With the conclusion of the zonal eliminations, all set for the 6th edition of the National Youth Games officially kicking off on Wednesday, October 13, 2021 at the sports complex of the University of Ilorin, Kwara State, as athletes and officials started arriving on Sunday to conclude registration and fine-tune their preparation for a weeklong event.
The Games which will feature a total of 33 sporting events will mark another turning point in Nigeria’s quest for a breed of new generational athletes that will make the country proud at the global showpiece.
Recall that the Joint Technical Meeting of the NYG, chaired by the director of grassroots sports development, Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports Development, Bode Durotoye and attended by no fewer than 32 state directors of sports from across the country, approved 33 sporting events that would feature in the multi-event games, opened to all Nigerians aged 15 years and below.
Among the approved events were: Athletics, Aquatics, Badminton, Basketball, Beach Volleyball, Boxing, Canoeing, Chess, Cricket, Fives, Cycling, Dart, Football, Golf, Gymnastics and Handball.
Others include: Hockey, Judo, Karate, Para-athletics, Para-table tennis, Scrabble, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis, Squash, Trado sports, Ayo and Kokowa, Volleyball, Weightlifting, Wrestling and Wush-Kungfu.
The meeting enjoined states sports councils, commissions and ministries to ensure that athletes for the NYG fell within the prescribed age bracket of 15 years and below for the credibility of the games.
The National Youth Games is best described as a production centre where federations source for athletes to replace the aging ones. The likes of Odunayo Adekuoroye, Grace Nwokocha, Imaobong Nse Uko, and many others who represented Nigeria at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics Games in Japan were products of the NYG.