Sports

Nwali is MVP as Nigeria retains African Scrabble title in Zambia   

Enoch Tochukwu Nwali was declared most valuable player at the end of the 14th African Scrabble Championship, which Nigeria won to remain the best African country in the sport.

Nwali, a 300 level Health Education student of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), dominated his opponents to become the new king of African scrabble at the competition, which ended in Lusaka, Zambia, yesterday.

Nwali achieved his victory on the final day, when he crossed the finishing line ahead of 85 other players from 10 countries.

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He secured 25½ wins plus a cumulative of plus 2023 points from 32 games, dropping six games and getting a draw in the four days of competition.

Nwali led from day one to finish of the championship, winning his first game against his nearest challenger, fellow Nigerian and former World champion, Wellington Jighere.

The victory in Zambia is the 13th title for Nigeria in the championship, which is in its 14th edition.

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Former World Champion, Wellington Jighere, who was tipped to win the tourney following a successful season, came second ahead of another Nigerian, Prince Omosefe, to complete the top three positions for Team Nigeria.

Both second and third-placed players had the same number of victories, 22, but Jighere had higher cumulative points.

Nigeria’s closest rivals, Team Kenya’s Allan Oyende, with 22 wins and plus 590, finished fourth ahead of Nigeria’s Eta Paul Karo, who placed fifth, Gitonga Nderitu also from Kenya came sixth while Uganda’s Edgar Odongkara was seventh.

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Team Nigeria came tops in the over all medals team table, with Kenya and Ghana second and third respectively.

Speaking to The Guardian from Zambia, yesterday, Nigeria’s national team Coach, Tony Ikolo, stated that the performance of his wards has shown that the country is still a force to reckon with in scrabble globally.

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