By; AYO OJEDOKUN, Lagos
Nigeria’s Amas Daniel won his 6th continental gold medal, even as Ekerekeme Agiomor entertained the crowd with an impressive display after winning gold on a remarkable Day 4 for the hosts of the ongoing African Wrestling Championships in Port Harcourt.
Amas, captain of Nigeria’s Men’s Team, became an African Champion for the 6th time after overpowering Tunisia’s Haithem Dakhlaoui 7-2 in the final of the Seniors Freestyle 65kg while Agiomor recorded an emphatic 11-0 win via technical superiority in the 79kg class against Fredylan Marais of South Africa to land his first continental crown, and afterwards, thrilled the crowd with Usain Bolt-like celebrations and some great dancing steps.
Having conquered Africa on six different occasions now, Amas says his focus will be on winning greater titles like the Commonwealth and Olympics Games.
“I’m so excited, honestly, but I would also say not too much because my focus and where I want to arrive is not to be an African Champion,” the 2014 Commonwealth Games silver-medalist said.
“I really want to be an Olympic Champion; I want to be a Commonwealth Champion.
“Anyways, I’m excited.”
While, Ogbonna Emmanuel John laboured very hard to defend his title in the 70kg class after being pushed to the limit by Egypt’s Amr Reda Hussein in the final. Hussein thought he had won the fight by criteria with scores at 2-2, but a challenge by Ogbonna’s coach handed the decision over to the Nigerian, who eventually claimed his second consecutive African title.
Ogbonna admitted the fight was a very difficult one.
“(Winning) back-to-back was not very easy, but I tried all my best; all I could do, I tried everything, and to God be the glory, I won it back-to-back,” he said. “It wasn’t an easy task.
“Automatically, this match makes my day, it makes me feel happy, and it makes me accomplish my aim.”
Perhaps, the most impressive performance of the night will go to Melvin Bibo (86kg), who took out his South African opponent, Hein Jansel Van, 10-0 via technical superiority inside the first round, to hand Nigeria a 4th gold medal in the Freestyle for Seniors.
Meanwhile, 3-time African Champion and 2010 Commonwealth gold-medalist Sinivie Boltic failed in his quest to land a 4th continental title, surrendering 2-1 to Egyptian Khaled Mohamed Abdala in the final of the 125kg event.
Soso Tamarau (97kg), Ebikewenimo Welson (57kg) and Robert Daufa (92kg) all won silver while Firstman Victor (61kg) settled for a bronze medal.
After Day 4 of action, Team Nigeria emerged winners of the Seniors Freestyle category with 4gold, 4silver and 1 bronze medal.
South Africa finished second with 2gold, 2silver and a bronze medal, same as Egypt who placed third in the Team’s classification.