NEWS DIGEST – No fewer than 18 players have been selected to represent Nigeria at the All Africa Senior Badminton Championships which comes up from April 22- to April 28 in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

The list made available by the Badminton Federation of Nigeria (BFN) on Tuesday in Lagos is made up of nine male and nine female players, while three senior national coaches will handle the team.

The men’s team is made up of Nigeria’s number one player, Anuoluwapo OpeyoriI, Godwin Olofuwa, Eneojo Abah, Clement Krobrakpo, Habeeb Bello, Aliyu Shehu.

Others are Gideon Babalola, Kayode Mope and Isaac Minaphee.

In the women’s team, Dorcas Adesokan, Deborah Ukeh, Peace Orji, Chinenye Ebere, Amin Christopher, Sofiat Obanisola, Ramat Yakubu.

Zanab Alabi and Augustina Sunday make up the number of women for the event.

The Head Coach is Benjamin Orakpo, while George Shitta and Susan Agboola as Assistant Coaches

Already, 18 countries have registered for the showpiece event which will see the best male and female Badminton players on the African continent compete for glory.

These countries include: Algeria, Benin, Botswana, Congo, Congo DRC, Eritrea, Egypt, Ghana and Ivory Coast.

Other participating countries are Kenya, Mauritius, Seychelles, South Africa, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe and host Nigeria.

In a related development, Brisby Christopher Egbonyi, who just graduated from University of Port Harcourt won the mascot competition.

He will be presented with the prize money of N100,000 during the championships.

At the unveiling ceremony in Port Harcourt, the Commissioner for Sports, Boma Iyaye who represented the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, applauded BFN for their vision.

He thanked them for highlighting the rich cultural heritage of the Rivers people.

He said that governor was committed to ensuring the event was a huge success.

He appealed to the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports to back Rivers to host other sporting events in 2019 and beyond. (NAN)