Nigeria’s taekwondo team failed in its bid to qualify for the 2016 Olympic Games after its four athletes failed to excel at the qualifiers held in Agadir, Morocco.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the qualifiers were held from Thursday to Sunday.
Chinazom Nwosu and Uzoamaka Otuadimma fought in the -57kg and +67kg categories respectively in the female competition.
In the male competition, Edwin Samson fought in the -68kg category and Jamilu Mohammed was to fight in the -58kg category.
However, according to reports from the competition venue, the trio of Nwosu, Otuadimma and Samson lost in the semi-finals, while Mohammed was disqualified for being overweight.
Otuadimma, who is the African champion, and silver medallist Nwosu both narrowly lost to their Moroccan opponents.
On the other hand, Samson lost to his Senegalese opponent through a kick to mouth in their bout’s second round stoppage time.
Samson had earlier defeated Togolese and Algerian opponents before losing to his Senegalese challenger in the semi-finals.
Nwosu defeated an Ethiopian opponent before crashing out in the semi-finals against a Moroccan opponent.
Also, Otuadimma had earlier defeated a fighter from Swaziland before losing in the semi-finals to a Moroccan opponent.
NAN reports that this is the first time Nigeria will fail to qualify for at least one of the taekwondo events at the Olympics.
It is also the third time Nigeria will be stopped by Morocco in the female categories, since the qualifiers for Athens 2004 and Beijing 2008.
Teams from 10 countries – DR Congo, Cape Verde, Cote D’Ivoire, Egypt, Morocco, Libya, Tunisia, Niger Republic, Mali and Senegal – picked the Africa tickets to the Rio 2016 Olympics.