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NVBF hoping for large turnout of participants at Controller-General of Customs Open Championships

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ABUJA – The Nigeria Volleyball Federation (NVBF) says it is expecting a high turnout of participants at the second edition of the Controller-General of Customs Open Volleyball Championships for Men and Women.
The federation’s Technical Director, Tony Oghuma-Eghiemai, said on Saturday in Abuja the NVBF was expecting a large turnout at the championships for various reasons.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the competition which holds at the Murtala Muhammed Square Sports Complex in Kaduna begins on Sunday and is scheduled to end on Saturday.
Oghuma-Eghiemai said the championships’ first edition had 28 teams and clubs in both the male and female categories in attendance, but the federation would now be hoping for a higher figure.
“We are expecting a high number of participants in Kaduna for many reasons.
“One of them is the fact that it is the first competition we are having this year for indoor volleyball, and we are grateful to the Controller-General of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for the magnanimity of sponsoring the event.
“It is a big way of closing the year for us and our teams and players, and without the NCS coming to our aid we would not have been having this.
“Therefore, many teams and clubs will want to be there, especially as the National Sports Festival (NSF) in Calabar has been moved to April.
“It will be an opportunity for them to size up other teams, and also assess themselves,’’ the Technical Director said.
He said the NVBF was also going to use the championships to scout for young and new players to replace ageing ones in the male and female national teams.
“We will have to start to get set for the qualifiers for both the 2015 All-Africa Games in Congo and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil,’’ Oghuma-Eghiemai said.
He was however hoping that the championships’ defending champions in both the male and female categories, the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Commission (NSCDC), would be present to defend their titles.
“We are hoping they are going to be there, in view of the quality of their teams as well as the fact that they need to come and show whether they are still as formidable as we think they are.
“Above all, the national teams need them, in terms of the quality of their teams and their players, to heighten competition and give us the opportunity to assess them for invitation for national assignments,’’ Oghuma-Eghiemai said.
He said a major attraction at the championships this year is that a Beach Volleyball competition will run side by side with the indoor volleyball event.
“It is to also afford the Beach Volleyball Committee of the NVBF the opportunity to look out for players to represent the country in all its competitions starting off early next year.
“Beach volleyball also have qualifiers for the Continental Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, Brazil as well.
“So, the Committee will be scouting for players in Kaduna too,’’ the NVBF Technical Director said.
NAN reports that the participating teams and clubs at the championships were expected to arrive on Saturday and Sunday, with the Technical Meeting slated for Sunday.
Competition is billed to start on Sunday or Monday, while the finals and closing ceremony are slated for Friday and the departure billed for Saturday.(NAN)

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