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Eagles’ First Choice Hotel Not Good Enough – Lulu 2010 W/Cup

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Nigeria’s first choice hotel as team base in South Africa for the 2010 World Cup was not up to standard, Sani Lulu, the Nigeria Football Federation, (NFF) President admitted in Lagos early in the week.

Lulu made the admission at a seminar for the World Cup-bound Nigerian journalists held at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos.

The first choice hotel of the Eagles, Hampshire Hotel, was dumped late last week after it failed to meet the April 28 deadline for completion of all specified requirements.

A high-powered Nigerian delegation led by sports minister, Ibrahim Bio, went to South Africa for a final inspection and dropped the Hampshire Hotel in Balito, opting for the Protea Waterfront Hotel in Richards Bay.

Lulu, who expressed gratitude to the Federal Government for coming to the aid of the federation in changing the hotel, said the government felt the country needed the best.

He said the government’s endorsement of the new hotel showed that it was prepared to provide added comfort and extra security for the Nigerian team while in South Africa.

“The government wanted better option than Hampshire Hotel. We insisted on better environment,’’ he added.

He said the choice of team hotels was usually the prerogative of team coaches, adding that Hampshire Hotel was chosen after Nigeria’s qualification for 2010 on Novermber 14  2009 and the draws for the championship that followed in Decemebr.

He said erstwhile coach of the Eagles, Shaibu Amodu and South Africa-based former Nigerian goalkeeper, Peterside Idah, chose the Hampshire Hotel.

Amodu’s successor, Lars Lagerback was not satisfied with the hotel’s standard during an inspection in March.

He explained that the federation’s problems with accommodation followed FIFA’s  decision to provide money to national federations in lieu of hotels as was

practised in the past.

He said the NFF had complained that the 400 dollars daily for each official delegation member provided by the world football body was not enough.

Nigeria will pay a fine of 125,000 dollars for the accommodation

cancellation, a decision the sports minister said was a compromise for the 250,000 dollars, which Hampshire had insisted.

Bio had said the Hampshire owners failed to carry out their side of the deal as they failed to complete the work on schedule.

Media reports in February that the Hampshire Hotel was substandard, led to the series of inspections and last week’s cancellation by sports minister Bio.

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Athletics: Okagbare Begins Preparation For Tokyo 2020

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Blessing Okagbare, yesterday started her preparations for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics at the National Trials.
The opening day of the Tokyo 2020 National Trials will see Okagbare competing in the 100m against highly rated Grace Nwokocha
Okagbare, the 8th time national champions is the favourite to win the event again, but Grace Nwokocha remains one of her biggest threats.
The American-based track queen won the championship from 2009 to 2014 and returned to win the 2016 edition after missing out in 2015.
Despite her qualification for the Olympics, Okagbare will be hoping to continue her winning streak and go to the Olympics in high spirits.
Apart from the 100m finals expected to take place in the afternoon, there will be shotput men final with all eyes on  Chukwuebuka Enekwechi.

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LAA Holds Lucrative Track Meet, Next Week

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The Lagos State Athletics Association has announced it would be holding a lucrative Athletics Meet on Thursday, June 24, 2021, at the Teslim Balogun Stadium.
Yussuf Alli, who is the Meet Director for the Lagos Open Athletics Championship, made the disclosure on Wednes-day even as he revealed that arrangements were in top gear to have an elite cast of athletes in the one-day meet.
According to Alli, the Lagos Open Athletics Championship will simultaneously serve as a qualifying window for the Tokyo Olympics as well as a preparatory event for athletes that have already qualified for the sporting showpiece.
“This is another fantastic window for those seeking to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics as well as those seeking quality competition to stay in shape for the Olympics,” Alli said.
“The Lagos State Athletics Association, which is one of the most vibrant in the country, is out to organise a world-class event that would be the talk of the town as we count down to Tokyo,”  he added.
The list of events to be competed for at the Lagos Open Athletics Championship include, the 5,000 meters, 400 meters hurdles, 100 meters, 800 meters, 400 meters and 100 meters.
There would also be quality action in the 4×100 meters open, 4×100 meters open and 4×400 meters mixed relay.
Long jump, High jump, Triple jump, Shot put as well as  4×100 secondary schools relay and 4×100 secondary schools relay have all been pencilled down for the maiden Lagos Open Athletics Champion-ship.
Organisers have assured that the top three finishers across all the events will receive handsome prizes for their efforts.

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S’ Falcons Bow To World Champions

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The Super Falcons of Nigeria lost 2-0 to world champions, USA, in their final Group game at the 2021 Summer Series in Texas, USA.
The result means the African champions failed to win any of their three matches at the invitational tourna-ment, drawing one and losing the other two.
Kristen Press gave the Americans the lead on the stroke of half time, and before Lyn Williams killed Falcons hope of getting a draw with the second goal on the dot of 90 minutes.
With the victory, the world number one has now gone 42 games without tasting a defeat .As for the Falcons, the aim of participating in the Summer Series was to prepare them for a crucial 2022 African Women’s Champion-ship eliminator against perennial rivals, Ghana in October.
The African Women’s Championship will serve as qualifiers for the 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.

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