AFN celebrates Ofili’s qualification for Paris 2024 Olympics

• CAA revs up plans for African Senior Championships
The Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN) has described the qualification by U.S.-based Nigerian speed star, Favour Ofili, for the Paris 2024 Olympics Games as ‘fantastic’.

Ofili, an African record holder, ran 22.33seconds in her 200m race to beat the Olympic benchmark of 22.57 seconds to grab the Paris 2024 ticket at the Tom Jones Memorial Classic held at the James G. Pressly Stadium in Gainesville, Florida, on Friday. It was her overall fastest time in all competitions this season after her stunning 10.85s (+2.6m/s) at the Battle of the Bayou a fortnight ago.

This latest feat earns Ofilli a second chance to compete at the Olympics having been denied the opportunity to represent Nigeria at the Tokyo 2020 Games, where she was disqualified by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) alongside some other Nigerian athletes due to their failure to meet the minimum testing requirements under Rule 15 of the AIU.

Speaking with The Guardian, yesterday, from Cameroon, where the Confederation of African Athletics (CAA) is holding a strategic meeting ahead of the coming African Senior Athletics Championships, AFN President, TonobokOkowa, said he was thrilled by Ofili’s achievement, just as he praised other Nigerian track and field stars who have booked their tickets to the Paris Olympics.

“I am excited because Ofili just recovered from an injury, which prevented her from joining Team Nigeria at the African Games in Ghana. The list is growing and I am sure we will have a great team at the Paris Olympic Games,” Okowa stated.

Nigerian athletes, who have booked their tickets to Paris are World Record holders in women’s 100m hurdles, Tobi Amusan, Ezekiel Nathaniel (men’s 400m hurdles), EdoseIbadin (men’s 800m), Ruth Usoro (Triple and Long Jump), Chukwuebuka Enekwechi (shotput) and Favour Ashe (100m).

Meanwhile, Okowa, who is the president of Africa Region 2 Athletics, and one of the vice presidents of CAA, has revealed that the meeting in Cameroon is to put the finishing touches to plans for a successful African Senior Athletics Championships, which will hold in Douala in June.

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