The Taekwondo Federation (WTF) sanctioned Nigeria Taekwondo Open has been shifted forward for three months after the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation (NTF) had officially proposed February 2019 for the global competition. NTF technical director and Olympics medalist, Chika Chukwumerije, who disclosed this in a press statement made available to LEADERSHIP Sports, said the postponement was to enable athletes both in Nigeria and other West African countries process their world taekwondo Global Membership System (GMS) License, a compulsory requirement to register for any global taekwondo event.
Chukwumerije, who remains the only Nigerian to have won taekwondo medal at Olympic Games, also hinted that, “So far, 50 persons from eight countries including India, Ethiopia, Ghana, Congo, Mozambique, Mali and Nigeria had registered before the close deadline. “But we are aware that more than150 persons including many Nigeria competitors that want to participate in the event were unable to complete their registration due to their inability to get their valid GMS license on time.
“Imagine having our very first world taekwondo event and all the world ranking points go to mostly foreign teams, plus Nigeria won’t be placed on a commendable place on the medal table because of non-participation. “It made no sense to host an event that doesn’t majorly benefit our Nigeria Taekwondo family. Other countries registered quickly because they have these documents and have been going for several internationals. “We have assisted about 100 Nigerians through the process of application and we intend to double the number before deadline of 20th January so they duly register for the event.”
NTF few months ago secured WT endorsement on Nigeria Open which debuted last year as an international competition. Ninth (9th) Korean Ambassador’s cup held earlier in October, this year where about 150 Nigerian Athletes participated and raked in more points at the National level.
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