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Team Nigeria’s campaign at the 22nd African Senior Athletics Championships in Mauritius started off on a good note as the country’s athletes cruised into final.

Tima Godbless ran a huge 11.25s to qualify for the final of the women’s 100m  yesterday  at the on-going  22nd African Athletics Championships in Mauritius.

Godbless came second in her semifinal heat behind one of pre-championship favourites, Carina Horn of South Africa who won in 11.08s.

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The Nigerian will need to run another huge personal best to stand a chance of making the podium today and probably a Nigerian win eight years after Blessing Okagbare won the country’s last gold medal in the event.

Moreso, reigning African Games 100m champion Raymond Ekevwo moved closer to ending Nigeria’s 12 year wait for the blue riband gold after  also qualifying for today’s final.

Ekevwo did not make the final without breaking sweat as he finished  third in the third semifinal heat, thereby missing one of the two  automatic slots for the final.

The-23 year old’s 10.15s run was however among the three fastest times achieved by those who missed the automatic qualification slots.

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Kenya’s reigning African record holder, Ferdinand Omanyala led the way once again with his 10.07s performance with defending champion, South Africa’s Akani Simbine the second fastest qualifier for Thursday’s final.

Meanwhile, two other Nigerians in the event, Praise Ofoku and Balkis Yakubu, failed to advance to the final despite the latter running a new11.63s personal best.

In the women’s 400m, the duo of Idamadudu Praise (54.61) and Patience Okon George (52.19) qualified for the semifinals.

In the men’s 400m, the trio of Samson Nathaniel (47.01), Adeyemi Sikiru (46.73) and junior international, Nnamani Johnson (47.37) all made it to the semifinals.

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While Adeyemi secured one of the three automatic slots on offer, Nathaniel and Nnamani qualified as two of the fastest ‘losers’.

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