ABUJA – Uganda’s top badminton player, Edwin Ekiring, on Sunday emerged champion in the men’s event of the Nigeria International Badminton Championship.
Ekiring defeated France’s Arnaud Genin 3-2 to clinch the trophy at the tournament held in Gymnasium of Abuja National Stadium.
The championship, which is in its third edition, was organised by the Badminton Federation of Nigeria (BFN) in collaboration with Badminton World Federation (BWF).
Ekiring, who is currently ranked 22nd in Africa, raced to an early lead in the match, taking the first two sets 11-4, 11-7 before Genin fought back to win the third set 11-4.
NAN recalls that Ekiring had on Saturday caused a major upset in the championships when he saw off Nigeria’s Bulus Jinkam, former Africa’s number one, with a 3-1 defeat in a quarterfinal encounter.
He overwhelmed Czech Republic’s Milan Ludik 3-2 in the semi-finals before taking on Genin in the final.
In the men’s doubles finals, it was an all-Nigerian affair as the pair of Jinkam and Ola Fagbemi saw off Enejoh Abah and Victor Makanju 3-1 to win the event’s price.
Also, Nigeria’s top player Jinkam combined with Susan Ideh to defeat the pair of Ola Fagbemi and Dorcas Adesokan 3-2 in the final of the mixed doubles event.
In the final of the women’s singles event, Switzerland’s Nicole Schaller edged out Nigeria’s Grace Ijadare 3-2 to emerge champion.
In the women’s doubles, Bangi and Hadia Hosny of Egypt displayed good combination to beat Nigeria’s pair of Tosin Atolagbe and Azeez 3-0.
NAN also reports that winners of the men and women’s final event smiled home with 1,220 dollars each while the runners-up pocketed 620 dollars each.
The semi-finalists and quarterfinalists in the category were compensated with 300 dollars and 100 dollars, respectively.
Winners of the men and women’s doubles as well as the mixed doubles events went home with 360 dollars each, while the runners-up pocketed 200 dollars each.
The semi-finalists in the category were not left out as they went home with 80 dollars each.
In his address at the closing ceremony, BFN President, Justice Danlami Senchi, thanked the various sponsors and sports personalities and institutions who contributed to the success of the tournament.
“I must not fail to thank Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko, the Governor of Sokoto State, for his sponsorship of this tournament and his contribution to the development of Badminton in Nigeria.
“Our gratitude also goes to the FCT administration as well as the National Sports Commission (NSC) for their administrative support and the use of the sports facility,’’ he said. (NAN)