Less than 7 days to the 2017 Commonwealth and Oceania Weightlifting Championships for Senior, Junior and Youth in Australia, Team Nigeria participation is still in doubt.
The championship is scheduled to take place in the city of Gold Coast from September 3, 2017, attracting 400 lifters and 150 officials coming from 37 countries.
The Nigeria Weightlifting Federation board led by Yahaya Mohammed earlier proposed the total number of eight weightlifters but had to trim the team down to five due to paucity of funds.
ACLSports.com gathered that President of the federation is sourcing for funds in order for the weightlifters to depart the country for Australia on Friday (September 1st).
A source close to ACLSports.com disclosed that, “If the country doesn’t go to the Commonwealth and Oceania Weightlifting Championships, then Nigeria can kiss the 2018 Commonwealth Games goodbye.”
ACLSports.com was told that the Africa Championship ought to be a qualifier for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, but could not due to financial constraints.
The source said: “Don’t forget that the country was not at the 2017 Africa Championships and this championship is the only available lifeline left. Nigeria cannot afford to miss out on the event at Gold Coast.”
The source further said, “Nigeria will have to wait for the wild card. And the lifter will be determined by the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) which is not a nice one.”
The event is also a test event for 2018 Commonwealth Games that will be held in the same venue in Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia from April 4 to 15, 2018.