The 2020 Olympics held in Tokyo saw a plethora of student athletes representing several countries at the Games and Nigeria was well represented.
Following the exploits of Elizabeth Anyanacho and Godwin Olofua in the Taekwondo and Badminton respectively, we turned our attention to the track and field events and our student athletes did not disappoint in both the men’s and women’s events.
The name Enoch Adegoke began resounding in the Nigerian media space on Saturday 31st July after recording a blistering run of 9.98s to win his 100 metres heat in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, thereby becoming the 11th born Nigerian to break the 10 seconds barrier.
Adegoke qualified for the Men’s 100 m finals after finishing 2nd in heat 2 of the 100m semis clocking an identical 10.00s with Trayvon Bromell which required the utilisation of the photo finish rule to decide who progresses to the final. Adegoke became Nigeria’s first 100m male Olympic finalist since 1996, 25 years after Davidson Ezinwa in Atlanta 96.
Unfortunately, a hamstring injury during the Men’s 100 m final prevented Adegoke from completing what many would describe as a fantastic Olympic experience.
NZUBECHI GRACE NWOKOCHA
The 20 year old from the University of Port Harcourt has had an Olympic debut to remember. she took part in the 100m and 200m at the Games and reaching the Semi-final stage in both events.
Grace ran an impressive 11.00s in the Heat 5 of the women’s 100m event finishing 3rd behind Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Switzerland’s Ajla Del Ponte in Heat 5 to grab a place in the semi-final of the event.
The Semi-final race proved too difficult for the young star as she could not better her time in the heat running 11.7 to finish 5th in the 3rd semi final race.
In the 200m, The Uniport sprint star raced in the heat 1 in the time of 22.47 to finish in thrid place and book her spot in the semi-final. Unfortunately once again she could not overcome the huddle as she could only finish 4th and did not improve on her Heat time missing out one of the best losers qualification.
Nwokocha returns to Nigeria with a wealth of experience that cannot be gotten anywhere else and would hope to continue her impressive rise in the world of athletics.