FCDA, rain delay new cricket pitches construction in Abuja, says Federation



The Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF) has attributed the delay in the completion of its two cricket pitches in Abuja to the lack of approval of the pavilion plan by the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA).

The construction of pitches is being bankrolled by Montage Cable Network.

Emeka Onyeama, the President of the federation, who disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday, also blamed the rain for the slow pace of work on the project.

Onyeama said the sports federation was still awaiting for approval of the pavilion plan sent to the FCDA by the National Sports Commission (NSC).

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“The turf wicket is 60 per cent done as you look at; we are just waiting for the rain to give us a little space, so that we can lay the turf.

“We have just submitted our drawing to the National Sports Commission (NSC), awaiting the approval for us to start construction of the pavilion and the sitting arrangement.

“World Cup Division Five is coming up in first quarter of 2016 and we are on point to make sure that we deliver the turf wickets before 2016.’’

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The NCF president said the federation was encouraged by the level of support the NSC and its Director-General, Alhassan Yakmut, had given to ensure a timely completion of the pitches.

This, according to Onyeama, is aimed at ensuring that the country bid for the hosting right of the World Cup Division Five scheduled to take place in the first quarter of 2016.

“I am so happy that the NSC led by Alhassan Yakmut, is strongly behind us.

“He wants the hosting to come up in Nigeria, to be able to facilitate eco-tourism and all kinds of thing that comes with sports development.

“So, we are deeply encouraged by the National Sports Commission and that’s giving us more effrontery and drive to make sure we win the bid to host World Cup Division Five, come next year.’’

Onyeama also said that he was fulfilled with the achievement of his administration, saying that most of his campaign promises had been achieved.

“As an individual, I have a self-fulfillment that I have kept to the promise I made the day we won this election.

“We have been able to institutionalise the game; we now have the game in National Secondary School Sports competition. We also have the game in National Sports Festival.

“That is all I have dreamt of today, we are also going into the Nigeria University Games Association (NUGA).

“Once we have done that, we are home, safe and dry. We also promised facility; the facility is already ongoing. So, I am fulfilled just that I cannot praise myself.’’

NAN recalls that Montage Cable Network, one of the sponsors of NCF, promised to construct two cricket pitches for the federation to boost the country’s chances of bidding for the 2016 World Cup Division Five hosting right.

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