By Clarkson Ogo
After five days’ action, the 19th national Sports Festival (NSF), tagged: ‘Abuja 2018’ would final come alive today as African queen of the track, Blessing Okagbare and other top notch athletes will take to the track for the athletics event at the main bowl of the Abuja National stadium.
Already, most of top foreign based Nigerian athletes are in Abuja to get the tracks burning today.
Okagbare and reigning Commonwealth and African Champion in the 100m Hurdles Event, Tobi Amusan, as well as Ese Brume who will be competing in the Long Jump event are in Abuja to compete for Team Delta, who are already topping the medal table with a wide margin.
Aside Okagbare and Amusan, spectators and analysts alike would also watch out for FCT’s Rosemary Chukwuma who won Nigeria her only gold medal at the recently concluded 2018 Youth Olympics in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
Chukwuma saved the best for last having finished third in the first stage of the race but won the final race with an impressive time of 11.17 seconds which was good enough to give Nigeria a gold medal in Buenos Aires.
The 2018 Commonwealth Games Bronze medalist in the 4x100m would be competing for FCT. She was Nigeria’s youngest athlete at the Commonwealth Games and anchored the 4x100m relay.
According to the itinerary of events released by the Athletics Federation Nigeria (AFN), the first event in athletics will be the Women’s 5000m event.
The Heats for the Men’s and Women’s 100m event will also be taking place during the morning session.
Team Delta will be hoping for gold when Brume takes the center stage for the Long Jump event billed for this afternoon.
Just like in Swimming where Delta State secured over 90 % of the gold medals available, many expect that they would do same in the athletics. However, with the wave of upsets that has been sweeping through the 19th Sports Festival, just anything can happen also in the athletics events.