Doha 2019: Team Nigeria optimistic of good outing, say Coach, Athletes

Gabriel Okon, a coach and board member of the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) and some athletes, say Team Nigeria to the World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar, will get good results.

The 2019 World Athletics Championships will take place in Doha from Sept. 27 to Oct. 6, and Team Nigeria to the championships comprises 25 athletes, six coaches and some members of AFN.

Okon told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos before the Team departed on Tuesday night for the Games that Nigerian athletes would give their best to win laurels.

“Our aim of going to the championships is to make sure that we get into the finals and win some medals, so that we can have a shot at getting on podium.

“We also want to qualify some athletes for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan,’’ he said.

Okon said that Nigeria would compete in three relays, 100m men and women, 200m men and women and long jump.

“We are expecting some medals this time around with God on our side. I think we can do better than what we did in the past.’’

Itsekiri Usheoritse, a bronze medallist in 100m race at the 12th African Games, said that the sprints events at the World Athletics Championships would be competitive.

He said: “The sprint is becoming very complicated. For Africa, we have four men under 10 seconds already.

“In the world, we have about 19 people going under 10 seconds. It will be a competitive event and it’s the world championships.

“Everybody wants to be there, everybody want to be the best, everybody wants to be the fastest man in the world.

“ So, it will be the highest championships you can ever imagine.’’

Joy Udo Gabriel, a member of the women’s 4×100 relay team, said that in athletics, anything can happen.

She said that Team Nigeria had the potential to spring surprises at the World Championships.

“This is athletics. Anything can happen. It’s a relay race combined with four people. Things will definitely happen there and we can spring surprises,’’ Gabriel said. 

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