that same day in Louisiana, her compatriot Asumnu did the double in both the 100m and 200m events respectively. Asumnu won her 100m race in 11.44s (w:+0.6) and also came out tops in the 200m, finishing in 23.39s to coast to victory.

In Greensboro, North Carolina, another Nigerian athlete was on parade in the meet. Peace Uko placed sixth in the women’s 100m event, finishing in a time of 11.63s . Ini-Oluwa Oye also accounted for a good Nigerian showing in Eugene, Oregon, placing third in the 200m event with a time of 21.24s (w:+2.3). In the field events, Euphemia Edem did a 6.22m leap to win the women’s Long Jump event in, Stephenville, Texas.

It was a similar tale in the male category, with Divine Oduduru continuing his fine displays from the African Junior Championship held last month in Ethiopia. Oduduru did the double in both the 100m and 200m event last weekend. He won his 100m race in a time of 10.43s and also claimed the top spot in the 200m, winning the race with a time of 21.22s in San Antonio, Texas.

The IAAF Diamond League season will kick off in Doha, Qatar on May 15 at the Suhain bin Hamad Stadium, and hopefully in years to come we will get to see more Nigerian athletes in action in the premiere Athletics league globally!

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Top Sprinter Auditions: How it happened in Enugu! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/25/top-sprinter-auditions-how-it-happened-in-enugu/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/25/top-sprinter-auditions-how-it-happened-in-enugu/#comments Wed, 25 Mar 2015 06:52:25 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4250 The last round of Top Sprinter Auditions was held this past weekend, with Enugu providing what has been a thrilling experience in the search for the best talents in Athletics. From Lagos to Ibadan, and now to the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu, the coal city became the third city that Making Of Champions has

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The last round of Top Sprinter Auditions was held this past weekend, with Enugu providing what has been a thrilling experience in the search for the best talents in Athletics. From Lagos to Ibadan, and now to the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in Enugu, the coal city became the third city that Making Of Champions has taken the Top Sprinter auditions to.

The trio of Top Sprinter Coaches Deji Aliu, Glory Alozie and Francis Obikwelu were joined by fellow Olympic Medallist, Uchenna Emedolu in Enugu, making it a quartet of athletes who once competed for Nigeria.

There was a lot of expectation bringing the competition to South-East Nigeria, largely because of the calibre of athletes the country has produced from this region. Over 150 athletes from all over Nigeria were in attendance, with many coming from the South-East, particularly Aba, Onitsha, Owerri and Port-Harcourt. Given the success of the Ibadan Auditions the previous week, athletes also travelled from as far away as Lagos, Benin, Ilorin and Jos.

Olubukola Alagbe (Right) coasted to victory in the women's 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay.

Olubukola Alagbe (Right) coasted to victory in the women’s 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay.

Just as was anticipated, the finals in both the male and female categories of all the events threw up an exciting contest. Olubukola Alagbe emerged as the best female athlete in Enugu as she claimed the sprint double, winning the 100m in 11.8s and following up with the 200m in 24.4s. Silverleen Nwokeocha finished 2nd in the 100m with a time of 11.9s, and Rasheedat Lawal placing 3rd with a time of 12.2s. Ann Nwaogu trailed Alagbe in 2nd in the 200m with a time of 24.7s, while Nwokeocha had another podium finish, placing 3rd with a time of 24.9s.

In the women’s 400m event, Chinenye Chukwu shrugged off the bereavement of her father just two days before the competition, running a good race in 56.1s to storm to victory. Glory Nyenke, another star attraction in Enugu, placed 2nd behind Chinenye, recording a time of 58.1s in the race. Nyenke competed in no fewer than five races in the final day of the events, running both in the school competitions as well as the senior races. Cynthia Moughalu, an aspiring Lawyer, finished third in the women’s 400m race with a time of 58.2s.

Chinenye Chukwu (Centre) shrugged off the loss of her father a few days before the auditions to win the women's 400m.

Chinenye Chukwu (Centre) shrugged off the loss of her father a few days before the auditions to win the women’s 400m.

A relay team aptly naming themselves “Team Top Sprinter”, anchored by Bukola Alagbe, clinched 1st position in the women’s 4x100m relay, winning with a time of 48.9s, while Team Abia ‘B’ settled for 2nd in 50.4s and Team Abia ‘A’ came in 3rd with a time of 50.5s.

In the men’s category in Enugu, it was a three-way show amongst the trio of Olisakwe Chukwudi, Thankgod Igube and Victor Peka in Enugu. These three athletes dominated their Heats and got people standing up in applause during the finals of the 100m and 200m events. Having been part of the Nigerian team at the African Juniors Championship in Ethiopia, the trio were undoubtedly the fastest sprinters on show, and their rivalry and camaraderie made the sprints a real spectacle.

National junior athletes, Chukwudi Olisakwe (Left), Thankgod Igube (Centre) and Victor Peka (Right) dominated the sprint double.

National juniors, Chukwudi Olisakwe (Left), Thankgod Igube (Centre) and Victor Peka (Right) dominated the sprints.

In the keenly contested 100m final, Chukwudi emerged tops to clinch the top spot, running the race of his life to win in 10.3s. Igube came in 2nd with 10.34s, while Peka took 3rd position in 10.35s.
It was the same tale in the men’s 200m final, but this time around the three athletes swapped positions in the Top 3.

Igube ran a perfect race in the bends, shaking off a late surge from Peka towards the home stretch to ensure that he finished 1st in a time of 21.0s. Peka settled for 2nd spot in 21.1s, while Chukwudi made sure it was another Top 3 finish in the 200m, placing 3rd also with 21.1s.

The trio were a delight to watch in the men's 100m and 200m races.

The trio were a delight to watch in the men’s 100m and 200m races.

In the men’s 400m, Precious Moses, won the event with a time of 48.3s. Chukwuma Madunta finished 2nd in the race with 48.9s, and Andrew Gowap who came all the way from Jos placed 3rd in 49.6s.

Igube and Chukwudi starred again in the 4x100m relay, teaming up to help Team Enugu to victory as they won the race in 41.5s. While Peka anchored another relay team calling themselves “Team Top Sprinter” to a 2nd place finish in 42.0s, Team Plateau ‘A’ came 3rd in 42.6s.

Precious Moses (Left) won the men's 400m race effortlessly.

Precious Moses (Left) won the men’s 400m race effortlessly.

In the Secondary school competitions, Nyenke shone again as she won the girls’ 100m event in 12.1s, beating Chiamaka Egbochinam who came 2nd in 12.2s. Monday Helen finished 3rd in 12.5s. Commercial Secondary school took 1st in the 4×100 relay in 52.4s, while both FGC Enugu teams took 2nd and 3rd in 54.0s and 54.2s respectively.

Nnabugwu Gbaruko won the boys’ finals in 11.2s, while Apeh Kingsley came in 2nd with a time of 11.3s, with Ozor Nwaji finishing 3rd in 11.5s. Interestingly in the relays, all three teams FGC Enugu presented out of the four teams that competed took the first three positions, with times of 46.2s, 47.1s and 47.9s respectively.

Glory Yenke who competed in multiple events, was one of the standout athletes in Enugu.

Glory Yenke who competed in multiple events, was one of the standout athletes in Enugu.

The Enugu auditions was an upgrade from the one held a week before in Ibadan, with the competition for places becoming more intense. In a distinguishing sense, athletes posted better times in their races, in contrast to that of Ibadan. Former National Champion, Obinna Metu, who was present during the two days that the Top Sprinter auditions took place, had nothing but praise for Making Of Champions for coming up with such an initiative.

“Honestly I am very happy that this competition (Top Sprinter) is being brought to Enugu. It’s been a while we had a competition of this calibre in this town, which is known to have produced good athletes in the past. I am also impressed by the performance of the athletes who have competed thus far, and we hope that this will be a continuous occurence”, Metu told Making Of Champions.

 Former 100m National Champion, Obinna Metu was at hand to watch the athletes compete in the Coal City.


Former 100m National Champion, Obinna Metu was at hand to watch the athletes compete in the Coal City.

Having completed the regional auditions of the Top Sprinter Genesis and with the quartet of Emedolu, Obikwelu, Aliu and Alozie selecting the Top 50 athletes in each location that will have a chance to participate in future boot camps with them, where these coaches would look to hone these chosen ones into world beaters.

The Top Sprinter Auditions will return later in the year, and athletes from all over Nigeria will once again have the chance to become part of the search for Nigeria’s next generation of Olympians!

The judges pose alongside the Top 30 selected male  athletes.

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Top Sprinter Auditions: What We Saw in Ibadan http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/20/top-sprinter-auditions-what-we-saw-in-ibadan/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/20/top-sprinter-auditions-what-we-saw-in-ibadan/#comments Fri, 20 Mar 2015 06:18:25 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4226 If the three Lagos Auditions in February gave a snippet of the concept of what Top Sprinter is all about, the Ibadan Auditions took it to an entirely different level. Over the weekend, over 150 athletes converged at the University of Ibadan from different areas in the South-West region of Nigeria, aiming to impress the

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If the three Lagos Auditions in February gave a snippet of the concept of what Top Sprinter is all about, the Ibadan Auditions took it to an entirely different level.

Over the weekend, over 150 athletes converged at the University of Ibadan from different areas in the South-West region of Nigeria, aiming to impress the three distinguished Olympians: Francis Obikwelu and Glory Alozie flew in from Europe to join Deji Aliu on the panel of Top Sprinter Coaches for the Regional Auditions.

Athletes came from as far as Akure (Ondo State), Abeokuta (Ogun State),  Ife (Osun State), Lagos and even Ilorin (Kwara State), whose athletes made an appreciable impact and excelled throughout the weekend. The Top 25 athletes who emerged from the Lagos competitions were also in Ibadan to rub shoulders with their counterparts in the Western region.

Athletes warming up before competition on Saturday in Ibadan

Athletes warming up before competition on Saturday in Ibadan

If the athletes from Lagos expected to have a cakewalk in Ibadan, they were in for a shocker as athletes from other states gave them a run for their money. The zeal with which all the athletes competed and challenged for the top positions in events underlined their determination to be selected. Day one activities were centred on the heats, but it looked like the real deal as the impressive times recorded showed the competitive edge in Ibadan.

In the Men’s 100m heats, the likes of Onengi Ikoko and Emmanuel Arowolo blazed through their races with very promising times. Onengi, who was the undisputed star in Lagos, came to Ibadan looking to continue with that form and he did that in a time of 10.6s in his heat.  Arowolo, who came all the way from Akure just a day after watching the Top Sprinter Lagos Auditions online, ran 10.7s in winning his heat.

The men’s 100m A Final was all poised for a final showdown between Ikoko and Arowolo and it lived up to its billing – it was a tight photo finish for the top 3 positions and the officials had to fall back on video evidence, spending several minutes to determine the winners. Ultimately, Arowolo lowered the Top Sprinter Auditions Record to 10.5s to snatch victory just ahead of Yusuf Hameed and Aderemi Adeyemi. Ikoko could only finish in 8th amongst the 10 finalists in the race.

Arolowo later completed the sprint double as he beat all comers in the 200m in a time of 21.7s, to be crowned the most valuable male athlete of the Ibadan Auditions. Edwin Peter finished 2nd with 21.8s, while Onome Erako placed third, also in 21.8s. The men’s 400m was won by Afeez Abdulrahman in a time of 48.9s, with Seun Olaniyi and Nnanyelugo Osakwe finishing in 2nd and 3rd with 49.8s and 50.2s respectively.

Arolowo stole the show as Male MVA after winning the sprint double - Obikwelu presented him a black Top Sprinter t-shirt

Arolowo stole the show as Male MVA after winning the sprint double – Obikwelu presented him a black Top Sprinter t-shirt

Coach Uruemu Adu presented the Top 3 in the 400m with their Top Sprinter t-shirts

Coach Uruemu Adu presented the Top 3 in the 400m with their Top Sprinter t-shirts

The women’s 100m was an interesting battle between SS3 student Ruth Usoro and University of Lagos undergraduate Moyosore Badejo, who placed 1st and 2nd respectively in the 100m at the Lagos Auditions. In Ibadan, Usoro claimed the fastest time in the heats on Saturday with 12.4s, with Badejo also winning her heat in 12.44s. It was Badejo who had the last laugh on Sunday as she finally claimed victory in the final with a time of 12.15s, pushing Usoro into 2nd place with 12.16s.

Nigeria Junior International Deborah Odeyemi finished in 3rd in 12.2s – a far cry from her PB of 11.45s set at the National Trials in Calabar last year, but she told MoC that since she only recently started her training for the new season and being based in Ibadan, the Auditions presented a good opportunity for her to compete despite her lack of race readiness.

In the women’s 200m, Badejo showed that what Arowolo could do in the men’s event, she could equally do in the women’s. She ran 25.3s to claim the sprint double, but 2nd placed Barakat Kazeem, another SS3 student but based in Ibadan, equally caught the eyes of Top Sprinter Coaches Obikwelu and Alozie after running 26.2s in her Heat on Saturday and 26.1s in the final on Sunday, barefooted the whole time! Yahaya Mojisola placed 3rd in a time of 26.9s.

Barakat caught the eyes of the Top Sprinter Coaches after competing  barefooted at the Ibadan Auditions

Barakat caught the eyes of the Top Sprinter Coaches after competing barefooted at the Ibadan Auditions

The star performer in the women’s 400m was Oluwatobi Ashamu, who had just returned from representing Nigeria at the African Junior Championships in Ethiopia the previous week. She won in 55.6s, while Abodunrin Bukola and Edun Feyisora place 2nd and 3rd respectively, with 57.8s and in 59.1s.

Fresh from winning Silver at the African Juniors,  Tobi Asamu dominated the women's 400m in Ibadan.

Fresh from winning Silver at the African Juniors, Tobi Asamu dominated the women’s 400m in Ibadan.

The 4x100m relay was the final event of the weekend, and in the women’s event, Badejo anchored the Lagos Top 25 girls to victory in 49.6s, to rubberstamp her status as the most valuable female athlete of the weekend, after winning the sprint double earlier that same morning. God’s Speed Athletics Club took 2nd place in 50.3s, while Kwara Team A were 3rd in 50.8s.

The Top 25 Lagos team, led by Moyosore Badejo (Right) won the  women's 4x100m relay.

The Top 25 Lagos team, led by Moyosore Badejo (Right) won the women’s 4x100m relay.

Moyosore Badejo emerged the Most Valuable Female Athlete with victories in the women's 100m, 200m & 4x100m.

Moyosore Badejo emerged the Most Valuable Female Athlete with victories in the women’s 100m, 200m & 4x100m.

In the men’s 4x100m, it was the same three teams that dominated – Kwara A finished top this time in 42.3s, while Team B for the Lagos Top 25 boys were second in 43.5s, and God’s Speed Athletics Club took the final podium place of the weekend in 44.1s.

Kwara Team A dominated the men's 4x100m event!

Kwara Team A dominated the men’s 4x100m event!

By all accounts, the attending athletes had the best times of their lives, after being conveyed from Lagos, Ilorin and elsewhere in buses, as part of an all-expenses paid trip to Ibadan for the weekend to compete at the Auditions.

Many of the athletes did not yet know who Obikwelu and Alozie were, nor were they aware of their achievements when they arrived on Saturday. That all changed on Saturday evening when the Making of Champions: “The History” film, which featured both their stories, was screened to the athletes.  By Sunday morning they were all furiously taking pictures with Obikwelu and Alozie and getting their autographs from them!

Top Sprinter Coaches, Deji Aliu, Glory Alozie and Francis  Obikwelu

Top Sprinter Coaches, Deji Aliu, Glory Alozie and Francis Obikwelu

The train now moves to the coal city, Enugu, where the South-East auditions will hold this weekend and another Olympian, Uchenna Emedolu joining the party. Emedolu will team up with Aliu, Obikwelu and Alozie for the Enugu auditions, looking out for the best athletes in a region reputable to have produced many good sprinters for Nigeria.

In the words of Aliu: “we are getting better and going up a notch with each audition.”

So, Enugu, as Making Of Champions comes into town with the Top Sprinter auditions, are you ready to show us that you can run?

Top Sprinter Coaches Francis Obikwelu and Deji Aliu take the athletes through their paces in warmup in Ibadan

Top Sprinter Coaches Francis Obikwelu and Deji Aliu take the athletes through their paces in warmup in Ibadan

 

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TOP SPRINTER Genesis – IBADAN AUDITIONS SCHEDULE!!! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/12/top-sprinter-genesis-ibadan-auditions-schedule/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/12/top-sprinter-genesis-ibadan-auditions-schedule/#comments Thu, 12 Mar 2015 10:27:42 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4218 The Schedule of Events for the Ibadan leg of the Top Sprinter Auditions is OUT! We are pleased to report that Top Sprinter Coaches Deji Aliu, Glory Alozie and Francis Obikwelu are ON GROUND, and they will be live and direct at the University of Ibadan Sports Centre this weekend to put the attending athletes

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The Schedule of Events for the Ibadan leg of the Top Sprinter Auditions is OUT! We are pleased to report that Top Sprinter Coaches Deji Aliu, Glory Alozie and Francis Obikwelu are ON GROUND, and they will be live and direct at the University of Ibadan Sports Centre this weekend to put the attending athletes through their paces in training and competition!
Please note that ALL athletes must arrive for registration between 10am and 1pm on Saturday, as the Competition starts by 2pm on Saturday. PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST CONTEST THE SEMI-FINALS ON SATURDAY TO QUALIFY FOR THE FINALS ON SUNDAY! 
Many thanks and see you on the Track!

DAY 1 – SAT MAR 14TH

REGISTRATION
11am – Registration at UI Hotels for Athletes coming from outside Ibadan
12pm – Lunch for Athletes coming from outside Ibadan
1pm – Registration directly at UI Sports Centre for Athletes in Ibadan

COMPETITION (Semi-Finals)
2:00pm – Arrival at UI Sports Centre for Athletes coming from outside Ibadan
3:00pm – Women’s 100m Hurdles Semi-Finals
3:20pm – Men’s 110m Hurdles Semi-Finals
3:40pm – Women’s 100m Heats
4:00pm – Men’s 100m Heats
4:20pm – Women’s 400m Semi-Finals
4:40pm – Women’s 400m Semi-Finals
5:00pm – Women’s 200m Semi-Finals
5:20pm – Women’s 200m Semi-Finals

EVENING ACTIVITIES
5:40pm – Warm down with the Top Sprinter Coaches for athletes qualified for finals
6:30pm – Ibadan-based Athletes return home, Others return to UI Hotels
7:00pm – Dinner for Athletes from outside Ibadan at UI Hotels
8:30pm – Film Screening – Making of Champions: “The History”

DAY 2 – SUN MAR 15TH

COMPETITION (Finals)
8:00am – Arrival at UI Sports Centre for Athletes who qualified from semi-finals
9:00am – Women’s 100m Semi-Finals
9:15am – Men’s 100m Semi-Finals
9:30am – Women’s 100m Hurdles Finals
9:45am – Men’s 110m Hurdles Finals
10:00am – Women’s 400m Finals
10:10am – Men’s 400m Finals
10:20am – Women’s 100m Finals
10:30am – Men’s 100m Finals
11:20am – Women’s 200m Finals
11:30am – Men’s 200m Finals
12:00pm – Women’s 4x100m Relay Finals
12:10pm – Men’s 4x100m Relay Finals

AFTERNOON ACTIVITIES
12:20pm – Shortlisting of Finalists to take part in ‘Bootcamp Selections’ by Top Sprinter Coaches
12:50pm – Ibadan-based Athletes return home
1:00pm – Lunch for Athletes from outside Ibadan & shortlisted Athletes at UI Hotels
2 – 5pm – Athletes not based in Ibadan start travelling back home
2:00pm – ‘Bootcamp Selections’ by Top Sprinter Coaches for shortlisted Athletes
5:00pm – Shortlisted Athletes return home

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Team Nigeria retains African Juniors title with 12 GOLD Medals on Day 4! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/10/team-nigeria-retains-african-juniors-title-with-12-gold-medals-on-day-4/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/10/team-nigeria-retains-african-juniors-title-with-12-gold-medals-on-day-4/#comments Tue, 10 Mar 2015 14:28:55 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4191 Sterling Performances by Temidayo Osinbanjo (Hepthatlon), Praise Idamadudu (200m Women), Divine Oduduru (200m Men), Ese Brume (Long Jump Women), Abdullahi Bashiru (110 Hudles) and the Women’s 4x400m relay team ensured that Nigeria’s campaign at the 12th African Junior Championships in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia ended on a high. The country moved to the top spot of

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Sterling Performances by Temidayo Osinbanjo (Hepthatlon), Praise Idamadudu (200m Women), Divine Oduduru (200m Men), Ese Brume (Long Jump Women), Abdullahi Bashiru (110 Hudles) and the Women’s 4x400m relay team ensured that Nigeria’s campaign at the 12th African Junior Championships in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia ended on a high.

The country moved to the top spot of the medals table on Day 2 and ended Day 3 with 6 GOLD medals. Six more GOLD medals were added on the final day as Nigeria retained its title from Mauritius 2013 with a total of 12 GOLD, 8 Silver and 7 Bronze medals ahead of South Africa (9 GOLD, 7 Silver, 7 Bronze), Ethiopia (6 GOLD, 12 Silver, 10 Bronze), Egypt (5 GOLD, 5 Silver, 3 Bronze) and Kenya (4 GOLD, 5 Silver, 3 Bronze).

Praise Idamadudu won the women’s 200m convincingly while Aniekeme Alphonsus took Bronze.

Praise Idamadudu won the women’s 200m convincingly while Aniekeme Alphonsus took Bronze.

It was a 1-2 for Nigeria in the men’s 200m as Divine Oduduru and Victor Peka led the race.

It was a 1-2 for Nigeria in the men’s 200m as Divine Oduduru and Victor Peka led the race.

Idamadudu picked her first GOLD of the championship in the women’s 200m, which she won with a time of 23.76s ahead of Ethiopia’s Tegest Tamangnu Yuma (23.84s) while team mate, Aniekeme Alphonsus (24.19s) won Bronze in addition to her 100m Silver medal.

Divine Oduduru inspired a 1-2 for Nigeria in the men’s race where he clocked 21.22s as Victor Peka won consolatory Silver in 21.53s after missing out in the 100m. Gilles Anthony Afoumba of Congo came third in 21.59s. His 200m GOLD is the third in his kitty (including GOLD medals in the 100m and 4x100m) and the Delta State athlete now holds the enviable position of Sprint DOUBLE Champion in both Youth and Junior categories.

Ese Brume retained her Long Jump title with a Championship Record of 6.33m.

Ese Brume retained her Long Jump title with a Championship Record of 6.33m.

Abdullahi Bashiru scaled through the 110 Hurdles with a GOLD medal.

Abdullahi Bashiru scaled through the 110 Hurdles with a GOLD medal.

Defending Champion in the women’s Long Jump, Ese Brume retained her title in style as she won the event with a Championship Record (CR) of 6.33m. This brings her tally of medals in the championship to FOUR (3 GOLD, 1 Bronze). Her team mate in the Long Jump, Mercy Abire took 4th in the event with a leap of 5.84m behind South Africa’s Carla Johnson (5.92m) and Esraa Mohamed (5.89m) of Egypt.

The 110 Hurdles GOLD also came to Nigeria courtesy of Abdullahi Bashiru. However it wasn’t an entirely smooth victory as Ifeanyichukwu Atuma, who initially came 2nd, was disqualified for beating the gun. The Youth Champion actually concluded the race and had already celebrated his 2nd position; however he was disallowed from collecting the Silver medal and the controversy surrounding this decision dampened the mood in the Nigerian camp.

Temidayo Osinbajo’s tenacity gave Nigeria the GOLD medal in the Hepthatlon.

Temidayo Osinbajo’s tenacity gave Nigeria the GOLD medal in the Hepthatlon.

Nigeria’s 4x400m women’s team took GOLD ahead of Ethiopia.

Nigeria’s 4x400m women’s team took GOLD ahead of Ethiopia.

However the victory of Temidayo Osinbanjo lifted the spirits of the team as she had been considered an unlikely candidate for GOLD in the Hepthatlon, which is not regarded as one of Nigeria’s strong areas. Osinbanjo posted 14.37s in the 100m hurdles, 1.57m in the High Jump, 9.51m in the Shot Put, 25.40s in the 200m, 5.66m in Long Jump, 26.48m in the Javelin Throw and 2:34.87s in the 800m, amassing a total of 4765 points. She was followed by Kaiqtion Kruquer of Namibia (4641points) and South Africa’s Nienka Du Toit of South Africa (4490points).

In the 4x400m, Esther Asamu, Yinka Ajayi, Idamadudu and Olowatosin Adeloye led Ethiopia and Kenya by a wide mark in 3:38.94s. Ethiopia came 2nd in 3:48.57s. However the Kenyans were eventually disqualified and no Bronze medal was awarded in the race. The men’s event was won by the Botswana team comprising of Karabo SIBANDA who won the 400m, Leungo Scotch, Unod Keetile and Vincent Basima who clocked 3:11.00s.

Botswana was spectacular in the men’s 4x400m race, taking GOLD ahead of Ethiopia and Nigeria.

Botswana was spectacular in the men’s 4x400m race, taking GOLD ahead of Ethiopia and Nigeria.

Nigeria picked Bronze in the men’s 4x400m event.

Nigeria picked Bronze in the men’s 4x400m event.

The South African country have confirmed their status as the continent’s best in the quartermile as they are also hold the title in the men’s 400m and 400m at senior level. Ethiopia followed closely in 3:11.19s, much to the delight of the home fans. The Nigerian team which included Omeiza Akerele, Adewale Sikiru, Abdulsalam Audu and Adekunle Fasasi fought hard but had to eventually settle for Bronze with a time of 3:11.20s.

Theddus Okpara was beaten to GOLD in the men’s High Jump by Algeria’s Hichem Bouhanoune who cleared 2.12m, while Mpho Links of South Africa made a leap of2.10m. Okpara who won Nigeria’s first medal of the tournament, a Silver in the Triple Jump, took Bronze with 2.06m, which is 4centimetres shy of his Personal Best.

Theddus Okpara picks a Bronze medal in the men’s High Jump.

Theddus Okpara picks a Bronze medal in the men’s High Jump.

Judith Aniefuna was a Silver medallist in the women's Shot Put throw.

Judith Aniefuna was a Silver medallist in the women’s Shot Put throw.

Team Nigeria’s contenders in the women’s 400m Hurdles, Daisy Akpofa and Glory Nathaniel could not match the speed of Gizelle Magerman of South Africa who took the race in 59.41s, while the pair took Silver and Bronze respectively with 1:00.35s and 1:00.51s. Judith Anulika won Silver in the women’s Shot Put event (13.53m), which was won by South African, Monique Wagner (13.96m) while Kelechi Nwanaga also picked a Silver in the women’s Javelin Throw with a distance of 46.46m.

Ituah Enahoro ended his first outing for Nigeria with a 6th place finish in the Men’s Discus (42.91m), having finished with the same position in the Javelin, while grabbing Silver in the Pole vault. The competition was an eye-opener for the 17-year old who is based in the Netherlands and is looking forward to representing Nigeria in more competitions in future.

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Nigeria grabs DOUBLE GOLD, Championship Record on Day 3 of African Junior Champs! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/08/nigeria-grabs-double-gold-championship-record-on-day-3-of-african-junior-champs/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/08/nigeria-grabs-double-gold-championship-record-on-day-3-of-african-junior-champs/#comments Sun, 08 Mar 2015 11:16:48 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4154 Nigeria retained the top spot at the end of Day 3 of the on-going African Junior Athletics Championships in Addis Ababa, courtesy of two last minute GOLD medals in the men and women’s 4x100m relays which were the last events for the day. The quartet of Aniekeme Alphonsus, Omotayo Abolaji, Blessing Adiakerehwa and Ese Brume

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Nigeria retained the top spot at the end of Day 3 of the on-going African Junior Athletics Championships in Addis Ababa, courtesy of two last minute GOLD medals in the men and women’s 4x100m relays which were the last events for the day.

The quartet of Aniekeme Alphonsus, Omotayo Abolaji, Blessing Adiakerehwa and Ese Brume were in perfect sync and carried out a seamless baton exchange in the race which saw them erase the former 18-year old Championship Record (CR) of 45.73s, replacing it with a new one of 44.83s. They were followed by South Africa and Ethiopia which posted 46.49s and 48.30s respectively.

Their male team broke the 40s barrier in their event.

The men’s 4x100m team broke the 40s barrier in their event.

Second leg runner, Abolaji put up a spectacular performance in what happened to be her first and last race of the championship, perhaps as a statement for being left out of the 100m flat. The Kwara State athlete won the Youth Category of the 100m at the National Trials for the African Juniors.

The men’s 4x100m team comprising of Thankgod Igube, Victor Peka, Chukwudi Olisakwe and Divine Oduduru also impressed as they broke the 40s barrier with a time of 39.99s to win the event ahead of Botswana (40.95s) and South Africa (41.46s). The heats of the men’s 4x100m took place earlier in the day where Nigeria won narrowly in 40.52s ahead of the Gambia (40.53s) and Kenya (42.19s), while Cote d’Ivoire dominated Heat 2.

Divine Oduduru ruled the 200m the same way he did the 100m.

Divine Oduduru ruled the 200m the same way he did the 100m.

Victor Peka is aiming for a medal in the 200m.

Victor Peka is aiming for a medal in the 200m.

The pair of Peka and Oduduru also ruled the heats of the men’s 200m, posting 21.45s and 20.93s respectively. Oduduru, who is also the defending champion of the event, bettered his time to 20.86s in the semis, which he won ahead of Ethiopia’s Gezahegn Ababu Feleke (21.47s) and Congo’s Giles Anthony Afoumba (21.54s). Peka clocked 21.70s to win his semis. Praise Idamadudu and Alphonsus qualified for the women’s 200m final after placing 1st and 2nd in their respective heats.

Temidayo Osinbanjo who competes in the hepthatlon, participated in four of her seven events and was leading the standings at the end of the day with 2975 points. She ran a time of 14.37s in the 100m hurdles, 25.40s in the 200m, made a leap of 1.57m in the High Jump and a throw of 9.51m in the Shot Put. Next to her is South Africa’s Nienka Du Toit (2946points) and Kaiqtion Kruquer) of Namibia with 2900 points.

Praise Idamadudu is a top contender for GOLD in the women’s 200m.

Praise Idamadudu is a top contender for GOLD in the women’s 200m.

The first medal of the day was won by Ituah Enahoro who is competing for Nigeria for the first time. The Netherlands-based athlete was initially billed to compete in the Decathlon, but had to settle for the Pole Vault, Discus and Javelin throws after the event was scrapped due to inadequate entries.
The 17-year old first participated in the Pole Vault where he set a Personal Best (PB) of 4.10m and won Silver behind Tunisia’s Seifeddine Mejri who came to the Championship with a PB of 4.80m, but won the GOLD with 4.40m. Moustafa Mohamed of Egypt took Bronze with a distance of 3.50m.

Enahoro went on to compete in the Javelin throw about an hour later but had to settle for 6th place which he secured with another PB of 52.71m. The Javelin throw was won by Egypt’s Bahaa Sherif Khalil with a distance of 70.09m. Enahoro will compete in the Discus throw on Day 4 of the competition.

Ituah Enahoro secured his first medal for Nigeria in the Pole Vault.

Ituah Enahoro secured his first medal for Nigeria in the Pole Vault.

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Reigning African Youth Champion in the 110 Hurdles, Ifeanyichukwu Atuma recorded the fastest time of 13.61s to win Heat 1 of his event while team mate, Abdullahi Bashiru took Heat 2 in 13.61s. Both athletes are set for the final which comes up later today and are hopeful of making it to the podium.

It was not a fantastic outing for Grace Anigbata who is making her first appearance at an international championship. The High Jumper who won the National Trials with a leap of 1.65m, and recorded an improved performance of 1.70m at the Sagamu camp finished a distant 8th with a jump of 1.60m. It was a 1-2 for South Africa in the event as Marlize Higgins and Julia Du Plessis took GOLD and Silver with 1.80mand 1.75m respectively.

Abdullahi Bashiru leads Heat 2 of the 110 Hurdles.

Abdullahi Bashiru leads Heat 2 of the 110 Hurdles.

Nigeria retained the top spot at the end of Day 3 with 6 GOLD, 4 Silver, 3 Bronze, closely followed by South Africa (5 GOLD, 5 Silver, 4 Bronze) and Egypt (5 GOLD, 4 Silver, 2 Bronze). The host country Ethiopia is 4th with 4 GOLD, 7 Silver, 6 Bronze while Kenya comes 5th with 2 GOLD, 3 Silver, 1 Bronze medal.

Team Nigeria will compete in at least 12 events on the final day of competition at the Addis Ababa Stadium. They include the Hepthatlon, Men and Women’s 200m, Men’s Discus Throw, Women’s Shotput and Javelin Throws, Women’s Long Jump, Men’s High Jump, 110 Hurdles, Women’s 400m Hurdles and the Men and Women’s 4x400m relays.

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Schedule for Day 4 of the African Junior Championships! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/08/schedule-for-day-4-of-the-african-junior-championships/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/08/schedule-for-day-4-of-the-african-junior-championships/#comments Sun, 08 Mar 2015 00:44:51 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4180 Good day Champs! Here’s the Schedule for Team Nigeria on the final day of competition at the African Junior Championships in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Hepthatlon 2:00pm: Long Jump (Temidayo Osinbanjo) 3:10pm: Javelin Throw (Temidayo Osinbanjo) Long Jump Women 3:30pm: Final (Ese Brume, Abire Mercy) High Jump Men 3:35pm: Final (Theddus Okpara) 400m Hurdles Women 3:40pm:

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Good day Champs! Here’s the Schedule for Team Nigeria on the final day of competition at the African Junior Championships in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Hepthatlon
2:00pm: Long Jump (Temidayo Osinbanjo)
3:10pm: Javelin Throw (Temidayo Osinbanjo)

Long Jump Women
3:30pm: Final (Ese Brume, Abire Mercy)

High Jump Men
3:35pm: Final (Theddus Okpara)

400m Hurdles Women
3:40pm: Final (Glory Nathaniel, Daisy Akpofa)

200m Women
3:50Ppm: Final (Aniekeme Alphonsus, Praise Idamadudu)

Shot Put Women
4:00pm: Final: Judith Anulika

200m Men
4:00pm: Final (Divine Oduduru, Victor Peka)

Javelin Throw Women
4:10pm: Final (Kelechi Nwanaga)

110 Hurdles
4:30pm: Final (Ifeanyichukwu Atuma, Abdullahi Bashiru)

Discus Throw Men
4:30pm: Final (Ituah Enahoro)

4x400m Relay Women
5:40pm: Final (Nigeria vs Kenya, Ethiopia and Botswana)

4x400m Relay Men
6:00pm: Final (Nigeria vs Ethiopia, Kenya, Djibouti, Sudan, Botswana, Gambia and Somalia)

 

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Top Sprinter Auditions go Nationwide as FOUR Olympic Medalists confirmed as Coaches!!! http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/07/top-sprinter-auditions-go-nationwide-as-four-olympic-medalists-confirmed-as-coaches/ http://www.makingofchamps.com/2015/03/07/top-sprinter-auditions-go-nationwide-as-four-olympic-medalists-confirmed-as-coaches/#comments Sat, 07 Mar 2015 23:28:12 +0000 http://www.makingofchamps.com/?p=4161 This month, the Top Sprinter Auditions are going NATIONWIDE, with two locations confirmed for Athletes all over Nigeria to STORM CAMP! And what a camp it will be to storm, with no less than FOUR Olympic Medallists who have done Nigeria proud in times past CONFIRMED as the Top Sprinter Coaches for these Regional Auditions,

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This month, the Top Sprinter Auditions are going NATIONWIDE, with two locations confirmed for Athletes all over Nigeria to STORM CAMP! And what a camp it will be to storm, with no less than FOUR Olympic Medallists who have done Nigeria proud in times past CONFIRMED as the Top Sprinter Coaches for these Regional Auditions, set to hold in Ibadan on March 14th & 15th, and then the following weekend in Enugu on March 20th & 21st!

Top Sprinter Coach for the Lagos Auditions, Deji Aliu, will be joined by an illustrious cast including his fellow Olympic Bronze Medallist, Uchenna Emedolu, and Olympic Silver Medallists Glory Alozie and Francis Obikwelu, who will be jetting in from their respective bases in Spain and Portugal to be part of Top Sprinter Genesis! They are all among the fastest people EVER to don the green and white of Team Nigeria!

Aliu and Emedolu were both among the quartet that won Nigeria’s last medal in the 4x100m at the Olympics – Bronze at Athens 2004. Glory Alozie won World Championship Silver in 1999 and Olympic Silver in 2000 for Nigeria in the 100m Hurdles and to date she is still the African Record Holder in the event (12.44s)! Obikwelu won World Championship Bronze for Nigeria in 1999 before going on to win Olympic Silver for Portugal in 2004. He still holds the Nigerian 200m Record (19.84s), and is also Europe’s fastest ever man (9.86s)!

Aliu, Emedolu and Obikwelu are among the EIGHT men in Nigeria’s history to have broken 10 seconds in the 100m, while Alozie is one of only FIVE Naija women to have run sub-11 seconds – we’re talking about very ESTEEMED COMPANY here!

Top Sprinter flyer

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