27th November, 2012
Few hours to the official opening ceremony of the 18th National Sports Festival, NSF, tagged ‘Eko 2012’, Rivers and Oyo States have clinched the first and second gold medals of the games.
Edward Osim of Rivers State won the first gold medal of the festival, when he beat Enoruwa Marvis of Ogun State in the 200m male cycling event held on Eric Moore Road in Surulere on Tuesday.
Right from the starting block, Osim showed class as he pedaled his way to the finish line ahead of Marvis who came second. The Ogun cyclist won a silver medal, while Kaduna State’s Issa Mohammed settled for the bronze medal of the male category.
Durogbade Joke of Oyo State survived the odds in the 200m female cycling event to win her state’s first gold medal, while Juliet Akaegbu of Rivers State came second in the keenly contested finals. Clara Enadogbor of Delta State finished third and picked the bronze medal of the female category.
Speaking shortly after the cycling race, Osim noted that he came to Lagos to win four gold medals, promising that he will not disappoint the government of Rivers State, that has invested a lot of money to develop the athletes.
“I am here to defend the titles I won at the last Sports Festival in Port Harcourt, and I have started with this gold medal”, Osim said.
“My target is to win four gold medals at the Eko 2012 Games, that will tell Nigerians that Rivers State is the best cycling state in the country,” he said.
Silver medalist in the male category, Marvis, who was born in Edo State, however declared that he represented Ogun State at this year’s festival to appreciate the state’s support to him and other athletes.
By Adebobola Alawode