By Taofeek Lawal
Mambila Barracks Badminton Club during the weekend in Abuja emerged winners of the FCT Badminton Mini Championships. The championship which is in its second edition was organised by the FCT Badminton Association for both active and veteran players at the Mambila Barracks.
A total of five clubs in the FCT took part in the tournament, namely; City Gate, Head of Service, Kubwa, Gracious Hotel and Mambila Barracks Badminton Club.
The pair of Ayo Akoda and David Umar of Mambila Barracks combined well in the men’s doubles category to finish unbeaten in the championships. They defeated the pair of Charles Gado and Abubakar Ado also of Mambila Barracks 3-1 in the final to win the championship’s first prize. They had earlier seen off City Gate Club’s pair of Benedict Nwakalor and Yerima Abubakar in three straight sets in the semifinals. Gado and Ado also of Mambila Badminton Club finished second, while the pair of Nwakalor and Abubakar of City Gate settled for the third position.
The Chairman, FCT Badminton Association who spoke to newsmen at the end of the tournament said the purpose of the championship was to create awareness about the game in the FCT. “We intend to organise a junior and veteran’s competition as well as a national competition where we will classify our professionals from number one to the lowest ranked player in the FCT. “We will also organise grassroots development programs for primary and secondary schools in the FCT so as to catch them young,’’ he said.
Also, Ahmed Mabudi, the Chairman, FCT Hockey Association who was a participant at the tourney noted that he was impressed with the organization of the tournament
“I played in a demonstration match for veteran players who are above 50 years and it was really interesting. We hope to learn from this. “I think there is a need for synergy between the Hockey and Badminton Association so as to ensure that FCT continue to progress in all sporting activities. “I call on other associations in the FCT to join hands together for the growth and development of sports in the FCT. “This is the Federal Capital of Nigeria and we want nothing but the best here,’’ he said.
The championship is expected to be held every fortnight. A total of five clubs are expected to take part in the next edition namely; Gwagwalada, Suleja, Immigration, FRSC and Mambila Barracks Badminton clubs.