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Tokyo 2020 Paralympics: Team Nigeria Finishes With Ugwunwa’s Gold, Onye’s Bronze

Tokyo 2020 Paralympics: Team Nigeria Finishes With Ugwunwa’s Gold, Onye’s Bronze

Flora Ugwunwa (pictured above) won gold for Team Nigeria with a throw of 19.39m in the F54 class of the Javelin event and Lauretta Onye followed up with a bronze in Shot Put to end Nigeria’s participation at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics on a high note.

Ugwunwa, a World and Paralympics Record holder, justified her rating and pedigree with the resounding victory and commanding performance in her field. She made her intention known from the start of proceedings, leaving no one in doubt with her poise and focus.

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Lauretta Onye also ensured she finished with a medal against all odds. Her push for gold was intense but she had to settle for bronze after fiercely contested final.

Lauretta Onye

These medal winning finishes for Team Nigeria increased the country’s medal haul at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics to ten with four gold, one silver and five bronze.

Team Nigeria participated at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics with twenty two athletes and won medals mainly in Powerlifting and Athletics.

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  • Tunsak 2 years ago

    Nice one. The Nigerian contingent returned with 10 medals ( 4gold, 1silver & 5 bronze) from 22 athletes. Powerlifting gave us 6 (3gold, 1silver and 2bronze) medals, Athletics gave 3(1gold & 3bronze) medals while Table tennis gave 1bronze medal.

    This however is a retrogression when compared to Rio Olympics where we were 17th overall (No 1 in Africa) with 12medals in total (8gold, 2silver and 2bronze) from a contingent of 23 athletes – Powerlifting with 9 medals (6G, 2S & 1B) & Athletics 3 medals ( 2G & 1B).

    A cursory look at why we lost our no 1 in position in Africa ( we placed 32nd in Tokyo (3rd in Africa behind Tunisia & Algeria) revealed that 5 of our golden medalists in Rio faced some challenges both natural and man-made ( we lost Ndidi Nwosu last year due to injuries she sustained in Commonwealth games 2018 and complications, Roland Ezurike was banned till March 2022 for doping reasons, and Lauritta Onye and our flag bearer, Lucy Ejike won bronze this time around, Josephine Orji was not even among the medals winner this time around.

    On a flip side, Latifat Tijani upgraded from Silver to Gold from the last Paralympics while Folashade Oluwafemiayo claimed Gold in Powerlifting 86kg setting a new Para record of 152kg in the process.( Folashade won silver in the 75kg in London 2012 but was banned for 2yrs in 2013 after failing doping test and hence missed Rio 2016).

    Tunisia got all their medals in Athletics wt 2 of their athletes claiming double gold. Algeria also had all their medals in athletics bar 1G in Judo and 1B in powerlifting.

    So we need to spread our tentacles especially in athletics where we are usually dominant. Tennis too got a bronze medal in men’s team, the only male amongst the medals. Thumbs up to Tajudeen Agunbiade and Olufemi Alabi but who says the women are not deserving of our accolades…

    We also need to manage the athletes better educating them to win clean…. Paris 2024 is around the corner, preparation begins now to take back our position as the no 1 in Africa or even aspire to the top 10. It’s achievable if we want to.