The recent nomination of Kingsley Ojeaburu by the Federation of International Basketball Associations ahead of the 2019 Men’s World Cup in China and the U-19 World Cup in Greece has been described by the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) as hope for younger referees in the country.
According to a release from the media department of the Federation, it noted that it was a good sign of better things to come the way of technical officials.
The federation through its President, Musa Kida said the recent recognition to officiate at the biggest global basketball stage bears witness to the growing stature of the game in Nigeria.
“It’s going to be an exciting World Cup affair with Nigeria technically presenting two teams. Apart from the D’ Tigers competing at the world stage for a chance to win the coveted trophy, all eyes will also be on Kingsley Ojeaburu who will be officiating at the World Cup for the second time,” Kida said
Kida described the opportunity as a perfect window for Ojeaburu to make a case for Nigerian referees by being a good ambassador.
“Ojeaburu will not just be going to the World Cup as a FIBA referee; he will also be representing and making a case for the referees back home. As one of the best referees we have in Nigeria, we trust that he will maintain his high level of professionalism which has continued to see him grow.”
The NBBF President said with the constant training and refresher courses being put in place for Nigerian referees, more referees would soon take centre stage on the international stage.
Ojeaburu began his referee career in 1994 and became a FIBA certified referee in 2005 in Abidjan.
Since then, he has gone to officiate at the 2014 Afrobasket Championship in Cote d’Ivoire where he got nominated for his first ever FIBA World Cup in Spain before featuring at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia.