The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Thursday promised to developed the sport and make it more popular than football in Nigeria, says Patricia Kambarami, ICC official.
Kambarami, ICC Development Manager for Africa and the ICC leader of delegation to Nigeria said this at a press briefing in Abuja to climax the working visit of the council to Nigeria.
“It is an honour for us to be in Nigeria, it is my first visit and I already like what I have seen.
“We at the ICC are looking at Nigeria as one of the power houses in Africa, we are here to review the state of cricket in Nigeria, in terms of government relations, media relations and other areas.
“It is important that the Nigeria Cricket Federation (NCF) follows the ICC standard and policies because without this, it will be difficult to work together,”she said.
Kambarami said that Nigeria’s population was a good opportunity to harness the potential that was needed in cricket in Africa.
“The population of Nigeria gives us a great potential to grow the numbers that we need in Africa cricket.
“Currently the numbers are not there, but we believe that after our visit we will grow the numbers in Nigeria. It is important to work with government to introduce cricket in schools,” she added.
Earlier, Adams Ukwenya, President of NCF said his administration would focus on making Nigeria a full member of ICC.
“Nigeria has played cricket for over a 100 years, we move up the ranked from being an affiliate to associate country in 2002.
” For now, the next direction for us is becoming a full member of ICC. We are glad that the ICC is taking serious interest in our growth at the time that Nigeria wants to become one of the country in ICC.
“The full members in ICC are only 12, two from Africa, and we hope that if we press the right buttons, Nigeria will be the next African nation to be a full member,” he said.
Ukwenya said that the ICC delegation was in Nigeria to look at the state of affairs in cricket and help the country to become a full member of ICC.
He said that becoming a full member nation of ICC would give Niheria direct access to the world cup and other interesting benefits.