One of the best athletics coaches in Nigeria, Tobias Igwe has vowed to produce athletes that can rule the world within a short period of time.Igwe, popularly called Toblow was named as head coach of the National Athletics Development Centre in Ondo State, a project being delivered in conjunction with the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN).
Toblow has coached Team Nigeria to various international competitions, including the All African Games, Commonwealth Games and Olympics. Some of the star athletes he produced for the country in the past include Mary Onyali, the Ezinwa brothers (Osmaond and Davidson), Tony Osheku, Philip George, Yusuf Alli, Henry Amike, Sunday Uti, Tina Iheagwam, Victor Okorie, Clement Chukwu, Beatrice Utondu, Emma Okoli, Michael Egbeaso and Uchenna Emedolu.
Speaking with The Guardian yesterday, Toblow, a former 800m, 1500m and 3,000 steeplechase champion, said that his primary assignment at the moment is to produce world best athletes, particularly in the short sprints and relays ahead the 2020 Olympics Games in Tokyo, Japan.
“I have been following the history of athletics in Ondo state and at the moment, my focus is to produce young athletes who can represent the country at the 2020 Olympics. The 2018 Commonwealth Games is around the corner, so my desire is to prepare for the next edition. Those who gave me the appointment know what I am capable of doing, and I won’t disappoint them,” he said.
According to Toblow, the government and people of Ondo State will be the first to reap the benefit of his new assignment saying: “I know that athletes like Falilat Ogunkoya are from Ondo State. She was a great 400m runner in her active days. I will re-produce another Ogunkoya as soon as possible. All I need is cooperation of the people.”Coach Toblow has been promised that his teams will enjoy funds support to attend six international championships yearly.