Olympics: Okagbare, Nwokocha Qualify for 100m Semi-Final

Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare competes in the Women’s 100m Semifinal during the athletics event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 13, 2016. (Photo by Johannes EISELE / AFP)

Olympic and World Championships medalist, Blessing Okagbare, has qualified for the semi-final of the women’s 100m at the ongoing Tokyo Olympics.

Okagbare finished first in Heat 6 in 11.05 (-0.1) seconds ahead of United Kingdom’s Asha Phillips who finished second in 11.31 seconds and Bahamian athlete, Tynia Gaither, at third in 11.34 seconds.

The 32-year-old’s recent feat is her third consecutive Olympics semi-final qualification and her fourth appearance in the Olympics.

Meanwhile, 20-year-old Grace Nwokocha also picked up qualification for the semi-final of the women’s 100m at the Olympics after posting a personal best time of 11.00 seconds to finish third in Heat 5.

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Nwokocha, who ran two new personal bests while also winning the 100m title at the National Sports Festival held in Benin City, Edo State, South-South Nigeria, is participating in her first Olympics.

World no. 1 Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce won Heat 5 with 10.84s with Switzerland’s Ajia Del Fonte placing 2nd with 10.91s.

Prior to the Olympics, Nwokocha, who has a PB and season’s best of 22.79s in the 200m, had said her “target for the Tokyo Olympic Games is to do better than what I have been doing by improving my time in the 100m and 200m.”

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