By; Niyi Ogungbola, Abeokuta.
Ogun State Government is set to host a marathon race and tennis game to recruit new talents that will beef up the State team so as to win more laurels during competitions.
The State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun dropped this hint during the break-out session for sports at the just concluded Youth Convention, held at the June 12 Cultural Centre, Kuto, Abeokuta.
The Governor noted that the marathon race and other games would help the State discover more talents for the State who could later earn national call ups, adding that some banks have indicated interest in sponsoring the competitions as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility.
‘’Our administration would do everything possible to make sure that this government will continue to utilise all the options available. I am assuring you that with the economic situation in the country, this administration has developed sports in the State. World Bank and other banks have agreed to support the State teams,’’ the Governor said.
Earlier in his address, the Commissioner for Youth and Sports, Mr Afolabi Afuape urged youths to take the vast opportunities inherent in sports to improve their standard of living, as it now fetching huge money for sports men and women.
“Our youths need to add value to what they are doing and be focused. I know with determination and zeal, they will get to their destined place. We enjoin them to take their career in sports seriously, as it covers all other aspect of life,’’ Afuape submitted.
“An ex-international and former captain of the then Green Eagles, Chief Segun Odegbami advised the participants to pursue what would make them happy, engage in what they have passion for, which could propel them to greatness, rather than searching for white-collar jobs that was becoming scarce.
“Failure is a stepping stone to success in sports. Sports is one of the ways to get it right in this country, Many lives have been changed for the better through sports, so it is my belief that if the youths engage themselves in a particular sport they so desire, the sky will be their starting point’’, Odegbami said.
Former African track and field queen, Chief (Mrs) Falilat Ogunkoya – Omotayo also encouraged youths to be focused and combine their studies with sporting activities, as the two were important to achieving greatness in life, urging individuals and corporate bodies to throw their weight behind sponsoring more sporting activities so as to encourage the youth.