Okagbare Wins Second Medal for Nigeria

Moscow — Captain of the Nigerian team to 14th IAAF World Championships here in Moscow, Blessing Okagbare lived up to her ratings yesterday, adding the bronze medal of the women’s 200m to the silver she won earlier in the long jump.

Despite missing the silver medal in a photo finish with Ivorian Murielle Ahoure, Okagbare insisted she was grateful to God for winning two medals in one championship.

“I am grateful to God for winning the silver and bronze medal of the long jump and the 200m respectively. Winning two medals, irrespective of their colours mean so much to me because it is not easy thing to do,” gushed the African sprint record holder in the Mixed Zone of the Luzhniki Stadium.

She admitted that he long jump even really stressed her before the 100m.

“It was quite stressful, most especially having to come out to also run the 100m’s final the very next day,” observed Okagbare.

Although she also admitted that she would have loved to pick the gold of Friday’s 200m, the University of Texas in El Paso graduate is however contented with her prized bronze medal, considering the fact that former champion, American Allyson Felix could not even make the podium in the event as she had cramps half way into the race.

Asked what next after the World Championships, Okagbare said she will remain focused on her career, looking forward to doing greater things for Nigeria.

“Don’t forget the season is still not over yet. I will continue my drive in the circuit and look forward to winning more laurels, thereafter, I will look forward to a very splendid vacation,” she noted.

The Delta girl was splendid in the race, coming out of the home straight of the half-lap race in the fourth position to battle Ivorian, Murielle Ahoure, to the finish line in a photo finish of 22.32secs. The Seiko timer of the Luzhniki Stadium handed the petit Ivorian the silver medal.

Jamaican Shelly-Ann Fraser who had earlier on Monday won the 100m had little opposition, also adding the 200m to complete her domination of the sprint events of this 14th edition ending Sunday.

Okagbare is the first Nigerian (man or woman) to win two medals at the same championship and also the first to win a sprint medal for the country. The best before yesterday was Mary Onyali’s 5th position in Stuttgart in 1993.