THE Badminton Federation of Nigeria (BFN), ahead of the sixth edition of the the biggest badminton competition in Africa, the Lagos International Badminton Classics, has launched a platform that will link sports-friendly organisations in the country to the great benefits that the international event presents.
Next Wednesday at the Civic Centre in Victoria Island, Lagos, the BFN will host the organisations to a lunch tagged ‘Shuttle Symphony’, which is a gathering of chief executive officers of various organisations in Nigeria.
The Lagos International Badminton Classics traditionally welcomes high-ranking players from all over the world, not just from Africa, making it the biggest on the continent.
It is also the badminton competition with the highest cash prize in Africa. At the fifth edition, the cash prize was $20,000.
BFN says the sixth edition even promises more in value as the Lagos International Badminton Classics has also merged elements of entertainment, opening various windows for different organisations to exploit.
In 2017, a new vista was opened as even spectators and others were beneficiaries. A raffle draw took place for all the attendees, with two return tickets to London and Accra won.
According to the President of BFN who is also a council member of the Badminton Confederation Africa (BCA), Francis Orbih, the essence of the Shuttle Symphony is to throw more light on the next edition of the Lagos International Classics which will run from August 30 to September 2.
The member of the council of the continental ruling body insisted that the Lagos International remains the first international challenge and the biggest in Africa.
Meanwhile, a two-day Shuttle Time Train the Trainer Badminton project, organised by the BFN, in partnership with Community Sport Educational Development (CSED) Initiative, ended on Wednesday at the Indoor Sports Hall of Kwara State Stadium Complex, Ilorin.
The training programme involved 25 schoolteachers (games masters/mistresses) and 100 students drawn from various secondary schools across Kwara State.
The programme, a Badminton World Federation (BWF) initiative to take the sport to the schools and to the grassroots in order to discover and develop hidden talents, attracted enthusiastic students, teachers and personalities.
Addressing the participants, the Kwara State Governor and the Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Mallam Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq, applauded the Badminton Federation and the world body as well as the Community Sport Educational Development (CSED) Initiative for the bold steps to develop the game.
Governor AbdulRasaq who called on corporate bodies, organisations and individuals to join hands with the government to take sports to greater heights.
The governor, who was represented by the Executive Chairman, Kwara State Sports Commission, Bola Mogaji, commended the participants for their conduct, advising them not to derail from their focus.
He reiterated the determination of the state government to always support sports in view of its potential to improve the economy of the athletes, the State and the Nation.
Governor AbdulRasaq urged the games masters and mistresses to be good ambassadors of the state and implement the training to the students.
The representative of the Governor later announced the personal donation of N200,000 to stage the State Secondary Schools Badminton Championship, urging the State Badminton Association to work out the modalities for a hitch-free tournament.
The Chairman, Kwara State Badminton Association, Suleiman Warah, advised the participants to embrace badminton, describing it as a lovely game that the students can make a career out of while pursuing their academic programme.
National Coordinator Shuttle Time Nigeria, coach Tajudeen Suleiman, said 28 teachers and 102 students from 28 schools attended the two-day programme that featured tips on how to raise beginners in badminton using Shuttle Time resources.