Amusan breaks African Record to become first Nigerian Diamond League trophy winner
Nigerian hurdler Tobi Amusan produced a performance of her lifetime at the Diamond League (DL) circuit final in Zurich on Thursday night as she became the first Nigerian athlete in history to clinch the prestigious DL trophy.
Having faced several disappointments at major competitions in recent years, the 24-year-old finally had the tide turn in her favour at the Swiss capital as she made it a historic night for herself, Nigeria, and even the whole of Africa.
She was in fine form coming into Thursday’s race but she dug even deeper to claim the DL title on the day. Up against Olympic Bronze medallist Megan Tapper, flying Dutch woman Nadine Visser and other stars in 100mH final, she stormed to a massive Personal Best and African Record time of 12.42s for the win.
Her time tonight eclipses the now previous African Record of 12.44s set by her compatriot Glory Alozie which has stood for more than 20 years.
Amusan, who is the reigning Commonwealth Champion, could not hold back the tears after her massive win and she did admit that winning Diamond League trophy is indeed a relief for her after the disappointments she faced at the Olympics where she narrowly missed out of a podium finish, placing 4th.
“It’s great…it’s a great feeling,” she enthused.
“Looking back, I did not win a medal at the Olympics. It was a very challenging time for me afterwards, but I never gave up, and I came out here and I was like… if I didn’t get a medal in Tokyo, at least I can get a Diamond League trophy – and I just did that!
“I’m glad I came out with a win. I have one more meeting in Zagreb, and I can take the season off. I am really looking forward to it.”
Visser placed 2nd in the race with a Personal Best and National Record time of 12.51s; Tapper finished 3rd with a time of 12.55s.