The Legon Sports Stadium at the University of Ghana. AFRICAN GAMES

The 2023 African Games come to a close on Saturday after two weeks of intense competition in Accra, Ghana, with Egypt emerging as the best team by far and the athletics competition providing a stunning spectacle in the final week.

Accra is hosting a the 2003 African Games from 4-23 March, with a remarkable organisation and Egypt crowned as the best team, just six gold medals short of the astonishing milestone of 100 titles. Will they reach it in the final competitions of the event? 

As is the case with the Olympic Games and in the Panam Games, the final week of competition is time to enjoy with athletics, a sport that usually brings African countries great success at every major event such as the Olympics or the World Athletics Championships. 

Ethiopia, for example, went into the athletics competition with no gold medals after 14 days of the Games and now has five, just like Kenya, which has won five of its six African titles in athletics.

Over the past two days, two world-class stars and big favourites for Accra 2023 have been crowned African champions to raise the level of competition. They will also be competing for Olympic glory at Paris 2024: Tobi Amusan and Ese Brume, both from Nigeria. 

Nigeria's Amusan burst onto the scene when she set a new world record in the women's 110m hurdles with a time of 12.12, eight hundredths better than the old record set by USA's 'Keny' Harrison. She also won gold at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham and at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene in 2022.

After a difficult year in 2023, when she missed three anti-doping tests (she didn't test positive) and received a suspension that was later lifted, and a sixth place at the World Championships in Budapest, Amusan came to Accra as the overwhelming favourite and she didn't disappoint.

The Nigerian was the fastest in the semi-finals with an easy mark for her (13.03) and won the final in 12.89, almost a second slower than her world record time. It was her fifth African title (three in the 100m hurdles and two in the 4x100m relay) and she will be competing for glory at Paris 2004 against the USA's Harrison and Nia Ali, and Puerto Rico's Jasmine Camacho Quinn, the reigning Olympic champion.

Also from Nigeria, Ese Brume is one of the best long jumpers in the world, with a bronze medal at the last Olympic Games, a silver at the World Athletics Championships in Eugene in 2022 and a bronze in Doha in 2019. She also won silver at the World Indoor Championships in Belgrade in 2022 and came to Accra as a three-time African champion and two-time Commonwealth champion.

After a disappointing sixth place finish at last year's World Athletics Championships in Budapest, the Ijebu-Ode native was the most high-profile athlete in the long jump final at Accra 2023, and she didn't disappoint despite the opposition she faced.

With the best jump ever at the African Games, surpassing the old record of 6.79 set by South Africa's Janice Josephs in 2015, Brume jumped 6.92 to show she is ready to take on the likes of USA's Tori Tara Davis and Jasmine Moore, Serbia's Ivana Vuleta and Germany's Malaika Mihambo at the Stade de France in August. Burkina Faso's Mathe Jasmine Koala took silver with a remarkable jump of 6.81.