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Okagbare leads Team Nigeria to ‘glory’ in the IAAF World Athletics Championships

Okagbare leads Team Nigeria to ‘glory’ in the IAAF World Athletics Championships
August 22
17:24 2015

The IAAF World Athletics Championships begins on Saturday and over nine days, the iconic Bird’s Nest in China hosts the last major outdoor athletics meeting before next year’s Olympics in Rio.

Blessing Okagbare will lead 16 other athletes expected to don the green and white colours of Nigeria at the championships.

Okagbare will be aiming for a podium finish in the 100m, 200m, and the 4 x 100 metres relay.

She will be joined by Gloria Asumnu, Stephanie Kalu, Cecilia Francis, Deborah Odeyemi, Patience Okon George and Regina George.

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Completing the list are Oluwatosin Adeloye, Margaret Etim, Rita Ossai, Uhunoma Osazuwa, Doreen Amata, Lindsay Wenyimi, Amaka Ogoegbunam, Miles Ukaoma, Odele Tega and Tosin Oke.

Here is a day-to-day guide to the events involving Team Nigeria.

Day One: Saturday, August 22

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Team Nigeria

Uhunoma Osazuwa will be up against Vanessa Spinola, Claudia Rath, Laura Ikauniece-Admidina, Portia Bing, Salcia Slack, Lyubov Tkach, and Karolina Tyminska in the 200m Heptathlon Heat 3. Day one of the heptathlon features four events –  the 100m hurdles, high jump, shot put and 200m.

Miles-Ukaoma

Miles Ukaoma

In the 400m hurdles, Miles Ukaoma, who has a personal best of 48.84 which is also his season’s best, will do battle with fellow Africans Saber Boukemouche of Algeria, Mohamed Sghaier of Tunisia and Cornel Fredericks of South Africa in Heat 3 of the event. Others in the chase are Kariem Hussein, Kerron Clement, Niall Flannery, and Annsert Whyte.

Other highlights

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In Dennis Kimetto and Wilson Kipsang, Kenya have the current and former world record holder so they are strong favourites to win the first gold medal of the championship in the men’s marathon.

Usain Bolt takes to the track for the first time in the men’s 100m heats.

Day Two: Sunday, August 23

Team Nigeria

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Okagbare starts her quest of claiming the 100m, She will be up against Natasha Morrison, Viktoriya Zyabkina, Lihen Jonas, Melissa Breen, Naomi Sedney, Charlotte Wingfield and Verena Sailer in Heat 2 of the event.

In the heptathlon, Osazuwa completes the second day of the seven-discipline event.

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Ukaoma will be competing at the 400m hurdles also.

Other highlights

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Bolt won three Olympic medals in 2008 in Beijing and he will be up for more in the Chinese capital. But he has USA Justin Gatlin – unbeaten in 26 races – standing in his way.

Three other events – long jump, javelin, and 800m – will also hold on Sunday.

Day Three: Monday, August 24

Team Nigeria

The semi-final and final of the women 100m holds today and Okagbare will look to beat the Usain Bolt of women’s sprinting, Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce!

Fraser-Pryce claimed the 100m-200m sprint double in Moscow two years ago, and she will be looking to defend her 100m crown on Monday. But will our own Okagbare bless Team Nigeria with a gold medal?

With a personal best of 55.46 and season’s best of 55.77, Amaka Ogoegbunam will hope for the best at the 400m metres hurdles.

Amaka Ogoegbunam

Amaka Ogoegbunam

Day Four: Tuesday, August 25

Team Nigeria

Miles Ukaoma will hope to scale all hurdles and compete for the men’s 400m hurdles while Tega Odele resumes action in Beijing in the 200m.

The women’s 400m has 45 athletes from 26 countries competing for medals. Tosin Adeloye, Patience Okon George, and Regina George will be in action for Nigeria.

Day Five: Wednesday, August 26

Team Nigeria

With a medal in the bag in the 100m, Okagbare will shift her attention to the 200m. Regina George is also competing at the event.

Nigeria triple jump champion, Tosin Oke, will hope to improve on his season’s best leap of 16.98 as action resumes at the event.

Tosin Oke

Tosin Oke

Tega Odele will hope to avoid six-time Olympic champion Usain Bolt in the 200m semi-final as he bids to appear in the final.

The women’s 400m hurdles final takes place with Amaka Ogoegbunam in the last eight?

Other highlights

Mo Farah competes in the 5,000m heats.

Day Six: Thursday, August 27

The semi-final of the women’s 200m holds with our own Okagbare and hopefully George still in contention.

Tosin Oke will have a chance to win a medal in the final of the triple jump.

The 200m battle is between Usain Bolt and Justin Gatlin but will our own Tega Odele steal the show?

A tall order we think!

The final of the women’s 400m should still have the trio of Tosin Adeloye, Patience Okon George, and Regina George competing for medals.

Lindsay Wenyimi, the American-born Nigerian sprinter, starts her quest of winning the 100m hurdles.

Lindsay

Lindsay Wenyimi

Doreen Amata is among the 30 athletes looking to win the women’s high jump as the event starts.

Other highlights

Christine Ohuruogu won Great Britain’s only track and field gold medal at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and seven years later she will be hoping to claim a third World Championship title.

Day Seven: Friday, August 28

Team Nigeria

Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce will be the favourite in Friday’s 200m final, but surely Okagbare has a say in it.

Lindsay Wenyimi should still be running for medals in the hurdles as the semi-final and final take place.

Other highlights

Tiffany Porter and her sister Cindy will hope to challenge for podium places in the 100m hurdles.

Day Eight: Saturday, August 29

Team Nigeria

The 4x100m relay heats and final will take the centre stage with Okagbare leading Gloria Asumnu, Deborah Odeyemi, Stephanie Kalu, and Cecilia Francis to “glory”.

The heats of the 4x400m start with 98 athletes from 17 countries competing. Tosin Adeloye, Patience Okon George, Regina George, Funke Oladoye, and Rita Ossai will hope to do the country proud.

regina george

Regina George

Other highlights

Mo Farah will be hoping to win his third world titles over 5,000m.

Usain Bolt could seal another global sprint triple with a victory in the men’s 4x100m relay after “winning” the 100m and 200m earlier.

Day Nine: Sunday, August 30

Team Nigeria

The final of the women’s 4x400m relay takes place with Nigeria in for a “golden” finish!

Other highlights

Asbel Kiprop of Kenya will look to claim a hat-trick of World Championship 1500m titles.

Genzebe Dibaba races over 5,000m on the final day having also contested the 1500m earlier in the week.

 

Good luck, Team Nigeria!

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