The National Council on Sports have revised the number of sporting events to be staged at future National Sports Festivals (NSF) to a maximum of 32 sports comprising 27 compulsory sports and 5 optional sports starting with the 2020 edition of the NSF to be hosted in Benin City, Edo State.
The development was reached at an extraordinary meeting of the Council held from Tuesday 12 -Thursday 14, 2019 in Benin where it was decided to increase the number of compulsory sports to 27 from 22 with the permanent addition of five sports: Karate, Squash, Kick-Boxing, Kung-Fu and Scrabble.
The five optional sports to be staged at the games would be at the discretion of the host state with Edo settling for Para-Tennis, Rugby, Cricket, Deaf Athletics and Golf.
Rugby makes a return to the NSF for the first time since the 2009 Kada games held in Kaduna while the other sports had an outing at the 19th NSF in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) last year.
The National Sports Commission said its decision to increase the number of sporting events at the NSF to a maximum of 32 sports “is in line with practices obtainable in the organization of major International Games i.e. Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games, Continental Games etc.”
Other considerations for settling for no more than 32 sports according to the Council were to reduce the burden of hosting, organizing and participating in the festival.
In selecting the compulsory sports the Council considered the popularity of a particular sport across the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nigeria’s performance in said sport in international competitions as well as the number of States that engaged in the sport at previous Festivals.
The National Sports Festival is enjoying something of a renaissance after a hiatus of six years during which no Festival was staged until the 19th edition in the FCT in 2019 which was won by Delta State. Edo State emerged hosts of the 20th edition at the conclusion of the 19th edition after seeing off competition from Imo, Cross River and Delta States.
The 32 confirmed sports for Edo in 2020 are the most at a Festival since the 37 events featured at the 19th edition in the FCT.
List Of Compulsory Sports For Future National Sports Festivals
- Beach Volleyball
- Para- Athletics
- Para- Powerlifting
- Para- Table Tennis
- Table Tennis
- Volleyball (Indoor)
List Of Optional Sports
- Amputee Football
- Deaf sports (Male and Female Sprint Event in Athletics)
- Para Shooting
- Para Soccer
- Para Swimming
- Para Taekwondo
- Sitting Volleyball
- Traditional Boxing (Dambe)
- Traditional Sport (Abula)
- Traditional Sport (Ayo)
- Traditional Sport (Langa)
- Traditional Wrestling (Kokawa)
- Wheelchair Basketball
- Wheelchair Tennis