Admiral Gambo declares open YSFON CNS/NOWA football tourney

By Ifeanyi Eduzor

Chief of Naval Staff Vice Admiral Awwal Gambo has commended Youth Sports Federation of Nigeria (YSFON) for it’s efforts at grassroots football development saying that their various competitions has helped in discovering talents who have done the country proud at the international level.
He stated this over the weekend when he declared open the 19th edition of Chief of Naval Staff U-14 boys and the 17th edition of Nigerian Navy Officers Wives U-17 girls football competition going on in Ilorin, the Kwara State Capital.
Admiral Gambo who was represented by Rear Admiral Ismail Zelani accompanied by top Naval officers noted that the partnership between the Navy and YSFON in grassroots sports development has yielded good result having produced some notable national team players such as former Super Eagles Captain, Kanu Nwankwo, Taiwo Awoniyi and Rashidat Ajibade saying; that this has given the service the encouragement to continue partnering with the body.
“I’m happy with what YSFON is doing in grassroots football development in the country and we’re happy to partner with them. It’s on record that since the commencement of YSFON/CNS football championship, many national and league players have been discovered who later became household names both locally and internationally in football.
“Players like Kanu Nwankwo, Taiwo Awoniyi and Falcons” Rashidat Ajibade and many more were products of this championship and we’ll continue to partner YSFON in order to give hope to talented youths of the country”, the Chief of Naval Staff said.
In his remarks, National President of YSFON Dr. Nasiru Yusuf Gawuna who was represented by the Vice President, North Central, Hon. Mustapha Allahdey was full of praise to the Nigerian Navy for sustaining the championship just as he charged similar services and corporate organisations to emulate the Navy and partner with the Federation to harness talents at the grassroots.
” We at YSFON are happy with our partnership with the Nigerian Navy and must commend them for their doggedness in sustaining the tempo of the tournament which has given hope to a lot of Nigerian youths.
” It’s equally important I use this opportunity to appeal to other Military and Para-Military formations including corporate organisations to emulate what Nigerian Navy is doing in area of grassroots sports development and partner with YSFON in order to develop sports further in the country”, noted Gawuna who also doubles as Deputy Governor of Kano State.
He also charged all the participating teams to shun all acts of indiscipline and play to the rules of the game and admonished the officials to be firm to all, assuring them of a hitch free competition.
Meanwhile in the opening match, Kwara State female team and last year’s runners-up began the tournament on a winning note when they whitewashed their Osun state counterparts 4-0.
The match which was played at the Kwara Football Academy, Kwara State Stadium, saw the host state dominating the game from the first blast of the whistle with the fans asking for more action.
Some notable personalities who witnessed the match/opening ceremony includes; Executive Chairman of Kwara State Sports Commission, Mallam Bola Magaji, Kwara State YSFON chairman, Ademola Kiyesola, Mallam Tunde Kazeem of Kazolinks amongst others.
Action continues today when host state face Bauchi with Kano playing Osun. Ekiti will square up against Enugu, Kaduna will play Delta just as Edo will test the might of Rivers. Also Nigerian Navy will trade tackles with Ondo with Ogun meeting Kebbi while Oyo tackles Nasarawa at the Kwara Football Academy Complex.
In the female category which will hold at the Queen Elizabeth School, Ilorin, Nigerian Navy will meet Ekiti while Oyo will play Kwara who are currently topping the female table

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