Table as Paralympics End Today


Email Nigeria Leads Africa in Medals

NTragedy as Iranian para-cyclist dies in accident
igeria’s Paralympians in Roland Ezuruike, who set a new Paralympic Rio are doing their best to record in the 54kg category. Two silver make up for the country’s medals also came in powerlifting courtesy poor performance at the Rio of Esther Onyema and Latifat Tijani, while 2016 Olympics as they lead Nnamdi Innocent collected bronze in the Africa in the medals table and 14th overall 72kg men’s category. with a haul of 8 gold medals, 2 silver and 2 bronze as at the time of filing this report. The Games end today, with Nigeria is tal- lying for golds with New Zealand, Italy and Canada. In the process, some of the Nigerian athletes have set world records in powerlifting and track and field.

The achievements of Nigeria’s Paralym- pians have cast those of the able-bodied counterparts into the shadows as the Ni- gerian Olympic contingent returned with a single bronze medal from Rio won by the men’s football team in a disappointing tournament that was a marginal improve- ment on the London 2012 Olympics, where Nigeria won no medals.

Nigeria’s performance so far at the Para- lympics means that they are currently the highest-ranked nation in Africa. Tunisia is second followed by South Africa.
Much of the success has been down to dominance on the powerlifting benches. Team Nigeria’s captain at the Games, Lucy Ejike, won gold in the 61kg women’s category last week, setting a new world record, lifting 142kg.

Ejike’s gold added to Paul Kehinde, who also broke a world record by lifting 220kg when winning the 65kg men’s category, and
Nigeria also picked up a track and field medal as Lauritta Onye won the women’s shot put in the F40 category, for athletes who are short in stature. Lauritta won gold with a world record throw of 8.40 meters, more than a meter further than silver medalist Rima Abdelli of Tunisia.

Nigeria’s team performance so far at the Paralympics has been nothing short of out- standing. Over the course of six Paralympic Games, since its debut at Barcelona 1992, Nigeria has won 58 medals (28 gold, 16 silver and 14 bronze), with 39 coming in powerlifting, 15 in athletics and four in table tennis.

Meanwhile, an Iranian Para-cyclist has died after being involved in a crash dur- ing the men’s C4-5 road race at the Rio Paralympics. Iran’s Paralympic Committee confirmed Bahman Golbarnezhad, 48, died after receiving treatment at the roadside and being rushed to hospital. Golbarnezhad also competed at the London Paralympics in 2012.

Yesterday’s race began at Pontal and included the Grumari circuit used in the Rio Olympics road races. The Vista Chinesa circuit – which included a treacherous descent where Annemiek van Vleuten of Nigeria’s Lauretta Onye (centre) celebrates winning a gold medal with a world record throw in the shot put IKheanacho Shines for Man City, Iwobi for Arsenal elechi Iheanacho scored his third scored twice on his first league start as champions consecutive goal this season and Leicester City downed Burnley 3-0.

provided an assist as Manches- Everton remain two points back in second ter City extended their winning place after Ronald Koeman’s side came from streak after a 4-0 thumping of behind to beat Middlesbrough 3-1 at Goodison
Bournemouth. City are top of the table with 15 Park. Boro took a 21st-minute lead when Everton the Netherlands crashed and sustained concussion during the Olympics – was not part of the Paralympic course.

Golbarnezhad’s death is the first in- competition fatality at a summer/winter Olympics or Paralympics since Danish cyclist Knud Enemark Jensen in the 100km team time trial at the 1960 Rome Games.

A statement by the Iranian Paralympic Committee read: “It is difficult for us to announce this sad news but, with immense regret, we have to say Sarafraz Bahman Golbarnezhad, Iranian cycling champion,

has died after an accident while racing in competition in the 2016 Paralympics.
“He was an exemplary Paralympic sports- man who, with love and energy, tried his best to promote the name of Iran and to make all of us proud and at the end he gave his life for this.
“All members of the Iranian cultural and sports camp here express condolences to his family and the Iranian nation. The name of Bahman Golbarnezhad will be inscribed in the proud history of Iranian Paralympics.”