NOAH Akwu stood hands akimbo, and shaking his head after his 200 metres heat, where he placed fifth and just missed making it to the next round. He was sad but not devastated because in that same race won by Usain Bolt were some of the fastest human beings ever to grace a race track.
Whenever Jamaica’s Usain Bolt is in an Olympic race, the question is: Who will come in second place? So, Akwu did not feel ashamed coming fifth in a race that featured Usain Bolt. But he felt he should have done just more to sneak into fourth position and a place in the semifinal.
But over all, the Middle Tennessee State University star believed that finishing in a time of 20.67 seconds in the lane next to Bolt, who finished first with a time of 20.39, was an indication that there is still room for improvement. And to achieve the desired improvement in the Olympics results, he says Nigeria must work hard on and off the pitch and on time too.
Speaking to The Guardian at the Westfield Shopping mall shortly before the beginning of the closing ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games on Sunday, Akwu said although Nigeria did not perform up to the standards expected by followers of the country’s sports, there were many positives to be taken out of the participation in the games.
According to the Kogi State-born athlete, “I don’t expect anybody to be happy with our poor show at the Olympics because as a country that has achieved so much in previous competitions the expectations are always high.
“But people should look at the performance vis-a-vis the money spent on preparation the athletes and the short period we had to train for the games.
“Britain spent billions of pounds getting their athletes ready and on