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Africa Wants Return To Rotation Of World Cup Hosts

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African delegates are keen for FIFA to reintroduce a rotation system for World Cup hosting after Morocco failed to land the 2026 World Cup.
The North Africans lost out to the triple bid from Canada, Mexico and United States on Wednesday.
“Rotation would be a solution,” said Malawi FA president Walter Nyamilandu.
“We should ask for an amendment to the bidding process that would allow rotation to come back,” added Liberia FA president, Musa Bility.
Morocco lost Wednesday’s vote at the FIFA Congress in Russia by 134 to 65.
By the time the 2026 finals take place, Africa will have hosted just one of 23 World Cups, while Mexico alone will have staged three separate tournaments.
The 2010 finals in South Africa only came about after football’s world governing body specifically introduced a rotation system in 2001.
This was pushed through by former Fifa president Sepp Blatter in response to South Africa’s narrow defeat to stage the 2006 World Cup, which eventually took place in Germany.
Bility believes FIFA could be tempted by the reintroduction of the system, which was abandoned in 2007 after Africa had been awarded the 2010 finals.
“I think this would be acceptable to FIFA because the World Cup is about taking football to the people,” the Confederation of African Football Executive Committee member told Tidesports source.
“There is inequality in the status of countries around the world so you need laws that will allow the tournament to rotate. You saw the margin of the vote – there was no way Morocco was going to win.”
Liberia was one of several African countries which did not vote for the Moroccan bid.
Morocco’s comprehensive defeat has left several African delegates wondering when, if ever, the continent will stage football’s greatest event again.
A total of 41 African nations backed the Moroccan bid, meaning the North Africans picked up just 24 votes from a possible 147 outside the continent.
“My biggest concern is that Africa won’t be given a chance soon,” added Nyamilandu.
“It might take a lot of years and a lot of convincing for the rest of the world to come and vote for Africa again. We had an opportunity and (the final vote) was clear testimony that Africa will not get support from the rest of the world.
“It’s going to take a long time for Africa to host the World Cup.”
Many African delegates believe Morocco lost because its projected tournament profit of $5 billion fell considerably short of the $11 billion being pledged by the North American bid.
“It was a game changer,” said Barry Rukoro, secretary-general of a Namibian FA that backed the ‘United’ bid.
“Football needs resources to develop across the globe and everywhere around the world, people are looking for much more resources than are available. So it really assisted the United bid.”
Even though many African federations will theoretically benefit from additional development funds that the extra $6bn of revenue for Fifa will bring, it still leaves a nagging doubt for some.
“I ask myself, what is the future of the World Cup? – because if we are going to go with the numbers only, what does it mean?,” said Kenya FA president Nick Mwenda.
“The numbers were staggering and it’s true that we all need the money, but when is Kenya going to stage the World Cup if that’s the route we go down?”
“If it is possible to achieve the $11 billion, is that going to be the benchmark?” queried Seychelles FA president Elvis Chetty.
“And if so, will that stop other nations from ever hosting and maybe Africa from ever hosting?”
Morocco has now bid five times for the World Cup without success.
Nonetheless, the African nation was still able to pledge a profit of $5 billion – double the amount that FIFA made from Brazil 2014, from an expanded 48-team World Cup.
“The dynamics have changed with the 48-nation tournament so maybe from an African perspective we need to start thinking how best we can accommodate 48 teams,” said Zambia FA president Andrew Kamanga.
“If you take Africa a whole, we have enough capacity from South Africa to Morocco in the north, so it’s question of ensuring you put together one composite bid that can address all the challenges.”

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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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