By Dennis Agbo
ENUGU- Former Nigeria skipper, Kanu Nwankwo, has selected four football players from Ikeoha Youths sports championship for overseas soccer carrier.
The two-weeks 2018 Ikeoha Youth Sports Championship which came to an end at the Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium, Enugu, weekend, was sponsored by the deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu and witnessed by former captain of the Super Eagles, Kanu Nwankwo, Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, sportsmen and women among other dignitaries.
Senator Ike Ekweremadu said the sports fiesta was in furtherance of his human capital development programme for the youths and efforts to help them happy and find recreation at a very frustrating period in Nigeria’s history.
“This is one way of giving them an opportunity to express themselves in sports, encourage them to be whatever they want to be and to be the best of it.
“Today, I feel so fulfilled that we have discovered a lot of talents. We brought in one of the most accomplished footballers in the country, Kanu Nwankwo, and he has identified four players, who are products of this Championship that he will take abroad for trials. That is exactly one of the things I wanted to achieve and I am happy I have achieved it.
“Kanu Nwankwo also agreed to invite some of the basketball players for trials abroad and of course, these are some of the things I wanted to achieve, and I am happy that we did achieve them.
“We want to create a pool of sportsmen and women in Enugu state and we believe that will be a feeder to the Nigerian sports environment and probably, as I said, we are going to export some of these guys. The money they will make will have a multiplier effect on Nigerian economy, ” Ekweremadu said.
The championship saw medals and cash rain at the finals as Ezeagu Local Government Area (LGA) overcame Aninri LGA in a 2-0 thriller to cart away the football trophy and N1 million prize money, while the silver medallists, Aninri LGA, took home N500,000.
Awgu LGA won bronze at the expense of Oji River after a pulsating encounter decided by penalty kicks that ended in their favour.
In the women basketball competition, Awgu LGA defeated Aninri LGA 24-10 to win gold, while Oji River LGA beat Udi LGA 54-34 to win gold in the men category.
In the same vein, winners in the men and women’s sprint and relay were also decided.
Onyekachi Christian, from Oji River LGA, won the men 100m race, Agu Nnaemeka from Awgu LGA won silver, while the bronze medal went to Eze Francis, also from Awgu LGA.
In the girls 100m, Iloh Onyedi, from Oji River LGA, emerged the gold medallist; Udi LGA won silver, while bronze went to Oji River LGA.
Obinna Nwobodo, from Awgu LGA, was voted the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the Championship, while Oji River LGA emerged the overall winner with the most medals won.