By Tony Ubani reporting from London
Opinions are still divided on why Maryam Usman, a weightlifting medal hopeful crashed out of the Olympics without a medal.
Not only that. The African Queen of weightlifting did not place in the event as her last lift in the Clean and Jerk(160 kg) frittered away the points she earlier garnered.
Many have blamed the coach, Patrick Bassey for not starting her with lesser weights rather than introducing her to 160 kg after lifting 129 kg.
DOWN & OUT . . . Team Nigeria’s female weightlifter hopeful, Maryam Usman disappointed as she flops during the women’s +75-kg weightlifting event of the London 2012 Olympics.
‘’She would not have been in contention for the bronze. Her closest opponent had a lesser weight and would dislodge her. I had to raise her to 160 kg because she is no stranger to that.
She lifts 170 kg. This is not the time to trade blames. I did not come here to admire London Bridge. We came here to win but Maryam lost focus and concentration.
I don’t know what happened, but she bungled it. It is painful. I brought her up and I know her capability”, Bassey who denied himself the luxury of the food at the Olympic Village after the contest said.
Don’t worry, there is still hope for us — Gumel
International Olympic Committee member, Engineer Habu Gumel visited Team Nigeria’s secretariat at the Olympic Village yesterday and asked Nigerians not to despair or give up hope on Team Nigeria.
On a day that Nigeria lost on two fronts, Boxing and Basketball, Gumel said that Nigeria could still salvage something from the remaining sports in Taekwondo, Wrestling and the relay events in Athletics.
‘’We should not give up on these athletes. They are doing their best and we still have some events ahead”, Gumel insisted.