Department of human kinetics staffers with the NSDFI team

Africa Cycling Championship 2022: South Africa Wins

 

 

By Our Reporter

 

One would have expected the Nigeria contingent to the 4th edition of Africa Cycling Championship in Abuja but Lack of motivation and low morale immensely weighed down the Nigeria Cyclists in the 2022 African Track Cycling Championship won by South Africa on Sunday at the Velodrome of Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.

South Africa beat 13 other countries to emerge champions, as hosts Nigeria distantly finished in the fourth position.

The dispirited Nigeria cyclists struggled to win four gold, seven silver and six bronze medals to end with 17 medals to occupy the fourth position; unlike the recent Africa Cup Championship that the cyclists dominated at the same venue.

Some of the Nigeria cyclists who spoke to Page3news.com.ng on the condition of anonymity said there was no proper preparation for the continental championship. “Our preparation and welfare during this African Track Cycling Championship was completely zero and a complete departure from the previous ones that we featured in. This time, there was no proper training and our feeding was next to zero.

According to some of the athletes, “We’re not expected to perform optimally with virtually empty stomach. Our performance is a signal to the management of cycling that all is not well with us. remember when we assembled here for the Africa Cup Championship, that we dominated virtually all events featured. this time, it’s a different story. We oftentimes fed ourselves while in camp”, some of the cyclists disclosed.

Reports have it that the Nigeria Cycling Federation, NCF president Engr Giadomenico Massari’s marketing strategy for the championship failed, as he had wanted to stage the continental championship without going cap in hand to the Ministry of Youth and Sports Development.

According to reports,
Massari believing that he could attract sponsorship, has been going round the corporate organisations without any positive response, thus was eventually left in the cold as the expected sponsors suddenly failed to honour their obligations. He had no choice but to cut down some of the expenses.

The disappointment adversely affected him even till the final on Sunday, as he was yet to believe that the sponsors have disappointed him. He managed to force a smile on his guests.

Champion South Africa amassed a total of 43 medals comprising 20 gold, 13 silver and 9 bronze.

Egypt placed second with eight gold, eight silver and 10 bronze while Algeria came third with five gold, five silver and seven bronze medals.

Host Nigeria got four gold, seven silver and six bronze medals to end with 17 medals for fourth position while Morocco followed in the fifth position with four gold, five silver and four bronze. Benin Republic and Cote d’Ivoire garnered one bronze medal each.

Prof. Igbekele Ajibefun, the Vice Chancellor of Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba-Akoko and his guests

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