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School Championships: Handball players decry poor standard of facilities


Lagos – Some participants at the just concluded Lagos State Secondary Schools Handball Championships have decried the poor standard of facilities at venue of the tournament in Lagos.

A few of them who spoke to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) at the Mobolaji Johnson’s Sports Centre, Yaba, venue of the competition, criticised some aspects of the competition.

The championships tagged ‘Opeifa Cup’ held from May 16 to May 21, was organised by the Lagos State Handball Association in which 103 teams from 74 schools participated.

They expressed sadness at the inadequate number of official balls, courts as well as nets and goal posts.

They also frowned at the absence of seasoned coaches to provide technical support to teams during the competition.

The participants, however, appealed to the Lagos State Sports Commission (LSSC) to make sufficient facilities available for the development of handball in their schools.

Shola Oguntowo, the Captain of Ayetoro Senior Grammar School, Ayetoro, said that they usually prepare for competitions, using the facilities at the centre.

Oguntowo whose team emerged winners in the senior girls’ categories said that the accessibility of the equipment would help them train more effectively.

“The LSSC is doing well but they need to help those of us in school by donating basic facilities for our training,” she said.

Glory Ashogbon of Mainland Senior Girls High School, Fadeyi, pleaded with the commission to visit schools to ensure that they have standard courts.

Ashogbon whose team ended 3rd position said that the provision of basic standard equipment would contribute immensely in the training of upcoming players.

“We don’t have handball court in our school not to talk of other important facilities to train with, so this has been a problem to us.

“Last year, we ended in the 3rd position and same in this year again and I am not happy about this, but had it been that we had training equipment in our school, we would have performed better,’’ she said.

Ajibola Eniola of Herbert Macaulay Senior High School, Yaba, commended Kayode Opeifa, sponsor of the championships for his support to the development of the sport.

Eniola also stressed the need to have seasoned coaches in schools for effective development of the sport at the grassroots.

NAN reports that the championships which had boys and girls played in the senior and junior categories had Archdeacon Senior Boys High School and Mainland Senior boys clinching the 1st and 2nd positions.

Herbert Macaulay Junior boys and Bariga boys’ Junior High Schools finished 1st and 2nd positions respectively while Onike Girls and St Francis Junior Secondary School also ended 1st and 2nd positions. (NAN)

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