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Eko 2012: Rivers, Lagos are men’s, women’s gold winners

08 December 2012, 16:27

Lagos - Men’s basketball defending champions, Team Rivers and hosts Team Lagos have emerged the men and women’s gold medallists, respectively, at the 18th National Sports Festival scheduled to end on Sunday.      

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Rivers successfully defended its men’s trophy by beating Team Oyo 60-31, while Lagos defeated defending champions, Rivers 61-34, to claim the women’s gold.   

Rivers completely overwhelmed Oyo all through the match to claim the men’s gold, while Lagos completely routed Rivers to also win the women’s god.

Team Rivers Coach, Fubura  Oyenabor, in a post match interview, said that his team really worked hard to defend its title, saying it was a well-deserved victory.

I thank God for this victory. Basketball is very much alive in Rivers and we have just proved that we have the quality to achieve greatness.

"We look forward to developing more quality players in the sport,’’ he said.

Team Oyo coach, Adebayo Aderinboye, said that Rivers players had height advantage over his players, adding, however, that he was pleased with the silver medal.

"It was great game; we were completely overwhelmed. Team Rivers were better coordinated and made good use of their physical advantage.

"For us, the silver medal is still good because the last time we archieved this greatness in basketball was as far back as 1981. So it’s a great thing for us,’’ he said.

In the women’s category, Coach Adewunmi Aderemi of Team Lagos said that it was a great victory for him and his girls, because they were able to overcome Team Rivers.

 "We are aware of what Team Rivers could do, so we refuse to allow them settle and play their game.

"I was confident of my girls and they did just what I wanted and we got the gold,’’ he said.

Caroline Biggs, Team Rivers’ women's coach, said she was unable to clinch the gold because her best players were not allowed to play.

"Three of my best hands were not allowed to play; they were ruled out by the indigenisation laws guiding the festival,'' Biggs said.

She, however, added that her team was contended with the silver, saying that the team was ready to reclaim its gold medal in Calabar in 2014.



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