The Lagos State Karate Association (LSKA) on Thursday pledged compliance to the requirements of the 2018 National Youth Games (NYG), especially registering athletes within specified age brackets for the competition.
The LSKA Head Coach, Sola Shoyoye, made the pledge in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos, adding that necessary screening of the athletes would done before the start of the Games holding in Ilorin from Sept. 7 to Sept. 17.
NAN reports that Ademola Are, the Director of Grassroots Sports Development of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, had said that only athletes of age 15 and below were eligible feature the competition.
Shoyoye said that eight karatekas, comprising four boys and four girls, were camping at the Mobolaji Johnson Sports Centre, Rowe Park, Yaba for the Games.
“The age requirement was specifically pointed out at the zonal eliminations by the grassroots sports director, and it is binding on us to comply and portray good image of our state.
“We are running an open camp at Rowe Park for eight athletes now; and we are using their school data and available birth certificates to conduct a thorough exercises on them again.
“It will be a wasted effort to prepare and present over-age athletes in Ilorin because they will be disqualified; and we will lose the medal chances,” he said.
He noted that only four of the athletes in training would finally make the list, as two slots were open for the boys and girls events.
According to him, the boys will compete in the -50 and +50 weight categories, while the girls have their class in the -47 and +47 categories at the Games.
“We are presenting two boys and two girls for the available slots; and the selection will be strictly based on individual response to training, application to fighting rules and discipline.”
NAN reports that the NYG, introduced and held in Abuja in 2013, is a grassroots competition aimed at raising new talents that will be nurtured to stardom in the sport.