Nigerians on social media are displeased with a remark by UK-based The Guardian concerning Nigerian hurdler and World Athletics Championships record holder, Tobi Amusan.
The newspaper had said Amusan’s record-breaking 12: 06s performance on Sunday was thanks to her spike shoes. But back home in Nigeria, many people felt The Guardian’s commentary about their heroine is disrespectful.
See some reactions below:
Journalist Fisayo Soyombo wrote on his verified Facebook page: “This piece by TheGuardian labouring to pin Tosin Amusan’s victory to her ‘super shoes’ is despicable.
“Writing that “there is nothing illegal about super shoes” and admitting that hers fell within World Athletics’ 20mm limit for soles is the very reason the piece has no basis. Disguised racism!”
Prince Nosa Ikponmwosa said: “Congratulationsto Tobi Amusan. She did not just win gold, but also set a new world record in women’s 100 meters hurdles.
“HOWEVER, THE AMERICANS ARE ALREADY TRYING TO DISCREDIT HER BECAUSE THEY WANT TO HOLD ALL THE WORLD RECORD.
“Immediately after the race, the former world 200m and 400m record holder, Michael Johnson, wondered whether the timing system at Hayward Field was off. He was far from alone. However it transpired that Amusan had been given a boost by using Adidas Adizero Avanti shoes, which are designed for 5km and 10km runners, rather than track spikes”- THE GUARDIAN.
“But the good news about it is that there’s nothing ILLEGAL about the shoe she wore. If she hadn’t won, nobody would have said a thing about the shoe she wore. Once again, Congratulations.”
Journalist Tolu Olasoji wrote on his verified Twitter handle: “The Guardian trying to undermine Amusan’s feat wasn’t even about mentioning the shoe debate but framing it in such a way that using those shoes gave her an *unfair* advantage but then came around to say it is legal. smh.”
Meanwhile, Amusan has said her record-breaking 12: 06s performance had nothing to do with her spike shoes.
“I had patella fasciitis at the beginning of the season so that set me back for a while. I spoke to Adidas and requested if I could get spikes with a softer sole,” Amusan told the press.
“My abilities are not centred around spikes,” she added.