Nigerian Athlete Tobi Amusan Smashes 100m Hurdles World Record

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Nigerian athlete Tobi Amusan has become Nigeria’s first ever World Record (WR) holder in Track and Field history after smashing Kendra Harrison’s former 100m Hurdles WR of 12.20s set in 2016, and replacing it with an astonishing 12.12s to win the first semifinal race in the event at the World Athletics Championships in Oregon.

The reigning Commonwealth Games Champion could hardly believe her good fortune as she glanced at the clock while crossing the finishing line, her mouth agape as it registered that she had indeed broken the WR.

Tobi Amusan

“It is a strong feeling. I wanted to get out and go,” Amusan told reporters. “I did what I had to do. Looking forward to the finals.”

The stage had been set for an electrifying semifinal from the previous day when the Nigerian raced to the fastest heat time in a global championship, dominating the field to win Heat 3 in a then African Record of 12.40s.

That spectacular performance was just the tip of the iceberg as Amusan still had so much to give.

Drawn in a stacked lineup in the semis, which ironically, included former WR holder Harrison and former World Champion Danielle Williams, the stakes were raised and the Nigerian took her performance a notch higher. Amusan separated herself from the rest of the field by the sixth hurdle to smash the WR.

So quick was the race that at least four of her competitors set lifetime bests, two of which were National Records (NR), as Harrison and Williams settled for Season’s Bests (SB) of 12.27s and 12.41s for 2nd and 3rd respectively.

Amusan is aiming for her first podium finish in a global competition and is the favourite for Gold heading into the final.


Chidi Nwoke/Making of Champions/World Athletics.

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