The 2019 National U18/U20 Championships which was held between March 16th-19th, 2019 at the Gateway International Stadium, Ilaro, Ogun State saw many athletes hit the standard set by the CAA for the 2019 African U20 Championships slated for April 16th-20th, 2019 in Abidjan, Ivory Coast.
Commonwealth Games 100m finalist, Enoch Adegoke had the quickest time over the blue riband event as he notched an early Nigerian Lead with a time of 10.36s in the heat, he went on to win the final in 10.39s thereby inspiring Alaba Akintola (10.78s), Shedrack Akpeki (10.83s) to run under the 10.84s which was set as the standard for the Men’s 100m. While Bowo Egbeyemi (10.84) and Omubo Gershon (10.84) equalled the qualifying time. Youth Boys champion, Brume Godsome also hit the standard, running 10.81s to win the 100m event.
The troika of Nwokocha Grace (11.73s) and Rosemary Chukwuma (11.83s) and Asemota Marvellous (12.12s) all hit the 100m standard enroute finishing top 3 respectively in the 100m final. The standard set in the Women’s 100m is 12.14s.
Rosemary Chukwuma also hit the 200m standard running 24.32s to clinch the National title while Grace Nwokocha who finished behind running 24.46s which also surpassed the qualifying mark of 24.74s. Favour Okpepe ran faster than 21.74s to defeat the rest of the field to win the U20 Men final with a PB of 21.44s which qualifies him for the event.
Youth sensation, Favour Ofili who opted from the 400m at the trials ran a blistering 23.74s to win the Youth 200m final which also qualifies the African Youth one lap champion for the U20 Champs in Abidjan.
After hitting the standard in the qualifying round, dipping in a Persona Best of 48.30s, Obashola Olaolwa further extended his PB on his way to win the 400m Youth Final A. Obashola secured the victory with a scorching 47.37s which was even faster than the time Nsikark Okon (48.74) used in winning the Junior Category. The qualifying time for the event is 48.32s. Fatola Adedoyin (48.14) and Akhalu Victor (48.19) who finished top 2 in Youth Final B also hit the standard.
Nse Imaobong led the pack from start to finish in the Girls U18 event winning the final in 54.46s surpassing the 55.67s standard.
ECOWAS U20 Silver medalist, David Olowookere was the man to beat in the U20 400mh final. The crowd cheered the Kwara-based athlete as he came into the home straight, they chanted “Ororo” “Ororo” “Ororo”. The National Sports Festival Champion won the race in 52.88s and was the athlete to meet the 400m hurdles event.
Comfort James secured the 800m and 1500m victories but neither of the winning times hit the standard. The closest was her time in the 800m where she notched 2:10.45s. The CAA set 2:10.00 as the standard.
On the field
Onaara Obamuagun hopped, stepped and jumped into the pit in 12.40m which was good enough as the Triple Jump standard is 12.40m. Youth Olympics Long Jump finalist, Victory George was just 0.01m away from the qualifying mark with a distance of 12.39m.
Esther Isah cleared a height of 1.75m surpassing the Women’s High Jump standard of 1.73m while Erhire Best scared 2.00m and was shy 0.06m off the standard.
Hannah Kemele threw a distance of 44.45m to win the Gold in the Women’s U20 Javelin event while the qualifying mark is 44.50m. She passed the mark for the Women’s Shot Put as she threw 15.22m to take the Gold. The standard for the event was set at 12.90m
Nnamdi Chinecherem was in his own class as he threw a distance of 64.63m to secure the win in the Boys U18 Javelin event. The standard for the event sits at 61.50m. Ihemelu Victor finished 2nd with 44.65m.
PS: This isn’t the list of athlete who will represent Nigeria but a list of athletes who hit the standard at the National U20 trials held in Ilaro, Ogun state.