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Oregon 2022 Echoes: Proud Bukatiger recalls Amusan’s humble start

Coach Solaja Ayodele who discovered celebrated World Athletics Championships gold medal in the women’s 100m hurdles, Tobi Amusan , said he was proud of the remarkable success of his protégée .

“I actually discovered Tobi Amusan at Our Lady Of Apostles Secondary School at Ijebu-Ode when she was in the Junior Secondary School (JSS),” Ayodele, fondly called Bukatiger told NationSport.

“I trained her to represent Ogun State in the school sports but while in the Senior Secondary School(SSS), her father stopped her from sports to concentrate on her studies.”

He added: “ But she would sometimes sneak to training until she finally stopped coming to training while in the SSS2 .

“Months after her WAEC/GCE, she was allowed to resume training early 2012 following several appeals to her dad through her mum

“I then took her and six other athletes from Ijebu-Ode to Uyo, Akwa Ibom State for three months for serious training. She and my other athletes represented Akwa Ibom at Eko 2012 National Sports Festival and this began her journey to stardom.”

On Sunday at the Hayward Field’s track and field stadium located on the campus of the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon, the 25-year-old Amusan was the cynosure of all eyes as she broke the 100m Hurdles World Record with a blistering 12:12 secs in the semi-finals en route to her Gold medal race with a sparkling wind assisted 12:06 secs.

“Of course I am very surprised but in a beautiful way,” Tiger further said. “ I expected a medal; maybe gold but not a world record and this is magical to say the least.”

Incidentally, Amusan herself admitted in an interview with the BBC Africa Sports that she was yet to come to terms with her latest success at the Oregon 2022 World Athletics Championships.

“It has not sunk in yet, maybe the magnitude of what just happened it will hit me later,” Amusan, the perennial also-ran who finished fourth at both the 2019 World Athletics Championships and the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics, said.”I go out there and put 100% in every championship and it’s just never enough. Every time it’s a fourth-place finish.

“Then this time my 100% is not only a gold medal but a world record. Trusting myself just made everything easier.

“ I’m thankful to the man above for keeping me healthy. When God says it’s your time, it’s your time,” she noted.

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