printer, Blessing Okagbare and sprint hurdler, Tobiloba Amusan sealed their qualification for the final of the IAAF Diamond League despite finishing fourth and fifth in the 100m and 100m hurdles respectively at the Muller Anniversarry Games Diamond League meeting in London at the weekend, Completesports.com reports.
Okagbare ran a new 11.04 seconds personal season’s best to place fourth in the 100m at the London meeting and it was enough for her to tie down a lane at the final of the event at the AG Memorial Van Damme Diamond League meeting in Brussels, Belgium in September.
The Nigerian garnered five points from her fourth place finish to increase her total haul to 20 points with only one round of qualification left in the event.
The 20 points lifted the 2014 Commonwealth Games double sprint champion to third on the qualification standings behind Ivory Coast’s Marie-Josée Ta Lou (24 points) who was third in London and Dina Asher-Smith of Britain (21 points) who came second (10.92 seconds) behind Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce (10.78 seconds).
Okagbare who is yet to break 11 seconds in the blue ribband event so far this year will be hoping to make amends for her disqualification last year at the Weltklasse Diamond League meeting in Zurich where the 100m final was held.
For Amusan who failed to replicate her incredible 10.49 seconds run in France a few days earlier, it was also mission accomplished as she garnered four more points with her fifth place finish in the sprint hurdles to increase her haul to 17 which is enough to secure qualification for her second consecutive trip to Brussels for the final.
The petite Nigerian made it all the way to the final in her Diamond League debut last year, finishing fourth (12.69 seconds) behind the USA duo of Mcneal Brianna and Kendra Harrison as well as Jamaica’s Danielle Williams who is also making a return to Brussels following her incredible 12.32 seconds run on Saturday in London.
The winner at the final of each Diamond Discipline will become “IAAF Diamond League Champion” and be awarded a Diamond Trophy, $50,000 prize money and a wild card for the IAAF World Championships in Doha later this September.
By Dare Esan