The President, Athletics Federation of Nigeria, Tonobok Okowa, African games gold medallist Deji Aliu and Olympic gold medalist Chioma Ajunwa, have urged world 100m hurdles champion and record holder Tobi Amusan not to allow losing the Women’s World Athlete of The Year 2022 Award distract her.
The World Athletics on Monday named American hurdler, Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone, the Women World Athlete of The Year, beating Amusan and three others to the prestigious honour.
Amusan, Jamaica’s Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Peru’s Kimberly Garcia and Venezuela’s Yulimar Rojas were the other finalists.
Amusan had a fantastic 2022, breaking the 100m hurdles world record on her way to winning gold at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon in 12.12secs.
Amusan also set a new record when she successfully defended her Diamond League title, finishing in 12.29secs in the women’s 100m hurdles this year in Zurich.
The 25-year-old also won gold in the women’s 100m hurdles and 4x100m women’s relay at the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
“Amosun should not worry about not winning the World Female Athletes Award, sometimes you win and sometimes you lose. All she needs to do is to concentrate and continue with her good work, work harder and pray so she keeps breaking records, there is always another chance to win,” Okowa told The APROKOVIBES.
Ajunwa, the first Nigerian to win an Olympic gold, advised the hurdler to put behind her the award.
“She has to focus on her career, everybody knows that she is the world champion, no doubt about that and she can’t be written off,” Ajunwa told The APROKOVIBES.
“Amusan should not be discouraged, she needs to move forward and continue to set new world records.”
Speaking further, Aliu, a member of the Nigerian relay team, which won bronze at the 2004 Olympics, said, “No, I don’t think not winning will discourage her in any way, being nominated by the World Athletics is an achievement on its own.”