Nigerians Nab Two Golds On Second Day of Commonwealth Games

By Eric Olanowski

GOLD COAST, Australia (April 13) - World finalist Odunayo ADEKUOROYE (NGR) and two-time Olympian Blessing OBORUDUDU (NGR) captured 2018 Commonwealth Games gold for Nigeria on the second day of competition at the Carrara Sports Arena 1. 

Adekuoroye, the 2018 African champion sang and danced her way to the tune of a second consecutive Commonwealth Games gold medal. 

After an unnecessary hands to the face call to start the bout, Adekuoroye trailed 1-0 in the opening period. The long and lengthy defending champion used her hand pressure to set up her offense and pick up six consecutive points. The three-time medalist took a 6-1 lead over Pooja DHANDA (IND) into the final period. 

Dhanda, the Youth Olympic Judo silver medalist struggled noticeably to close the distance and get through the hand defense of the Nigerian. With under a minute to go, Pooja desperately looked for an opening and found a feet to back takedown for four points off a double leg which closed the gap in the score to 6-5.  Adekuoroye came out in the top position and secured the final point of the match, ultimately winning her second crown in as many tries, 7-5. 

At 68kg, Blessing Oborududu, the 29-year-old eight-time African champion won the battle of Olympians, as she defeated Danielle LAPPAGE (CAN), 4-3 to win her first Commonwealth Games championship. 

After a very limited first period, Oborududu escaped trailing 1-0 as she failed to score on the activity clock.

Trailing 3-0 after a second period Lappage takedown, the Nigerian remained patient and scored her first points of the bout off a failed Canadian offensive attack. With 13 seconds remaining, Lappage looked to close out the match with a final takedown, but the hips of Oborududu proved to be too heavy, as she spun around for the match-winning defensive takedown. 

Overcome with raw emotion after the final whistle, the first time champion barrel rolled from the center of the mat to the coaches corner where she had to be carried back to have her hand raised. 

In the 97kg freestyle finals, Martin ERASMUS (RSA), the 22-year-old African champion nullified Mausam KHATRI’s (IND) two inside trip attempts with two four-point throws and took the commanding 8-0 lead. Erasmus tacked on another takedown to secure South Africa's first Commonwealth Games wrestling gold medal since 1958.

Bajrang BAJRANG (IND), the silver medalist from the 2014 Games showed his transition wrestling skills in the 65kg finals by picking up a takedown and immediately jumping to a left side gut wrench. 

Bajrang would repeat the sequence before capping off his gold medal performance with a duck under at the 2:20 mark to take the technical superiority victory over Kane CHARIG (WAL), 10-0.

Also of note, Kane Charig, the 26-year-old silver medalist made Commonwealth Games history, becoming Wales’ highest finisher ever! 

GOLD - Bajrang BAJRANG (IND) df. Kane Daniel CHARIG (WAL) , 10-0. 

BRONZE  - Amas DANIEL (NGR) df. Vincent DE MARINIS (CAN), 4-4. 
BRONZE - Charlie James BOWLING (ENG) df. Jean Guyliane Joris BANDOU (MRI),10-0. 

GOLD - Martin ERASMUS (RSA) df. Mausam KHATRI (IND), 12-2

BRONZE - Jordan STEEN (CAN) df. Samuel Stephen BELKIN (NZL), 10-0. 
BRONZE - Alexios KAOUSLIDIS (CYP) df. Soso TAMARAU (NGR), 2-1.

GOLD -  Odunayo Folasade ADEKUOROYE (NGR)  df. Pooja DHANDA (IND), 7-5. 

BRONZE - Emily Suzanne SCHAEFER (CAN) df. Joseph Emilienne ESSOMBE TIAKO (CMR),13-3.

GOLD - Blessing OBORUDUDU (NGR) df. Danielle Suzanne LAPPAGE (CAN), 4-3. 

BRONZE -  Divya KAKRAN (IND) df. Sherin SULTANA (BAN), via fall.