–Nigerian trio confirmed for Sainsbury Grand Prix
By Dare Esan:
Sprinter,Blessing Okagbare, quartermiler,Reginna George and triple jumper Tosin Oke have been confirmed for the ninth meeting of the 2014 season of the IAAF Diamond League on 11-12 July in Glasgow, Scotland.
While Okagbare will compete in the women’s 200m where she leads in the race for the IAAF Damond League prize and George,who lost her national crown to Folasade Abugan last month in Calabar will compete in the 400m,Oke has been confirmed for the triple jump.
Okagbare who ran a new 22.23 seconds personal best in the event at the end of May at the Prefontaine Classics in the USA leads the race with 10 points, three more than former multiple world champions, Allyson Felix of the USA who lost to the Nigerian last week in Paris and another American, Bowie Tori.
Tori is the fastest woman in the event so far this year following the 22.18 seconds she ran to relegate Okagbare to the second position in Eugene,Oregon in May.
George is one of only three women in this weekend’s race yet to run a sub-51 seconds and the Nigerian will be aiming to run inside 51 seconds rather than trying to cause an upset in a field loaded with many former and current world and Olympic champions.
The former USA junior international is up against two women who have broken 50 seconds this year;former world and Olympic champion Sanya Richards-Ross (49.66) and reigning world indoor champion,Francesca McCorory (49.48).
Also confirmed for the event are Botswana’s Amantle Monthso,the 2011 IAAF World Champion and 2007 and 2013 world champions,Britain’s Christine Ohuruogu.
Oke will,like George hope to hit the 17m mark for the first time this year instead of aiming for a top two finish.
The Nigerian holds a 16.60m personal season’s best,the lowest mark by any of the competitors this weekend.
Oke is up against three Americans who have hit the 17m and above this season with Claye Will whose season’s best of 17.75m is the second longest mark so far achieved this season.