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Tobi Amusan: Nigeria’s First World Athletics Championships’ Winner

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Over the years, the most populous black nation in the World, Nigeria has been known as a country blessed with people of different talents for the impact they bring to Africa and the World.

Today, we took interest in bringing it to the space of the public, a certain Nigerian with qualities and achievements over the years, mostly in the aspect of Athletics, which is no one other than ‘Tobi Amusan’.

Oluwatobiloba Ayomide Amusan (born 23 April 1997) is a Nigerian track and field athlete who specialises in the 100 metres hurdles and also competes as a sprinter.

Amusan showed a lot of athletic potential from an early age. She was a silver medallist at the 2013 African Youth Championships in Warri. She also claimed gold in the 100 metres hurdles at the 2015 African Junior Athletics Championships in Addis Ababa.

In 2015, while making her All-Africa Games debut as an eighteen year old, she won the gold medal in the 100 metres hurdles.

In 2016, as a freshman for The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), Amusan became the second athlete for the university to be named C-USA Female Track athlete of the Year since UTEP joined C-USA.

Amusan was the gold medalist in both the 100 mH and the 200 m. She also claimed a silver in the long jump at the C-USA Championships. Amusan first broke the 13sec barrier in the hurdles with a time of 12.83s at the El Paso UTEP Invitational.

She was runner-up at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 100 mH. And later ran a windy 12.79s behind Kentucky’s Jasmine Camacho-Quinn.

Amusan also competed at the 2016 World Junior Championships in Bydgoszcz. Despite running her second fastest time ever, she placed fifth in the final, she then went on to represent Nigeria at the Rio Olympic Games, reaching the semifinals of the 100 mH.

In her first outdoor race of 2017, she ran a then lifetime best and UTEP record of 12.63s in the 100 metres hurdles, She was the C-USA champion in her specialist event and also the runner up in the 200 metres.

At the 2017 NCAA Outdoor Championships, there was a reversal of finishes in the 100 metres hurdles. In a dramatic race, Amusan claimed the title ahead of Camacho-Quinn who was the champion the previous year. She did this in a personal record time of 12.57s.

She also represented Nigeria at the World Championships in London later in the year.
The champion also ran a personal best of 7.89s in the 60 metres hurdles at the start of her 2018 season, then went on to represent her country at the Birmingham World Indoor Championships reaching the final of the 60 metres hurdles.

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At the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, 2015 World Champion, Danielle Williams seemed to be the favourite to take the title In the final, however, Amusan moved ahead of her competitors and won the race by a clear metre ahead of Williams.

She also won a bronze medal in the 4 x 100 m relay with her team mates, Joy Udo-Gabriel, Blessing Okagbare and Rosemary Chukwuma. Later that year, she won her first African Championships title in her specialist event at the Asaba African Championships.

This fulfilled a Nigerian tradition as Judy Bell-Gam had won this race for Nigeria at the first African Championships, she also claimed a gold medal in the 4 x 100 m relay at the championships.

At the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar, Amusan ran a personal best of 12.48s during the 100 metres hurdles qualifying rounds. In the semi-finals the following day, she equaled this personal best before placing 4th a few hours later in the final with 12.49s.

In 2021 Amusan finished fourth in the Tokyo Olympics with a time of 12.60s. She later competed in the Zurich Diamond League event, which she won in 12.42s, becoming the first Nigerian to win a Diamond League trophy.

Amusan opened her 2022 season by winning the 2022 Diamond League event in Paris, were she set an African record by 0.01s with a time of 12.41s.

She won gold in the 100m hurdles at the 2022 African Championships in Mauritius, defending her title successfully with a time of 12.57s (wind-aided). She also competed in the women’s 4×100m and won gold.

Later in 2022, she competed in a Diamond League meet, finishing second with a time of 12.60s, behind Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn.

At the 2022 World Championships, Amusan entered the 2022 World Championships as a medal contender after back-to-back 4th place finishes. In the heats, she ran a new personal best of 12.40s, bettering her old record by 0.01s.

In the semifinal setting a new world record of 12.12 seconds in the semifinal, then a 12.06 in the final, becoming the first Nigerian to win a world title.

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