President of the Handball Federation of Nigeria (HFN) Samuel Ocheho says the HFN is very prepared and ready for the second phase of the Prudent Energy Handball Premier League which commences in Lagos this weekend.
Twelve male and 11 female teams (with the Ghana Police female team competing on a non-scoring basis) from different parts of the country are expected in Lagos for the tournament which runs from 4th to 17th October, 2019.
After putting necessary logistics in place for the commencement of the league, Ocheho said the HFN are now waiting for the second phase of the elite league to start.
“In terms of readiness for the Prudent Energy Handball League that will be holding from the 4th to the 17th of October in Lagos, the Handball Federation of Nigeria is very ready,” the ex-international handball player said. “We’ve put everything in place; we are doing everything within our best possible means to ensure that the championship is hitch-free.
“We are on the final stages of preparation, and everything is going on well right now.
“So, I believe that we are fully ready and waiting for the teams to arrive so that games can kickoff on Saturday.”
At the conclusion of the first phase of the Prudent Energy Handball League in Abuja, Kano Pillars lead the male category, while Road Safety Babes occupy top spot in the female standings.
Ocheho, has however, predicted that things could change at the top, adding that fans who will be at Rowe Park in Yaba for the matches should expect fireworks and upsets.
“The fans should expect a lot of fireworks. The fans should expect the best of handball that Nigeria can offer on display,” the HFN boss promised.
“If you look at the log from the first phase, you’ll find out that things are very, very tight, and the teams are not very far from each other.
“I expect a lot of upsets in the second phase. Kano (Pillars) are currently leading in the male category. Would they be able to retain it? The second phase will judge. Safety Shooters are right behind them, pursuing them. There other teams behind them also running after them.
“So, I think it’s going to be fireworks. Nobody will want to give the trophy away to the other just like that. So, we expect a lot of handball artistry on display.
“Even from the female side, it is very close one between Road Safety babes and Plateau Peacocks.
“So we wait and see. But I believe the fans will have no dull moment,” Ocheho concluded.
Champions in both the male and female categories will go home with the sum of one million naira (N1m).