Tokyo 2020: More bad news for Nigeria’s Athletics team

The country’s Athletics team are already without ten of their athletes, but they’ve now suffered yet another blow, which could affect their medial chances

Nigeria’s hopes of winning a medal in the Athletics event of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics have received another damaging blow after one of the country’s top medal hopefuls Blessing Okagbare was suspended for testing positive to a banned substance.

The Athletics event of the Tokyo Olympics started yesterday, and Okagbare had won an her 100m heat in comfortable fashion.

However, the Athletics Integrity Unite released a statement later in the day that the Nigerian has been suspended for testing positive for “human Growth Hormone.“- one of the banned substance on WADA 2021 prohibited list.

The statement read: The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has provisionally suspended Blessing Okagbare of Nigeria today with immediate effect after a sample collected from the sprinter tested positive for human Growth Hormone.

Growth Hormone is a non-specified substance on the 2021 World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA)
Prohibited List and a provisional suspension is mandatory following an adverse analytical finding for such substance under the World Athletics Anti-Doping Rules.

The AIU collected the sample from Ms. Okagbare during an out-of-competition test on 19 July.

The WADA-accredited laboratory that analysed the sample notified the AIU of the adverse analytical finding at mid-day Central European Time yesterday, Friday 30 July.

The athlete was notified of the adverse analytical finding and of her provisional suspension this morning in Tokyo.

Okagbare was scheduled to race in the 100m semifinals later today, but the suspension has now ruled her out. She won’t also get to participate in her favourite 200m.

Her suspension is a devastating blow to Nigeria, who are already without 10 athletes in the Athletics event after they were ruled out of participation by the AIU due to a non-compliance in out of competition testing.

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