Nigeria’s delegation to the Bahamas has concluded its inspection of facilities for the 2017 Commonwealth Youth Games billed for Nassau in July .
The team comprising the Minister of Youth and Sports Barrister Solomon Dalung, the Director Grassroots Sports, Dr Ademola Aare and the Secretary-General of the Nigeria Olympic Committee Tunde Popoola inspected the training areas, tracks, athletes’ accommodation, indoor sports hall and swimming pools.
According to the leader of the delegation Barrister Dalung, the venues are almost ready for the 6th edition of the games billed for July 19 to 23.
“The host city for the Commonwealth Youth Games is about 70% ready and they have assured us that all venues will be ready before the opening ceremony. We held valuable discussions with the country’s sports minister who led us on the inspection tour of hostels and other facilities. We are impressed with what we’ve seen so far. ”
Nigeria will be represented by 26 athletes taking part in 7 sports namely; swimming, athletics, beach volleyball, cycling, boxing, tennis and judo.
According to the NOC Secretary General Tunde Popoola, the visit was hectic.
“Two hours after we arrived, we were taken to the World relays also holding in the Bahamas. Thereafter, we had a classroom session where we went through all registrations and events registered for and what they will provide for the contingents. The games will be held on an island and the temperature as of today is about 30 degrees.
We were told that the temperature will be hotter during the games so these are things we need to keep in view.
“One good thing is that their facilities are compact and just within the same area so it’s just a walking distance from any other venue. I will say that this is one of the best accommodations to be provided for athletes. They will be accommodated in very nice hotels acquired specifically for the games. Their security is also top notch. Since it will be held on an island they have escape boats, security personnel, divers and so on. It’s been a very fruitful visit” Popoola said.
The Director grassroots sports Dr Ademola Aare also revealed that the athletes will be selected from the recently held National Youth Games held in Ilorin.
“We discovered some athletes at the Youth Games in Ilorin so we will also pick from them when camping begins. The rest of the athletes will be provided by the various federations because they have age grade programs. Some of them may be overaged so we will screen them while in camp. If funds are made available, we are proposing camping from May to June.”
Meanwhile, the Minister is expected to grace the opening Group B game of the 2017 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup competition between Nigeria’s Sand Eagles and their counterparts from Italy on Thursday.
The match starts at 6.30pm local time at the National Beach Soccer Arena Nassau.