By Uche Amunike
Reigning Nigeria, Commonwealth and World Champion in 100m hurdles, Tobi Amusan is all set to coast home with the last major global title of the outdoor season and get her hands, yet again, on the legendary Diamond Trophy at the 2022 Diamond League finals in Zurich, Thursday.
The 25 year old Nigerian world champion started her historic run on the track last year, with the Diamond League trophy when she became the first Nigerian athlete to win a Diamond League discipline and crowned the Diamond League Champion for the year after speeding to a 12.42 seconds African record to win the high hurdles in Zurich. Since then, she hasn’t looked back.
In early June, Tobi Amusan started her 2022 by successfully defending her African Championships title in Mauritius before heading to Paris to smash her 12.42 seconds African record.
After running 12.41 seconds at the Diamond League meeting in Paris, she stormed Edo City in Nigeria to change the 12.63 record set by Angela Atede at the Nigerian Championships in 1997, in Lagos.
Before going to the biggest stage in world athletics where she attained a legendary status, this reigning African champion ran 12.58 seconds to add the championship records to her collection.
The World Championships received their greatest shock when the unstoppable Tobi Amusan sped to a world record of 12.12 seconds in the semi finals of the 100m hurdles, followed by a wind-assisted 12.06 seconds in the finals, to win a gold medal.
She went ahead to win the commonwealth Games title in a Games record of 12.30 seconds, making her the first Nigerian track and field athlete to defend an individual title successfully at the Games.
Amusan will hopefully complete the task, Thursday, by successfully defending her Diamond League crown where she will contend with the reigning Olympic champion, Jasmine Camacho-Quinn from Puerto Rico, who has remained unbeatable since she won the bronze in Oregon at the World Championships.
Recall that the Puerto Rican defeated Tobi Amusan at the Stockholm and Lausanne Diamond League meetings and also went ahead to win in Silesia and Brussels where she ran a new 12.27 seconds personal lifetime best, setting meeting records at the three most recent meetings.
After coming second place in the Lausanne Diamond League, Amusan stated that she was confident about bouncing back at her next meet at the Olympic stadium this weekend. She got off to a strong start and built a sizable lead, then powered away to victory.
After the last hurdle, she was seen limping at the end of the race, minutes after her celebrations. She however stated afterwards, that she was okay and looking forward to her next competition at the 3922 Wanda Diamond League final in Zurich later this week.
Her words: ‘It has been a long season, but I am still alive. I just wanted to finish strong today. I was here to execute’.
‘I need to work on what I need to work on, but it is alright. There is always room for improvement. I need to improve my start and my finish’.
‘I will race again in Zurich. Today we had a great competitive field. My goal was to focus on myself.’
Amusan will also face Olympic Silver Medalist and former world record holder, Kendra Harrison; World Silver Medalist Brittany Anderson; World Indoor Silver Medalist Devynne Charlton and 2019 World Champion, Nia Ali.