Nigeria’s 100m sprint duo of Enoch Adegoke and Usheoritse Itsekiri booked their passage into the semifinals of the competition after excelling in their various heats, with compatriot Divine Oduduru getting disqualified for making a false start at the starting block. In the women’s 100m semifinals, 20-year-old Grace Nwokocha failed to qualify for the finals after she could only finish in fifth place in her heat.
Adegoke became the 10th fastest Nigerian man of all time, and clocked one of only four sub-10 times in the 100m event at this year’s Olympics. Adegoke won Heat 2 in 9.98 seconds, creating a new personal best record for himself. He finished ahead of Nigeria-born Qatar runner Femi Ogunode (10.02 seconds) and Great Britain’s Hughes Zharnel (10.04 seconds).
Itsekiri qualified for the semifinals after finishing in third place in Heat 1 with a time of 10.15 seconds. Itsekiri finished in third place behind USA’s Ronnie Baker (10.03 seconds) and France’s Jimmy Vicaut (10.07 seconds) to book his place in the semifinals of the tournament.
In Heat 5 of the men’s 100m event, Nigeria’s Divine Oduduru was disqualified after making a false start to the race. Great Britain’s Reece Prescod surprisingly made the same mistake but was pardoned, prompting calls for Nigeria to appeal the decision to disqualify Oduduru from the race and allow him to try and beat the qualifying time.
Nigeria’s sole flag bearer at the women’s 100m semifinals Grace Nwokocha, failed to qualify for the final as she finished in 5th place in Heat 3 of the event with a time of 11.07 seconds. Jamaica’s Elaine Thompson-Herah eventually picked up gold in the event after winning the final with a time of 10.61 seconds, securing back-to-back 100m Olympic gold medals ahead of compatriots Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce who earned the silver medal, and Shericka Jackson, who won bronze.