Ferdinand Omanyala takes the Men's 100m in 2022 African Athletics Championships, photo by Deji Ogeyingbo for RunBlogRun
Gina Bass takes the Women's 100m at the 2022 African Athletics Championships, photo by Deji Ogeyingbo for RunBlogRun
This is Deji Ogeyingbo's column for the second day of the African Athletics Championships.
Two great 100-meter races, the 100m hurdles, 110m hurdles, 4x400m mixed relays, and women's 1,500m, and 5,000m, were part of the second day in Mauritius. Deji sent us photos and videos for social media.
Omanyala and Bass storm to 100m Gold as Botswana wins first mixed 4x400m Relay on Day 2 of the African Championships
On a day characterized by blustery conditions, it was the duo of Ferdinand Omanyala and Gina Bass that braved the odds to win the men's and women's 100m titles on Day two of the ongoing Africain Athletics Championships taking place in Mauritius.
The men's 100m final was billed as a straight duel between the defending champion, Akani Simbine and African Record holder, Omanyala. And they both delivered a race for the ages. The race was keenly contested between both sprinters, with very little to separate them in the end. It went down to the wire, literally.
They waited with bated breath. Eyes both fixed on the screen, hugging and smiling, knowing full well they had given their all. The fans in the stadium could feel it. Almost seven minutes, and it eventually popped up. Both sprinters ran an identical 9.93s, with Omanyala taking it by three-thousandths of a second (0.003s) in a windy 3.
It was despondence on the face of Simbine, who has now lost his 100m African record and African title to Omanyala in the span of a year. For Omanyala, this felt very important to him. He had canceled races in Europe to be here, and it paid off, eventually.
In the women's draw, Bass held off a late surge from Niger's Aminatou Seyni to take the win in 11.06s while South Africa's record Holder Carina Horn was third in 11.14s.
Elsewhere, Tobi Amusan defended her 100m Hurdles title in an empathic fashion as she blew away the field to win in 12.57s (+4.0). Ebony Morrison and Marrion Fourie were second and third, respectively.
Also, it was a tale of showmanship from Libya's Amine Bouanani as the sprint-hurdler emerged victorious in the men's 110m Hurdles in a windy 13.26. (+4.8), dethroning defending champion Antonio Alkana who was third.
Botswana was a class apart in the mixed 4x400m relay final at the African Championships, the first time the event his held in the history of the championships. They won Gold in 3:21.85. Nigeria (3:22.38) and Kenya (3:22.75) were second and third.
Winny Chebet continued Kenya's dominance over the women's 1500m. The Commonwealth Games champion defended her title in an astonishing fashion, cantering through to win in 4:16.10. She was followed by Purity Chepkirui, who took Silver in 4:16.28.
The women's 5000m final was a spectacle for the little crowd inside the stadium, mainly because they wanted to see Caster Semenya race in person. South Africa could only manage a fifth-place finish as Beatrice Chebet led a 1-3 for Kenya that saw her take Gold in a time of 15:00.82.
Infield, Ghana's Rose Yeboah won the women's High Jump on countback with a mark of 1.82m, beating Nigeria's Tope Adeshina. South Africa's Yvonne Robson was third. South Africa's Thalosang Tshireletso won the men's triple jump.