The Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF) says its aim of organizing a students’ clinic is to discover budding talents for the sports in Enugu and by extension the South-East.
The Federation’s Regional Development Officer (South-East), Charles Obasi, told newsmen that the event and other cricket events to come would popularize the sports in schools in Enugu and the region.
Obasi noted that the clinic also covers a training sessions for school instructors as well as physical education teachers from the participating secondary schools so that they can continue coaching the students after the clinic.
He noted that the federation would provide soft balls and bat shapes for the school to continue training the students after the clinic; while it would partner with the state’s sports ministry to be sending cricket coaches to the schools to monitor their development.
He said: “We in the federation is looking beyond today to a future where great cricket giants will be coming from this part of the country especially Enugu State.
“The Federation strongly believes that cricket will soon be a huge money spinner in the country with a strong national league just as it is in South-Africa, India and Australia today. Those who play cricket will be highest sports earning men and women very soon’’.
According to him, the Federation will be organizing first-ever secondary schools cricket competition in late January in Enugu to further showcase the sports to enlarged fans of the sports.
The Federation’s National Development Manager (South), Tonye Timinadi, said that as the lead instructor, he observed that the students participated in the clinic with excitement to learn more about cricket.
“With the excitement in them; as an instructor, I see great cricketers in the making. The future is bright for them with their present attitude to the sports.
“I will be coming back to Enugu State in few weeks to see how the budding cricketers and their instructors are faring in various schools,’’ Timinadi said.
Rev. Fr. Chijioke Ede, Principal, St. Patrick College, Emene near Enugu, said that the school was elated to host these students learning about cricket for the first time, as this great opportunity would bring greater goodwill to the school.
“Self development does not come from reading or academics alone; but a students can develop a talent in sports especially cricket and he gets livelihood, fame and money from it as well. So, it is a welcomed development,’’ Ede said.
One of the participating students, Miss Maryanna Uka from Anglican Girls Grammar School, Akwananaw in Enugu, said that she had learnt in the game of cricket to obey the umpire and play according to instruction.
Another participant, Master Obinna Ezema from Good Shepherd Anglican Seminary School, Independent Layout, Enugu, said that he had learnt that the game of cricket can make one be disciplined and physically fit.
The theme of the three-day clinic, which lasted from Nov. 16 to Nov. 18, was: “NCF 9ja Kids Mass Participation in Cricket in Enugu State’’.