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Ekevwo, Alphonsus shine at Nigerian junior Championships

Raymond Ekevwo and Anikeme Alphonsus were the star performers at the 6th edition of the Nigerian youth and junior championships which held at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos last week.

Nigeria's Tosin Adeloye winning the women's 400m in Akure / Photo credit: Making of Champions
Nigeria's Tosin Adeloye winning the women's 400m in Akure / Photo credit: Making of Champions

Raymond Ekevwo and Anikeme Alphonsus were the star performers at the 6th edition of the D.K Olukoya Nigerian youth and junior championships which held at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos last week.

Over the years, the D.K Olukoya junior championships, sponsored by the Mountain of Fire and Miracles (MFM) church, has become a veritable platform for helping young Nigerian athletes rise to stardom.

Raymond Ekevwo, who is the new kid on the blocks, won the 100m Boys with a stunning time of 10.37 – the fastest time by any Nigerian junior this year.

Ekevwo, who came into the championships with a personal best of 10.56, lowered it during the heats with a time of 10.53 before clocking a sub-10.4 in the final which qualifies him for the IAAF World U20 Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland in July.

“I was a bit surprised, I never expected to go that fast but I am greatful to God, Ekevwo said after the race. “At the world junior, I am hoping for the best. When we get to Poland, God will take control.”

Anikeme Alphonsus, Nigeria’s fastest home-based athlete this season, won the women’s 100m title in 11.59, a far cry from her 11.35 she ran in the heat.

“I am very happy that I ran a PB of 11.35. I am grateful to God,” said Alphonsus. ” The reason I ran a slower time in the final was probably because of tension.

“I need to work on my start and finishing, so that I can run faster. My target is to win the GOLD medal in Poland and run a new record as well,” she added.

In men’s Shot put, Isaac Odugbesan took the title with a throw of 17.90m while the 2015 National Bronze medalist, Ruth Usoro won the women’s Long Jump in 6.11m. Mercy Abire was second with 5.98m.

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Bashiru Abdullahi won the 100m hurdles with 13.72 while Precious Ojeikere, who ran a personal best of 14.05 in the heat came second. Victoria Adubi won the women’s 100m hurdles with a new PB of 14.87.

Praise Idamadudu led the girls in the 400m in 54.18 ahead of Rita Odigbo (55.45), Knowledge Omovoh (55.53) and Blessing Adiakerewa (56.24).

Emmanuel Bamidele ran a stunning time of 47.75 to nick the boys title, followed by Afeez Abdulrahman (48.08), Akindele Atanda (48.96), Francis Nsikak (49.18), Toluwani Adebakin (49.54), Saheed Jimoh (50.87) and Eseroghene Ogunma (50.92).

Mercy Ntiabong won the girls 200m in 23.17 ahead of Praise Idamadudu (24.24) Ruth Usoro (24.96), Marvelous Asemota (25.66) , Joy Udoh-Gabriel (25.70) and Chiamaka Egbochinam (25.89).

In the boys section, Chukwudi Olisakwe, recovered from his shock first round exit in the 100m to take the 200m title in 21.78 seconds ahead of Faye Assan (22.03).

Prosper C. Ogbonna clocked 22.08 for third ahead of Timothy Emoghene (22.49), 100m winner Raymond Ekevwo (22.62), and Abdulrahman Afeez (22.63).

The next AFN Golden League which was slated for Ilorin has now been moved to Tuesday in Sagamu.

DK-Olukoya-Nigerian-U20 Championships Results

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Eseroghene Oguma is a track & field writer. Ese is also an athlete who specializes in the 200m and 400m, and was the Lagos State champion over the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay in 2015.

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