Cricket Federation Disbands National Team, Sacks Coach


From Olawale Ajimotkan in Abuja

The Nigeria Cricket Federation has disbanded with immediate effect the male national cricket team (Yellow Green) as a consequence of their embarrassing outing at the ICC World Cricket League Division 5 qualifiers in Jersey Island, UK.

Federation president Emeka Onyeama told reporters on Tuesday that national chief coach Uthe Ogbimi has also been relieved of his duty with the team. He said both Ogbimi and team Captain Kunle Adegbola were liable for what happened to the team and on the pitch.

Nigeria, which nursed a high hope of advancing to World Division 4, has now been demoted to the regional amateur category after the scrapping of Division 5 and 6 by ICC.
Onyeama, who tendered unreserved apologies to the Nigerian public, said the performance left a bitter taste in the mouths of everyone.

He said the team underperformed in spite of the intensive preparations and increment of their daily allowance to $100 per day from the old regiment of $25- $50 per day which they met in place.
Onyeama, who noted that given that the national team taken to UK was already too old and no longer reliable, declared that the federation would now undertake a rebuilding process where young players from the U19 team would be upgraded to the national team.

He said a new national coaching crew will be announced in the wake of the proposed North West Africa Tournament and ICC/Africa T-20 tournament scheduled for September.
He refused to attribute the failure to the role of Indian level A coach Shriam Regananthian, who joined the team on the eve of their departure to UK.

He said it would amount to speculation and assumption to attribute the poor outing to the inclusion of the Indian, saying that in cricket people will always take responsibility for failure and success.
Onyeama said the partnership with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BBCI) which brought Regananthian to Nigeria was a based on need basis, adding it has earned four of the country’s young prospects opportunity of playing in India.