By Dare Esan:
The athletics event of the on-going Olympics Games in Rio de Janieiro, Brazil begins Friday morning (afternoon in Nigeria) with Nwanneka Okwelogu facing a baptism of fire in the shot put.
The USA-based Nigerian is competing in her first Olympics and has been drawn in the first of two qualification rounds.
With a personal best of 17.91m which she achieved this year, Okwelogu must throw just three centimetres (18.40m) short of the 18.43m Nigerian record set by Vivian Chukwuemeka at the Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, California, USA in April 2003 to be among the automatic qualifiers.
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Meanwhile, multi-eventer Uhunoma Osazuwa will begin her two-day journey into possible Olympic history on Friday when she files out in the 100m hurdles event of the heptathlon.
Ranked the 25th best in the world coming to the Games, she can become the first Nigerian in the event to make it to the top 10 at the Olympics.
Last year at the IAAF Worlds in Beijing, Osazuwa finished the 18th best in the world, amassing 5,951 points. She will however need to break the new 6,153 points Nigeria record she set at the African Championships in Durban, South Africa last June to get to the brink of history.
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