The 21st African Athletics Championships came to a halt at the Stephen Keshi Memorial Stadium on Day 5 , as Team Nigeria placed 3rd (9 GOLD, 5 Silver and 5 Bronze) on the overall medals table, finishing behind Kenya and South Africa.

The host nation added 3 GOLD, 1 Silver and 2 Bronze medals to her tally on the last day, with the women’s 4x400m producing one of the biggest highlights of the day when they stormed to victory in the event.

The team made up of Patience Okon-George, Abike Egbeniyi, Folashade Abugan and Yinka Ajayi, got the crowd on their feet as they stormed to victory in a scorching time of 3:31.14.

It was however Glory Nathaniel who opened the floodgates of medals for Nigeria as she  struck GOLD in the final of the women’s 400m Hurdles. Pitted against the defending champion from the last championships, Wenda Nel, the 2018 Commonwealth Games medallist in the 4x400m was calm and collected, executing a great race to claim victory in 55.53s.

Nigeria’s other athletes in the final, Rita Ossai and Abasiono Akpan, finished 6th and 7th in the race respectively.

With both the final of the women’s High Jump and Triple Jump sandwiched between each other, Grace Anigbata was caught between a rock and a hard place. However, the jumper’s decision to compete in the Triple Jump proved a wise choice as she struck GOLD in the final, leaping to a new PB of 14.02m

The final of the men’s 200m race was a riveting one as it pitted Nigeria’s Divine Oduduru against his collegiate rival, Ncincihli Titi. Titi, who beat Oduduru in the semis yesterday, had the last laugh once again, clocking a time of 20.46s to clinch victory.

Although Oduduru and Loxolo Adams posted the same time 20.60s, the 2018 NCAA Champion was given the nod for Silver, with the South African settling for the Bronze.

In the men’s Javelin final, Samuel Kure set a new Personal Best (PB) of 75.69m to win a Bronze medal. Kenya’s Julius Yego claimed the victory with a throw of 77.34m, while South Africa’s Rensburg Philmar took Silver with a throw of 76.57m.

The men’s 4x400m relay men accounted for Nigeria’s other Bronze on the day as the quartet of Orukpe Eraiyokan, Rilwan Alowonle, Isah Salihu and Chidi Okezie teamed up to place 3rd in a time of 3:04.33. Kenya claimed victory, while South Africa placed 2nd in the race.

In the women’s 20km race walk, National Record (NR) holder in the event, Fadekemi Olude narrowly missed out on a medal as she placed 4th, clocking a time of 1:41:16. Also, the men’s category saw the duo of Gbenga Fatoyinbo and Lawal Oluwaseyi place 11th and 12th respectively in the final.

 

 

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There are very few things in life that make me happy, but talking and writing Sports has to be at the top. I honed my broadcasting skills at the University of Lagos Radio Station and have free-lanced for platforms like Top Radio and Superscreen TV amongst others. Deji loves running commentaries on Football matches and Athletics, and is now a Junior Sports Writer at Making of Champions. He hopes to become a Sports Agent in the future.

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