Bamidele Olowosagba

Team Lagos have won the star prize of N2 million at the just concluded 2nd Ochei Wheelchair Basketball International Championship held inside the Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Surulere, Lagos Saturday.

Team Lagos defeated Delta State in the final by 40-29 points. Runners up got the sum of N1.5m, while the third place winners, Edo State got N1m from the sponsor, Victor Ochei, the Speaker of the Delta State House of Assembly.

Coach of Team Lagos, Ayinde Balogun, who took Team Oyo to the first edition last year, said that the support they received from their teeming fans motivated them to the final where they dethroned the defending champions, Team Delta.

“We will like to dedicate this victory to all our fans that ensured that we were not alone in this tournament despite the fact that we started on a slow pace in the beginning of the competition. We are really proud of them because we never knew we could enjoy so much support from the Lagosians despite the fact that the championship is being hosted in Lagos for the first time.

“We also want to thank the Lagos State government, through the Office of the Commissioner for Youths, Sports and Social Development headed by Enitan Osodi for the moral and financial support they gave to us,” said coach Balogun, who is fondly called ‘Ashana Pro’.

Meanwhile, in its bid to reward the victorious Team Lagos for their triumph, the Lagos State government has promised to purchase 10 new modern wheelchairs for the team. This was disclosed by the Commissioner for Sports, Osodi, while congratulating Team Lagos for their success.

A Team Lagos’ player, Ahmed Ogunbona, was adjudged as the most valuable player and the highest pointer of this year’s tourney. He was given the sum of N500, 000 with a new wheelchair.

Twelve states of the federation took part in the grassroots sports competition, while Ghana, Togo and Benin Republic were international teams that featured in the tourney.

The third edition is scheduled to hold next year at the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja.