Top 20 sporting heroes, heroines since Independence

1st October 2023

NIGERIA SPORTING HEROES

JOHNNY EDWARD and PETER AKINBO

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Despite glaring limitations, countless Nigerian athletes have braved the odds to become global and continental champions after the country gained Independence in 1960. Here, PUNCH Sports Extra’s JOHNNY EDWARD and PETER AKINBO profile 20 of the country’s top athletes as Nigeria celebrates her 63rd anniversary

Lucy Ejike (Powerlifting)

Six Paralympic Games, six medals. The story of global powerlifting is incomplete without mentioning Nigerian amazon Lucy Ejike.

Born in Enugu October 16,1977, Ejike found herself wheelchair bound after she was infected with polio as a child, but she didn’t let her physical challenges affect her, representing the country at six consecutive Paralympics — from 2000 in Sydney to Tokyo in 2021, winning three gold, two silver and one bronze medal.