A total of 17 athletes and 18 officials on Tuesday departed Abuja for Argentina ahead of the 2018 Youth Olympics slated for Oct. 6 to Oct. 18, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.
The athletes include five athletics, two badminton, two table tennis, two rowing and canoeing, two wrestlers, two golfers and two boxers.
Bidding the team farewell at the Abuja National Stadium, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Youths and Sports, Olusade Adesola, urged them to go for the best and compete clean to make the country proud.
According to him, “the athletes are in high spirit, we have trained them very well to enable them excel’’.
“We have cultivated in them the passion to deliver and I am sure they will deliver knowing that they are not only representing Nigeria but Africa.
“They are not under any pressure to deliver but they have the passion to do so. Our slogan is: `whatever is good, is good for me’, they are going there to compete and come out victorious.
“We encourage them to be kind, hospitable, considerate but to go for victory, they are not going to play the game under the influence of inducement, they are going for fair games,’’ he said.
Speaking on behalf of the team, Captain Ineh Emmanuel pledged to give their best to make the country proud.
“We are the best of the best here that make the team for the youth Olympics, and I believe that we are going to put in our best,’’ he said.
He thanked the ministry for the support and encouragement to the team, adding that they had adequate training that will see them through the championship.
NAN also reports that Nigeria would participate in eight sports, while the second batch of the team would depart on Oct. 10.