After two days extension on the schedules initially released for arrival dates for states, as well as the problems of accommodation of athletes due to extended academic activities, the 6th edition of the National Youth Games gets underway tomorrow Friday, at the University of Ilorin Sports Complex, Ilorin.
Despite the two days extension for arrival of states, the Acting Director, Grassroots Sports Development at the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Alhaji Bode Durotoye said that the original schedule for the Games will not be affected, as the Games comes to a close on October 19th.
The opening ceremony will commence by 3.00pm tomorrow.
All the athletes were today screened ahead of the official commencement of hostilities, with Alhaji Durotoye insisting that athletes must be U-15 years old, and that screening continues up till the end of the Games.
“Athletes need to be U-15 years of age, and not 15 years plus. The screening Committee has done a thorough job, but nevertheless, the process continues till the final day, as any athlete detected to be above age 15 will be withdrawn, and the coach and state sanctioned.
The Games which will feature a total of 33 sporting events will mark another turning point in Nigeria’s quest for a breed of new generational athletes that will make the country proud at the global stage.
The approved events were: athletics, aquatics, badminton, basketball, beach volleyball, boxing, canoeing, chess, cricket, fives, cycling, dart, football, golf, gymnastics and handball.
Others include hockey, judo, karate, para-athletics, para-table tennis, scrabble, table tennis, taekwondo, tennis, squash, trado sports, ayo and kokowa, volleyball, weightlifting, wrestling and wush-Kungfu.
Delta State won the last edition in 2019, after garnering 104 medals to win the Games for the record fifth time.
Team Delta garnered 104 medals comprising 41 gold, 32 silver and 31 bronze medals.
Team Lagos placed 2nd on the medal table after garnering 72 medals: 22 gold, 36 silver and 14 bronze medals.
Bayelsa came third with 45 medals, 17 gold, 6 silver and 22 bronze medals.
Akwa Ibom placed fourth on the table with 41 medals comprising 16 gold, 12 silver and 13 bronze medals.
Expected to grace the opening ceremony tomorrow are the Kwara state Governor, Mallam AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, the Vice Chancellor, University of Ilorin, Professor Sulaiman Age Abdulkareem, the Minister of Sports, Chief Sunday Dare, top government functionaries, Federal Ministry officials and others.