By DARE ESAN
Blessing Okagbare is attempting to race, once again, into the record books today, Monday as she lines up for first the 100m semi-final and later the final at the IAAF World Athletics Championships.
Okagbare is undoubtedly the greatest sprinter Nigeria has ever had and Completesportsnigeria.com’s DARE ESAN, who is in Beijing covering the IAAF World Athletics Championships, brings you five facts you need to know about her before the races and five records she could add to her already very storied career.
1.Okagbare is the first and so far Nigerian nay African sprinter to break 10.80 seconds in the 100m courtsey her African record run in London in 2013.
2. Okagbare is the first and so far only Nigerian, man or woman, to win two individual medals at the IAAF World Championships.
3. Okagbare is the only Nigerian woman to win an IAAF worlds medal in the field event courtesy of her silver medal win in the long jump two years ago in Moscow at the 14th edition of the Championship.
4. Okagbare is the only Nigerian to win a straight sprints medal at the IAAF worlds courtesy of her 200m bronze finish in Moscow two years ago.
5. Okagbare is the first and so far only Nigerian woman to have broken 11 seconds in the 100m more than once in a season and has actually run inside 11 seconds more than 13 times since she first did in 2012.
5 RECORDS OKAGBARE COULD SET OR BREAK IF SHE WINS A MEDAL IN 100M
1.Okagbare can make history as the first Nigerian athlete to win Olympic and World Championship medal if she makes it to the podium in Beijjng. Seven years ago she won a long jump bronze here at the same Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing.
2. Okagbare will become the first Nigerian, man or woman, and indeed the first African to win a 100m medal at the IAAF Worlds if she nicks one here in Beijing.
3. Okagbare can become the first Nigerian,man or woman to complete a sprint (100, 200m) double at the IAAF Worlds if she gets to the 100m podium in Beijing.
4. Okagbare can become the first Nigerian, man or woman to win a medal at two (consecutive) IAAF Worlds if she gets a medal in either the 100m or 200m.
5. Okagbare can become Nigeria’s fastest woman in the history of the championships if she can run faster than the 10.97 seconds Mary Onyali ran in the first round at the 4th IAAF Worlds in Stuttgart, Germany in 1993.