Nigeria’s Tosin Oke came 3rd in the men’s Triple Jump at the Birmingham Diamond League meet on Sunday, with Olympic champion, Christian Taylor winning the event. The Nigerian national champion who is making his second appearance in the Diamond League this season, improved from his sixth place finish in Doha, leaving it late to leapfrog into 3rd.
It was the last attempt of 16.71 that earned Oke the 3rd place finish in the final results of the day, with the Commonwealth Silver medalist going past America’s Chris Carter who was initially ahead of him. Taylor’s 17.40 set him apart from others, achieving that mark in his third attempt, while European champion, Benjamin Compaore placed second with 17.01 which he got in his first jump.
At the Doha Diamond League, Oke finished 6th with a best distance of 16.83, but it was all about Pedro Pablo Pichardo who achieved a Personal Best (PB), National Record (NR), Meeting Record (MR) and Diamond League Record (DLR) of 18.06m.
With the 2015 World Championship coming up in August, Oke will be hoping to get to the qualification mark needed for him to represent Nigeria at the competition in Beijing. There is also next year’s Olympic Games in Rio to look forward to, but the field is getting tougher and he will have to raise his performance if he is to match the other Triple Jumpers who are presently at their best.
Pichardo and Taylor have already scaled past 18.00m this season, and both athletes without doubt will be the favourites when the championship commences. Oke might not be at their level, but the Nigerian will be focused on qualifying for the event.
The National trials will take place next month in Calabar, and Oke will be hoping to replicate his 2012 performance, where he set a new PB of 17.23m. Last year, he finished 2nd behind Khotso Mokoena at both the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the African Championships in Morocco