By Gracious Akujobi
The game of hockey has recorded remarkable growth in recent times, the Director of Organisation, Nigeria Hockey Federation (NHF), Tunde Popoola has said.
In a chat with Prompt News Online, Mr. Popoola said the game of hockey has improved tremendously, hoping for only the best in the years ahead.
According to him, the growth was evident in the high standard of the game displayed so far at the 4th edition of the International Energy Insurance (IEI) Hockey League Finals which kicked-off on Monday at the Adokiye Amasiemaka Stadium in Port-Harcourt
“So far, we are seeing high standard of performance from players, officials and administrators”, Popoola said.
Meanwhile, the Competition Manager at the league finals in Port Harcourt, Mr. Samuel Fadele, has said the competition has been very tough, considering the calibre of teams involved.
Fadele said nine teams are taking part in the league male category finals, while eight teams are taking part in the female category of the event.
The teams in the male category are Niger Flickers, who are the defending champions, Yobe Desert Warriors, Union Bank, Kano State, Plateau Tigers, Delta Force, Bayelsa Kings, Rivers and Police Machine.
In the female category we have Bayelsa Queens, who are also the defending champions, Yobe Queens, Delta Queens, Imo Heartland Flickers, Plateau Queens, Rivers, I. G Babes, who are the Police team, and Edo,’’ he said.
In Wednesday matches, Delta Force played a 1-1 draw with Police Machine, while Rivers State defeated Plateau Tigers 2-1 in the male category.
In the female category, I.G Babes (police) lost 0-3 to Bayelsa Queens, Rivers State played a goalless draw with Edo State, while Imo Heartland thrashed Yobe Queens 3-0.
The winners and runner-ups at the League will represent Nigeria at the African Club Male and Female Championship being proposed for Accra in Ghana later in the year. The IEI league finals come to an end on September 21.