…As Olympic silver medalist Oborududu wins gold
A A major upset was seen at the just-concluded Governor Diri National Wrestling Classics in Yenagoa as young wrestler Stephen Simon dethroned a four-time African champion, Amas Daniel, en route to winning his first national title senior.
Additionally, Olympic silver medalist, Blessing Oborududu, reigning African champions, Hannah Reuben and Ogbonna John are said to have won gold during the tournament.
Dynamite Club’s 2019 Cadet National Champion Simon caused a huge upset against Commonwealth silver medalist Amas Daniel in the semi-finals.
The Bayelsa-born wrestler went on to win a hard-fought final over Federal Road Safety Corp’s (FRSC) Eghty Appau 3-2 to clinch his first senior national title in the 65kg class.
Battling in front of a cheering crowd and many dignitaries including special guest and Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Chief Sunday Dare, 10-time African champion Oborududu survived an early scare to record an impressive 12 win -2 by technical superiority against the Delta team. Dumebi Ndah in the women’s 68 kg wrestling final.
After downing the world No. 3 after a tango, Ndah missed a great chance to pin Oborududu, the Olympic runner-up showing agility and character to ultimately prevail by superiority.
In women’s 50kg wrestling, Purity Club’s Christiana Ogunsanya shocked Olympian and Tokyo 2020 teammate, Adijat Idris of Ondo State in the quarter-finals as she was on her way to claim gold.
Ogunsanya received the top prize after multiple African champion Mercy Genesis of Team Bayelsa retired with a knee injury while leading 2-0 in the final.
Meanwhile, in a battle of two heavyweights, African champion Hannah Reuben of the Nigerian Army prevailed 4-1 over Kemasuodei Dressman of Team Bayelsa in the 76kg category final for strike gold.
Similarly, in the freestyle events, four-time African champion Ogbonna John of Team Ondo gave himself the perfect birthday present after securing a landslide 11-0 technical superiority victory over Ugbo Kpun of the ‘Edo State during the 74 kg category final.
Meanwhile, Commonwealth silver medalist Ebikewenimo Welson of hosts Bayelsa State dug deep to defeat Team Oyo’s Stephen Akintewe 5-1 in the 57kg final.
Following their victories during the 1st Gov. Diri National Wrestling Classics which have just ended, the wrestlers have qualified to represent Team Nigeria at the 2022 African Championships in El Jadida, Morocco, which begins in a fortnight.