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Hammed promises to revive judo in Lagos

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Despite winning only a silver medal with five judokas at the 20th National Sports Festival, chairman of the Lagos State Judo Association, Sheriff Hammed, believes the new board is poised to revive the fortune of the sport.

Speaking on the silver medal won by Adebukola Adeyanju in the -78kg, Hammed said the association would work to groom more judokas that would do the state proud in subsequent tournaments.

“I must say that the judokas did not perform badly in Edo, as we had one silver from the five athletes that featured in the event. The performance could have been a better one but there was a drastic reduction in the number of athletes in judo due to COVID-19 protocols.

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“Our players were reduced from 14 to five, which did not enable us to register for more events.

“With this outcome from Edo 2020, the association will go back to the drawing board, look at the lapses and find lasting solutions to the dwindling fortune of the sport in Lagos.

“I see the festival as a test run for the athletes, who have been match-rusty for over three years. We hope to put many things in place to boost the athletes,” he added.

He said the board would seek partnerships with private sector operators to promote and develop the sport, adding they would also visit the Japanese ambassador to see how his government could support the sport.

“It is a new beginning for the judo family in Lagos and I am going to use my experience as a marketing communications expert to attract local and international brands to the sport and ensure we organise several events to engage the athletes. Being a Japanese sport, we hope to involve the Japanese companies in Lagos to give the sport the needed support by partnering with the association.

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