SIFAX Group has provided financial support to aid the preparations of two Nigerian athletes competing in the forthcoming Tokyo Olympics.
Dr Taiwo Afolabi, Group Executive Vice Chairman, SIFAX Group, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday in Lagos, signed by the organisation’s Corporate Affairs Manager, Mr Muyiwa Akande.
SIFAX Group is Nigeria’s leading business conglomerate with interest in Maritime, Aviation, among others.
Afolabi said that two table tennis stars, Olufunke Oshonaike and Aruna Quadri, were supported with the sum of $10,000 each.
According to him, the support is provided under the #AdoptAnAthlete programme.
He said that the programme was an initiative of the Federal Ministry of Youth & Sports Development to canvass support from the private sector for athletes representing the country at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
Afolabi said that the financial support would cater to the athletes’ preparations for the Olympics, including medical expenses, hiring of personal trainer, dieting and other related needs.
He commended Mr Sunday Dare, Minister of Youth and Sports Development, for the initiative, describing it as an avenue to further encourage athletes to give their best at the global event.
“We wish to applaud the efforts of the Honourable Minister for bringing relevant stakeholders onboard to support our athletes going to the Tokyo Olympics.
“This laudable initiative will go a long way in encouraging the Olympians to aim for gold, knowing full well that the country is ready to provide some sort of support to put them in the best frame of mind and shape for the competition,” he said.
Afolabi also praised both Quadri and Oshonaike for their outstanding talents and consistency over the years both at local and international levels.
He charged them to do the nation proud at the Olympics.
“The incredible and outstanding talents of Aruna Quadri and Olufunke Oshonaike cannot be overemphasised, as they have represented the nation graciously at various sporting events across the globe and we are proud of them.
“I want to use this opportunity to encourage them to go all the way at the 2020 Olympic Games,” he said.
Oshonaike, who competed at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics Games for the first time, will be at the Tokyo Olympics for the seventh consecutive time, a feat never attained by any African athlete.
Aruna Quadri is currently ranked 27th in the ITTF male world rankings.
In 2014, the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) named him as the Player of the Year, while he was also part of the Nigerian team that won bronze at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Kindly like us on Facebook