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Sports Minister charges Scrabble Federation on Grassroot Development

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Joel Ajayi

The Honourable Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Mr. Sunday Dare has charged the Scrabble Federation of Nigeria to hunt for talents at the grassroots with a view to retaining their present status at global competitions.


The Minister gave the charge today in his Office in Abuja when he received a delegation from the Federation who came to present the PAN African Scrabble Championship Trophy on Maiden Tour of Africa, to him.


He stated that Nigeria was proud of the Federation for standing out as the Number one Scrabble-playing nation in the world and urged them to hold unto the position through the discovery and nurturing of players from the grassroots.


“I am glad to receive the trophy, and as the trophy makes its tour, I know that it will come back to Nigeria after the Tournament”, Dare said.


The Minister who commended the 8-year-old Master Saviour Onazi, National Junior Scrabble Champion, for the feat he had achieved for the country, assured that the Ministry will support his education and tournaments as part of its Talent Hunt Programme.


Dare stated further that the future of sports in Nigeria is  bright with the passage of the National Sports Industry Policy (NSIP) which has reclassified Sports as Business and not Recreation, noting that it outlines an effective means of improving the funding of sports, obligations of the different tiers of government as well as participation of the private sector and other stakeholders in sports.


He therefore called on the Federation to create more awareness on the forthcoming competition as they prepare to host the first ever edition of the Pan-African Scrabble Championship that will be held in Nigeria in August 2023.


Earlier, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Sports and Youth Development, Alhaji Ismaila Abubakar thanked the President Muhammadu Buhari-led Administration for its commitment to the development of sports in the country.
While calling on sports loving Nigerians and philanthropists to key into the NSIP for a more robust partnership in the sector, he assured that government will continue to create an enabling environment for both athletes and investors to thrive in the field of sports.


Also speaking, the President, PAN African Scrabble Association, Mr. Adekoyejo Adegbesan thanked the Ministry for its support to the Federation, stressing that they will deploy their technical expertise so as to solidify their dominance in the game.

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Fago Lawal crowned his first start for 1961 Istra with a win

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Former Mavlon FC striker, Salim Fago Lawal crowned his first start for 1961 Istra FC of Croatia with a won against NK Rudes in the elite league encounter played on Saturday evening.

Fago, who has been working very hard and improving in every game did not disappoint the expectations of his coach and the rest of the technical crew of 1961 Istra, as he troubled the defence of the opponents.

His strong physical presence against NK Rudes defence was one of the factors that contributed to the 2-1 win of the host team.

Although, he did not score any of the goals, but there was no doubt that he had a good game with his aerial ability, dribbling runs into box, which helped in weary the defence of the away team.

The bully striker made his 69mins on the pitch to count to the delight of the fans of 1961 Istra and it is hoped that he will continue to raise the banner of Nigerian flag high at his modest Croatian club.

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