“It’s a New Dawn For Nigerian Athletics” – Sunday Dare
Nigeria left her best for the last day of the World Athletics Championships in Eugene, Oregon, United States of America by winning a gold and a silver medal.
Tobi Amusan broke the 100m hurdles World Record in the semi finals with an astonishing 12.12s and followed up with a (+2.5)wind assisted 12.06s in the final.
The time in the final would not be recognised as it was well over the legal +2.0 wind assist allowed in Athletics.
Before then, she had run 12.40s in the heat to set a new African Record.
Amusan has now become Nigeria’s first ever World Champion in athletics.
Team Nigeria would go on to celebrate another podium finish in the Long Jump, with Ese Brume’s 7.02m leap.
Brume won a bronze medal at the 2019 World Championships and the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo.
Reacting to Nigeria’s late rally for medals in Oregon and the country’s best performance ever at the Championships, Sports Minister Sunday Dare said these heartwarming feats will herald a new dawn for Nigerian athletics.
“I am so proud of what Tobi Amusan, Ese Brume and even those who didn’t get on the podium have achieved in Eugene, Oregon. This is the beginning of great things for Nigerian athletics. This is a new dawn.
“Years of hard work and consistently knocking on the door has yielded the right dividends. For the first time in our history we have a World Champion. This is huge. Congratulations to Nigeria.”
The Minister also highlighted a few other positive results for Team Nigeria even though they did not end in podium finishes.
“For me, these medals are not the only positives from the World Championships. The 4×100m relay teams(men and women)showed a lot of promise for the future.
“The women barely got here as the 16th best team in the world but they got so close to getting on the podium, the men also gave it their best shot and showed they have a bright future.
“Our athletes in the short sprints also showed character. Some of them are competing on a high level stage like this for the first time, rubbing shoulders with very experienced and tournament tested veterans and legends and not falling too far behind in extremely tough situations.
“They can beat their chests and be proud of what they have achieved. We now have the responsibility to continue to support them by creating the right environment for their growth.”
With the World Championships now over, focus would shift to the Commonwealth Games starting later this week in Birmingham, United Kingdom.
“We have gained a great momentum going into the Commonwealth Games now, this will definitely inspire Team Nigeria to making a huge impact in Birmingham,” Dare concluded.