Saturday, July 02, 2022

We are Ready to Host Women T20I Cricket, Akpata Says



The President of the Nigeria Cricket Federation, Uyi Akpata has said that all is now set to host the maiden Women’s Invitational T20I Tournament at the Tafawa Balewa Square in Lagos from Monday, March 28, 2022.

According to Uyi, “We have just a few days to the official opening event and we have most of our boxes ticked. The ground is taking very good shape and the necessary accessories needed for the full running of an event of this magnitude are almost fully in place. I can say we are very ready.”

The event, when it gets off next Monday, will become one of the biggest Women’s Cricket events on the continent, given the pool of participating countries it parades.

“We are expecting the five other countries joining Nigeria to start arriving on Saturday and we have a number of pre-event formalities that have been scheduled to go on from there until the first ball on next Monday” he added.

Uyi also said the event has also enjoyed huge support from corporate Nigeria, especially those with some measure of interest in the gender perspectives that this event addresses.

“We would be making a show of our sponsors and partners sometimes during the week and I believe their support at this time has been a huge plus for this event taking off in the first place.”

The International Cricket Council, Africa, who also has sanctioned the event will also be monitoring proceedings from the start to finish, including making each match count for each nation’s ranking.

Four foreign umpires would be officiating at the event, of which, two of the participating countries will provide one each, Rwanda and Sierra Leone; while the other two would come from neutral non-participating countries, Kenya and Uganda. These would be joined by four home-based umpires in officiating at all the 12 matches of the tournament.

Akpata said the Women’s Invitational T20i Tournament is part of the developmental plan of the Nigeria Cricket Federation and will be upheld as a yearly event to sustain the growing interest and extraordinary achievements that the Federation has attained with Women’s enrollment into the game in the past few years.

This year, more than 125, 000 female cricketers are projected to be recruited into the game, through a nationwide grassroots programme of the Federation.

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