Yobe State athletes have begun preparations for the 19th National Sports Festival, the state’s Director of Sports Council, Baba Mustapha, has said.
The festival tagged Paradise Games 2014 is scheduled to take place between November 23 to December 7 in Calabar, Cross River State.
Mustapha told the News Agency of Nigeria in Lagos during the week that the athletes were being trained by top coaches.
He said, “They will be called to camp very soon so that they will have a more conducive environment to get prepared for a successful outing at the festival.
“This has to do with providing good training facilities; we are very passionate about their wellbeing since they are going to Calabar to represent the state.
“We are aware that the festival is open, which makes it more competitive. I am sure that is the reason for their early training.”
According to him, exceptional athletes identified in various sports through the council’s grassroots programmes will represent the state at the Games.
“This is to promote and expose our budding talents at the national level and to provide opportunity for them to compete outside the state,’’ Mustapha added.
He expressed the optimism that the athletes would improve on their performances.
NAN reports that Yobe won one silver and four bronze medals at the 18th edition of the festival in Lagos in 2012.