Par­adise Games: Ondo squash player vows to re­tain ti­tle

Daily Trust - - SPORT -

Yemisi Olatunji, Ondo State Squash As­so­ci­a­tion player and gold medal­ist at the 19th Na­tional Sports Fes­ti­val, yes­ter­day said she was train­ing hard to de­fend the ti­tle at the forth­com­ing fes­ti­val.

The fi­esta tagged, “Par­adise Games,” would hold from Nov. 23 to Dec. 3 in Cal­abar, Cross River.

Olatunji won gold in in­di­vid­ual event and bronze in the team event at the 19th Na­tional Sports Fes­ti­val tagged EKO 2012 in La­gos.

Ondo State came sixth on the medals ta­ble with 18 gold, 12 sil­ver and 28 bronze, tolling 58 medals.

Olatunji, who is cur­rently the num­ber one fe­male squash player in the coun­try, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Akure, that win­ning medals in Cal­abar would not come easy.

The gold medal­ist, how­ever, said that she was train­ing hard to fend off chal­lenge in or­der to re­tain her medals.

“I have par­tic­i­pated in two fes­ti­vals; KADA Games in 2009 where I lost out in the quar­ter fi­nal.

“The sec­ond and re­cent one is ‘Eko 2012’ in La­gos and I won gold and team bronze.

“I know it is go­ing to be tough. Nor­mal closed fes­ti­val is not al­ways easy. Now that it is open, I need to train harder than be­fore. I am con­fi­dent of com­ing back home with two gold medals,” she said.

Olatunji, who ex­pressed op­ti­mism that the fu­ture of squash was bright in the coun­try, said:

“I know the game will be bet­ter than this be­cause we have per­son­al­i­ties play­ing squash like for­mer Pres­i­dent Oluse­gun Obasanjo who is also our grand pa­tron.

“The Se­nate Pres­i­dent too plays squash. So in the next five years, squash will be one of the best sports in Nigeria.” ( NAN)

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