BY EVEREST EZIHE
Overwhelmed by the exploits of Imo athletes thus far in the ongoing National Sports Festival christened Edo 2020 leading to the team winning many laurels when compared with their previous outings, the Head Coach with Imo State Sports Commission, Mr. Joe Chimezie has said Imo Coaches deserve commendation for making the state proud despite their challenges.
Chimezie who spoke at Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium Complex, Benin, one of the venues of the sporting fiesta.
as the state has in her kit 9 Gold, 13 Silver and 17 Bronze medals as at the time of the interaction and filing of the report.
He said “I am highly impressed with our athletes. Some of them have now qualified for the finals, some have won medals and some didn’t win.
“We started well at home but due to Covid-19, we stopped our camping and that is one of the problems we are experiencing here because the stoppage really affected some of the athletes.
“The results thus far recorded, kudos should go to the Coaches. Most of these athletes were products of grassroots sports, discoverered by the coaches who against all odds fine tuned them into finished products.
“Most the coaches used their money and made tremendous sacrifices in building them up and today they are given us laurels. Imo Coaches deserve commendations and incentives” he noted.
He appealed to Imo State government to encourage the coaches, to enable them harness more hidden talents from the various autonomous communities and from other states of the federation.
Chimezie further expressed gratitude to the State Commissioner of Youth and Sports, Hon. Dan Ogu for his dedication, commitments and patriotism to sports development and transformation as well as the State Director of Sports, Mrs. Chizotam Aretola for her motherly sacrifices and encouragement.
On the issue of replacing ageing athletes, Chimezie canvassed the need for the state to organize sports festival involving all the 27 council areas, insisting that hidden talents will be discovered and groomed for the advantage of the state and the nation at large.