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NBBF Awaits Court Judgement On Premier League

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It’s been over a year since the Premier Basketball League was halted by a court injunction against the NBBF.
A law suit filed by a League Management Committee is arguing that the Musa Kida-board cannot legally host a new PBL season.
Whilst the legal tussle is expected to reach a conclusion on October 13, when the Court gives its judgment, the lacuna has been disruptive of Basketball activities in the country and particularly for Players in the division, a situation Kida says he sympathizes with.
“My heart really goes out to the Players, but I’m sure they won’t forget that we’ve had some programs where I personally ring-fenced participation; I cordoned it off so that they have a chance to compete,
“We were stopped from the league, legally. NBBF is a good “corporate citizen” of the country, so we respect the law and that’s why we are not holding the Kwese Premier League,” he told brila.net.
However, for the NBBF its had to dig in and unearth what was a moribund “D-League” to bring any type of normalcy to what was quickly becoming basketball’s worst era.
The Federation swung into action and commissioned the D-Leagues, opening up the game to an excess of 200 teams with prospective pro players in their ranks.
After an initial two-year contract was signed in 2018, the NBBF struck a 5-year extension with the title sponsor for a ¦ 150million deal.
A paltry sum considering it’s a spread of ¦ 30million across the five years but it represents a meaningful contribution to keep the ball bouncing and the sport alive.
Yet, there are deeper questions about the structure of teams coming through and transparency in a league where the first season was wrought with irregularities.
With the much talked about Re-categorization of Sports as a Business in the country, what plans are in the works to trial the process with D1 and D2 Leagues when the Government lifts all restrictions on contact sports – the suspension was due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The NBBF isn’t clear on these crucial areas and there’s a feeling that it isn’t getting the best value for one of Nigeria’s biggest sport.
Nonetheless, it is a project that excites Kida:
“Nobody makes too much noise of our divisions 2 and 1, but they are really all year long, they’re being played at the lowest levels, at state level so maybe that’s why they don’t make too much noise until the conference or national finals.”

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Aiteo Cup: Diri Hails Bayelsa Finalists

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Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has lauded the feat of the state-owned football teams who reached the finals in the male and female categories of the 2021 Aiteo Cup.
Diri, while congratulating Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens for their outstanding performances, praised their indomitable spirit and resilience in surmounting the odds to qualify for the last stage of Nigeria’s oldest football competition.
Bayelsa United, who plays in the second tier Nigerian National League, on Friday defeated Premier League neighbours Rivers United 1-0 in the semi-finals, while Bayelsa Queens crushed perennial rivals Rivers Angels 5-0 to reach the women’s final.
The Governor, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Daniel Alabrah, on Saturday, described Bayelsa United as “giant killers” for defeating Premier League sides Enugu Rangers, Lobi Stars and Rivers United on their way to the final.
“The excellent run of Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens in this year’s Aiteo Cup is very heartwarming. Both teams reaching the finals is no mean feat. I congratulate them for making the state proud and setting a record of teams from the state playing in the finals of the male and female categories of the same competition for the first time,” Diri stated.
“By their outstanding performance, Bayelsa United and Bayelsa Queens have shown that the sporting revolution of our Prosperity Administration, which resulted in Bayelsa placing third in the last National Sports Festival in Edo State for the first time, is on course. I therefore urge them to complete their excellent run in the competition by bringing home the trophies.

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D’Tigress To Play Mozambique In Afrobasket

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Nigeria’s senior basketball team, D’Tigress, have been drawn to face Mozambique and a yet to qualify team in Group B of the 2021 Women’s Afrobasket, which holds from September 17 to 27 in Yaounde, Cameroon.
The draw was held in Yaounde last Saturday.
D’Tigress will be hoping to retain the title they won two years ago in Senegal, where they defeated the hosts in the final. A win in Cameroon will mean they have won the last three editions of the tournament.
The Nigerians will know their final group opponent when the FIBA Zone 6 qualifiers take place from August 16 to 22.
In Group A, hosts Cameroon will face Cape Verde and Kenya, while Senegal, the most successful team in the competition’s history with 11 first-place finishes, will slug it out with Egypt and Gabon in Group C.
Mali, Ivory Coast, and a team to be decided via wild card will fight for a slot in the next round in Group D.

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Ebonyi Football Fans Celebrate Nwankwo Kanu At 45

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Football fans in Ebonyi State yesterday, celebrated the birthday of formerNigerian international and Arsenal legend, Nwankwo Kanu.
The former Super Eagles skipper turned 45 yesterday.
Tidespoets source gathered  that the 1993 FIFA U-17 world cup winner, fondly called “Papillo’’ by his fans had 86 caps for Nigeria.
The former Iwuanyanwu Nationale Football Club of Owerri’s talisman scored 13 goals for Nigeria in an enviable career that spanned from 1994 to 2010.
Kanu is a recipient of the Member of the Order of the Niger (MON), an Olympic Games football gold medalist and had illustrious club careers with Ajax Amsterdam of Holland, Arsenal and West Bromwich Albion of England.
Defunct Ebonyi Angels FC of Abakaliki Defender, James Onele, said that Kanu thrilled soccer fans across the world with sublime skills and trademark passes.
“Kanu won two African Footballer of the Year awards, an AFCON silver medal, four AFCON bronze medals among other honours.
“He was the first Nigerian, alongside Finidi George to win the prestigious UEFA champions league trophy with Ajax in 1995,” said Onele.
An Arsenal FC supporter, Ejike Okoro, said the club’s fans were proud of Kanu’s achievements during his time with the English Premier League side.
“Kanu played 197 times for Arsenal, scoring 44 goals and was part of the club’s invincible team that did not lose any match in the 2003-04 EPL season.
“He was instrumental in endearing Arsenal to millions of Nigerian soccer fans, despite later dropping to lowly-rated clubs such as Portsmouth and West Bromwich Albion,” Okoro said.
A banker and football enthusiast, Chief Barry Ogoh, told active footballers to emulate Papillo in investing adequately for the ‘rainy day’.
“Kanu, Augustine J.J. Okocha, among other ex-internationals are still financially stable as many ex-internationals have become bankrupt.

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