8 January 2013

Nigeria: Hockey Rules Out Participation in 2016 Olympics

Lagos — Nigeria Hockey Federation, NFH, has ruled out its participation in the Brazil 2016 Olympic Games.

President of the federation, Patrick Ukah, said that it is better the NHF focuses on some lesser competitions which will be held around the world to prepare its players for the 2020 Olympics.

To this end, Ukah said the federation will leave nothing to chance to prepare Nigerian players for the three important championships in its calendar this year. The tournaments are the Africa Cup of Nations, the Junior Olympics and the African Club Championships.

According to Ukah, "It is the belief of the hockey federation that we should not waste our time targeting a participation at the 2016 Olympic Games which is very closer to us. But we believe that working towards our participation in the 2020 Games will be productive now.

"That is why we are looking at the Africa Cup of Nations, the Junior Olympic Games and the African Club Championship. We'll use these tournaments to get our teams ready for the Olympic Games in 2012 which is still far away."

Ukah, a former member of Africa Hockey Federation Finance and Marketing Committee, said that the federation would prepare the Nigerian players very well for the three international championships for the country to post good results in those tourneys.

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