By Olusola ‘Jide @jide_olusola
The Minister of Youth and Sports, Barrister Solomon Dalung has revealed the motive behind the International Cricket Council embarked on the World Cup trophy tour to Nigeria.
The sports minister who was represented by the Permanent Secretary, Mr Olusade Adesola, said the trophy tour to the country has shown the trust and confidence of the world governing to Nigeria.
He stated this while receiving the ICC World Cup trophy at the Velodrome of the Abuja National Stadium yesterday.
“The presence of the ICC trophy in Nigeria shows the trust and confidence the world governing body has for Nigeria which is historic even though Nigeria is not among world Crickets powerhouse.”
“It also reaffirmed the effort of the present board in repositioning the game in Nigeria, we also look forward to winning the ICC World Cup soon”
“I urge you to hold up the game as we go continue to build a more comfortable atmosphere for the cricketer in the country” he added.
On his part, president of the Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF), Professor Adams Yahaya Ukwenya lauded the world governing for bringing the trophy to Nigeria, adding that Nigeria is set to dominate the world.
“This is the priceless trophy in the world for cricket and the winners of the trophy are described as the best cricket nation in the planet. It’s the 50overs and the ODI trophy” he said.
“The Nigeria Cricket team have dominated the game in western regional Africa and we are work hard so that we can dominate Africa and the world.”
“The national U19 will travel to Namibia to contest for a World Cup tickets in March, also the female national team will be in action for place to represent the continent at the World Cup and also the male team will fight for place in the T20 World Cup, I assure Nigerians that we will do everything humanly possible to qualify for the for the World Cup “ he added.
In the same vein, the ICC Africa financial Operating Officer, Kuben Pillay said the trophy tour will inspire cricketers adding that Nigeria has what it takes to dominate the world in the game.
“It inspires the next generation of cricketers and it is for the awareness of the game and the Cricket World Cup.
“Nigeria has a lot of potentials to dominate Africa and the world in the next 15years with the focus in the right areas in which the Nigerian federation is doing presently,” he concluded
This is the first time that the trophy tour will be coming to Nigeria in the more than 120years of cricket history in the world.
The trophy holders Australia is set to retain her title during the ICC World Cup which will be hosted by England and Wales in June later this year.