The Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung has picked the third place finish of Nigeria’s women national hockey team (Green Hornets) as the best sporting moment of 2017 in Nigerian sports.
Solomon Dalung declared this on Saturday at the Abuja National Stadium while speaking as the special guest of honour during the closing ceremony of the 2018 National Hockey Super League.
Dalung, who praised the Senator Abdul Ningi-led board for their selfless effort, sacrifices and commitment towards returning Hockey to its rightful place among top Nigerian sports, said the Bronze medal meant more than just a third place finish.
In a year where Nigerian sports witnessed remarkable feats such as Super Eagles’ World Cup qualification, Wellington Jighere leading his team to help Nigeria finish as Best Scrabble playing nation at the 2017 WESPA Championship, Nigeria’s Women Basketball Team (D’Tigress) crowned African champions, coach Ekundayo Se Freeman and Bello Tunde Muiz leading Nigeria to Gold and Silver at the 2017 Special Olympics World Winter Games and many more, Dalung stressed that the Green Hornets’ feat was the greatest.
“I am very pleased with what the Senator Abdul Ningi-led board has done in the years it has been in charge of Nigerian Hockey.
“I have been following the remarkable growth that the sport has had in recent years under this board.
“I am particularly pleased with what the team achieved in 2017 at the African Nations Cup. Finishing third at the tournament was the best sporting moment of 2017 in Nigerian sports.
“For a team that has failed to participate at any international tournament in the last 14 years to now turn up and finish third is a great feat,” he said.