By Orkula Shaagee, Abuja
Following the team’s draw against Tunisia and Cameroon at the official draw ceremony held in Dalar, Senegal, Otis said the team can mount a strong title defense with the talents at his disposal.
Having led the team to a historic eighth place finish at the 2018 World Cup in Spain, Otis is aware of the buzz already created around D’Tigress ranked number 2 in Africa.
The team will hope to bury the ghost of their 2015 misadventure where they narrowly lost to host-Cameroon 70-71 in the semifinal under Coach Scott Nnaji.
“I know Cameroon has a good history against us. They beat Nigeria in the 2015 semis. At this level, anybody can be beaten any day, so we are taking all the teams as the same. No matter who they are, we are going to play them hard and tough”.
Despite exuding confidence about their chances at the AFROBASKET holding in Dakar, Senegal, Otis cautioned that winning the title for the fourth time will not come cheap.
“It is a round ball, no matter what, it is still going to bounce. We are still going to worry about health and how the chemistry is going to pan out this year because we have not had a lot of time to train together”.
The reigning African Champions went 8 games unbeaten to clinch the 2017 title in Bamako, Mali defeating Senegal, 65-48 points to win the title.
Nigeria (Defending Champions), Senegal (host), Mali and Angola have been tipped as favorites by bookmakers.
Husband of Slain Kenyan Runner Tirop Seeks Plea Bargain
The husband of slain Kenyan distance runner Agnes Tirop is seeking a plea bargain after initially denying a charge of murder, his lawyer said yesterday.
Tirop, a rising star in the world of athletics, was killed last October in her home in Iten, a high-altitude training hub in western Kenya for top runners.
Emmanuel Ibrahim Rotich was arrested after a dramatic late-night chase the day after Tirop’s body was found with stab wounds, and has been in custody ever since.
The 41-year-old denied a charge of murder at a November court appearance.
But in the latest twist in the legal saga, his lawyer Ngigi Mbugua told the Eldoret High Court that Rotich was willing to plead guilty to a lesser charge in the hope of attracting a more lenient sentence.
The prosecution said it was not against the idea of a plea bargain but wanted Tirop’s family to be involved in the process.
A hearing on Rotich’s request will take place on 22 September.
Ganduje Appoints Galadima Acting Kano Pillars Chair
Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, has appointed Ibrahim Galadima as acting Chairman of Kano Pillars Football Club.
The appointment is with immediate effect, the governor said.
Surajo Shuaibu Yahaya who had chaired the club was relieved of the job.
The appointment of Galadima who is Chairman of Kano State Sports Commission to oversee activities of Kano Pillars is part of routine exercise in sports administration of Ganduje, a statement by his Chief Press Secretary Abba Anwar said yesterday.
“As Kano Pillars is facing more competition in National Premier League (NPL) it will be good to have a leadership that will perfectly lead the Club.”
“Ibrahim Galadima, Chairman of Kano State Sports Commission, will now replace the current Chairman of Kano Pillars FC, Surajo Shu’aibu Yahaya.
“Galadima will serve in acting capacity, before the appointment of a substantive Chairman,” Ganduje said.
FIFA Emerges Best Global Sports Federation on Governance Standards
By Eze Okechukwu, Abuja
FIFA has been rated among the international sporting federations with the best standards of governance following a review conducted by the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations.
FIFA was among seven out of 33 international federations who achieved a score of 175 points or more out of 200 and were placed in the top group, A1, which the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations described as “an exclusive group”.
The federations were divided into five groups according to their score, with the target score, regarded as satisfactory, set at 130 for full members of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations.
It was the fourth such review conducted by by the association, with FIFA also placed among the leading international federations and the previous was in the year 2020.
The aim of the project, led by ASOIF’s Governance Task Force, is to promote and ensure a culture of good governance within the international federations and help drive continuous progress.
The review looked at five aspects of governance – transparency, integrity, democracy, development and control mechanisms – and these were further divided into ten sub-sections, with a score of zero to four awarded for each.
The review began with a self assessment in January and February this year where international federations were asked to complete a questionnaire and determine a score for each question, providing explanatory evidence for their decision. These assessments were then independently moderated by an external sports governance consultancy.
The assessment took place in the context of the ongoing global pandemic, which has severely affected sport, but was conducted before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which has caused more uncertainty in the sporting world.
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