The Rivers State Sports Council is in morning over the recent death of former Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Tonye Harry, who was also the Chairman Rivers State Tennis Association and Deputy President, Nigeria tennis Federation.
The Board, Management, Chairman of Sports Associations and Staff of the Sports Council on Friday visited the family house of the late lawmaker in Port Harcourt to commiserate with his family members over their untimely loss.
Condoling with the widow and family, members of late Harry, leader of the delegation and Chairman of the Councils Board, Hon. Charles Paul noted that the death of Tonye Harry was a big blow not only to his family but to the Sports council and Sports world.
According to Hon. Paul, late Harry was key to the success story of Rivers State and the Sports Council, especially, in tennis. He single handedly ran the Tonye Harry Foundation and sponsors young tennis players to realize their potentials.
“He has been nice to us and sponsors tennis, which association he chaired and personally sponsored our athletes to represent the state at various levels”, he said.
The Chairman further said that his commitment to youth and Sports development was second to none and prayed that his legacies, especially, the Foundation be sustained.
He prayed for peace and God’s protection for his family.
“It is our prayer that God will continue to be with the family, gibe them and us the fortitude to bear the loss”.
He further urged the family to ensure peace in the home and see that the widow and children were not persecuted.
He promised to see that the council and the family liaise with the Foundation to immortalize late Harry with the annual tennis competition he used to organize.
Speaking on behalf of the family late Harry’s brother, Tamunotein E.W. Harry said that the late Lawmaker organiswed himself and family very well and assured that peace would continue to reign in the family.
Also speaking moments later, the Director of sports in the State, Sir Daobu Harry described the State Tennis Association Chairman as everything to the Sports Council. He recalled that in the past three National Sports festivals, the late Harry sponsored the tennis association single-handedly and nurtured players to win medals for the state.
“He has contributed a lot to the State’s overall achievement at the National Sports festival and beyond. We’re really lost a sportsman, philanthropist, sponsor and an administrator”, said the Director of Sports.
The Chairman of Handball association, Kwashi Thompson on behalf of Sports association Chairman described late Harry as a sports reform and a strong pillar who came through the ranks.
“He truly embedded in the promotion of sports, especially, tennis, without Tonye, there was no tennis in Rivers State, it is going to be a herculean task trying to fill the vacuum his death has created, you can understand what that means”, said Thompson.
He urged people, especially, those that are well-to-do to emulate his sports philanthropy and commitment.
Athletics: Okagbare Begins Preparation For Tokyo 2020
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.
LAA Holds Lucrative Track Meet, Next Week
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.
S’ Falcons Bow To World Champions
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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