SILESIA NAMED HOST OF 2021 IAAF WORLD RELAYS

The IAAF World Relays will head to Europe for the first time in 2021, with the Polish region of Silesia confirmed today as host of the fifth edition of the biennial event.

The newest addition to the IAAF’s World Athletics Series, the World Relays were held in the Bahamian capital of Nassau for the first three editions, while this year’s event was held in the Japanese city of Yokohama.

Poland has a proven track record of hosting major athletics events with Bydgoszcz having hosted the inaugural IAAF World U18 Championships in 1998 as well as two editions of the IAAF World U20 Championships and IAAF World Cross Country Championships. Sopot staged the 2014 IAAF World Indoor Championships, while Gdynia is currently preparing to host the 2020 IAAF World Half Marathon Championships.

Poland also has a strong recent record in relay events. Their women’s 4x400m team was triumphant in Yokohama earlier this year and at the 2018 European Championships, while their men’s 4x400m squad set a world indoor record en route to taking gold at the IAAF World Indoor Championships Birmingham 2018.

Chorzow’s Silesian Stadium, which will hold the World Relays on 1-2 May, 2021, has in recent years hosted several well-attended international competitions that form part of the IAAF Hammer Throw Challenge, including the Kamila Skolimowska Memorial, which last year attracted a crowd of more than 40,000 people. The Silesian Stadium was also where, in 1969, Nadezhda Chizhova became the first woman ever to surpass 20 metres in the shot put.

The region of Silesia is a major industrial hub and home to almost five million people.

IAAF President Sebastian Coe welcomed Silesia as the first European host of the IAAF World Relays.

“The World Relays is our youngest global event but in just six years it has developed a vibrancy that gives it a unique character,’’ Coe said. “Its focus on team races allows our athletes to show a different side to their sport, and their joy in competing with teammates shines through.”

“We have been blessed with wonderfully enthusiastic crowds at every edition of the World Relays and we are confident that the people of Silesia will provide another lively atmosphere. Poland is one of our most active member federations and has a deserved reputation for delivering excellent athletics events and attracting big crowds, so I’m delighted that we will be bringing another of our World Athletics Series events there in less than two years from now.”

© DzejKej86 / WikiCommons

The Marshal of the Silesian Voivodeship, Jakub Che?stowski, said: “The Silesian Stadium has been proving that it is the best athletics stadium in Poland. We have the best infrastructure, and thousands of spectators cheering stars of world athletics create an exceptional atmosphere. The IAAF World Relays will be a great opportunity to see the best runners, but also to inculcate passion for sports among children. In such activities the sports ambassadors of the Silesian Stadium such as Anita W?odarczyk, Justyna ?wi?ty-Ersetic and Ewa Swoboda are supporting us. It will also be a wonderful opportunity to promote the Silesian Voivodeship as a region that is worth visiting.”

The 2021 IAAF World Relays will be used as a qualifying competition for relay teams aiming to compete at the IAAF World Athletics Championships Oregon 2021.

IAAF

D’Tigress, NBBF Bag FIBA Recognition As Sports Minister Lauds NBBF

Another feather was added to the already decorated cap of the Nigeria Basketball Federation in the wee hours of Thursday in China.

The NBBF was recognised as the federation with the Most Improved Women Team between 2017 – 2019 at the plenary session of FIBA Congress and Awards Ceremony which took place in Beijing on Thursday.

Ogunade (Vice President) and Col Sam Ahmedu (rtd) (International Representative) during the celebration witnessed by 156 National Federations.

The women team under the period in review won 2 FIBA Afrobasket championships and became the first African country to qualify for the quarter finals of the 2018 Women World Cup in Spain.

Speaking after the ceremony, Kida said the award is a validation of the improved status of Nigerian basketball since the board was elected in 2017.

“As a board, we have invested our personal money, time and energy in the last 2 years to drive basketball in Nigeria. Earlier in the year, we were celebrated by FIBA Africa which spurred us to do more.”

“We have gone a step further to do more which has once again been rewarded with another AFROBASKET title in Senegal which has seen our unbeaten run in the championship stretching to 14 over the course of 3 championships”, Kida said.

Nigeria Basketball Federation President Kida

An elated Kida thanked every stakeholder who contributed to basketball growth saying the award is just the first of many more to come and a call for more sacrifice from all.

The FIBA Award for success and excellent work was picked up by Kida.

The Minister of Sports, Dare Sunday took to twitter to congratulate the NBBF for elevating basketball since coming into office 2 years ago.

He pledged government’s unflinching support to the board led by Kida saying they are living up to the expectations of Nigerians and sports stakeholders.

Ekiti FA Set To Unveil Inaugural JKF U-15 Championship

Ekiti football association has intensified its quests to develop and grow football in the state, as it moves up with plans to organise the first ever U-15 football tournament for male and female teams in the state, aptly named JKF Youth Cup.

According to a statement credited to the Ekiti FA chairman, Bayo Olanlege, the youth football tournament is in recognition of the zealous and awe- inspiring efforts of the state governor, Dr. John Kayode Fayemi to improve the fortunes of youths in the state by engaging them to positively channel their unbridled energies and talents through sports.

Bayo Olanlege

The JKF U-15 Youth Cup is expected to feature 24 male and 8 female teams.

” We are certainly poised to make history with this tournament. We want to have 24 male and 8 female teams drawn from different parts of Ekiti state, and importantly, it is free, and of course, invitational.

He added that 6 venues spread across the 6 Federal Constituencies in the state are expected to hold the matches. As he went further to reveal other mouth watering attractions of the tournament, that has received the support of the sports loving governor of the state.

“Parts of the uniqueness of this tournament is that teams would be remunerated for qualifying to the next stage in the competition. We also plan to remunerate players and coaches for progressing further in the competition.

“It is a youth football tournament, but we intend to make it a benchmark for similar competitions in this part of the world, ” the amiable and resourceful football administrator stated confidently.

John Kayode Fayemi
photo credit: kfayemi.com

Meanwhile, the JFK Youth Cup slated for September, this year, has already been creating positive buzz amongst football lovers and stakeholders in the state.

And it is also attracting support and sponsorship interests from corporate bodies such as Gossy Spring Water, Voice FM, EKTV, as well as potential sponsorship from the media, and a fast growing new generation bank, amongst other interested firms.

Akeem Busari

Tokyo 2020: Super Falcons Soar To 2-0 Over Algeria in Blida

African champions Nigeria have taken a big step forward in their Tokyo 2020 Olympics African qualifying first round fixture against Algeria with a 2-0 victory over the Algerians in the first leg in North Africa on Wednesday night.

Head Coach Thomas Dennerby had taken only home-based professionals to the battlefield in Blida, with foreign-based stars opting out due to club commitments. But it proved an opportunity for the home girls to make a statement.

Relentless pressure told on the home team’s defence as a defender conceded an own goal after only 14 minutes, but there was to be no more goal in the first period despite the visiting team enjoying much of the possession.

Nasarawa Amazons’ petite midfielder and former junior international, Amarachi Okoronkwo lashed home in the 53rd for Nigeria’s second, completing a miserable few days for Algerian women football, which also on Wednesday suffered the agony of losing the bronze medal match of the 12th African Games women’s football tournament to host nation Morocco in Rabat.

On Monday, Algeria’s U20 girls received a 3-0 spanking from their Nigerian counterparts in the semi finals at the African Games in Morocco.

Victory at the Stade Mustapha Tchaker in Blida means the Super Falcons are standing on robust credit ground ahead of Tuesday’s return leg against the Algerians at the Agege Stadium, Lagos.

FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019™: A Football Party For All

As Brasília, Goiânia and Vitória/Cariacica gear up to host the first-ever FIFA U-17 World Cup in Brazil, fans can look forward to catching a glimpse of the most talented young players in the world as ticket sales get underway on 30 August 2019 at 12:00 (midday) Brasília time.

With prices starting at five Brazilian real, tickets will be available in two categories, both of which will provide access to the two matches played in the respective double-header.

Visa cardholders will have an exclusive opportunity to secure their tickets with a 50% discount during the Visa Presale from 30 August at 12:00 (midday) Brasília time, until 9 September at 12:00 (midday) Brasília time.

As of 9 September and until the day of the final on 17 November, fans will be able to apply for tickets on a first-come, first-served basis via FIFA.com/tickets. All tickets purchased by 27 September will benefit from early-bird prices.

“The FIFA U-17 World Cup was a key milestone in my career, just as it was for players like Ronaldinho and Neymar. I can only encourage Brazilian and international fans to secure their tickets and support a new generation of football stars. From a Brazilian perspective, I know what it means to play in a World Cup on home soil and just how important it is to be able to count on the support of the fans. For the fans in the Host Cities, this will be a historic opportunity to see world-class football on their doorstep,” says FIFA Legend and Brazilian goalkeeping great Júlio César, who played at the FIFA U-17 World Cup in 1995 and will share his views on the tournament with the team delegates who will gather on Thursday for the Team Workshop in Brasília.

FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019™: a football party for all
Photo credit: FIFA

The FIFA U-17 World Cup has long been a breeding ground for some of football’s most gifted players, as besides Júlio César, Ronaldinho and Neymar, the likes of Toni Kroos, Cesc Fàbregas and Landon Donovan all blossomed at the tournament.

While the only official platform on which to secure tickets will be FIFA.com/tickets, fans will also be able to apply for tickets over the counter, in the host stadiums from 23 October until 17 November.

All tickets sold via FIFA.com/tickets will be available for download as e-tickets as of mid-October. Tickets sold over the counter will be delivered to the customer at the time of purchase.

Hosts Brazil will take on Canada in the opening match at the Estadio Bezerrão in Brasília on 26 October 2019.

Further details on the FIFA U-17 World Cup Brazil 2019™ are available on FIFA.com.

Olajide Omotayo Shines As Nigeria Dominates Men’s Table Tennis Singles Event At African Games

Olajide Omotayo gave an inkling of what he has in stock again at the 12th African Games as the Nigerian defeated one of the continent’s most celebrated star – Egypt’s Ahmed Saleh 4-3 in the quarterfinal of men’s singles to berth in the semifinal of table tennis.

Omotayo was all over the Egyptian in the encounter which had the fans glued to their seats throughout the match.

The Nigerian combined his backhand with forehand smoothly and this confused the Egyptian who surrendered to the youthful Nigerian star.

Aside Omotayo, Aruna Quadri also walloped Congo Brazzaville’s Saheed Idowu 4-0 to berth in the last four and set up a rematch of the ITTF Africa Cup against Egypt’s Omar Assar on Thursday August 29.

Seven-time Olympian Segun Toriola was at his very best when he also beat Egypt’s Khalid Assar 4-3 to set up a semifinal clash against Omotayo.

In the women’s event, Olufunke Oshonaike played her last game after going down 3-4 to Egypt’s Farah Abdel-Aziz. Dina Meshref also beat Algeria’s Lynda Logrhaibi 4-0, while Edem Offiong humbled Egypt’s Reem El-Eraky.
Cameroun’s Sarah Hanffou berthed in the last four after beating Egypt’s Yousra Helmy.

Offiong will battle Hanffou while Meshref will face her compatriot – Abdel-Aziz in the second semifinal on Thursday the August 29th.

Nigeria’s Olajide Omotayo

An elated Omotayo said: “I am so excited that in my first African Games I made it to the semifinal. I knew that it was going to be a tough game against of the most experienced African players and I just ensured that I did not get angry on table because he did everything to upset me but I was determined. I was calm and I am happy that this is a good outing for me in the singles.”

ZURICH TO HOST DIAMOND LEAGUE FINAL IN 2020 AND 2021 AS THE LEAGUE UNDERGOES REFORM…

ZURICH TO HOST DIAMOND LEAGUE FINAL IN 2020 AND 2021 AS THE LEAGUE UNDERGOES REFORM TO BECOME STRONGER AND MORE RELEVANT TO ATHLETES AND FANS

Weltklasse Zurich will host the 2020 and 2021 Diamond League finals under the new one-final format that was jointly announced by the IAAF and Diamond League in March this year.

© Diamond League

The Diamond League was established in 2010 with two finals, traditionally held in Zurich and Brussels, but for the next two years Zurich, long considered one of the pre-eminent one-day meetings in the world, will host the single final.

The selection of the final venue was also influenced by the scheduled renovation of the King Baudoin Stadium in Brussels over the next two years.