With a few days to the 4th AFN Golden League taking place in Ozoro, Delta State, most Lagos based athletes were afforded the opportunity to prepare for it as they turned out in their numbers to participate at the Track and Field Coaches Association of Nigeria (TAFCAN) meet.
This is the third TAFCAN meet happening this year, with this edition staged at the National Stadium in Surule. Usually most track clubs based in Lagos utilize the TAFCAN meet as an avenue to prepare and ascertain their fitness levels for much bigger competitions.
It was a dominant showing by Making of Champions (MoC) Track Club, who won almost all the events they fielded athletes in, emerging with the most wins of all the clubs that competed.
Shell sponsored Chiamaka Egbochinam, started what was to be a triple-win for her, comfortably winning heat 1 of the women’s 100m with a time of 11.9s. That time was the fastest of the two heats, with Stella Anyaleke finishing 2nd overall (2nd in heat 1) with a time of 12.4s, while Janet Sunday was 3rd overall (3rd in heat 1) in 12.5s.
In the men’s 100m, another MoC athlete Ifeanyi Ojeli was the standout performer, overcoming a bad start to run the fastest time of all five heats, racing to victory in heat 1 with a time of 10.7s. Ojeli beat Terry Maurice of Osheku club who was 2nd in that race, posting a time of 10.8s, while David Moses who won heat 2 in 10.8s finished 3rd overall.
In the women’s 200m, Egbochinam carried over her impressive 100m form, running the fastest time overall of the three heats to win with a time of 24.3s (24.32). Egbochinam narrowly edged out her teammate, Arco sponsored Joy Udo Gabriel who finished 2nd overall winning heat 2 with a time of 24.3s (24.34).
For Udo Gabriel, it was her first time in action since her heroics at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia, where she was part of the Nigerian quartet that won Bronze in the women’s 4x100m relay.
Deborah Adewale finished 3rd overall, having finished 2nd in heat 2 behind Udo Gabriel with a time of 25.1s.
Then came Ojeli who completed the double, holding off Jare Folarin to win heat 6 of the men’s 200m, and he did so running the fastest time of all the heats, crossing the line in 21.3s (21.29s). Folarin who was 2nd in that race, finished 2nd overall with a time of 21.3s (21.35)
It shows how much 16-year old MoC athlete Favour Ekpekpe has improved, running the 3rd fastest time in the men’s 200m as he paced his way to victory in heat 4 with the 3rd overall best time of 21.5s. Ekpekpe was narrowly beaten in his 100m heat, finishing 2nd behind Duke with a time of 10.9s.
Meanwhile in the men’s 400m, Obasola Olaoluwa ran a good home straight, coming from a losing position to win with a time of 48.7s. He covered the ground on MoC’s duo of Segun Akhigbe and Bunmi Oluwalateef who finished 2nd and 3rd in 48.8s (48.78)and 48.8s (48.83) respectively. There were just two heats in the men’s 400m, with the other heat (1) not producing much better times to better that of heat 2.
In women’s 400m, heat 1 produced the top 3 fastest times overall with Deborah Adewale winning with a time of 55.2s, beating MoC’s Blessing Obarierhu who was 2nd in 57.1s and Aminat Alabi 3rd in 58.1s.
Alabi came back to win the win’s 800m with a time of 2:16.8, beating Charity Agofure who was 2nd in 2:18:5 and Hawal Aruna 3rd in 2:22.2.
Sylvanus Oluwaseun won the men’s 800m with a time of 1:57.9 beating Ismail Muhammad who was 2nd with a time of 1:59.9 and James Odelana 3rd with a time of 2:02.0
In the field events, Onaara Obamuwagun was the sole competitior in the women’s Long Jump, recording a leap of 5.32m. While in the men’s category, Fuad Lawal won with a mark of 6.43m and Monday Godwin 2nd with 6.38m ahead of Favour Ochayi who was 3rd jumping 6.32m.
Both the men and women’s 4x100m relay races were won by MoC teams, with the women’s quartet of Udo-Gabriel, Moyo Badejo, Glory Nyenke and Egbochinam outclassing the field to win their race in spectacular fashion. (As at the time of this result, the relay results were unavailable).
Note: All the times reported in this story were hand-timed