Lagos - Victor Eyinka, Head Coach of the Lagos State Amateur Boxing Association has died during an illness, an official of the association has announced.
The association’s Assistant Coach, Wasiu Bisiriyu, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that Eyinka, 55, died on Tuesday after he had battled whooping cough for some years.
Bisiriyu said that he was shocked on hearing about Eyinka's death, describing the death as a great loss to the association.
He described Eyinka as a sportsman and someone who had a big vision for boxers in Lagos State.
Bisiriyu said further that Eyinka’s death was a great setback for boxers’ preparation for the 18th National Sports Festival, scheduled for Nov. 27 to Dec. 9 in Lagos.
``He was a colleague, a complete gentleman and a great sportsman who meant well for the association but his death was so unfortunate.
``He died at a time that we needed him most, his death will affect the preparation of boxers for the sports festival, I pray that God should grant him eternal repose,’’ Bisiriyu said.
Meanwhile, some boxers who reacted to Eyinka's death said that they would miss him.
Olaide Fijabi said that he was perplexed when he heard of Eyinka’s death, adding that the association had lost a rare gem.
``I did not believe the news but it later dawned on me that it is true, we lost a rare gem,’’ Fijabi said.
Another boxer, Joseph Otto, also said that he would miss the coach so much, noting that they had been preparing together for the sports festival.
Gabriel Francis said that he was so sad when he heard the news of the coach’s death.
``I think we boxers will miss him dearly, it is sad to hear the news but I just pray that God should give him eternal rest,’’ Francis said.
Eyinka became the head coach when the former head coach, Femi Babafemi, retired in 2011.