By Chekwube Francis
Glory is returning to Igbobi College, Lagos as all rounder, Chekwube Francis Umenzekwe, leads a resurgence aimed at taking the school back to the apogee of sports in Lagos.
And this will be good news to famous old boys like Vice President Yemi Osibanjo, Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila and Mr. Babatunde Fashola.
The school’s relay quartet anchored by Umenzekwe is the team to beat in Lagos and remains outstanding in invitationals outside Lagos. At the Second Channels Television Classics held in Lagos in November, Igbobi
College emerged tops in the 4x100m event dusting St. Gregory’s College, Obalende and Temple Secondary
School, to second and third spots respectively.
Umenzekwe is the face of Sports at Igbobi. He plays soccer, table tennis and throws Javelin. The sprinter has taken part in the MOC Grand Prix, Lagos and Government College Ughelli Relays. He is the 200m champion of the Lagos First Generation Heritage Colleges Association [LAFGEHCA] Games and finished second in the 100m at the Channels TV Championships.
The sky is indeed the student’s limit. Umenzekwe who idolizes Usain Bolt and Olusoji Fasuba, has eyes on the IAAF Diamond League and the Olympic Games. He is also not ready to sacrifice his studies.
He said: “I have a lot of respect for Bolt and Fasuba. I want to be an Olympian and also be part of the IAAF family. That is why I follow the IAAF Diamond League. However, education means a lot to me so the goal is to combine sports and education”.
Perhaps the best athlete to come out of Igbobi College was Sidney Beliose Asiodu whose time from 1957 to 1963 saw him captain the Schools football, athletics and cricket teams. Crowned ‘Igbobi Horse’ as the Best Sports Student in 1963, Asiodu went ahead to represent Nigeria at the Tokyo ’64 Olympic and Kingston ’66 Commonwealth Games. He died in 1967 during the Asaba Massacre.
Chief Modestus Umenzekwe, Onwa of Achina in Anambra State is his son’s backbone. The All Progressives Congress chieftain always reminds Chekwube that Igbobi produced Chief Ernest Shonekan, Prof Taslim Elias and Prof. Jacob Ade Ajayi before sports stars like Dosu Joseph, Fatai Atere and Abiodun Baruwa. The key to success is a combination of book and ball.