Captain of Nigeria U18 Girls handball team, Esther Matthew produced an explosive performance against Ghana in their second match at the ongoing IHF U18 Girls’ Challenge Trophy (Zone 3) in Ghana.
Nigeria dismantled Ghana 49 to 29 goals in front of their home fans as Esther Matthew was adjudged the Most Valuable Player of the match.
An elated Esther Matthew told www.aclsports.com that winning the MVP gives her great joy and excitement.
The Seasiders Babes player revealed that the instruction given by the coaches was never to underestimate any player on the court and it stuck to the head of every player.
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She said, “Winning the MVP against Ghana was a great joy for me, it is a birthday gift that came early. I cannot be more grateful to God for the strength he gave me during the match.
“During the match, the only thing ringing in my head was how to win against the host, Ghana. We all worked hard together and it became a reality. Every player contributed their own quota to the success of the team.
“Before the commencement of the match, our coaches told us not to underrate any team and convert every chance.”
“My inspiration came from the Head Coach who said I had to step up my games”, she added.
Matthew called on Nigerians to continue to pray for and support the team.
She said, “My message to Nigerians watching us and giving their support, is that we will not disappoint you all. On behalf of the female U18 national team, I want to say thank you.”
Meanwhile, head coach of Nigeria U18 Girls handball team, Agboola Shittu told www.aclsports.com that the team were able to play according to the game plan.
Shittu said beating Ghana in front of their home fans feels great adding that no team is unbeatable.
He said, “The team was able to play according to instructions and ball handling has improved. However, our returning back to defence today was not top notch, we need to work on that against Ivory Coast tomorrow (Friday).j
“Nigeria played against the Ghanaian team and the fans. It is natural for the host to get the total support of their home fans; the team is happy to silence them after the first half of the match.
He said, “We changed our starting line up against Ghana by introducing tall players. We are definitely going to rejig our line up against Ivory coast; we are definitely to reflect a more attacking side.”