National champions, Sliders baseball and softball teams, shakes Offa
*Games masters, mistresses got clinic, demonstration game
*District Administrator sends invitation to Offa
By Adejoke Bamidele, Offa
Over 400 children in primary and secondary schools trooped out to watch the silky skills of Nigeria’s best cadet baseball and softball teams, the Sliders of Ilorin’s U-15 team in Offa where they played a demonstration games during the clinic for schools’ games masters and mistresses.
According to the national team coach and two-time All African Games silver medallist, coach Olajide Abidoye, we invited Games masters and mistresses of schools in Offa to come for the clinic.
Games masters and mistresses from eight secondary and primary schools showed interest to learn more about the game.
Four of the Sliders Baseball players who just returned last December from South Africa and eight of the girls that also returned from the week long training from two Dutch coaches from Holland were on parade.
The Sliders teams are national champions in their cadet category.
The four players who returned from the South African programme include Saback Oyeyemi, Olamilekan Oladada, Jamiu Abdulganiyu and Bello Alege.
While the lasses who attended the Dutch training programme in Ibadan are Shekina Bello, Rashidat Mohammed, Naomi Abiodun, Sabiat Adeyemi, Hadizat Abdulganiyu, Deborah John, Sarah Uche, and Dupe Adeoye.
Present to monitor the programme attended by 105 males and females is the Organising Secretary, Mr Niyi
Tinuoye who was joined by several of the volunteers of the programme in the community. Many parents too turned up to come and see the regimen their children are made to pass through.
Coach Influence Gwede in his assessment said, “with this rudimentary training we have been giving the children since January when we started this programme and now seeing how the game is played by people with international experiences, their horizon would definitely have opened.”
Many of the children are so happy because of the new frontiers the twin sport is offering them. We also want to ensure the possibility of bringing these stars from Ilorin once a month to Offa. This will speed up the
training process of the children.
Given also that there are about three Little League invitations already for Poland, Williamsport in America and one other tournament this year, the children are already excited.
In his remarks, Mr Tinuoye said, “as a community we can’t be less thankful for the wide opportunities that these programmes are bringing to not only the parents, volunteers and more especially to the children. The quality of coaches we got is simply outstanding and great.”
“At the rate we are going, in another one year from now, I can boast of emerging new sports stars that will take the name of Offa beyond the shores of the country. Imagine, a programme that is less than three months is already receiving rave comments and invitations for international tourneys. Who would have told some of these kids that sports can take them abroad this year? See
what I mean?”
In a related development, Mr Sunday Oladele, the Little League District Administrator for Nigeria North Central, he congratulated the NSDFI for the Offa initiative and added, “I got a hint of your sporting program in Offa and I am writing as an authority from the office of the District Administrator Nigeria North Central to introduce Little League to you and the benefits.
Little League is a grassroots developmental program of the baseball and softball. I am so impressed with the quality of training you have put in place. For the year 2017, we have a lot of exciting programs including international trips to Poland, Holland, Italy and USA. We extend invitation to your teams. We look forward to you giving these children the needed international exposure.”