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Nigerians Sure Of Paralympic Qualification

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Tajudeen Agunbiade, a silver medallist in the Class 9 Singles at the 11th Al-Watani Championships, on Thursday said that many Nigerian para-table tennis players would qualify for the Paralympics.
The championships, which is to serve as qualifier for the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, took place from April 8 to April 10 in Amman, Jordan.
Agunbiade told Tidesport in Lagos that he was optimistic of many players’ qualification for the Paralympics because the country was blessed with a lot of talents in the sport.
“I’m confident that a large number of para-table tennis players will qualify for the 2020 Games; we have a lot of talents,’’ he said.
The athlete noted that it was great to have won a medal at the competition, adding that it was fulfilling making himself and the country proud.
Tidesports source reports that the country won one gold, four silver and two bronze medals at the championships.
According to Agunbiade, players have two more tournaments to meet the required points set by the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF).
The Tokyo Paralympic Games will hold from Aug. 25 to September 6.

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Preparation Begins For 2019 Nigeria Ladies Golf Open

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Organisers of the 2019 Nigeria Ladies Golf Open Championship, scheduled for the IBB International Golf and Country Club in Abuja, have began activities aimed at a successful hosting of the event.
Kayode Adeniyi, Chairman of the event’s Media and Publicity Sub-Committee, in a statement on Saturday in Abuja disclosed that preparations have began with visits to and interactions with key stakeholders.
“The President, Ladies Golf Association Of Nigeria (LGAN), Ekanem Ekwueme, led some members of the committee on a courtesy visit to the Minister of State for Power, Goddy Agba, as part of the awareness campaign to herald the annual event.
“Ekwueme told the Minister that players from more than 10 African countries have indicated their interest to participate in the championship which was won last year by Eva Magala of Uganda at the Ibom Resort Golf Club in Uyo, Akwa Ibom,” he said.
Tidesports source reports that the tournament is scheduled to hold next month in Abuja.
Adeniyi quoted Ekwueme as saying the tournament was important to lady golfers because it has the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR), “being an event where any lady golfer who participated and earned a good score will be ranked internationally”.
Ekwueme had said members of the IBB International Golf and Country Club were not only prepared to host but to take the competition’s main trophy from the Ugandan.
“They want to dethrone Eva Magala. Some of the best Nigerian Ladies will equally take part in the three-day event, and I am sure they will also want to make Nigeria proud,” she was quoted as saying.
The LGAN President solicited Agba’s support in making the event a memorable one for foreign players, “so that they will attend and return home with so many good things about Nigeria”.
She however urged the minister to begin to play golf, pointing out that the game is for both the young and elderly.
While responding, Agba had thanked the LGAN members for their efforts in promoting the game of golf among Nigerian women.
He urged them to always think of their country Nigeria first in whatever activities they are doing.
“The present government’s commitment to the development of the Nigerian people in every capacity is unparallel.
“In that regard, your country should always come first in all you do, as a way of giving back to your country too.”
The minister then promised to support the LGAN towards achieving its members’ desire before, during and after the tournament.

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Bad Officiating, Reason For Loss In Amputee Cup – NAFF Coach

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Assistant Coach, Nigeria Amputee Football Federation (NAFF), Gbenga Dosumu, has blamed poor officiating for the 2-0 loss to host Angola in the final match of the just-concluded Cup of African Nations for Amputee Football (CANAF).
Dosumu, in a telephone interview with newsmen, at the weekend, faulted activities of referees that officiated the match held on Friday in Luanda.
Tidesports source reports that Angola hosted the just concluded 5th edition of Federation of Africa for Amputee Football (FAAF)- organised CANAF tournament. Seven nations participated in the tournament held in Luanda from October 1 to October 12.
“We came second because of bad officiating;  the referees favoured the Angolan team who also had the home advantage and a massive support from the fans.
“I know we did well, having won four matches, played a goalless draw with Tanzania, and 2-2 with host Angola in the group stage matches, before bowing 2-0 to Angola in the final encounter,” he said.
He said that Kelvin Kingsley, who netted four goals, exhibited outstanding skills and emerged as Nigeria’s highest goal scorer, while Ezeji Kennedy scored three goals which was instrumental to the Special Eagles’ good finish.
The coach added that the Special Eagles had performed well in the tournament, adding that the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development should reward the players.
“We have, in the midst of poor funding, performed well and, without mincing words, our achievement deserves good reward from the sports ministry. We should be celebrated because it is not easy.
“As a team, we made sacrifices to represent Nigeria and with passion and commitment, we were able to mount the podium for the silver trophy. Today, we are number two on the continent,” he said.
According to him, the Special Eagles resurfaced in the FAAF-organised continental tournament after six years of non-participation due to lack of funds and sponsorship.

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Deaf Eagles Deserve Reward From Authorities – Coach

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The national coach of Nigeria Deaf Football Association (NDFA), Banjo Kamiludeen, has called for reward for the Deaf Eagles, runners-up at the just-concluded West Africa Deaf Football (WADFU) Tournament.
Tidesports source gathered that Mali defeated Nigeria 1-0 in the final match of the tournament held in Sierra-Leone.
Nigeria, tournament’s three-times champions and three-times runners-up, had alongside seven countries participated in the competition organised by the West Africa Sports Deaf Union (WASDU) from September 27 to October 6.
“We struggled to go for this tournament and the boys successfully got to the final where they lost to Mali 0-1, after conceding some few minutes to the end of the match.
“In all, the team has done very well and deserves to be recognised by the government for making the country proud and finishing second out of the eight countries.
“As we know, the Deaf Eagles have been doing marvelously well. In all their outings at the tournament, Nigeria stood out in the continent and beyond,” Kamiludeen said at the weekend.

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