Emmanuel Gyan and his wife, Deborah Pam, On Saturday, won the male and female categories of the Warri Effurun Peace Marathon concluded at the Warri Township Stadium.
The outcome of the 10km race, which was flagged off by Apostle Dave Ackah-Haman of the Rainbow Christian Assembly, was a bit of a surprise for athletics officials present as race favourites, Ismael Sadjo and Joy Abiye-David, were outpaced.
More surprising was how Sadjo, who led from the start until about eight kilometres, was overtaken by Gyan, who had been on his trail zipped from the onset.
Gyan coasted home to finish at 30.38secs, Sadjo clocked 30.40secs and Paul James came third with 30.42secs.
“It is one of those things in sports, you will always have upsets. You can call it one of those Saudi Arabia v Argentina moments,” said Sadjo, who was actually wearing an Argentina jersey after the race.
In the women’s race, veteran Pam made a strong showing after two years break from athletics. She returned in 35.09 seconds, beating Hundung Gyan (36.41 seconds) to the second spot, Blessing Shambor was third with 36.43, while Abiye-David was fourth in 37.02 seconds.
Athletics Federation of Nigeria board member Navy Commodore Omatseye Nesiama was on hand to present the winning prizes to the athletes, promising that the race would be bigger and better next year.
The Chief Executive Officer of the Warri Effurun Peace Marathon praised the athletes for putting up a good show while urging them to train harder and post better times that will challenge world elite runners.