Ekanem, Itsekiri to Battle Cameroonian Eseme for the Sprint Gold Today

Ekanem, Itsekiri to Battle Cameroonian Eseme for the Sprint Gold Today

Femi Solaja 

Nigeria’s dominance in sprint in the continent will be tested today in the men and women’s 100m final at the ongoing 13th African Games in Accra, Ghana.

Nigeria’s duo of Consider Ekanem and Itseoritse Itsekiri will fly the country’s flag in the final of the men’s sprint to know the fastest man in the 100m event.

New boy on the block, Consider Ekanem, was not under any pressure to produce the 10.37seconds that got him a ticket to the final. He beat Ghana’s Aggreh Barnabas to the second spot. Barnabas ran 10.42 seconds while Bibi Noa Jerrel of Mauritius was third with 10. 47 seconds.

Experienced Itseoritse Itsekiri kept his cool in the third semi-final heat, which  saw two expulsion after false starts, to run 10.29 seconds. It was the second fastest time in the semi-final heats and it seems the man to beat in the men’s 100m is Cameroonian Emmanuel Alobwede Eseme, who clocked 10.23 seconds 

Earring to the final race of the event today.

In the women’s sprint, Olayinka Olajide and Justina Tiana Eyakpobeyan must figure out how to handle Gambia’s Gina Bass who had the fastest time in the semi-final an 11.37 seconds effort. Bass is the defending 200m champion from Rabat 2019. 

Her semi final race  was the fastest, with Madagascar’s Claudine Njarosoa finishing 11.59 behind Bass and Ghana’s Mary Bokye third with 11.64 seconds.

Olajide was first in her heat racing to 11. 46 seconds. 

Eyakpobeyan also finished top in her heat with 11.67 seconds. Based on their credentials coming to the African Games they must be having more gas in their tanks to to make it a Nigeria 1 and 2 in the final.

In other events of the day, Esther Joseph Elo ran 51.81 seconds in the women 400m heats to establish herself as the favourite to clinch the title. 

Nigeria’s other runners Brittney Ogunmokun and Easter Okon Peter also qualified for the semi-final. 

Ogunmokun ran 53.53seconds in her heat while Okon Peter secured the first position in her heat with 53.17seconds.

in the men’s race Chidi Okezie ran a relaxed race of 45.89s as a season opener in the men’s 400m. 

He leads Dubem Nwachukwu who got edged in 46.29s in his heat and Sikiru Adeyemi in 46.72s into the semi finals.

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