• Runs 38.26 seconds at Warri Grand Prix, AFN boss excited
After three unsuccessful attempts, Nigeria’s 4x100m relay team, yesterday, secured its ticket to Budapest 2023 World Championships following a superlative performance at the Warri Grand Prix held at the Stephen Keshi Stadium, Asaba, Delta State.
The 4x100m relay quartet of Ashe Favour, Kanyinsola Ajayi, Alaba Akintola and Godson Brume finished in 38.26 seconds to secure the ticket in the race, which also featured Benin Republic and The Gambia. They had done 38.64 seconds in their semi-final event before improving to 38.26 seconds in the final, which guaranteed them a spot among the 16 nations in Budapest.
It brings to four, the number of relay tickets Nigeria has secured for Budapest, after the three qualification tickets it had grabbed earlier.
Nigeria’s women’s 4x100m, 4x400m and the mixed relay are already through to the World Championship.
Before yesterday’s Warri Grand Prix in Asaba, which was used by the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) and Delta State government to honour former Secretary General of the Supreme Council for Sports in Africa, Dr. Awoture Eleyae, the Nigerian men’s 4x100m team had missed the chance of grabbing the ticket in three previous attempts in Lome, Togo, Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, and last week in Cotonou, where they had a mix up in their baton exchange.
United States-based sprinter, Godson Brume, who anchored the race in Asaba, had told The Guardian on Wednesday that there would be no room for error in the event.
“I feel we just have to get better in our baton exchange this time because our target is the 4x100m relay ticket in Asaba. I know that the AFN has tried so much by ensuring we participate in another relay event after what happened in Cotonou last week,” he said.
AFN President, Tonobok Okowa, could not hide his joy yesterday. “I am so excited we got the ticket at last. I thank God for this wonderful gift. We can now concentrate on our preparation for the World Championships in Budapest,” Okowa stated.
In the same vein, former AFN President, Chief Solomon Ogba, said the success in grabbing the 4x100m relay ticket was a dream come true.