It was a great start to the 2020 season for several homebased athletes who converged at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, on Saturday, February 15, to compete at the All-Comers Meet, with many of them setting Personal Bests (PB) in the process.
The men’s 100m provided a glimpse of what to expect this season, with Idjesa Uruemu clocking the overall fastest time of 10.34s (a Season’s Best) in the heats, taking the win in Heat 4 while MoC’s youngster Favour Ashe sped to an outstanding PB of 10.40s to win Heat 12 – the fastest time in the world in the U20 category!!! Teammate Jerry Jakpa clocked 10.41s to win Heat 10.
However, in the A Final, Enoch Adegoke was the man to beat as he raced to an SB of 10.32s, having earlier won his heat in 10.71s. Uruemu clocked 10.35s in 2nd place as Jakpa settled for 3rd in an SB of 10.40s and Emmmanuel Arowolo 4th in 10.43s.
In the B Final, Godwin Ashien took the victory in 10.72s, as Gafaru Audu and Consider Ekanem placed 2nd and 3rd respectively with 10.76s and 10.80s.
Grace Nwokocha was a class apart in the women’s event as she clocked the overall fastest time of 11.52s in the heats – a PB for the Uniport student. Praise Idamadudu had the overall fastest time of 11.70s with which she won Heat 2, as Joy Udo-Gabriel clocked 11.77s in the same heat. The trio emerged Top 3 in the final as well!
Nwokocha got a good start, maintained the lead and crossed the line to win the women’s 100m final with a time of 11.38s, which would have been a new PB but for the massive wind (+7.6). Udo-Gabriel was 2nd in 11.59s and Idamadudu 3rd in 11.66s.
There were fireworks in the 200m as the leaders in both the men and women’s events clocked PBs while racing in the heats. MoC’s Emmanuel Ojeli did not compete in his signature event, the 400m, but stepped down to the 200m, running with intent and blazing through from the start to finish to run a new PB of 20.94s (0.0). His teammate John Clifford also posted a new PB of 21.56s to finish 2nd as Isah Salihu placed 3rd in 21.95s.
Uruemu clocked the overall 2nd fastest time, winning Heat 8 with an SB of 21.32s to finish ahead of Sikiru Adeyemi (21.39s) and Orukpe Eraiyokan Orukpe (21.72s). Segun Sewekan also posted 21.72s to win Heat 6 ahead of Fakorede Adekalu (21.84s).
Meanwhile Favour Ofili commenced her 2020 season with a new 200m PB, running the fastest time overall in all the heats, an impressive time of 23.07s (-0.4) in Heat 3. Esther Okon also ran a PB of 23.77s in 2nd, and MoC’s Mercy Umoibang 3rd, also with a PB of 24.73s. Opeyemi Oke of Ondo State won Heat 1 with 25.07s as Godbless Tima won Heat 2 with 24.48s.
Moving to the 400m, it was Sikiru Adeyemi who ran the fastest time across all seven heats, racing to an SB of 46.57s to easily win Heat 4. Emmanuel Salubi won Heat 2 in 47.63s as Chidera Nnamani ran the race of his life to win Heat 3 with a new PB of 48.03s, with Abdulraman Afeez coming 2nd in 48.24s and Femi Abegunde 3rd in 48.71s.
Nsikak Francis won Heat 7 in 48.22s with Edidiong Udo following in a PB of 48.38s. Heat 6 was won by Japhet Samuel (48.30s) while Isah Salihu and Nathaniel Jeremiah won Heats 1 and 5 respectively with an identical time of 48.76s.
In the women’s 400m, Glory Patrick dominated Heat 1 with an SB of 54.50s while Blessing Oladoye won Heat 2 with an SB of 54.96s to finish ahead of Ayomide Joseph (54.97s) and Karo Brume (58.50s). The final heat was won by Abasiono Akpan in an SB of 54.97s, with Opeyemi Oke (56.59s) and Fatimoh Abdulazeez (56.66s) following. A few hours later, Akpan came back to win the women’s 400m Hurdles, this time crossing the line in 59.95s.
Competing in his first race in 2020, National Sports Festival (NSF) champion David Olowokeere didn’t have to break much sweat after Henry Okorie slipped and fell, racing to victory in Heat 2 of the men’s 400m Hurdles with a Season’s Best of 52.66s. Gbenga Bakre won Heat 1 with a time of 53.53s.
In the women’s 100m Hurdles, Victoria Adunbi stretched past MoC’s Miracle Thompson after the last barrier to win in 14.77s. Thompson who was competing in her 2nd competitive race, clocked 14.94s to finish 2nd.
African Games Silver Medallist Abejoye Oyeniyi won the men’s 110m Hurdles in 14.39s. Wisdom Musa was a surprise 2nd place finisher in 14.61s, ahead of Samuel Osadolor who came in 3rd in 14.73s.
The Top 3 finishers in the men’s 800m were Adebisi Sodiq (1:54.77), Goke Ogunseye (1:54.82) and Akpan Emmanuel (1:55.14).
Oyebode Dada returned a time of 16:46.79 to win the men’s 5000m ahead of Adamu Modi (17:13.24) and Akinlomide Abayomi (17:16.91), while Adijat Shittu won the women’s race with 20:16.01 as Chinoso Nwokeoji placed 2nd in 21:02.40.
Joseph Edafiadhe leapt to victory in the men’s Long Jump event, jumping an SB of 7.55m to win the event. Meanwhile Utitofon James threw a new SB of 42.94m to win the women’s Discus event.