The men and women’s 200m proved to be the highlights on Day 4 of athletics at the ongoing 20th National Sports Festival with the men and women 4x100m final drawing the curtains on an eventful day.
In the men’s 200m, Alaba Akintola of Edo State went from bridesmaid to the bride upgrading Silver in the 100 to GOLD in the final, winning in a new Personal Best (PB) of 20.51s (-0.1). Jerry Jakpa who ran from lane 8, got in ahead of Chidi Okezie to win Silver in an equal PB of 20.59s, and the latter got Bronze for Delta State in 20.84s.
It was double joy for Team Delta Grace Nwokocha, as she not only stormed to GOLD in the women’s 200m, her winning time of 22.79s (+0.5) was a new PB for her and enough to see her qualify for the Tokyo Olympics in the event. Tima Godbless of Bayelsa took Silver with a new PB of 23.65, while Praise Ofoku was 3rd for Delta State.
On the field, Ese Brume had little fuss in winning the women’s Long Jump title, as she won in 6.46m for Delta State, with Ruth Agadama of Kwara taking the Silver with a new PB of 6.42m.
In the relays Edo state drafted Emmanuel Arowolo was drafted in to take the 3rd leg for them, and after Enoch Adegoke and Alaba Akintola had given them a decent lead in the first two legs, they were unstoppable as they won in 39.75s. Delta State took Silver in 39.85, while Jerry Jakpa
With Edo State getting disqualified after beating the gun, It was Delta State to lose as Grace Nwokocha anchored them to victory in 44.35s. It’s now three GOLD for Nwokocha, as Lagos State took the Silver.
For the first time at the festival, the mixed 4x100m took place. Team Delta tactics paid off, as Ogho-Oghene closed up a lot of ground running the anchor leg to give them the win in the first heat in 43.41. In the second heat, Blessing Ogundiran anchored Team Edo to win in 43.17. The final comes up on wednesday.