Nigeria’s current queen of the tracks, Blessing Okagbare, has qualified for the semi-final of the women’s 100 metres event.
Okagbare finished top in Heat 6 in a time of 11.05 seconds on Friday, while United Kingdom’s Asha Phillips finished second in 11.31 seconds and Bahamian athlete Tynia Gaither came third in 11.34 seconds.
For the first time since 2012, Nigeria will have two athletes running in the semi-final of 100 metres women event after home-based athlete, Grace Nwokocha, also qualified.
Nwokocha finished third with a new personal best of 11.00 seconds behind world no. 1 Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, who won the heat with 10.84 seconds, and second-placed Switzerland’s Ajia Del Fonte with 10.91 seconds to qualify for the semi-final.
While Nwokocha qualified for her first semi-final, Okagbare will be running in her third since she made her debut in the event at the 2012 Olympics in London.
The 20-year-old Nwokocha has been drawn to run from lane nine in the third semi-final heat with the fastest woman alive, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce of Jamaica, Daryl Neita of Great Britain, Teahna Daniels of the USA, and, Muriel Ahoure of Ivory Coast.
On her part, Okagbare has been drawn in the first semi-final heat alongside two heavyweights of the event, defending Olympic champion, Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica, and Great Britain’s Dina Asher-Smith.