Nigerian top female sprinter, Blessing Okagbare has come out to explain the factors that stopped her from competing in any track event at the ongoing National Sports Festival in Abuja.
Sports247.ng gathered that, in spite of earlier forecasts that Okagbare would be part of the events with Team Delta, the former African record holder opted out on account of a busy year ahead of her.
Okagbare did turn up to watch some athletics events at Abuja National Stadium, where she complained about poor crowd turn out, but she did not dust her spikes to compete.
Just as it was earlier this year, when she also snubbed several events at the African Athletics Championship in Asaba, Delta State, controversy and critical comments trailed Okagbare’s decision in Abuja.
However, she remained calm under the storm and simply retorted that she is keeping herself in shape for the 2019 international circuit, where she admits it was not a rosy year for her in the outgoing season.
Okagbare, whose personal best in 100 meters stands at 10.79 secs in 2013 and 200 meters at 22:04 this year, stressed that, as a programmed athlete, she has to keep her eyes and body on the global calendar.
She added: “I would had loved to run, to at least motivate most of the athletes in the sprint events, but I have to guide my calendar very well.
“With the World Cup and Golden League that will soon commence, there is the need to follow my programme and ensure that nothing go wrong.”