Oyo and Delta states’ men and women have emerged champions of the 2023 BetKing 3×3 Wheelchair Basketball National Championship which was held at the outdoor Sports Hall of Alake Sports Centre in Abeokuta, Ogun state.
Oyo state defeated Lagos state 10-1 to lift the trophy in the men’s category while Delta state defeated Oyo state 3-2 to win the women’s category.
Osun state came down from three points to beat Abuja 7-5 to seal third position in the men’s category while Imo state pummeled Kwara state 5-1 to settle for third position in the women’s category.
Speaking at the closing ceremony, President of Wheelchair Basketball Federation of Nigeria, Mr Seyi Johnson, said the championship was an opportunity for the players to get an opportunity to represent Nigeria at the African Para Games in Ghana next September.
He said the current board is working round the clock in ensuring Nigeria returns to its rightful position in Africa.
Johnshon said, “The current board plans to leave a legacy in Wheelchair Basketball; the journey has been tedious but we are optimistic of making a mark. We are ready to organise various championships across the country. Wheelchair Basketball will make Nigeria proud and will be a thing of joy as well as pride to sports in this country.
“Impossibility is not in my dictionary and I got the philosophy from my boss, Hon Bukola Olopade. He told me when people say there is no way, I should create a part and I think I am creating a way in Wheelchair Basketball.”
He said, “Ahead of the African Para Games in Ghana, the national coaches are on ground to monitor the players and sports talents. After two weeks of rest, the players will resume camp because our dream is to attend the Para Games and qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics. We have identified our weak links and want to work on them before the African Para Games.”
Meanwhile, winners in both categories went home with a trophy and N500, 000; first runners-up pocketed N300,000 while second runners-up went home with N200,000.