NEWS DIGEST – The Qatar Volleyball Association has extended a wild card to athletes in the Nigeria Volleyball Federation (NVBF) to compete in this year’s Katara Beach Volleyball Cup.

Francis Imoudu, The head coach of the beach volleyball team, made this known on Monday in Lagos.

If athletes are given a wild card for a particular competition, they are allowed to play in it, although they have not qualified for it in the usual way.

Imoudu said that top beach volleyball players like Jefferson Bellaguarda (Brazil), Kay Matysik (Germany), Phil Dalhausser (USA) and Todd Rogers (USA) will star in this year’s extravaganza.

It is going to be staged at Katara Amphitheater in Qatar from March 12 to March 16.

Nigeria is the only African team invited for the four-star event allotted by the FIVB in the Middle East.

Imoudu expressed joy over the invitation and promised that Nigeria will put up a good performance at the event.

He said that Obayemi Ogunshina and Hilary Simon will fly the colours of Nigeria in Qatar.

Imoudu said that it was a thing of pride and joy for Nigeria to be the only African side at the four star championship.

“I want to assure Nigerians, including the President of the Nigeria Volleyball Federation, Mr Musa Nimrod, that we are going to put up a good performance.

“This invitational championship will also prepare the boys for the busy 2019 calendar and also use the opportunity to score points for the world FIVB ratings,’’ Imoudu said.

He said the invitational championship was made possible by the efforts of the NVBF President and immediate past president, Gumel.

According to Imoudu, Nigeria has never participated in an FIVB Beach tour, this is the first time and we are the only Africa team in an entry of over forty countries.

He said that the nation is enjoying this privilege due to the positive hard work of the president who sits on the FIVB board.

“The championship is the second of the 10 competitions called FIVB 4stars to be organised during the 2019 season by the International Volleyball Federation worldwide.

“The competition in Doha will see the participation of 56 teams from 28 different countries.

“In the main draw, the world’s top 14 out of 16 teams will be contesting for the title, which shows the value of the event,’’ Imoudu said.(NAN)