On Monday, July 25, 2022, Nigerians learned that Oluwatobi Amusan had won Nigeria’s first-ever gold medal in the World Athletics Championships, making history.
Oluwatobiloba “Tobi” Amusan is a track and field athlete from Nigeria who specialises in the 100-metre hurdles and competes as a sprinter. She won the 100-metre hurdles event at the 2022 World Athletics Championships by breaking the world record with 12.12 seconds in the semifinal and 12.06 seconds with wind assistance (+2.5) in the final to earn the gold medal. She won the competition twice at the African Games and was the 2018 Commonwealth and African champion. She triumphed in the 100-metre hurdles event at Zurich’s 2021 Diamond League Trophy.
Oluwatobiloba Amusan was born in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, Nigeria, on April 23, 1997. She is a well-known athlete and started her early life as an athlete after completing her tertiary education.
Amusan had great athletic potential from a young age. She won a silver medal at the 2013 African Youth Championships in Warri, Delta State. She also won gold in the 100-metre hurdles event at the Addis Ababa 2015 African Junior Athletics Championships. She won the gold medal in the 100-metre hurdles in 2015, when she was 18 years old and competing in her first All-Africa Games.
Since The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) joined C-USA, Amusan became the second student-athlete to be named C-USA Female Track Athlete of the Year in 2016 while still a freshman. She won the gold medal in the 100 and 200 metres.
At the C-USA Championships, she also won silver in the long jump. At the El Paso UTEP Invitational, Amusan ran the hurdles in 12.83 seconds, breaking the 13-second barrier for the first time.
This surpassed the 33-year-old 100 mH UTEP record held by Kim Turner. In the 100 mH, she finished second at the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Championships. She trailed Kentucky’s Jasmine Camacho-Quinn by a breezy 12.79 seconds. Amusan took part as well in the 2016 World Junior Championships in Bydgoszcz. She finished fifth in the final despite having the second-fastest time. She later competed for Nigeria in the 100 mH semifinals at the Olympics in Rio.
She set a UTEP record and a lifetime best in the 100-meter hurdles at her first outdoor event of 2017 with 12.63 seconds. She finished second in the 200 metres and won the C-USA championship in her specialty event. Her finishes at the 2017 NCAA Outdoor Championships were revered n the 100-metre hurdles. Amusan defeated Camacho-Quinn, the winner from the previous year, in a thrilling race to win the championship. She completed it in a personal best of 12.57 seconds. Additionally, she represented Nigeria in London in the World Championships later that year.
At the start of her 2018 season, she set a personal record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 7.89 seconds. She later competed for her nation in the 60-meter hurdles final at the Birmingham World Indoor Championships.
In Sally Pearson’s absence, reigning world champion Danielle Williams appeared to be the favourite to win the gold medal at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia. Amusan pulled away from her rivals in the final to defeat Williams by a comfortable metre. Her teammates Joy Udo-Gabriel, Blessing Okagbare, and Rosemary Chukwuma also took home a bronze in the 4 x 100 m relay.
Later in the year, at the Asaba African Championships, she earned her maiden African Championships championship in her specialty event. As Judy Bell-Gam had won this race for Nigeria at the first African Championships, this fulfilled a tradition in Nigeria. At the competition, she also won the gold medal in the 4 x 100 m relay.
On October 5, 2019, while competing in the 100-meter hurdles qualifying rounds at the 2019 World Championships in Doha, Qatar, she ran a personal best of 12.48 seconds. She matched her personal best the next day in the semifinals before finishing fourth with a time of 12.49 seconds in the final.
At the Tokyo Olympics, Amusan placed fourth with 12.60 seconds. Later, she participated in the Zurich Diamond League competition, which she won in 12.42 seconds, making history as the first Nigerian to take home a Diamond League medal.
Amusan won the 2022 Diamond League competition in Paris to start her 2022 season, setting an African record by 0.01s with a timing of 12.41s.
At the 2022 African Championships in Mauritius, she won gold in the 100-meter hurdles while successfully defending her title in 12.57 seconds ( wind-aided). She participated in the women’s 4100m and took first place.
She participated in a Diamond League meet later that year and placed second with a timing of 12.60 seconds, trailing only Olympic champion Jasmine Camacho-Quinn.
After two consecutive 4th-place results, Amusan entered the 2022 World Championships as a medal contender. She beat her previous record in the heats by 0.01s, running a new personal best of 12.40s. She established a new world record of 12.12s during the semifinal. She beat her previous time in the championship race, finishing in 12.06 seconds to become the first Nigerian world champion ever.
Tobi Amusan has made a name for herself in sports. She has achieved a lot of success and broken many records. Some of her achievements include:
- She won a silver medal at the 2013 African Youth Championship in Warri.
- Additionally, she won a gold medal in the 100-meter hurdles in the Addis Abeba 2015 African Junior Athletics Championships.
- She won the gold medal in the 100-meter hurdles in 2015, when she was 18 years old and competed in her first All-Africa Games.
- Since UTEP joined C-USA, Amusan became the second student-athlete to be named C-USA Female Track Athlete of the Year in 2016 while still a freshman at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP).
- In the 100n hurdle and 200 m, she won the gold medal. At the C-USA Championships, she also won silver in the long jump.
- At the El Paso UTEP Invitational, Amusan ran the hurdles in 12.83 seconds, breaking the 13-second barrier for the first time. This surpassed the 33-year-old 100 mH UTEP record held by Kim Turner.
- She set a UTEP record and a lifetime best in the 100-meter hurdles at her first outdoor event of 2017 with 12.63 seconds.
- She finished second in the 200 metres and won the C-USA championship in her specialty event.
- Amusan defeated Camacho-Quinn, who won the championship the year before, to win the 2017 NCAA Outdoor Championships. She completed it in a personal best of 12.57 seconds.
Numerous online publications have stated her estimated net worth to be N622.5 million ($1.5m).
There’s little knowledge about her personal life; we don’t know if she is married or in a relationship.
Toni Amusan is a very dedicated and hardworking woman. She was determined to make not only her family but the nation proud. She broke so many records, including the ones she set for herself.