Abu, Laari qualify for 2017 NCAA D1 Indoor Championships

Ghana’s 800m prospect, Agnes Abu and mile (1600m) runner Sampson Azumah Laari have qualified for the 2017 NCAA D1 Indoor Championships in the USA.

Abu is the first Ghanaian female athlete in history to qualify for the championship in a middle or long distance event. The last Ghanaian female athlete to make it to the big dance was sprinter Flings Owusu-Agyapong in the 60m in 2012.

Laari on Sunday recorded a new feat in his career, running a sub-4 minute mile; a deed no Ghanaian has ever done.

“This was a feat that has even not been accomplished outdoor by any Ghanaian athlete, let alone on the short track of an indoor arena where sharper bends compromise speed and require one to run eight laps to complete the mile (1600 meters),” a statement from the Ghana Athletics Association (GAA) read.

Laari set the West African record in a time of three minutes, 58.75 seconds.

He currently holds four national records – two indoor and two outdoor. Sampson also holds the indoor mile and 3000m records, as well as the outdoor 1500m and 5000m events.

On the sprint front, Rio Olympians Janet Amponsah and Gemma Acheampong completed a ‘one-two’ finish for Ghana in the 200m final at a competition in Boston.

Amponsah won the indoor one-lap race in 23.64 seconds, with Acheampong following in second in a new personal best of 24.15s.

In New York City, Rio Olympian Akua Obeng-Akrofi returned a seasonal best time of 24.13s in the 200 meters to win the Ivy League Indoor Championship and the 400 meters event in 54.10s while Solomon Afful led the men’s sprint charge in Boston where he placed third in the 200 meters in 21.21seconds.

At home in Ghana, athletes are continuing their recovery from the Tamale Circuit and are preparing for the next National Circuit Championship in Accra on March 18.




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