By Olanrewaju Akojede
Lagos – As the 5th National Youth Games (NYG) is ongoing in Ilorin, a young wrestler, Abigail Ogbuike, says her love for wrestling as a career should not be misconstrued to mean engaging in it to bully her mates.
The Imo-born Ogbuike, who made the assertion in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Lagos, said she chose to be one of Nigeria’s greatest wrestlers, adding it was the reason she started off as a wrestler at her early years.
Ogbuike, who participated in the last edition of the National Youth Games in Ilorin in 2018 as a member of Lagos State contingent, said that wrestling as a sport was not a hostile game.
“Wrestling is not what many term it to be, some see us as aggressive personalities which we are not, wrestling is different from fighting; as a wrestler, I’m not expected to fight in public.
“My choice to be a wrestler is not to bully anyone, especially my mates, wrestlers are cool, while most people see us as friends and not bullies; I am cool with everyone, I don’t fight.
“Wrestling involves techniques which is different from the negative perception about the sport, being a wrestler does not mean that you can beat anybody, not about body building alone.
“I have had many wonderful experiences since I started wrestling about six years ago, I developed interest because my dad is also a wrestler and I have since been enjoying doing that,’’ she said.
Ogbuike said that she would be glad to be one of Nigeria’s greatest wrestlers, adding that early start to the sport was an advantage to her.
“I have seen many wrestlers who I admire, but my whole interest is to be one of the greatest wrestlers in Nigeria, I have people I am looking up to like Odunayo Adekuoroye and others.
“I love the sport and I chose wrestling because I was encouraged by my dad who happens to be a wrestler himself, he is a professional wrestler but I am in amateur division.
“I had a wonderful experience last year at the National Youth Games in Ilorin which was my first attempt in any competition, I am looking forward to the ongoing this year’s edition to win my first medal.
“In the nearest future, I want to turn a professional wrestler because I have good trainers who have been guiding me on what to do,’’ she said.