…Tobi Amusan’s fate hangs in the balance
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria has released a list of 26 athletes for the World Athletics Championships holding in Budapest, Hungary from August 19 – 27. Ese Brume, who is Nigeria’s biggest medal hopeful, headlines the list.
Also in the list are national champion, Usheoritse Itsekiri, Favour Ashe and Seye Ogunlewe who will feature in the men’s 100m.
Alaba Akintola will be Nigeria’s only entrant in the men’s 200m, while Dubem Nwachukwu and Chukwuebuka Enekwechi will fly Nigeria’s flag in the men’s 400m and shot put respectively.
Fakorede Adekalu and Karlington Anunagba will join the quartet of Itsekiri, Ashe, Ogunlewe, and Akinola to form Nigeria’s men’s 4x100m team.
In the mixed 4x400m, Nigeria will present Chidi Okezie, Dubem Nwachukwu, Samuel Ogazi, Ezekiel Nathaniel, Patience Okon-George, Imaobong Uko Nse, and Ella Onojuvwevwo.
Nigeria will have one athlete each in the women’s 100m and 200m, with Rosemary Chukwuma and Favour Ofili expected to represent the country.
Uko Nse will be Nigeria’s sole representative in the women’s 400m, while Ruth Usoro will join Brume in the women’s long jump event.
The women’s discus will have Pamela Amaechi Obiageri, Ashley Anumba, and Chioma Onyekwere while Sade Olatoye will compete in the women’s hammer event.
Nigeria’s women 4x100m team has Chukwuma, Ofili, Justina Eyakpobeyan, Faith Okwose, and Success Umukoro.
As expected, reigning World Champion and World Record Holder in the women’s 100m hurdles Tobi Amusan is missing from Nigeria’s team to the World Championships.
Amusan was provisionally suspended by the Athletics Integrity Unit after she was alleged to have missed three drug tests within a space of 12 months.
The 26-year-old maintained her innocence, and her appeal is to be heard with finding made public before the start of the competition.
Godson Brume and Udodi Onwuzurike, who had both hit qualifying times in the men’s 100m (with Onwuzurike also hitting the mark in the 200m), are also not on the team.
Godson Brume had announced his withdrawal in a Twitter post on Monday, saying he needed time to recover from injury, while Onwuzurike was also at risk due to an injury reportedly sustained while running for the Nigerian relay team while fighting for qualification.
With the fate of Amusan still hanging in the balance, all eyes will be on Ese Brume, 27, who won bronze medal at the 2019 World Championships in Qatar and silver medal at the 2021 World Championships in Eugene, USA.