Nigeria opens campaign against Rwanda as battle for promotion begins in Abuja
Nigeria has been presented the tough task of battling with Rwanda in the opening game of the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) U-19 Men’s World Cup Africa Division 2 Qualifiers, which begins at the twin-ovals of the MKO Abiola National Stadium, Abuja, today.
The One Day International (ODI) format championship also has in contention such tough nations as Kenya, Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Ghana and Sierra Leone. They are all trying to be among the top-three nations to move from the qualifiers to the next level.
Ahead of the competition, Ghana and majority of Bostwana’s team arrived late last night, which development may cause slight changes in the tournament fixtures.
According to the Chairman of the Local Organising Committee (LOC), Ogbonnaya Okogeri, the big win for Nigeria is being able to put up the standard required for hosting this international event.
“This is the second ICC event that Nigeria will host, but this is unique in that it is on a higher level because of the quality of facility and personnel required to pull it off.
“So far, we have been able to meet up on so many fronts and as the event gets off the ground formally, our joy will be to coast home smoothly with a successful hosting.”
ICC Global Developmental Manager,
William Glenwright, who was around earlier in the week, had said the country’s feat in cricket developmental index has been impressive and has earned a look in from the global body for more support.
Nigeria between 2018 and 2019 scaled the U-19 World Cup ticket for her maiden appearance on the global stage at the World Cup in January 2020 in South Africa, an achievement Nigeria’s team handler, Daniel Gim, has assured they have set as benchmark.
“We have put in the hard work and I am sure, as a team, we are hungry to scale to the next stage and above all return to the World Cup,” he ahead of today’s opener. The tournament will end on October 9.