Nigeria Olympic Trials: Ofili and Ajayi win first national titles as Tobi Amusan strolls to 100mH final on Day 1

Nigeria Olympic Trials: Ofili and Ajayi win first national titles as Tobi Amusan strolls to 100mH final on Day 1

Funmilayo Fameso 11:05 - 17.06.2024

Recap of Day 1 activities at the Nigeria Olympic Trials in Benin.

Day 1 of the Nigeria Olympic trials concluded with mixed reactions, with the highlights being Favour Ofili and Kanyinsola Ajayi claiming their first titles and Tobi Amusan smoothly sailing to the final.

The trials taking place from June 16 to 18 at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin will primarily be used to determine new national champions and select athletes for the Paris Olympic Games and the African Championships in Cameroon.

Kicking things off among the galaxy of top athletes present, WR holder Amusan began her quest for a historic fourth in the women's 100mH, blazing to an easy 12.82s (unofficial) to win her semifinal and qualify for the final.

However, Faith Osamuyi clocked the fastest time of 12.76s (unofficial) in the second semifinal, thus putting herself in the conversation of challenging US-based Adaobi Tamugbo for the second position behind pending winner Amusan.

Following this, Ofili made a triumphant return to home soil by winning her first national title in the women's 100m ev

The talented sprinter who last raced in Nigeria in 2021, continued with her brilliant year as she stormed to an impressive new SB of 11.06s - a time good enough to surpass the Olympic qualifying standard of 11.10s.

Favour Ofili

African Games revelation Olayinka Olajide was second in 11.37s, while Justina Eyakpobeyan secured the last podium placement in 11.47s.

Consequently, in the men's 100m event, Ajayi wasn't to be denied against more experienced sprinters, as he held his form to the finish line in an impressive 10.14s (0.0) ahead of Alaba Akintola in 10.16s, while defending champion Usheoritse Itsekiri was third in 10.22s.

Kanyinsola Ajayi claimed the Nigerian 100m title in Benin

The 19-year-old has been a big revelation this season since relocating to the USA on scholarship as a student-athlete. He made giant strides in the NCAA and now, blazed his way to national recognition.

Meanwhile, Patience George ran the fastest time across all women's 400m heats, taking the third semifinal in 52.38s. Omolara Ogunmakinju closed well to finish second and qualify for the final, while Blessing Akintoye was third.

While in the men's category, Dubem Amene made a rebound in heat 3 to redeem himself and win in 46.21s, ahead of Dubem Nwachukwu.

Sikiru Adewale won the second heat in an unofficial 46.41s ahead of Chidi Okezie as both advanced to the final.