As the career of one great woman pentathlon athlete ended at the Christchurch Commonwealth Games today (January 25), a new pentathlon star from Africa made a spectacular impact.
As the career of one great woman pentathlon athlete ended at the Christchurch Commonwealth Games today (January 25), a new pentathlon star from Africa made a spectacular impact. The veteran Mary Peters of Northern Ireland, winner of the pentathlon gold medal at the Munich Olympics and making her final international appearance in the event, had one of the greatest struggles of her carder against 19-year-old Nigerian Modupe Oshikeya.
Victory remained in doubt even after the last event. But as the medal winners were announced, Mary Peters came forward to bow out of international competition with another gold medal. She won by the narrow margin of 32 points, with a total of 4455 points to Modupe Oshikoya's 4423 points. Ann Wilson of England was third, nearly 200 points behind.
Another African competitor showing promise of a medal was Kenyan Fatwell Kimaiyo who convincingly won his heat in the 110-metre hurdles -- and returned the fastest time in all the qualifying heats. Police officer Kimaiyo coasted home in 13.8 seconds.
SYNOPSIS: The start of what turned out to be the fastest qualifying heat for the men's hundred-and-ten metres hurdles at the Christchurch Commonwealth Games on Friday. The man to watch is Kimaiyo of Kenya on the far side. He coasted to a convincing win over Binnington of Australia. And his time was a fifth-of-a-second better than the next fastest heat winner.
Throughout the day spectators enjoyed a great battle for victory in the women's pentathlon. In one of the five events the hundred metres hurdles -- a promising young Nigerian athlete forged ahead to win and build up her points total in the overall event with the fastest time. She's nineteen-year-old Modupe Oshikoya.
She kept up her challenge in the high jump.l Here she cleared five feet eight and a half inches -- which had also been cleared by her chief rival, Mary Peters of Northern Ireland, the reigning Olympic pentathlon champion.
Mary Peters had built up her points total with a good performance in the she Oshikoya needed a good win against Mary in the two-hundred metres to have a chance of catching up ... and she kept African hopes of a medal alive with a good win in twenty-four and one-tenth seconds.
The veteran Mary Peters, appearing in her last international competition, was the first to congratulate the promising young Nigerian athlete. Victory between the two remained in doubt until the last But at the medal presentation, Mary Peters stepped forward to receive the gold. She'd won by the narrow margin of just thirty-two points, scoring a total off four-thousand four-hundred and fifty-five points to Oshikoya's four-thousand four-hundred and twenty-three. Seven-thousand spectators rose to pay tribute to the girls who had put up such a close and equal contest. Mary Peters says she is retiring after these Games to raise funds for an atheletics track in trouble-torn Belfast.
Taking her place on the rostrum with Peters and Oshikoya was England's Ann Wilson, who took the bronze medal. It was a plucky performance -- injury had prevented her training until three months ago. But she was a full two hundred points behind the promising Nigerian athlete Modupe Oshikoya.