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Olympics Qualifier: Team Nigeria miss out again

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The Nigerian men’s 4x100m, 4x400m, and women’s 4x400m and mixed 4x400m teams failed in their bids to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics on the last day of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria Olympics National Trials at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos on Sunday.

The relay teams however have another chance to secure qualification at the Making of Champions Relays on Saturday and Sunday at the same venue.

It was a rainy day on Sunday, as athletes had to run on wet pitches in some of the most important races of the Olympics trials.

Although Nigeria presented two teams for the men’s 4x100m race, the quartet of Enoch Adegoke, Usheoritse Itsekiri, Fakorede Adekalu and Godson Brume could only win in 39.40secs, which was lower than their target of 38.46secs needed to usurp Trinidad and Tobago, in 16th place in the World Athletics list.

It was also disappointment for the men’s 4x400m team, as Samson Nathaniel, Emmanuel Ojeli, Adeyemi Sikiru and Chidi Okezie’s time of 3:05.56 was not enough to upstage Brazil, who are 16th on the Top List with 3:02.84.

Their women counterparts also failed to overtake Dominican Republic in 16th place with 3:30.02, after Imaobong Nse Uko, Patience Okon-George, Favour Ofili and Knowledge Omovoh ran a Season’s Best of 3:31.27.

The mixed 4x400m could only finish third behind Zambia and Senegal.

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There was however some good news, as the women’s 4x100m improved their ranking on the Top List to 15th from the 16th position they previously held after Blessing Okagbare – who ran the anchor leg – led Rosemary Chukwuma, Favour Ofili and Grace Nwokocha to win the race in a time of 42.98secs.

They overtook Brazil, who had a time of 43.04secs to place 15th on the Top List. They would however hope two teams do not better their time before qualification closes on June 29 to ensure qualification for the Olympics.

The PUNCH had earlier reported that the Nigerian relay team squandered their chances of securing qualification for the relay events at the Olympics when they failed to attend the World Athletics Relays in Silesia, Poland May 1 and 2.

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