There was a great deal of disappointment as Oluwatobiloba Amusan failed to win a medal in the final of the 100m hurdles after a second successive fourth place finish in the event at a major competition. Nigeria’s female basketball side D’Tigress also fell to a third successive defeat in Tokyo at the hands of hosts Japan to bow out of the competition.
Amusan was carrying the hopes of a nation and after her fourth-place finish in her last outing with Nigeria at the World Athletics Championship in Doha, was determined to not miss out on the podium places when she reached the final of the competition in Tokyo. The 24-year-old was slow out of the blocks, immediately putting her behind her co-competitors, but she recovered well to finish in a time of 12.60 seconds. It was, however, not enough for a medal as she finished in fourth place behind Jamaica’s Megan Tapper (12.55 seconds), USA’s Kendra Harrison (12.52 seconds) and Puerto Rico’s Jasmine Camacho-Quinn (12.37 seconds).
In the women’s 200m event, Nigeria’s Grace Nwokocha ran a personal best time of 22.47 seconds in Heat 1 of the event to finish in third place and qualify for the semifinals. She finished behind Ivorian Marie Ta Lou (22.30 seconds) and Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller-Uibo (22.40 seconds) in the race.
Nigeria’s Blessing Oborodudu qualified for the semifinals of the women’s 68kg freestyle category after going through two qualifying rounds in quick succession. In her first match against Azerbaijani Elis Manolova, she showed her technical superiority as she emerged victorious by a scoreline of 13-2 to qualify for the quarterfinals. In her quarterfinal bout against Kyrgyzstan’s Meerim Zhumanazarova, she looked visibly tired after the exertions of her first match, but she picked up a hard-fought 3-2 win over the 2018 Asian Games Bronze medalist. Nigeria has never won an Olympics wrestling medal. She has a chance of securing a medal when she faces Mongolia’s Battsetseg Soronzobold in the semifinals of the event.
Nigeria’s female basketball team D’Tigress was eliminated from the basketball competition at the Tokyo Olympics after falling to a 102-83 defeat against hosts Japan in their last match of the preliminary round. The Nigerian side lost previously to the USA and France in their first two matches before joining their male counterparts in getting eliminated after losing a third match. The team lost all four quarters to their Japanese opposition as the Japanese showed a greater willingness to shoot for threes and were successful with the strategy. D’Tigress can now turn their focus to the FIBA Afrobasket tournament after their first round exit from the Olympics.