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Nigeria cricket team and coach sacked by cricket federation

The Nigerian cricket team finished last in the six-team ICC World Cricket League Division Five tournament.

Nigeria cricket team
The Nigerian cricket team which participated in the WCL Division Five tournament

In a shocking turn of events, the Nigeria Cricket Federation reportedly decided to disband the country’s men’s cricket team and also sack their coach. The reason behind this drastic decision was Nigeria’s dismal performance in the recently concluded ICC World Cricket League Division Five tournament, which was played in the Jersey island of UK. The six-nation tournament, which was clinched by home side Jersey, saw the Nigerians finish right at the bottom as they lost to Tanzania in the 5th place playoff. The other teams that featured included Oman, Vanuatu and Guernsey.

Federation president Emeka Onyeama made the announcement while addressing a press conference in Nigeria’s capital city Abuja. Onyeama also took the opportunity to highlight the kind of preparation that the team had undergone to help them produce results. He said, “The team had three phases of camping, which ran for two months, where over 40 players were assessed and the best 14 chosen to represent the country.”

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“Allowances for pre-tournament in the UK of $50 per day and $100 per day for the tournament proper were paid in full before their departure. This is the first time this administration was paying the national team $100 per day for international tournaments as against the usual $25 to $50 given to them prior to the inception of this administration,” he disclosed about the financial perks that the team received.

Apart from that, the federation also hired the services of a BCCI-certified coach to provide inputs to the team’s head coach. About this development, Onyeama said, “The federation also went into partnership with Shriram Regananthan, a Level A coach certified by the Board of Control for Cricket India. This was to assist the national team coach to improve the skills of the players and our chances to gain promotion to Division Four of the league."

Despite these preparations, the Nigerian men’s team failed to produce a noteworthy performance in a tournament of great importance for them and this has disappointed the federation president to a great extent. This team was prepared in the best way to have earned us victory instead of this dismissal result.,” he was quoted saying.

Talking about what the future holds for the country’s cricket, Emeka Onyeama revealed, “The federation is undertaking a rebuilding process of the national team where young players of U-19 with passion for the game will wear the national colours. A new team and coaching crew will be announced and communicated accordingly in the wake of the proposed North-West Africa Tournament.”

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