The Edo State Rugby Association are glad to announce that the 2021 season is the most successful season, Head Coach of the Association Mr. Ntiense Williams stated.
While thanking God for the success recorded, Mr. Ntiense further highlighted that “The 2021 Rugby Season started with the return of the beautiful game of Rugby to the 20th edition of the National Sports Festival which was hosted by Edo State and tagged Edo 2020”
Rugby had suffered two postponements after 12 years of absence as one of the 5 Optional Sports, but thanks to the Chairman of the Edo State Sports Commission Barr. Godwin Dudu Orumen and the Director of Sports Technical Mr Charity Igbinosa who had so much confidence in their Head Coach Mr Ntiense William who is popularly called “Mr Rugby” in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, it was the sports loving Deputy Governor of Edo State Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu who saved the day for Rugby when he helped to get a Waver for the Female Rugby to be a Scoring Event after it suffered from the reduction in Team Sports due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
Edo State Rugby Teams emerged champions with 3 Gold, 2 Silver & 1 Bronze Medals respectively out of the 6 Gold, Silver & Bronze Medals available, thereby topping both the Male & Female categories and the overall event.
The victory further rubbed off on the juniors who went with just the Female U15 Team to the National Youth Games in Ilorin and came back victorious with the Gold Medal and thus becomes the back to back U15 Female National Champions.
To revive the Edo State School’s Rugby program which was started in 2014, but was truncated in 2019 due to the Covid 19 Pandemic, the Edo State Rugby Association received a donation of 28 Rugby Balls from the Ehibam Greifshare Foundation who have been sponsoring the Ehibam Schools Rugby Tournament since 2018 in Edo State and distributed them to 19 Schools who are now to be engaged in the program from 2022.
In appreciation of the special favour done to the Female Rugby to be featured at the 20th National Sports Festival, the Edo State Rugby Coaches and Players decided to honour the sports loving Deputy Governor of Edo State Rt. Hon. Comrade Philip Shaibu with a Birthday Rugby Invitational Matches against its sister State, the Delta State Rugby Male & Female Teams on Wednesday 8 December 2021 at the home of Rugby in Edo State, the Edo Boys High School, Adolor, which now boast of the only dedicated lush green Rugby Pitch in Edo State and Nigeria, courtesy of the Executive Governor of Edo State Mr Godwin Obaseki who provided excellent sporting facilities for the National Sports Festival. Both the Male 10-A-Side and the Female 15-A-Side Matches ended in favour of the host Edo State.
It is expected that once the Rugby Pitch is fitted with Changing Rooms and a Sitting Stand for spectators it will become the best Rugby Arena in the country that can also host International Games in the nearest future.
The 2021 Rugby activities in Edo State ended with a 7-A-Side Rugby Tournament at the same venue on Thursday 9 December 2021 with 6 teams made up of 3 Male & 3 Female teams slugging it out for honours in the Heritage Rugby Event.
1. Dragon Rugby Team = 65points
2. JHV Rugby Team = 40 points
3. Dutch Rugby Team = 15 pointsp
1. Royal Queens Rugby Team = 45 points
2. Diamond Stars Rugby Team = 35 points
3. Young Liones Rugby Team = 5 points
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Rugby Football Federation witnessed a change of guards with the election of a new board led by Dr Ademola Are as President and AIG Aliyu Abubakar as his Vice President.
They have already swang into action by securing a Marketing Deal for the Rugby Federation.
*Nigeria Rugby Football Federation Signs Marketing Deal with Marketing Giant, Pamodzi Sports*
Nigeria’s leading sports marketing company, Pamodzi Sports Marketing Firm have been unveiled as Nigeria Rugby Football Federation’s long-term marketing partner.
As part of the partnership, Pamodzi Sports Marketing will drive the marketing strategy, sponsorship, hospitality and Rights Acquisition for The Nigeria Rugby Football Federation.
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Pamodzi Sports Marketing, Chief Mike Itemuagbor said. “We are really excited to be partnering with the NRFF. We have seen drive, enthusiasm and amount of work being put in by the new President, Dr Ademola Are and our support for them will complement their efforts to see to the growth and development of Rugby in Nigeria.
Nigeria Rugby Football Federation President, Dr Ademola Are stated that the NRFF-Pamodzi partnership is an indication of the bright prospect of Rugby Sponsorship within the country.
“The NRFF Board’s commitment to work with the leading sports marketing organization such as Pamodzi is to change the perception towards Rugby to the betterment of our players and stakeholders within and outside the country. We thank Pamodzi for their belief in NRFF and goodwill. We also thank God for sparing our lives and guiding us through these strange times.”
Pamodzi Sports Marketing is a leader in sports marketing, sponsorship, hospitality and Rights Acquisition business with operations within and outside the shores of Nigeria. The company is presently in a long term partnership with the Nigeria Football Federation and the relationship has been yielding positive results since 1994 when Nigeria qualified for her first ever World Cup in the America.
With Delta State hosting the 21st edition of the National Sports Festival next year 2022 it is expected that Rugby will once again come alive with lots of activities going forward.