The 2009 edition of the Royal Hoopers Basketball, Camp and Classic, which kicked off in Port Harcourt on Wednesday at the Sports Complex of the Nigerian Police Force Old G.R.A. was a rendezvous for sports personalities and athletes in the state.
The basketball classic which is the third edition was colourful in content and character as the basketball courts were given face lift to add colour and aesthetic to the exercise.
NBA legends and coaches from the United States of America were part of the ceremony.
The Rivers State Commissioner for Police, Mr. Bala Hassan who declared the event open described the Royal Hoopers Basketball classic as a welcome development towards the promotion of sports in the state, adding that the event will impact the participants and Rivers society positively as the youths can now engage their minds in sporting ventures rather than embarking on criminal activities as a result of idleness.
The Rivers State Sports Commissioner, Hon. Boma Iyaye, who was among the dignitaries that graced the occasion, while making his speech commended the President and organisers of the Royal Hoopers classic for a wonderful job the outfit has been doing in the state and beyond.
The commissioner said that the state government would partner with the Royal Hoopers outfit towards ensuring that the organisation enjoys adequate support from the government, and that the state was considering a proposal to take over the promotion sponsorship and management of the Royal Hoopers Basketball team.
In the same vein, the President of Royal Hoopers Academy, Mr. Syndoph Endoni who also doubles as one of the sponsors of the event left no stone unturned in embracing the idea of the Rivers State government proposed take over plan of the Basketball Academy.
In his words: “It is a collaboration thing, and it is going to be capital intensive, so the state government is taking over to properly manage it. Royal Hoopers is now in the Nigerian Premier Basketball League and to be in the premiership is not a one man show, so they have to come in and provide special opportunities for the boys.’
The highlights of the events were the scientilating display put up by the Hoopers cheer leaders group and some celebrated Nigerian musical artistes in the likes of Chizmoney, Double K, Korkormikor, among others.
The camping exercise began from Wednesday, while the classic competition, which will see elite basketball clubs in Nigeria take on one another and two others from Cote d’Ivoire and Benin Republic, commences on Sunday.
WAFU Zone B Qualifier: Rivers Govt Throws Weight Behind Angels FC
Rivers State Governor, NyesomWike, has placed a marching order to accord the necessary support needed to aid the Jewels of Rivers, Rivers Angels FC qualify from the West African Union(WAFU) B and ultimately win the CAF Women’s Champions League Cup.
The Rivers State Commissioner for Sports, Boma Iyaye disclosed this, Monday, in a press statement signed by the state government’s press officer, Daniel Nwankwoala.
The commissioner commended the team for its victory over Hasaacas Ladies of Ghana in the opening match of their group qualifier, played at the weekend.
He promised to give the necessary support needed, as ordered by the State Governor, to enable the team get the desired results, playing their CAF Women’s qualifier and win the cup as well.
“The Governor has placed an order to ensure that the team lacks nothing needed, to help boost their morale, help them perform optimally and aid victory, as they embarked on this maiden competition,” Iyaye said.
Earlier, head coach of the team, Edwin Okon, has expressed optimism that his team will perform even better, having prepared adequately for the competition.
“We will fight to the end, my girls will do even better job. I can assure you that, the(players) are in high spirit and determined to win.
“I am glad that we don’t have injuries worries, so, we are set and ready to do Nigeria proud,” he added.
It would be recalled that the Port Harcourt, Nigeria representatives started their campaign in the WAFU Zone B qualifier with a 2-0 win against their Ghana opponents, Hasaacas Ladies on Saturday, to get closer to qualification for the semi-finals.
By: Nancy Briggs
Sports Minister Hails Anyanacho,Offiong
Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare, has described Elizabeth Anyanacho as a future star.
Anyanacho lost 12-7 to Turkey’s Nur Tatar in the Round of 16 of the women’s 67kg taekwondo event at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics on Monday morning.
Dare, who watched the bout, congratulated the 22-year-old despite the defeat.
“You’ve done well against a world champion. Keep your focus. The world will soon rise to salute you in the near future,” Dare told Anyanacho.
Tidesports source reports that he was also on hand to encourage Edem Offiong, who lost 4-1 in the second round of women’s table tennis to the USA’s Lily Zhang.
“You exhibited strength and talent. Nigeria thank you for making the country proud at the Olympics,” Dare told Offiong.
The pair of Godwin Olofua and Anuoluwapo Opeyori also lost their second Group B match in the men’s doubles badminton event against Denmark’s Kim Astrup and Anders Rasmussen, while Dorcas Adesokan was beaten 2-0 by Spain’s Clara Azurmendi in the opening Group B match of the women’s badminton singles.
We Won’t Give Up On Playing For Nigeria – Ogwumike Sisters
Nneka Ogwumike, Chiney Ogwumike and Elizabeth Williams say they haven’t given up their dream of representing Nigeria in the future after they were denied the opportunity to play for the country women’s basketball team at the Tokyo Games.
The three WNBA stars, who all have American and Nigerian citizenship, would have strengthened D’Tigress squad at the Olympics, but the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled they were ineligible to represent Nigeria at the moment after having played for the United States.
“I still have a lot of pride and high hopes for the Nigerian team as it is composed now,” Nneka Ogwumike said.
“So, maybe this time around, I won’t be a part of it directly, but I certainly do hope that I can be in the future.”
“I think the fight has just begun,” Chiney Ogwumike said. “I cannot accept to being called a naturalised citizen, when I have full citizenship.
“People don’t know the extent to which my family, and myself in particular, ever since I was at Stanford, has been going back to Nigeria to help. So to have someone say that I am not Nigerian is not fair to my family or my heritage or myself. It just does not feel right at all.”
Williams, who plays for the Atlanta Dream said, “It’s really about the principle now. We’re still going to keep appealing and fighting because I think people need to understand there are a lot of us that have dual citizenship. Even if we grew up here, our households look very different than what people think, and that part of us is very real.
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