July 26, 2018

Asaba 2018 AAC: Orukpe vows to help Nigeria win 400m medal

Asaba 2018 AAC: Orukpe vows to help Nigeria win 400m medal



By Ben Efe

Nigerian quarter-miler, Orukpe Eriyokan has vowed to salvage a medal in the highly competitive 400m event at the African Athletics Championships, billed to start August 1-5 in Asaba, Delta State.

Orukpe, was previously dropped from the Nigerian team after he was alleged to have spear-headed a protest of the athletes during the trial at Asaba, but after he was reinstated, he expressed his readiness to fight for a medal.

“I’m grateful to the ex internationals and also Solomon Ogba who fought for me to be back into the team.

“In Asaba we are going to put in our best thought we have strong competition from other African athletes, we can win a medal for Nigeria in the event,” said Orukpe.

His optimism is buoyed by Chidi Okezie’s improvement. Okezie an up coming 400m runner ran a personal best of 45.24 seconds last Sunday in St Kitts and Nelvis.

“I feel excited about running a new PB, but I know that I have more in me. This is perfect timing going into African Championships, now it means I am ready to run. My only expectations is to have fun and get on the podium,” said Okezie in chat with Athletics Heat.

Some of the top African performances this season so far for the event, are of those belonging to Isaac Makwala of Botswana who did 44.23 seconds in May, Kenya’s Emmanuel Kipkurui posted 44.52, Thebe Baboloki of Bostwana did 44.54 seconds, while South Africa’s Derrick Mokaleng has 45.02.